Royal Roads Tourism

Victoria, BC

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Field Study Blog- Goldstream Provincial Park, Cherry Point Winery by Chelsea Smith

Waterfall Goldstream Provincial Park

Waterfall Goldstream Provincial Park

Goldstream Provincial Park

The morning was crisp and I was working on a couple hours of sleep, however the fresh air and the morning moisture were the perfect way to start off the field study. Goldstream Park is picturesque especially at this time of the year when everything is starting to bloom. The waterfall is something spectacular and adds to the atmosphere.

Visitor Center Goldstream Provincial Park

Visitor Center Goldstream Provincial Park

The parking lot was empty when we first arrived and after attending the information center/gift shop without any attentive service I thought that this could be the reason. The shop definitely could use some improvements on customer service and maybe a revised food menu. However, by the afternoon the parking lot was full and the bus had to move to make room. I concluded when we were heading out that people weren’t coming to Goldstream Provincial Park for the information center or for the food. They were coming for the adventure, nature and its surroundings. Goldstream Park sells itself with its beauty, without having to do any intense marketing. I also concluded that I would fall into the category that would come and experience this place on my own. I have already decided that I will be coming back for a hike sometime soon.

Cherry Point Winery
This was the highlight of the day for me because I love wine and I love learning more about the wine industry. I have been working as a bartender and server for the past ten years so I have been around the wine industry for sometime now. I have had lots of wine training in those past ten years and every time I have the chance to gain more knowledge I always thoroughly enjoy it.
Xavier (the owner) was an absolute treat. It’s so refreshing when you come across someone who is so passionate about his or her career. I enjoyed how Xavier really emphasized on the importance of the local community. Xavier stated “wine brings in the community” and he really tries to involve the community with all of the local events he puts on. I also got a more in-depth look at how wine is grown. At Cherry Point Winery they plant by soil and not by the grape. This is a new concept to me which I was taken back by because so many people talk about the importance of ‘the grape’. One other point that Xavier talked about that struck me as odd, was the fact that with the extra grapes they had last season they decided to throw them away/crush them. This made me think about sustainability as soon as he said this and to me this seems like such a waste. Xavier talks so much about the local community but couldn’t he have given away these grapes to the local community? I understand that Xavier sees the importance of adhering to a certain standard but I don’t think sharing extra grapes with the local community would tarnish that image. On the contrary I believe it would have the opposite effect.

Cherry Point Winery Xavier’s collection

Cherry Point Winery Xavier’s collection


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Field Study Blog- Day 4: Mount Washington by Abby Willet

On our trip to Mount Washington I was constantly thinking about the financials of the company. How do they deal with yield management and low season? How are their financials set up? What are their operating costs? How much are they selling in the restaurant with an excellent turnover rate of 4-5 a day? What depreciation value do they have on their equipment? How much are they selling the ski hill for? It was devastating to see grass on that hill seeing as hitting the slopes is the major form of income for this operation. It was a brutal realization that most adventure tourism companies rely heavily on the cooperation of the natural environment. I fear for the future of Mount Washington’s ski hill because it is clear that they will not move forward with product development because they are holding off on potential buyers. I would like to see a downhill mountain biking course being offered in the summer months that can also be implemented during seasons such as this last winter. It was mentioned that they use to operate this product, I am curious to know why they got rid of it. It is so crazy to think that other ski hills located inner BC and Alberta are closing down their lifts too. What does this mean for Canadian Tourism to the Rockies?
It is such a struggle when operating a company that relies so much on the cooperation of weather. The staff at Mount Washington Alpine Resort seems to be taking all the correct measures when working with a tourism company; they are developing a web app for customers use, are proactive on their social media channels, have reputable sponsors and partnerships, creating new events for the guests to partake in, giving back to the community with donations, and are taking steps to be eco-friendly.
… but there is no snow.

Abby- Day 4

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Field Study Blog- Day 3: Qualicum Beach, North Island Wildlife Recovery Centre (NIWRC) by Abby Willet

My team’s turn to present the day’s activities and our first stop is Qualicum Beach. This town has a clear brand image of what the community provides for travellers and potential retirees. It is a quaint town that has an abundance of art, shopping, and relaxing activities to experience. This is a strong community that relies on the residents support for anything that is to be implemented in the community. This is good and bad because residents could potentially stop any further tourism growth in the community, but it also creates a sense of unity. Meeting with the major allowed us to gain a deeper knowledge of what the areas intensions are. It made me happy to hear that they refuse to put in fast food restaurants, and that they take active measures to protect the wildlife in the area by eliminating dog access on the beach during migrating periods of the Brant geese and promoting “stream keepers” to ensure the return of salmon each year. I am happy to see that Parksville and Qualicum Beach are working together to promote the area with their Discovery Guide that is published annually. Although they are competitors, they understand the combined efforts will be more beneficial for the whole area.

The Chamber of Commerce was a quick visit and it didn’t really leave a lasting impression on me. I can imagine that the community likes the happy little small town lifestyle that has been established and they don’t really want things to change so there doesn’t really seem like there is room to grow.
Abby- Day 3

The NIWRC was great and I am so happy that it was part of the itinerary. It was interactive and educational and it focused on the natural environments of Vancouver Island giving the tourists a deeper connection with the area. I think that the lay out of the tour is well thought out, and that the end of the tour you will find yourself standing in the gift shop. I think that they should have a great big sign that says you can donate money to a favourite animal that the guest visited on their tour. I would have much rather donated $5-10 to the animals than pick up a key chain or fridge magnet. But I didn’t actually think of it until just now, so the sign may have been there but it needs to be more noticeable and promoted throughout the centre. I think that it’s great that they constructed the picnic area with an amphitheater, which will allow the centre to provide live shows. It shows that they are anticipating a decline in the TALC and are taking active measures to rejuvenate the centre and potentially generate more donations from visitors.

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Field Study Blog- Day 2: Tourism Nanaimo, Nanaimo Museum by Abby Willet

Abby- Day 2Wow! I had a wonderful time at Tourism Nanaimo. It was great to meet with the ladies there and get a deeper understanding of the roles of the local DMO and struggles that they may encounter. I really started to understand the difficulties that fall into working for a DMO. Trying to get the entire community on board and have a clear direction with long-term goals. I think that Tourism Nanaimo will struggle because there doesn’t seem to be a clear focus of which direction they should follow through on; cruise lines or accommodation. If they want to focus on a day trip kind of destination they need to focus their efforts on the ferries and cruise lines. If they want more overnight stays and conferences then they need to commit to building proper accommodation facilities. They have limited funding from the government and I feel that they will be spread thin going in multiple directions. I thought it was interesting that they didn’t perform an exit survey. I think they seriously need to consider implementing this to gain a better understanding of what the travellers think about the destination. It was great to learn about the Nanaimo Bar Trail and the 5 month campaign that Chelsea described. It is known through the travel industry that tourists want to visit places that people love to live in. Focusing efforts on boosting community morale is a great way to build the travellers through the area, especially since they have a high percentage of VFR’s in the area.

I enjoyed myself at the Nanaimo Museum and I thought that it was just the right amount of information for a daily activity. However, by the time I went through the museum I had already spent 3 hours talking with the ladies at Tourism Nanaimo and receiving a tour from Chelsea around the town telling us about the history in the area, which helped me appreciate what the museum showcased. After discussing the daily excursions over pints at the pub I realized that my experience would be greatly different from those who are just paying admission prices and going through the museum.

In the evening the crew went out for some drinks to a couple of places around the neighbourhood. It was clear that there was no collective community involvement and Chelsea was correct to say that people are just coming into town and buying tourism related companies, such as restaurants, and not understanding that they are part of the tourism industry. They have limited knowledge on how to successfully run an operation within the community and I believe that the area will fail due to poor customer service skills. I thought of World Host, which provides courses on customer service skills, and implement them as government requirements to work in restaurants, much like ‘Serving it Right’ and ‘Food Safe’.

Abby- Day 2b

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Field Study Blog- Day 1: Goldstream Provincial Park, Cherry Point Winery, Chemainus by Abby Willet

Today is the day, the day that we venture onto our journey of the island and I am excited to see what unfolds in the next 7 days. Our first stop is Goldstream Provincial Park, which is a short drive from Royal Roads University campus. It is wonderful to have so many options for hikes in a close proximity to Victoria; this really boosts the tourism opportunities for people visiting Victoria. I’m curious to know how many tour companies are located downtown Victoria that transports travellers to the parks for day trips. Once we arrived to the park we talked about the famous salmon run that occurs each year, and then we visited the Goldstream Nature House that acts as a visitor centre for the park. It was nice to get indoors and warm up beside the fire, but I was surprised that the ladies working didn’t take advantage of the group huddled around the fire trying to get warm. Neither of them came over to enquire about our visit or offer us a hot chocolate to warm up our bodies. It’s amazing how receptive people are to the power of suggestion. Something that I wanted to note about the experience was the limited access there is to the other side of the highway; where the waterfalls and trellis are located. Yes, we had the opportunity to walk through the tunnel but when I was there last the water level was too high and I couldn’t pass through that way. I resorted to blindly running across the highway praying that a speeding car wasn’t flying around the corner at the same time. I suggest building a bridge across the highway or pedestrian lights to cross the highway safely.
Our next stop was Cherry Point Winery where we got a deeper understanding of the wine industry in the community. This particular winery relies mostly on word of mouth generated throughout the community. The gentlemen hosting the seminar showed he was very passionate about his wine, which left a positive experience for the group. I don’t know how much the tour was or what was offered for his time, but I hope that he gives out more wine on a regular tour. I’ve been on wine tours before and they have given more than a sip for tasting. I believe that people are more willing to purchase souvenirs and gifts when they get more out of the experience than expected.
Last stop of the day brought us to a town called Chemainus that is known for its murals around town. It would be interesting to visit the town in the summer time, which is high peak season. It is difficult to analyze the effectiveness because it was a bit of a ghost town and most of the shops were closed. I thought the “lost mural” was of interest, I think it should be mentioned somewhere to encourage travellers to interact with locals to find it; like a scavenger hunt!

Abby- Day1b                               Abby- Day 1

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A Day in the Life of a Shangri-La HK Intern – Derek To

Greetings from Hong Kong, KOWLOON SHANGRI-LA.
My name is Derek To and I am currently interning at the Kowloon Shangri-La as a Sales & Marketing trainee. I was born in HK, and grew up in Vancouver. A not-too-familiar culture adds to my learning experience. My Professional Profile is built up with working experiences ranging from three to five star properties. I’ve been exposed to front and back of the house in various departments ranging from Front Office, F&B, Housekeeping, and now Sales & Marketing. I breathe in this breath of fresh air, to learn, adapt, and retain all opportunities I come across in the future, particularly my passion for F&B management.


Hong Kong

Hong Kong is a vibrant city that needs not sleep nor rest.

Over looking the Harborview

Its nightlife speaks of another tale, check out the Symphony of Lights. The usual guest comment that I get in the hotel is, “It’s so different here, everything goes at such a rapid pace!” I nod and smile, only because it’s true. During the day, the streets are filled with children rushing to school; employees rushing to work; moms rushing to the grocery market, maids rushing to complete their ten thousand chores.

Despite the rush, this cosmopolitan hotspot is renowned for its spur of tourism and international tradeshows. If I were to describe Hong Kong using a traffic sign, I would choose the yield sign. People in Hong Kong are like hamsters on a treadmill, they just keep going and going. The traditional brakes have long been deteriorated by the intervention of efficiency. Slow is a sign of incompetent and weakness, so there is no such thing as a period or a 4-way stop.

People in Hong Kong are disciplined long-distance runners because they energize themselves with food, work, and stress. That usually gives them the direction needed to accelerate and survive. However, Hong Kong has a lot of roundabouts. Therefore, yield is not a sign of respect but the way to survive. Brace yourself to any oncoming traffic because you can never be too sure. Go when it’s safe enough, because it never is safe enough (if you know what I mean).

Many have asked me, “Why have you come back to Hong Kong, Derek?” The tale that I tell also acts as a reminder to help reassure my decision to come and develop my career path. The opportunities to develop my professional portfolio are more promising and exciting here in Asia. Despite the pollution, overpopulated density, major hygiene issues, and long and stressful working hours, I’ve decided to board the train of opportunities, taking with me the moral essentials that I’ve picked up back home in Vancouver.

hospitality from the heart

Kowloon Shangri-La

My internship with Kowloon Shangri-La Hotel has been an amazing learning opportunity. A family professional environment gives me full potential to exercise with passion, my own personal values and ethics in a relatable authentic themed setting. I yearn to grow in an Asian culture that integrates the passion of tradition with the international brand of knowledge, talent, and experience.

A Must-Watch Sentimental Ad: Shangri-La Culture

Our values, Shangri-La & me The flavor of service is engulfed in rich Asian culture; immersed with grace and sincerity. The tranquility of peace and comfort arouses with selfish desires to come back for more. Together we are trendsetters, driven through innovative achievements and committed to lead as Asian World Class Leaders.

Routine Schedule

The minute hand strikes at 7:30, a crisp whisper of hot and humid air breathes over my shoulder, swiftly awaken. The dawn of another day unwinds to unleash a new day of challenges and opportunities.

Snake-Line up

I hustle onto the bus, hop on the metro train, bypassing street traffic. Yet to find myself fighting against another set of traffic – people (lots and lots of it). In any case, foot traffic is much simpler and more predictable than street traffic. A brisk pace to work beats a cup of caffeine or a bud of cigarette each morning. I arrive to work and approach my cubicle, 2 floors below ground level; there, I begin my day as a Sales & Marketing Trainee. Duties that I do include price comparison on all types of events and functions across competitive market segments. I review all types of menus and pricing strategies, and also perform data analysis, re-summarization, and competitive pricing through extensive research and consultations. I’ve been appointed to assist in the organization of future Graduation and Christmas packages to plan and budget for next year’s selection of menu items, package offers, and cost. Organization and preparation is key.

As an Events Management trainee before, and now a Convention Sales trainee, I’ve experienced a new set of challenges, dealing with MICE, groups with 50 rooms and above, handling inquiries, initiating site inspections, drawing floor plans for different types of events, recording dmc systems, and issuing proposals and contracts. Systems that I got to familiarize with included Opera, Delphi, StarCite, CVent, and Meeting Broker. Unlike operations, S&M is about being one step ahead of operations. Everything is built up on organizing and preparing for the function itself – the finale. It is such an eye-opener opportunity to have witnessed the different roles each department played and how one’s output leads to the next. Together, we are a 5-Star culture performing with modesty and integrity.

A Tourist Myself


Early June I had the chance to experience the metropolis of the Asian Las Vegas, Macau, a ferry ride away from Hong Kong.

Macau VS Vegas

Having been to NV Las Vegas on several occasions, I was able to make observations and comparisons. During my visit, I differentiated a subculture that speaks of social instability wrapped in gold. Despite the grand scale of luxury and world class hotels and resorts, I noticed local community suffered from insufficient resources and education. Social poverty and the lack of guidance to train the right ‘fit’ of personnel emphatically offset the trend to expand on local tourism. Macau chases to alleviate its tourism brand image to build world class reputation and international recognition. Nevertheless, booming of tourism will only further lag local communal development. The structural exterior display of the city expresses international appeal; however, the internal shortage of soft skills and the inadequate level of service and etiquette inevitably burden potential expansion. Together, they define an overall discrepancy; thus hindering full potential growth of entertainment tourism in the Asian Las Vegas.


On the brighter side of things, I was delighted to witness the new and exquisite Galaxy Macau group, of which it consists of Galaxy Hotel, Banyan Tree Hotel, and Okura Macau Hotel. Others hotel I’ve also visited include MGM, Wynn, Venetian, and Mandarin Oriental. I was fortunate enough to stay at Ponte 16 Sofitel Hotel and had the thrill to explore the museum of Michael Jackson and be reminded about world class luxury.

Buffet @ Venetian Hotel

Lunch buffet at the Venetian Hotel Macau. Also holding the 7th International HOTEL EXPO this November!

Durian Ice-cream

My all time favorite fruit in a mouth-watering form, durian ice cream. Local cuisines that represent Macau include Portuguese tarts, crab congee, pork/beef jerky, almond biscuits, and durian ice cream.

*More pictures of the new Galaxy Hotel groups are available on my facebook.


Early August, I paid a trip to one of the small islands located south of Hong Kong, Cheung Chau Island for a one day trip. There I got to see and experience a smaller remote island that was filled with local culture and exotic seafood! The dumbbell-shaped looking island was another hot spot for tourism. Narrow streets, dried herbs, and people, lots and lots of people were the first things that came to sight. With a taste of a different culture, I visited a few monuments and temples that were presented as landmarks of the island.

Under the blazing sun

Biking around the island made it possible for me to expand my horizons to see and explore the beaches, the winding roads, the rock carvings, and the Cheung Bo Tsai Cave (Pirates of the Caribbean).


Fisheries was the dominant agricultural industry; their main source of tourism and revenue. They are renown for their fresh and wide selection of seafood. Definitely a mouth-watering local experience.

*More pictures of Cheung Chau cuisine (SEAFOOD Fiesta!) are available on my facebook.

**I have stumbled upon a lot of hardships in just a short period of time, both personal and professional. I know the day that I look back, the mountain I was climbing on, was just a grain of sand after all. At the end of the day, a balcony view like this, I restore myself with an open-mind; looking far towards a future of opportunities soothes all obstacles. “It’s worth it” At peace and content; my mind. Embracing what life has to offer, I sit down and begin to write a new chapter…the adventure of a hotelier.

Balcony View

Upcoming Tradeshows and exhibitions:

(*My favorites)

*Food Expo

Asia’s Fashion Jewellery & Accessories Fair

Computer & Communications Festival

*German Bier Fest

*Wine & Dine Festival

Restaurant and Bar Convention


HONG KONG Tourism Hot Spots

Dim Sum

Tsing Ma Bridge

The Peak

HK Board of Tourism

Ocean Park

HK Themed Streets

HK Airport

Lan Kwai Fong

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Summer Travels – 2010

As a Board member for the Canadian Tourism Human Resources Council, I recently attended a meeting in Miramichi NB. Judy and I used the opportunity to spend a few days travelling in Atlantic Canada and also attended a family wedding in Truro NS. If you have not travelled to the East Coast of Canada, I encourage you to put it on your “must see” destinations list and make the effort to go. It is as spectacularly beautiful as BC with incredibly friendly people, great food and drink and wonderful music. Perhaps a sign in the Old Triangle Pub in Charlottetown, where we spent a wonderful afternoon listening to an Irish music jam session said it best; food for the body, drink  for the spirit, music (and I will add scenery) for the soul.

We spent 5 days in Eastern PEI and as the pictures will attest, this is an area that the “Anne Fans” (Anne of Green Gables) seem to have not yet discovered. Based near a small town called Souris, we explored the beaches, and parks and thanks to TripAdvisor took advantage of incredibly low lobster prices to have a lobster dinner at the Blue Fin Restaurant for less than $15.00!

We then took a very scenic drive to Miramichi NB so that I could attend my meetings and wished we had more time to explore the Acadian Coast.

Once the meetings concluded, we quickly headed towards Cape Breton NS, in order to explore the Cabot Trail and Cape Breton Highlands National Park. On a picture post card Canada Day, we hiked the Skyline Trail and then headed towards Baddeck NS where we took in a Ceilidh.

Now that we are home we are anxiously previewing over the lineups and schedules for some upcoming music festivals including the Vancouver Island Music Festival in Courtenay and the Island Folk Fest in Duncan. These events will have to satisfy our souls until we can return to Cape Breton next fall to take in the Celtic Colours Festival!

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A Summer of Travel

Now that mid August is here, I am pausing for a couple of weeks at home to catch my breath before the new academic year gets underway and a whole new round of learners, recruiting trips and conferences to attend. I wanted to share with you some of my experiences from the past couple of months.

Vacation in Bavaria

Judy and I took two weeks at the start of the summer and participated in our first official home exchange with a family from Germany. We found this family through Homes for Exchange, one of several online sites designed to facilitate these types of vacations. The home we used as our base was in the town of Bayreuth which is a city of about 65,000 people located about one hour from the Czech border. While we had grand intentions of traveling extensively in the region, we were so taken with the bike paths and hiking right from our base, that we only ventured out of the region once to drive to the Czech republic. Because of our limited German every day was a challenge but part of the fun. In restaurants we would each choose a different entree and hope for the best. Every now and then though we got caught off guard. For instance, we had heard about a really quaint beer garden that was in the hills about 6 kms out of town. We decided to hike to it one weekday, planning to arrive at noon in time for lunch and a cold local beer. When we arrived at 11:45 am we were greeted by the following sign. Needless to say it was a dejected pair of thirsty, hungry Canadians who walked back to town.

At the end of the two weeks, I would have to say that Germany exceeded everyone of our expectations and we whole heartedly endorse the whole concept of home exchanges, although I wonder from a academic perspective how it affects the tourism industry. For us, we had a chance to see an area we likely would not have ventured to and because our accommodation and transportation (we traded cars too) were free, we likely spent way more in restaurants then we would normally on vacation. Many people have asked us if we were worried about strangers in our house or someone else using our car, but our answer is always….. they took a chance on us as well and their home was waaay nicer than ours! Besides, after much e-mail correspondence and even a couple of phone calls, we actually coordinated our travel dates so that we could spend a couple of days in Canada with our exchange family and really enjoyed the opportunity to meet with them. The other question people constantly ask us, is, would we do it again. The answer is an emphatic yes. We are currently in discussions with a couple in Switzerland to do something similar next summer. By coincidence, he is an instructor at the local tourism college in his region so hopefully if we can coordinate our timing, I will get a chance to meet with him and exchange ideas as well as homes and vehicles.

Council of Hospitality, Restaurant and Institutional Educators Conference in San Francisco

I was fortunate enough to be able to attend this conference as a result of funding from our professional development committee here at RRU. If you have never been to San Francisco, make it a priority. It is a world class tourist destination with an incredible array of attractions, restaurants, events and hotels. My only regret is that I did not book a few extra days and play tourist.

I chose to stay at a boutique hotel near Union Square that was about a 20 minute walk to the headquarters hotel. Fortunately, as the picture below will attest to, San Francisco can be very cool in the summer and while I managed to avoid Victoria’s heat wave, it was unseasonably cool even by their standards.

mark twain quote

In all the years of going to conferences, there was a first at this one for me. As an indicator of the economy perhaps, the headquarters hotel (Hyatt Embarcadero) shortly before the conference started, dropped their room rate by $50 per night I suspect in an effort to get us to stay there. By that time many of us had already used sites such as Kayak. to secure a much better deal at nearby properties. My guess is that the Hyatt came nowhere near achieving the desired room block for this conference which has consequences for the conference organizers as well. In any event, the conference was great with several outstanding sessions on everything from IT in the classroom, to facilitating better internships to partnering with industry. As well I ran into one of my former professors from Southern Cross University in Australia who has invited me to be a speaker at the upcoming Panel of Experts conference in Australia.

I can’t resist sharing with you my evening at Oakland County Stadium to watch the Toronto Blue Jays. Because both teams are doing so badly, I was able to buy a ticket from a “onsite broker” (we used to call them scalpers) for half the ticket price that placed me right beside the Blue Jays dugout and in the first row. The most bizarre part of the evening was listening to the fans chanting ” You Canadians Suck ” when virtually the entire roster is from the US. Given my surroundings, I didn’t feel it was my place to try to point that out to them!

Visiting Interns

Most recently, I along with my colleagues have been on the road visiting our student interns. What an incredibly gratifying experience this has been. We have all commented about how nice it is to see this year’s cohort out there contributing to industry and making us proud. I should point out that one of the benefits of these visits is that virtually every supervisor or manager we talked to, has asked us about enrolling in our programs so our students must be demonstrating great things as it relates to their education. Wouldn’t it be neat to have a classroom full of learners who have already supervised our BA learners? In Whitehorse Ali Alzaki (BA) is working at a Best Western for John Robertson who is in our Masters program. Ali says he wants to experience a Canadian winter so what better place than Whitehorse? In Edmonton, I stayed at the Coast Edmonton House and was checked in by our Beth Craine (BA) who is the duty manager there. Harriet Zhang (BA) is making us very proud and to quote her manager (and MA prospect), “Harriet is probably the nicest person I have ever met in my life”. Now there is an endorsement! In Calgary I met with Bellstar Resorts who have two of our students (Tanya Patel and Amanda Roy ) working for them. Bellstar is keen to continue our relationship based on their experiences so far with our learners so thank you ladies! While I was in Calgary I took a bit of time to connect with one of my graduates from a former University who is the F and B manager at one of the Delta properties. He reported that he is seeing signs that the economy is turning around as the corporate recruiting has started up again with hotels targeting and recruiting (poaching?) good employees and managers.

Finally I stopped in to see Katie Klassen at Tourism Rossland. Talk about a jack of all trades … Katie is doing everything, According to her boss she had nailed all of her learning objectives within the first week and has proven to be invaluable to the organization. Tourism Rossland has become a big fan of RRU as a result of this experience.

What’s next?

The end of summer for me is marked by my annual trip to band camp (I know….. I’ve seen American Pie too). But this one is different….. For a number of years I have used the occasion of the BC Bluegrass workshops to get together with a long time friend of mine and play some music, learn some new songs, swear that we will practice harder, curse the blisters on our fingers and stay up way to late generally having fun with 150 other like minded folks. This camp has been running for 20 years and for many people this is their annual vacation. I suppose it could be classified as a form of educational tourism but for most of us it is just plain fun. Someday I will become proficient on the mandolin but until then, band camp is an excuse to get together with old friends and leave work and technology behind. As my friend Mike says, this is the only place he has ever been where no-one cares what you do for a living, instead they care about what instrument you play and what songs you know. That said last year, at our campsite we had a fiddle player (doctor) remove stitches from the arm of a bass player (social worker) using pliers from a guitar player (carpenter) while a mandolin player (me) supplied the anesthetic (don’t ask). It was pure harmony! Who knows what will happen this year?

band camp

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Enjoy the Experience of a Century: Tour the Castle and Gardens of Hatley Park National Historic Site!

Hatley Castle from Italian Garden

Hatley Castle from Italian Garden

When the construction of Samuel Maclure’s “New Dunsmuir Castle” began at Hatley Park in 1908, Canada’s largest and most diverse National Historic Site was born.  Over the past 100 years Hatley Park’s magnificent 565-acre agricultural estate has been home to a former Premier and Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, the honourable servicemen and women of HMCS Royal Roads, Royal Canadian Naval College, Canadian Services College, and Royal Roads Military College, and the learners and faculty of Royal Roads University.  It is a legacy founded on quality; built for success.  Come help us celebrate our centennial in 2008, and see how Hatley Park National Historic Site can meet all your experiential travel needs!





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