Westcoast Resorts Announces Strategic Expansion on Haida Gwaii

The Haida Nation created HaiCo in 2009 which now owns assets worth in excess of $22 million including five businesses that employ more than 350 people. Photo by Westcoast Resorts, HaiCo.
The Haida Nation created HaiCo in 2009 which now owns assets worth in excess of $22 million including five businesses that employ more than 350 people. Photo by Westcoast Resorts, HaiCo

Haida Gwaii, BCWestcoast Resorts, a subsidiary of Haida Enterprise Corporation (HaiCo), is pleased to announce several major changes to their fishing resort operations for the 2017 seasons. In a strategic decision to align Westcoast’s operations with HaiCo’s long-term goals, The Lodge at Milbanke Sound is now closed as of September 2016. Previously located on the Central Coast of BC, the lodge will be renovated and moved to Haida Gwaii to re-open as a new Haida cultural centre and eco-adventure resort planned to open in 2017. Consolidating all operations on Haida Gwaii ensures that Westcoast Resorts continues to contribute to HaiCo’s corporate objectives of honouring Haida culture and values, improving employment opportunities of Haida people, and growing the economy of Haida Gwaii.

Westcoast Resorts’ two existing premium fishing resorts — Englefield Bay and Hippa Island — will receive new upgrades designed to further enhance the guest experience in time for the 2017 season. Englefield Bay, the only fishing resort located on the southern end of Haida Gwaii, is known for its plentiful migrating salmon stocks, while Hippa Island, located on the northwest coast of Haida Gwaii, is renowned for its variety of fish species, and the valuable inclusion of fish portioning and full-time guiding services for all guests.

The new eco-adventure resort will be located in a remote area of Haida Gwaii’s picturesque west coast, and will feature a variety of opportunities for guests to learn about Haida culture, as well as explore the island in ways that align with the Haida philosophy of Yah’guudang, which means having deep respect for the environment — land, sea and air and all living things.

We are so excited to see our long-term vision of protecting and promoting Haida culture fully come to life by now having all of our operations located on Haida Gwaii

“We are so excited to see our long-term vision of protecting and promoting Haida culture fully come to life by now having all of our operations located on Haida Gwaii,” states Bob Brash, CEO at HaiCo. “We’re looking forward to really pampering our guests at Englefield and Hippa in 2017 and beyond, and launching the new eco-adventure resort planned to open in 2017.”

HaiCo’s existing cultural lodge, Haida House at Tllaal, a ten-room property on the east coast of the island, continues to experience overwhelming demand in recent seasons, and turned away over eight hundred guests in 2016 alone. In 2010, 3.7 million British Columbians sought out Aboriginal tourism as part of their interprovincial trips, compared to just 1.8 million in 2006. The addition of the new Haida adventure lodge on the west coast will capture the booming demand for Aboriginal tourism on Haida Gwaii, often referred to as the ‘Galapagos of the North’ for its abundant wildlife and lush surroundings.

Westcoast Resorts will continue to execute strategic initiatives to further the economic independence of Haida people while preserving and promoting Haida culture and community, both on Haida Gwaii and with our valued guests from around the world.

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About Westcoast Resorts
Westcoast Resorts, part of the HaiCo group of companies, operates two premium fishing resort lodges off the coast of Haida Gwaii, British Columbia for angling enthusiasts and private or corporate groups. Located in two highly sought-after fishing grounds, Englefield Bay and Hippa Island, guests of either resort can expect first-class service, gourmet local and fresh food, knowledgeable guides, immersive wildlife experiences and, of course, legendary fishing. For more information or to book your legendary fishing getaway, visit WestcoastResorts.com.

Learn more about the Haida Nation including their businesses and stewardship initiatives.