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Floating Nordic-style spa proposed for Victoria’s Inner Harbour

Features would include saunas, hot and cold pools, green space

The companies behind a floating 144-foot spa facility are hoping to draw traffic to Victoria’s Inner Harbour rain or shine with the promise of saunas and hot and cold pools.

Varm Experiences Ltd., in association with Havn Experiences Ltd., is asking the city to approve a design for a dock space next to the Harbour Airport in Ship Point Marina.

Inspired by Scandinavian-style hydrotherapy, the Havn facility would feature saunas; hot, cold and saltwater pools; and urban green spaces for relaxing. It would also include event and concert space, possible floating stages, and washrooms and change rooms.

The proposal suggests a two-storey, 144 by 33-foot boat-shaped space.

A design rendering of a proposed floating sauna in Victoria’s Inner Harbour. (Courtesy Havn Experiences Ltd.)
A design rendering of a proposed floating sauna in Victoria’s Inner Harbour. (Courtesy Havn Experiences Ltd.)

In the application, Varm and Havn say the goal is to draw people to a more neglected area of the Inner Harbour year-round. They also emphasize environmentally-friendly design features, such as using recycled and reused materials for up to 90 per cent of construction and collecting rainwater to water green spaces during dry periods.

The companies say the lower deck of the facility would be completely accessible, but admit steep pathways down to Ship Point Marina and existing dock ramps would hinder some people from reaching the site. They say they’re prepared to work with the city and Greater Victoria Harbour Authority to make it as accessible as possible.

City staff began reviewing Varm and Havn’s application on March 10. Once through, it will head to council for discussion.

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