London Mountain Lodge approved 

Rezoning for the London Mountain Lodge retreat on Nita Lake was approved by council this week, subject to protection of a Valley Trail right of way.

Ross Depner’s proposed retreat includes a lodge and 25 small log cabins on 10 acres of land on the western shore of Nita Lake. The lodge will offer seven two-room guest suites, an 80-seat fine dining restaurant, a small spa and high-tech meeting rooms.

The concept for the development is to capture a traditional turn-of-the century log lodge ambience.

The 25 two-bedroom log cabins will be placed in the surrounding forest and linked with walkways. Each will offer a small kitchen and covered deck area. The cabins will be sold individually – similar to a strata-titled hotel – and will be placed in a rental pool. Guests will be able to cook their own meals, order room service, walk to the lodge for a meal or access Creekside restaurants via a valley trail that will cross the railway and link with the existing trail at Jordan Creek. A shuttle service to the village is also planned.

A heritage cabin and barn on the property will be used for an artists-in-residence program. Staff housing will also be provided in cabins on the property.

The project received third reading by Whistler council Dec. 4, following a Nov. 20 public hearing. The only speaker at the public hearing was Garry Watson, who lives opposite the property on the other side of Nita Lake. Watson supports the project but suggested the cabins be restricted to a maximum footprint size.

Mike Purcell, director of planning, told council Monday Watson’s suggestions had been reviewed but rejected. Purcell said the site will be subject to a development permit, which allows planning staff to review each building site and ensure the best possible design. Purcell added that the zoning bylaw limits the overall square footage on the property.

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