Frederique Philip.

Foreclosure not in the plans for Sooke Harbour House

Investors unroll new expansion plans for Sooke hotel

Reports of the demise of the Sooke Harbour House through foreclosure are unwarranted and inaccurate said co-owner Frederique Philip.

“We are absolutely not in foreclosure,” said Philip. She said they have not been served a foreclosure and are just weeks away from paying back their loans to Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC).

The action taken by BDC was pursuant to their time policy for non-performing loans. Court documents state that the BDC had launched foreclosure action against the Sooke Harbour House. The Sooke Harbour House currently owes $2.9 million on a 1997 mortgage on two properties. The properties are assessed at $3 million but this is not the true market value of the property. In 2012 the property was listed for sale at $5.9 million.

Monetary restructuring is currently taking place to accommodate their expansion projects with a group of investors. Plans include a $2 million investment in Phase I and another $5 million in Phase II. The investors are closing on a $3.5 million debt package as part of their overall financing and the BDC will be paid out of that new interim senior secured debt.

“Things are taking longer than expected,” said Philip via email on Friday. “A few glitches happened also during that time that have showed down the process. This is not a set back, just a small hiccup!”

Many factors contributed to the revenue erosion experienced by the hotel including; the 2008 global financial crisis, high energy prices, a strong Canadian dollar, lack of working capital, coherent marketing plans, as well as family issues. Many of these factors are no longer an issue in the larger picture allowing for a more optimistic outlook in the tourism industry.Expansion and upgrades will include complete upgrades to the existing oceanfront guest suites; a new casual restaurant serving local craft beers on tap along with the same food philosophy as has been practiced for the past 36 years. A new spa facility, a permanent art gallery featuring local and First Nations art, and 22 new guest suites, to be completed by October 2016, are among the extensive plans. Plans are in the works for “The Ocean Club”, an exclusive club open to 100 members who will enjoy the hotel as well as a day sail on the hotel’s chartered 50-foot sailing vessel. There are many other changes which are all intended to enhance revenues and the hotel’s appeal to travelers and locals.

The Sooke Harbour House has a long history in Sooke. Thirty-six years ago Frederique and Sinclair Philip purchased the small inn at the foot of Whiffin Spit. They have been front and centre in the Slow Food movement and have been awarded numerous international honours both for their inn, food and their wine cellar. The Sooke Harbour House has consistently been named one of Canada’s best inns and restaurants. The hotel has been used for feature films and movies, has welcomed movie stars, politicians and the rich and famous, while always maintaining its small town charm and reputation for fine food.

“The thing to do is to believe in the Sooke Harbour House and our capacity to go forward as planned even with this little hiccup,” said Philip.

 

 

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

Just Posted

UPDATED: West Shore RCMP locate dangerous, ‘high-risk sex offender’ thanks to help of taxi cab driver

Scott Jones wanted on a Canada-wide warrant, ‘a risk to women and girls,’ police say

Sidney’s Cascadia Seaweed hopes to float to the top of a growing industry

Food products based on seaweed could hit local shelves in spring 2021

New Oak Bay officer on the traffic beat

Const. Jeff Savoy a ‘top traffic enforcement officer’

Deadline looms to take Esquimalt’s waste stream survey

Township wants residents, business owners’ thoughts on integrated resource management

West Shore Rotary Club raises $20,000 with Golf Ball Drop fundraiser

Nearly 4,000 golf balls poured onto Olympic View golf course Saturday

QUIZ: Do you know what’s on TV?

Fall is normally the time when new television shows are released

A (virtual) walk around the world by 88-year-old B.C. man

George Doi says it’s simple: ‘I like walking’

End of CERB means uncertainty for some, new system for others

As of a week ago, the CERB had paid out $79.3 billion to 8.8 million people

Horgan, Wilkinson trade barbs over MSP premiums, health care at campaign stops

Horgan called a snap election for Oct. 24 earlier this week

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Vancouver Island Tour de Rock riders roll into Parksville Qualicum Beach

Saturday’s schedule includes Port Alberni, Ucluelet and Tofino, followed by Nanaimo on Sunday

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

Most Read