ONE HELLUVA HOTEL

Who and what is behind the papered windows of the old McKinnon Block?

 


The 1911 McKinnon Block is getting a major face-lift. Owner Stephen Jenkins shows the view from Revy’s first rooftop patio. PHOTO PETER WORDEN

>> BY PETER WORDEN

Welcome to the 1911 McKinnon building. Stephen Jenkins and his wife Rebekah (“the creative force,” he says) bought the McKinnon building last fall and have been hard at work on the massive re-modelling these past few months. The project has piqued the public interest as people peer through the covered windows to get a sneak peek.

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Revy’s ballingest new hotel won’t forget its historical roots.


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The hotel and restaurant should be open in time for the 2016 winter season.  PHOTO PETER WORDEN

“There’s great history here,” says Jenkins. The building was originally owned by Hector McKinnon, a local tobacconist.

“This was his jewel for entertaining people, selling tobacco, shooting pool.” Since then it has been a dance halldentist offices and now soon-to-be hotel, restaurant and event space. The new digs will have a 70-guest restaurant with mezzanine for drinks and socializing to give it a buzzy feel. Its giant production kitchen will be run by LaBaguette caterers extraodi- naire Sonia Ratté and Olivier Dutil. Upstairs will be a small nine-room hotel for adventure travelers, and downstairs, an historical event space called McKinnon Hall—a throwback to its original use. And finally, up on the rooftop a partially covered patio lounge and hot tub with 270°view.

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Money doesn’t just grow on trees … despite this money tree in the construction zone.  PHOTO PETER WORDEN

But Revy’s ballingest new hotel won’t forget its historical roots. The marquee outside will be preserved and the original look of tin ceilings and brick walls, maintained. “So you’ll walk into a new room but it will feel like an old room,” says Stephen who adds he and Rebekah were trying to pay respect to an irreplaceable building while still modernizing it into a flexible use space. It’s a challenge in a building with 14-inch concrete where nothing is plum and needs to be re-engineered with lots of new steel, “but that’s what makes it cool,” he says.

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 Holding it all up, 105-year-old Douglas fir cross beams meet modern steel braces. PHOTO PETER WORDEN

“This whole project is about Revelstoke people,” he says, “and this is the most important thing I want to say. We want this place to feel like a place that’s approachable by the community.”

The hotel plans to be open in time for the winter season.


Stephen and Rebekah want to hear from you—what are your memories of and ideas for the old McKinnon Block?

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