General manager Claus Larsen stands in the most familiar feature of the Best Western Plus Vernon Lodge Hotel

General manager Claus Larsen stands in the most familiar feature of the Best Western Plus Vernon Lodge Hotel

Atrium makes a name for itself at Lodge

Vernon Lodge changes name – and ends association with Best Western – becoming independent Vernon Atrium Hotel and Conference Centre

It’s most noticeable feature will become its name.

The Best Western Plus Vernon Lodge will change its name – and end its association with Best Western – on Tuesday, becoming the independent Vernon Atrium Hotel and Conference Centre.

“It’s because of the atrium; it’s who we are, that’s what people associate us with – the hotel with the big atrium and swimming pool,” said Claus Larsen, Vernon Atrium Hotel general manager, at a news conference Friday announcing the change.

The independent hotel will be owned by the RPB group, which likely means changes to some of the guest room decor which had previously been restricted.

The hotel opened as the Vernon Lodge, was associated with Best Western for a year, became an independent hotel again before being acquired by the Coast hotel group.

The building that will forever be known as “The Lodge” in North Okanagan circles has been part of the Best Western chain for the last 20 years.

“We’ll never get rid of people knowing us as ‘The Lodge,’” said Larsen. “It’s just not going to be our name anymore.”

The hotel is known for its large atrium which features BX-Swan Lake Creek running directly through the middle of it, plus hundreds and hundreds of green plants that surround restaurants and the swimming pool.

Larsen said the hotel is working with the ownership group to return the atrium to its past glory.

“We have hired a tropical expert team, and they will come and replant as soon as we get rid of everything and the season is right,” he said. “We’re replanting the atrium to its former glory, adding some colourful atrium plants so it’s not just all green.”

The hotel had a great relationship with Best Western, which operates 4,200 hotels globally under specific rules and regulations, but Larsen said the time was right for the Atrium Hotel to go on its own.

“We want to do some things with the rooms and some extra things that we were not allowed to do with Best Western,” he said.

Customers will receive a warm cookie (or two) upon check-in, and each room will have two fresh bottles of free water.

A select number of rooms have already been experimented with certain wall coverings, and the hotel is replacing the fleece blankets.

More than $2 million in renovations have been made to the hotel over the past couple of years.

There are 125 staff, the longest-serving member is 35 years. Staff will not be affected by the name change.

The hotel’s new sign is expected to be erected by Dec. 10.

Larsen said the hotel will remain a model corporate citizen.

 

“We have always been a pillar in the community in terms of charity and fundraising, and we’ll continue down that road,” he said.

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(File)
Overwhelming support for Vernon businesses this holiday season: Chamber

Vernon chamber urges shoppers to keep dollars local amid pandemic with #voteVernon campaign

Vernon Fire Rescue Services responded to reports of a structure fire on Valleyview Place Jan. 26, 2021. (Brendan Shykora - Vernon Morning Star)
Fire snuffed in Vernon home

No visible smoke, flames from area of reported structure fire

Vernon’s Noric House long-term care facility is dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
Another death linked to COVID-19 outbreak at Vernon care home

It’s the sixth death at Noric House related to the virus to date

Design rendering for the proposed Coldstream Community Centre. An advisory committee will make a decision on the latest site plan Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021. (Sahuri & Associates rendering)
Coldstream committee to review latest designs for new community centre

Design renderings have been released for the centre that would add 84 local child care spaces

A sign indicating a COVID-19 testing site is displayed inside a parking garage in West Nyack, N.Y., Monday, Nov. 30, 2020. The site was only open to students and staff of Rockland County schools in an effort to test enough people to keep the schools open for in-person learning. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
4 more deaths, 54 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

This brings the total to 66 deaths in the region

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
Canadian, American rescue crews searching for missing aircraft in waters near Victoria

The search is centered around the waters northeast of Port Angeles

Kevin Lee Barrett pleaded guilty to the aggravated assault of his mother Eleanor Holmes on Tuesday, Jan. 26. (File)
West Kelowna man who beat his mom could be sentenced up to 9 years

Kevin Barrett entered a surprise guilty plea to the lesser charge of aggravated assault on Tuesday morning

Interior Health reported two more COVID-19 deaths at Sunnybank Retirement Center in Oliver Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021. (File photo)
COVID-19 claims lives of two more South Okanagan care home residents

Five residents of the Oliver care home have died since the outbreak was first declared

11 more cases of COVID-19 have been linked to a cluster on Big White Mountain. Pictured above is TELUS park at Big White Ski Resort, Jan. 26. (Big White Ski Resort)
11 more cases of COVID-19 linked to Big White cluster

This brings the total case count to 225, according to health authorities in a Tuesday update

Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber are wanted on Canada-wide warrants. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Convicted killer, robber at large after failing to return to facility: Victoria police

Dean Reber, 60, and Jonathon Muzychka, 43, may be together

Oliver Elementary School
Former Oliver PAC treasurer charged with fraud returns to court

Belinda Yorke will be in court to fix a date for trial in February

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens during a postelection news conference in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
30% of B.C. recovery benefit applications held up in manual review

The province says 150 staff have been reassigned to help with manually reviewing applications

Adam Dergazarian, bottom center, pays his respect for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in front of a mural painted by artist Louie Sloe Palsino, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Kobe Bryant’s presence remains strong a year after his death

Tuesday marks the grim anniversary of the crash that took their lives

Most Read