Reconstruction of iconic Algonquin Resort on track: officials
Officials won’t offer a firm date, but they insist one of the biggest reconstruction projects in New Brunswick is on track.
At least 150 trades workers are working on the Algonquin Resort in St. Andrews each day; sometimes more than 200 workers are on site.
From the outside, it appears unlikely the landmark hotel will be reopening anytime soon, but general manager Tim Ostrem says that isn’t so.
“This will be one of the most exciting hotel openings in Canada this year,” he says.
Ostrem insists the hotel will be ready for the start of the tourist season in June, although he’s reluctant to offer a firm date just yet.
“We don’t want to open unless our guests are able to experience the new Algonquin Resort, so most of our facility, with the exception of some rooms that are not seen or don’t affect the public, will be ready.”
Close to $30 million is being spent on the 124-year-old building.
In terms of the local economy, the hotel is one of the most important buildings in St. Andrews, and perhaps in all of southwest New Brunswick. It brings hundreds of people into the area every night during tourism season, and it was sorely missed last summer when it was closed.
Many merchants in the area noticed a significant drop in business last summer, without the hotel to draw tourists to the area.
St.Andrews Mayor Stan Choptiany says the upgrade will allow the Algonquin to compete with other resort areas in the Maritimes.
“With the change in how they’re approaching this, they will have a full fitness centre and a three-storey waterslide. That will bring the kind of things that other resorts in other towns have,” says Choptiany.
The new owners expect to announce an official opening date in a few weeks.
With files from CTV Atlantic's Mike Cameron