Boutique lodge units hit local marketplace 

Its future may have hung in the balance throughout early 2004 but now the Nita Lake Lodge is moving full steam ahead with real estate sales.

Last week, the developers invited local real estate agents to Millennium Place for the official launch of 30 units in the upscale lodge.

David Ehrhardt, a principal in the Nita Lake Lodge Corporation, explained that they wanted to offer the units to local real estate agents and their clients first before marketing the hotel to outside investors.

"Our motivation was at two levels," said Ehrhardt.

"One is that we had heard from people in the community that they would like to have an opportunity to get to the head of the line, so to speak. And secondly we wanted also to be supportive of the local realtors.

"If you’re in the community then I think you should support the community."

The marketing process is designed so that people can present an offer through their favourite realtor.

More than half the units are already spoken for in the 77-unit lodge.

"Some of the original investors (in the Nita Lake Lodge Corporation) are going to take units and convert their investment position into an ownership position," said Ehrhardt.

The remaining units vary in price from $425,000 to $967,000, depending on the unit size and location.

That price includes a full furniture package.

The hotel will be the first full-service boutique hotel in Whistler with a restaurant, lounge, coffee shop/deli, banquet facility, swimming pool and three hot tubs.

It will be a Phase II property, based on a similar revenue sharing model as the present Pan Pacific hotel at the base of the mountains.

"Quite frankly, we’ve modelled ourselves after that because of the tremendous success that that particular property has had," said Ehrhardt.

Developers are hoping the lodge will eventually become a member of the Relais & Chateaux organization of leading boutique hotels throughout the world.

The comprehensive Nita Lake Lodge development also includes 14 single family homes on the west side of Nita Lake. Those homes are not yet on the market but Ehrhardt expects that they should be up for sale in about one month.

In the meantime he said the company will be accepting offers on its hotel units as of Monday, July 12.

Anyone presenting an offer before that will have it dated and stamped to ensure fairness.

The units are being marketed through the Whistler Real Estate Company.

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