Looking Forward to HI-Pacific Mountain Region’s Future
We at Hostelling International - Canada - Pacific Mountain Region (HI-C-PM Region) have always believed that our best days of hostelling are still ahead of us. In this light, we are excited to share with you our current as well as our future hostel developments.
Hostelling International started over 100 years ago in Germany. Yet despite its humble beginnings, hostelling has now grown to become a worldwide phenomenon that enriches the lives of people, both young and old. Here in Canada, our hostelling legacy spans over 75 years, starting with the Barclay Sisters and their simple, rented tent in Bragg Creek, Alberta. Today, HI-Canada boasts over 55 hostels from coast to coast and most recently opened a brand new, purpose built hostel in Whistler in July 2010. Times have most certainly changed, but it would never have been possible without the ideas, dreams and determination of a few.
Every day, HI-C-PM Region welcomes guests from around Canada and the world at any one of our 31 properties in British Columbia, Alberta and the Yukon. In our ongoing efforts to keep the Barclay's legacy and dreams alive, HI-C-PM Region has developed a set of Mega End and Sub Ends that both Board and Staff look to when making operational and development decisions.
Our Region's Mega End and Sub Ends are:
A community of travellers, when experiencing people, places, and cultures in Western Canada, have as many genuine hostelling options as the organization can sustain.
1.1. Members and Travellers can experience Pacific Mountain Region’s unique geographical and cultural landscapes through a network of strategically located hostels. It is further interpreted to include but not limited to:
- Hostels are located to provide access to a spectrum of geographical and cultural landscapes in the Pacific Mountain Region. The network will grow at a rate of at least one hostel every three years commencing April 01, 2009.
- Financially sustainable hostels situated in all key urban centres and top international destinations in the Pacific Mountain Region by 2026.
- Guest utilize wilderness hostels for active experiential pursuits at an annual occupancy rate of at least 45% by 2015 and at a net direct operating cost not exceeding $50,000 annually.
1.2. Members and Travellers in the Pacific Mountain Region can participate, in a genuine hostelling experience characterized by:
- A focus on affordability.
- A welcoming environment for all ages, and an emphasis on young people.
- Hostel facilities and programs that encourage interaction.
- Hostel facilities and programs that reflect and encourage an experience of the surrounding culture and geography.
- Hostel facilities and programs that model and promote environmental stewardship.
- A focus on participation and volunteerism.
Since the formation of the HI-PM Region six years ago, an average of $500,000 to $600,000 has been spent annually on capital improvements in our hostels; along with additional funds for major capital projects such as the new HI-Whistler property, new heating system and window replacement at HI-Vancouver Jericho Beach, as well as washrooms and public areas of HI-Vancouver Downtown.
As we look forward to the next ten years, we have several more major capital projects planned, such as:
- Redevelopment of HI-Vancouver Central (common space on the main floor)
- New hostel in Calgary by the end of 2015 (current lease expires December 2015)
- New hostel in the town of Jasper to replace the current HI-Jasper
As we face the next chapter of hostelling, we see ourselves continuing to play a role in neighborhoods around the region, in Canada and around the world in the hope of forming stronger connections with our members and guests - to build a "community of travellers". With our strong brand identity, HI has the freedom and flexibility to be innovative and explore new channels of distribution that will keep us in step with our current members and guests and hopefully recruit new followers and believers too.
For updates on our latest developments and capital projects, please visit this web page for more information. We also invite you to share your ideas and comments with us.
Please email your comments to Alistair McLean, CEO of HI-Canada's Pacific Mountain Region.