Jul 1, 2008 | Marmot, Summer 2008

Mount Washington’s Renovation Revolution

Mount Washington Alpine Resort’s Alpine Lodge is undergoing some changes that patrons will be able to see both inside and out.

“We’re renovating to accommodate wedding and conference business in the off-season, Resort Food and Beverage Manager Tim Defert said.

The number of weddings taking place at Mount Washington has risen exponentially since he took over as Food and Beverage Manager three years ago. That year, the Resort was seeing six to ten weddings per year. Now’, they’re up to 30. “We have bookings all the way to 2010 already,” Defert said. They even have three or four winter weddings booked for 2008-09.

Although Raven Lodge has been the destination of choice for couples wanting to tie the knot in an alpine setting, the Resort renovated the Whiskey Jack Room in Summer 2007 so the wedding business could expand to the Alpine Lodge.

Meanwhile, the Resort is completing renovations to the top floor, Marketing Director Karen Bonell said. “The emphasis is on warmth and woodwork,” Defert said. “It will give it a more lodge-like feel, which will complement our focus on healthy choices for the next season.”

A new conference area has been created at one end of the Alpine Café; a sliding door can be open during peak times when more table space is needed, or closed for conference or small meeting space as necessary.

The new area features a dropped ceiling and better lighting, as well as new banquet chairs purchased last year, Bonell said.

Mount Washington can accommodate conferences of up to 500 people, depending on the type of event.

“We are targeting larger conferences, especially because of all the activities offered – not just on the mountain, but in the surrounding area, with golf, fishing and all the rest of it,” Defert said.

The new “lodge-like” atmosphere will continue outside, as the Resort plans to change the look of the Alpine Lodge’s exterior.

Staff will work on designs of a wooden façade for the Lodge throughout the spring and summer. The project will cost in the neighbourhood of $500,000, Bonell said. Construction will start this summer.

Over at Raven Lodge, the Lodge has been recarpeted and painted in anticipation of the wedding season. “The new colour in there has actually made the wood pop out,” Bonell said. “It’s absolutely fabulous.”

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