MILLBROOK - Construction on a 94-room hotel and convention centre is to begin next spring at the Truro Power Centre.
The $13-million project will see the creation of a mid- to upper-scale facility that will include such amenities as a retail and entertainment centre, restaurant, indoor swimming pool, waterslide, fitness centre and a 700 square foot meeting centre.
"We wanted something that was more of an international, recognized brand," Millbrook band
Chief Robert Gloade said, in announcing the project to the Truro Daily News. "This is the next project that we have committed for the location because we want to be able to attract more people to the area and we wanted something that was a mid- to higher-scale facility. And it fits right in," he said.
The hotel is being built through a 50-50 partnership between the Millbrook First Nation and Driftwood Hospitality Management, based out of Florida.
It will be located just south of the Legends Gaming Centre alongside Highway 102 in Millbrook and is scheduled to open in 2015 following about an 18-month construction period.
The contractor for the project is Lindsay Construction of Dartmouth.
The vision for such a facility has been in the works for about four years, Gloade said, but the band has only been working with Driftwood Hospitality Management specifically on this concept for less than a year because it had not previously identified the brand of hotel for the site.
Highway signage promoting the project will be erected later this week and the brand name will be identified sometime in January because all of the pertinent documents have yet to be signed.
However, the project is definitely "a go," Gloade said.
Driftwood Hospitality Management is a hotel management company that operates and develops hotels in the U.S. with affiliates in the Caribbean and Latin America. The company's current portfolio consists of nearly 40 hotels and more than 8,000 rooms in major resort destinations and top business travel and convention markets in 12 U.S. states, the Bahamas and Costa Rica.
"This compliments the area with the hospital, with the REC Centre, with everything else that we're trying to do in the park itself," Gloade said. "We're pleased to finally get one more project developed and we know from past experience that once you start a certain one, everything else falls into place. And this area is in need of some major construction and major development."
Although economic development projects have slowed in recent years, Gloade added, "we're coming into a phase where we're getting past that to a comfortable circle."
He suggested the new hotel will not only help serve the needs of travelling tourists but will take the community one-step closer to making it more attractive overall.
"That's the emphasis also, to not only attract the travelling tourists but also working on and continuing making the power centre, Truro and Colchester a destination," Gloade said.