March 26, 2019
Over the course of 2018, Medicine Hat’s Comfort Inn & Suites was completely renovated. All 100 rooms and suites received a modern update, from paint to flooring and linens. The leisure amenities, pool, fitness centre, common areas and meeting rooms also have a new look.
“We have had wonderful feedback on the renovations,” says Carrie Bruce, general manager of Comfort Inn & Suites. “Everyone, especially regular guests, seem to like the rooms and updates.”
The Comfort Inn & Suites, which is operated by the Braemar Group, has been a staple of the busy Dunmore Road commercial district since 1997. Other major destinations in the area include Medicine Hat Mall, Medicine Hat Lodge and the Ross Glen Business Park.
“You don’t really have to get in your car once you arrive, unless you want to venture out to other parts of the city,” says Lloyd Daser, director of operations for the Braemar Group, of the hotel’s location. “It’s good for guests who are here for a longer term project as well.”
The Comfort Inn & Suites is at the centre of retail and commercial development underway in Medicine Hat’s southern commercial area. Across the street from the hotel, Medicine Hat Mall completed renovation of its former Target space in 2017, drawing anchor tenants Marshall’s and HomeSense, as well as a new food court. Also, renovations to the former Sears bay are underway with three new retailers confirmed for the space.
Down the road, the Southlands commercial district is buzzing with commercial construction of two large developments under way. Once complete, Southlands’ Strachan Corner is expected to have over 125,000 square feet of retail space. Save-On-Foods and Bed Bath and Beyond are confirmed anchors for that development, with smaller retailers and Brown’s Social House filling the remaining bays. Nearby, South Country Coop and Canalta are developing 17 acres of land, which will include a new extended-stay hotel.
Also in the Southlands commercial district, the Holiday Inn Express & Suites redesigned and updated their 96 room hotel and construction on two neighbouring new hotels is underway. Sun City Hotels’ 120-suite Best Western Inn and Suites, and the Braemar Group’s 110-room Marriott TownePlace Suites, are expected to open in 2019.
“Construction is underway in all corners of the city,” says Jon Sookocheff, director of business development at Invest Medicine Hat. “In addition to hotels, major projects are taking shape.”
Indeed, while development activity in Southlands is prompting investment from existing properties, major projects in the region include Aurora Cannabis’ 1.2 million square foot cannabis production facility, and Capital Power’s 200 megawatt Whitla Wind Facility.
Medicine Hat serves a catchment area of approximately 140,000 people in Southeast Alberta and Southwest Saskatchewan. Situated along major transportation arteries, Southlands sees traffic counts of over 42,000 vehicles per day from the Trans-Canada Highway, Dunmore Road and Strachan Road.