Hotel bookings in P.E.I. strong as Canada Winter Games draw near
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CHARLOTTETOWN, PEI — With just weeks to go until the start of the 2023 Canadian Winter Games in PEI, the province is expected to see an influx of tourism dollars, particularly for hotels.
This is typically a slow time of the season, said Betty Anne Morrison, director of sales and marketing at Delta Prince Edward in Charlottetown.
“It gives our employees more hours and provides a lot of work, and it helps the whole island’s economy, typically during a slow season,” she said.
In addition to providing accommodation for Canada Games staff and sponsors, the hotel also hosts judo and table tennis tournaments. The hotel is now 80 percent fully booked.
“It’s going to be very, very crowded because of the Canada games, so we’re really looking forward to that,” said Luke Thompson, the hotel’s Guest Service Manager.
“The phone is ringing a lot more and things are changing because people are coming from all over Canada. Reservations are constantly changing due to flights. There is much to do.”
Many downtown hotels are booked by employees and sponsors. This leaves the parents and families of hundreds of athletes to book accommodation in various hotels and inns on Prince Edward Island.
Douglas Horner, general manager of the Loyalist Country Inn and Conference Center in Summerside, reports that the inn is 70 percent full.
“We offered a special package of prizes for the games, that’s about $20 off our regular price, and that’s on our loyalist’s website for everyone to see. We also offer the Hospitality Suite 24 hours a day, 7 days a week,” he said.
The hotel provides free parking. It’s also revamping the menu at its restaurant.
“We have geared our menu, which is based on healthy eating, to the Games and the athletes. We are extending the opening hours for the restaurant, bar and lounge.”
Cory Snow, manager of the Microtel Inn in Summerside, said he too is seeing high occupancy rates at the new hotel.
“We are doing our best to ensure staff are ready and prepared and our facilities are in the best condition so that guests traveling to the Canada Games or other events have the best experience,” Snow said.
The hotel is connected to Credit Union Place, one of the main venues for the 2023 Winter Games.
“You can go straight from our hotel to the Credit Union Place, the sports venues, the pools and the fitness center that are there, the conference center, so many activities will be right next to us, such as sports activities and other events related to the Canada Games,” he said.
They also have a few other events leading up to the Canada Games, Snow said.
“Like small hockey tournaments, concerts here at Credit Union Place, that’s really going to help us prepare for the Canada Games and make sure we’re ready to take people from all over Canada when they land here at Summerside and PEI.”
Jennie Pham is a sophomore in journalism at Holland College in Charlottetown.