The annual Tourism Vancouver Island Gala Dinner and Awards Ceremony was held recently in Port Hardy and a Comox Valley company came away with a prestigious honour.
Kingfisher Oceanside Resort and Spa was presented the Innovator of the Year Award for the extensive renovations done at the resort.
“Sponsored by Eclipse 360, the Innovator of the Year Award recognizes a tourism stakeholder that has developed or renewed a tourism product, package, or initiative that captures the attention of visitors and increases the desirability of the Vancouver Island Region as a destination,” said Lana Cheong, of Tourism Vancouver Island in a press release. “This year the award was presented to the Kingfisher Oceanside Resort and Spa. The transformation of this property over two years has taken this resort to a new level. The Pacific Mist Spa, Ocean7 Restaurant and Aqua Bistro and Wine Bar have gone under extensive renovations to bring these amenities to a 5-star level. One of the most extensive renovations is the ‘Serenity Gardens,’ which encompasses the courtyard of the property and allows guests to relax in a serene setting while taking in the breathtaking view.”
“We are so honoured to receive the award from the Vancouver Island tourism community,” said Kingfisher sales and events manager Linda Bridgman. “This award symbolizes the significant investment and innovative change that has occurred at the Kingfisher Oceanside Resort & Spa over the past few years, and there’s more to come in the new future.”
The Serenity Gardens alone was a $300,000 project, according to Kingfisher owner Bill Brandes.
Now that the renovations to the spa, restaurants and courtyard are complete, attention will turn to the interior and exterior of the hotel.
“It’s going to turn into a very craftsman-style hotel, like something you’d see on the California coastline, like in Santa Barbara,” he said.
“One wing of our first building – the Ocean Courtyard wing – has been closed for a few months now,” said Bridgman. “It looks incredible… it’s going to open next month, and the change is incredible. It’s a stunning rebuild of our first building. Once that’s complete we are going to pause for a bit prior to the next phase.”
According to Brandes, the total bill for all renovations will be an estimated $7 million.
The Tourism Vancouver Island Gala Dinner and Awards were part of the TVI 55th Annual Conference.