Crystal Mountain is a former ski area next to Kelowna with all Provincial Approvals for redevelopment and expansion. It is ready to become a year-round destination in an existing, accessible, and vibrant tourism market with one of the best climates in Canada.
A pedestrian-friendly resort village with condominium buildings, hotels, townhomes and single family lots will be developed over three phases. Design guidelines will be in place and most of the single-family lots will have ski-in/ski-out access, direct golf course access, and/or beautiful views of Lake Okanagan.
Real estate will be developed along with major tourism infrastructure upgrades. The existing ski area will reopen and will be expanded significantly over three phases with new high-speed ski lifts and on-mountain facilities. A new championship golf course will be built and provisions will be made for downhill and trail mountain biking, snow tubing, zip-lines, and many other activities.
A Master Development Agreement, valid for 60 years, has been signed with the Province. This gives the developer exclusive rights to 7,166 acres and to construct the project according to its Master Plan.
An Official Community Plan, essential for rezoning, has been approved by the local government — the Regional District of Central Okanagan.
A Master Plan has been approved by the Province and guides the development. The approval is for 3,801 bed-units, including:
The developer retains the right to modify the real estate mix and development timing according to market conditions.
A comprehensive multi-year environmental review has been completed resulting in a project that is designed to leading conservation and environmental mitigation standards.
Crystal Mountain is a unique opportunity for the creation of a large, quality tourism destination in a favourable climate and in a popular region. Skiing and bicycling are the current major activities, with an opportunity for golfing and many other activities in the master plan, providing unique winter and summer recreation in one of the most popular tourism regions of Western Canada.
The tourism industry in British Columbia has seen constant and accelerating growth over the past three decades. British Columbia is ideally situated to welcome the rapidly growing Asian tourist market with quality new developments and access to its tremendous natural wonders.
An experienced project team, with a lengthy and proven track record, including the most successful ski resort development of the last 50 years in B.C. (Kicking Horse Mountain Resort), has created the master plan for the project.
The team previously created Kicking Horse Mountain Resort, an industry leader in sales and growth since 2000, and is comprised of key collaborators that have been working together for over 35 years; Pheidias Project Management and Oberti Resort Design, Leitner Poma lifts, Doppelmayr Lifts, McElhanney Consulting Engineers, Golder Associates, Enkon Environmental and other specialists.
It is an approved year-round destination adjacent to Kelowna. It is a trophy destination for the Okanagan region of British Columbia. It is a new development over an abandoned former ski hill, shovel-ready following a lengthy approval process. It has an approved Master Plan for 3,801 bed-units and an area of approximately 2,900 hectares (7,166 acres). It has a Master Development Agreement with the Province of B.C. and an approved Official Community Plan from the local government.
Zoning for the opening of the ski area is already in place and zoning for the first phase of the real estate development is substantially ready for application. The local First Nation and the local government have been very supportive during the entire approval process. The development will create an economic engine that will continue to generate cash-flow in perpetuity.
A beautiful setting above Kelowna
and Okanagan Lake
OKANAGAN POWDER SNOW
AN EXISTING DESTINATION
The resort village site, at 1,100 m (3,600 ft.) elevation, has exceptional access from Kelowna International Airport and the Coquihalla freeway from Vancouver, B.C. The Okanagan region’s attractiveness has been proven by its summer visitors and famous wineries and lake attractions. The region is the second-most visited in British Columbia with approximately 4 million yearly visitor-days from Canada, the U.S., Asia and Europe. There is considerable opportunity for growth in the tourism industry in British Columbia, which has seen record growth in revenue and visitor numbers.
Kelowna and Lake Okanagan are already popular with Albertans as well as British Columbians as a vacation getaway — but also as a family and retirement community. Kelowna is the fastest growing city in British Columbia, with a 1.8% average annual growth rate. Approximately 360,000 people live in the Okanagan.
In winter, Crystal is a bit like Colorado, but with more comfortable elevations and easier accessibility. In summer, Crystal is minutes away from the most popular warm-water lake in Western Canada as well as some of Canada’s most popular wineries.
Current visitor projections are very conservative and envision 75,000 skier/day visits at opening and approximately 250,000 visits are projected at build-out. By way of comparison, Big White Ski Resort, which is located an hour to the east of Crystal (45 minutes east of downtown Kelowna), currently sees 650,000 annual skier/day visits.
Market conditions, visitor projections and the project’s pro-forma have been reviewed favourably by PricewaterhouseCoopers.
Large properties and recreation areas with good climate and in the proximity of existing successful tourism destinations are exceedingly difficult to find due to environmental and other restrictions. Barriers to new entries are significant. The approval processes alone for such projects often take 5-10 years to complete.
With considerable investment, Crystal successfully completed an 8-year long approval process resulting in a Master Development Agreement with the Province of British Columbia.
Crystal’s unique combination of elevation, climate, secure and dry snow, scenery and ease-of-access are a geographic reality that cannot be matched by many other resort locations in Canada or North America.
Three factors are key for profitability of a mountain resort area:
With planned snow making to extend the winter season, the project is strong on all three points, and is in one of the best climatic zones of North America that is renowned for its wineries, water sports and many amenities nearby.
The project’s pro forma is the result of over 30 years of industry experience and is based on conservative visitor projections, conservative real estate absorption rates and capital costs based on current contractor estimates. The pro forma has been reviewed by PricewaterhouseCoopers who assessed its assumptions, market conditions and comparable projects and declared Crystal’s projected 31% IRR to be “not unreasonable”.
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