From left: Ali Price, Darrelle Jesperson and Helen Corcoran, all managers at the Quality Resort Bayside, sit in the hotel’s restaurant where numerous renovations have taken place, with many more to come there and throughout the hotel. — Adam Kveton

More B.C. in Parksville hotel thanks to renos

From Mediterranean to local stylings with ongoing work at Resort Bayside

There is still a lot of work to be done, but the changes are already mounting at Quality Resort Bayside.

The hotel hasn’t seen a major renovation since the early ’90s, but since February, work has been undertaken both inside and outside the building — the start of a renovation period that could see significant changes over the next five years.

That’s according to conference and restaurant manager at the Resort Bayside, Helen Corcoran.

“It almost would have been easier to bulldoze it down and start from the beginning,” she said with a laugh.

The NEWS spoke with Corcoran as well as front office manager Darrelle Jesperson and conference services manager Ali Price on the efforts.

The renovations are nearly complete in guest rooms and in the hotel’s restaurant, with more work to be done on the patio, landscaping, the pool and hot tub and more. Water pipes, electrical, HVAC and other systems have also been worked on. But there is still a lot that could happen as part of renovations, and the three managers are not privy to all of it, they said.

“There is a huge wishlist, and what is going to be crossed off that wishlist, we don’t know,” said Jesperson.

“There are some exciting opportunities down the road,” said Price, which include the entire property.

But the overall direction for the hotel’s look and feel is towards a more Island-centric experience.

The hotel was built in 1985 and the last major reno was in the early ’90s, said Price.

“It gave (the hotel) a sort of Mediterranean type feel and we wanted to get away from that. We wanted to go with more of a West Coast beach feel that sort of encompassed where we are.”

“As you know, what looks good today does not look good tomorrow,” said Corcoran. “So we have to keep upgrading to keep up with the Joneses.”

That effort can be seen in the restaurant, where Corcoran let loose her design ideas.

The changes include new flooring and brighter paint, as well as new tables and light fixtures. Chandeliers are still on their way.

There is also plenty of artwork by local artists up on the walls both in the lobby and the restaurant, and there’s a stronger push to showcase local craft brews and wines.

The guest rooms have renovated bathrooms, new carpets and new beds, with double beds being replaced by queen beds, and sofa beds removed to make way for king mattresses.

That will allow for a slightly larger capacity at the 59-room hotel, said Jesperson.

Work in the guest rooms meant that half the hotel had to be closed from the middle of February to early June, said Corcoran.

But the hotel worked to keep various parts of the restaurant open despite renovations there.

But the reno that the women are most excited for thus far, and the one they think locals will enjoy most, is the patio.

The patio will have new furniture, and the views will be expanded after bushes currently blocking sightlines to the shore are removed and placed elsewhere on the property.

The area will be partially enclosed with plexiglass, and fire tables will be added. “A whole new look,” said Corcoran.

So far, the renos have cost tens of thousands of dollars, but the total budget is unknown, said the managers.

Though the managers are not aware of all that is planned, they said the hotel’s owner, Dominic Petraroia, has been very receptive to their input.

Jesperson said some upcoming renos will include the lobby areas and upgrades to meeting facilities, though she noted she does not have dates for that work yet.