Changes at Blue Mountain
This is the final part of this 4-part series
Intrawest and Blue Mountain know that in order for the resort to remain vibrant and solvent, they need to keep visitors coming to the resort. Since Fortress purchased Intrawest, they focused on cutting capital expenditures and reducing operations which did not prove to work.
The resort now focuses on bringing special events and experiences to the village. Almost every week-end, there is a festival or special event taking place such as the centurion bike race, the Apple Harvest Festival, Music Series, Beach parties and art shows. They are linking to other local activity providers such as Scenic Caves adventure tours (you gotta go zip-lining!), La Scandinave Spa and various Adventure Tour operators.
This year, they have made the first steps in recent years to new capital investments starting with Phase 1 of an on-site adventure park. In partnership with Blue Mountain resorts, the Village is now completing construction of a rather exciting Alpine Coaster ride that features a 1.5 kilometer, elevated track through forest into the Village where guests ride in a cart over the track that sits 1 to 6 metres off the ground. This will be open year round and is only the first of a 2.5 million dollar master plan that also includes an alpine mini golf course, rock-climbing, Euro-bungee, Tree Top Walk, Zip Line and mountain-top park. The village also expects to expand from its present 46 shops and restaurants to about 60-70 at completion.
Since it is a stated goal of the resort to increase rental occupancies, it is quite possible that the combination of scarcity ( with no new developer inventory at this time), increased occupancies and economic stability may see better returns on investment for unit owners in the Village at Blue. Of course only time will tell.