Its $6.5-million renovation complete, the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel opened its doors Tuesday.
The upscale renovation of the former Coast Canadian is a major boost to the city’s downtown. General manager Stephen Earl noted it is the only branded hotel in the city centre and will draw a business crowd.
The hotel opened with about 20 guests and is expected to ramp up its occupancy over the next seven days. The renovation took 19 months and included every part of the exterior and interior.
“Everything was done: rooms, corridors, lobby, meeting rooms, fitness facilities and pool,” Earl said in an interview.
Opening of the hotel will also return a conference and meeting facility to the downtown that was a staple of government and business when the property was operated by Coast Canadian, which has since moved its flag to Aberdeen.
The hotel will operate a restaurant and lounge called Citrus, with local brews, wines and what the company called a fusion menu of West Coast and international cuisine.
The hotel also has a new outdoor patio.
Earl said Hilton’s loyalty program has 16 million members worldwide, something that will draw business guests and tourists to the St. Paul Street property.
The hotel will soon receive ratings under the star and diamond programs. Earl expects a four-star rating for the renovated property.
“We’ll be getting our rating, now we’re open. We’ll be at the top of the list as a full-service brand.”
Renovations to the hotel follow major investments to two others downtown — Hotel 540 and the Plaza Heritage Hotel — in the past several years.