Sunridge party draws a paying crowd 

An unauthorised commercial dance party held on Valentine’s Day at a luxury rental home in Sunridge has left property managers reeling and may result in charges being laid against the organizers, according to the Whistler RCMP.

Police were called to the house on Sunridge Drive on Feb. 14 to deal with a noise complaint. The duplex property is owned by a California couple and is managed by Whistler Exclusive Property Management.

Neighbours said the party continued until 10 a.m. the next morning and claim party occupants were selling drinks at the bar in the house. Up to 150 people were at the dance party.

A woman who attended the event says the organizers charged $20 per head to recover the cost of renting the property for the night. Organizers were reportedly selling tickets to the party in bars in Whistler Village beforehand. Neighbours say there was a constant stream of traffic going to and from the house between 2 and 4 a.m. People without tickets were turned away and reportedly broke into a nearby house that was under construction. No damage has been reported at any of the properties in the immediate area.

RCMP Sergeant Wayne Mossman says the matter has been turned over to the municipality’s bylaw department to investigate possible zoning infringements. He says charges may also be laid under noise level bylaws.

"Police asked the occupants to turn down the music and it appears this was not done satisfactorily," Mossman said.

The presence of a commercial party on a private, residential property is another issue.

Patrick McCurdy, the president of Whistler Exclusive Property Management, says his staff were deceived by the renters.

"It came as a total shock to find out," he said. "One of the staff knew the person who wanted to rent the property and he said it was for a group of executives visiting Whistler for the purpose of acquainting themselves with the local high end property market."

He says all rental contacts are double-checked as a matter of course and a staff member drove by the property around 11 p.m. on Valentine’s Day.

"The place was quiet and appeared unoccupied," he said. "We certainly wouldn’t tolerate any occupancy of a commercial nature and the party was totally without our knowledge or consent."

McCurdy says he doesn’t know of any recourse available to him but will be extremely cautious in the future.

"It’s disappointing that someone would take advantage of a personal contact situation." He says all residential rental properties contain a "no parties" clause.

The municipality is looking into the issue.

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