A season of development is in full swing at Schweitzer Mountain Resort with construction beginning on a 30 unit, ski in/ski out boutique hotel directly adjacent to the existing Selkirk Lodge. “On busy weekends and holidays, it’s been challenging for us to offer enough accommodation in the village for our guests,” states Schweitzer CEO Tom Chasse. “This new hotel will not only do that, but will also provide our guests with an enhanced experience and easy access to all that Schweitzer has to offer on a year round basis.”
The as yet unnamed hotel is designed by the Portland based firm Skylab Architecture. “Drawing on the heritage of Schweitzer Basin, yet contemporary in its design, it will provide a perfect venue for guests to relax, play and revel in the natural beauty surrounding them,” says Jeff Kovel, Principal/Design Director at Skylab. “Guests will enjoy spaces that heighten their connection to the outdoors and the rich local history. The building will be a state of the art facility and feature heavy timber construction (CLT) along with reused materials like chairlift cables from around the resort.”
“The hotel will offer impressive views of Lake Pend Oreille, a 50 seat restaurant, bar and outdoor patio with a fire pit on the north end of the building. We also plan to include a small co-working space, exercise area, communal ‘living room’ and outdoor spa,” explains Chasse. “We’ll be able to improve the arrival experience for all of our lodging guests and add additional underground parking for both the new hotel and the Selkirk Lodge. The hotel will also accommodate corporate and social events including retreats, family reunions, weddings and other private gatherings.”
Excavation of the site began in late June 2019 with Spokane based Walker Construction leading the effort “To be able to improve and enhance people’s experiences in this region has always been a focus of Walker Construction,” comments Ed Walker, Walker Construction owner & president. “We know Schweitzer Mountain is one of our area’s true jewels and we are honored to team with Schweitzer Mountain and Skylab Architecture on this incredible new hotel.”
The construction process will take place over the next two summer seasons with the new hotel opening in the fall of 2020. “This first summer is focused on getting the infrastructure and foundation in place, with the bulk of the actual construction occurring in the summer of 2020,” states Chasse. “When you visit Schweitzer this summer, it’ll be obvious we are a work in progress. We thank you for your patience and understanding as we improve the overall guest experience at the mountain.”
The new hotel is included in Schweitzer’s master plan for development that was finalized in 2019. Phase one of the plan commenced this summer with the installation of two new lifts in The Outback and breaking ground on the hotel. In concert with the development of the hotel, Schweitzer and Skylab have partnered with Dunn + Kiley, a master planning and landscape architecture firm that is internationally recognized for their expertise in the planning and design of mountain resorts. Dunn + Kiley will be instrumental in improving the landscape architecture surrounding the hotel and within the existing village.
Schweitzer’s plan to add more lifts, a new mid-mountain day skier area, and renovations to the existing infrastructure are expected to be implemented in the next 10 years.