Royal visit, PGA, UBCM amounted to “one amazing week”

With delegates from the UBCM, the PGA tour and the Royal visit, the chamber of commerce said it amount to an amazing week.

Kate emerges to the delight of wellwishers in Victoria.

Kate emerges to the delight of wellwishers in Victoria.

It’ll still be a while before the final numbers are added up to reveal the economic impact of the royal visit for the capital region. But with delegates from the Union of B.C. Municipalities and the PGA tour also flooding into the city during that time, Catherine Holt, CEO of the Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce, said it all amounted to one amazing week.

“The tourism operators, especially the hotels, were talking about the fact that it was maxed out. All the rooms on the lower Island up to Duncan were occupied,” said Holt about hosting the three major events all at once.

“The main thing I think the (royal) visit did for Victoria was make us look like an amazing place, so that’s more of an investment in future visitors than the immediate.”

From florists and catering to transportation and restaurants, businesses were buzzing throughout Victoria as the region showcased the finest it has to offer. During their week-long visit to B.C., where Government House was used as a home base, Prince William and Kate made several public appearances, including the B.C. Legislature, the Cridge Centre for the Family and sailing a tall ship with the Sail and Life Training Society into the Inner Harbour on their final day.

Their movements were closely tracked by a horde of international media, which lit up during the children’s party at Government House, where the couple let their two young children waltz into the spotlight to play with local youngsters. But when the couple toured other locations (without their children), such as Bella Bella and Haida Gwaii, the focus was largely on photo ops and what Kate was wearing instead of where they were going or what they did.

Nonetheless, as many as 1,000 members of the media came to Victoria to cover the royal visit, which also attracted hundreds of fans from across the province and south of the border.

Tourism Victoria covered the visit by posting live video on its social media sites from every major event. Video of the royal couple arriving was the best performing Facebook post ever with more than 51,000 views.

“As the destination marketing organization for Greater Victoria, we could not have asked for a better opportunity to show our region to the world,” said Tourism Victoria President and CEO Paul Nursey in a written statement.

“We know from reaction of media and tour operators that there is interest in coming back to Victoria. Time will tell how much business we are able to achieve because of knowledge gained from the royals visiting our destination.”

For Marc Holescher, a partner at Peetz Outdoors Limited in Victoria, the royal visit provided a rare opportunity to deliver a unique artifact to the royal collection. To commemorate their visit, the Victoria branch of the Monarchist League of Canada selected one of its Artist Series wood fishing reels as a gift for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Carved by renowned Kwagiulth artist Jason Henry Hunt, the reel’s design contains an orca, salmon and moon that’s meant to bring focus to the majestic West Coast species that depend on healthy Pacific salmon stocks for their existence. The reel is one of the six artist proof reels from the 2016 artist series commissioned each year that aren’t available for sale to the public. Instead they’re reserved to support the fundraising efforts of organizations focused on salmon conservation and habitat rehabilitation.

Holescher thought the reel was fitting since the couple went fishing during their visit with First Nation in Haida Gwaii. Prince Andrew also used Peetz wood fishing reels to catch salmon off Pedder Bay during a visit in July 1977.

“Whether they use it or it ends up as an artifact in the royal collection, either way we were honoured,” said Holescher. “It was a perfect fit.”

 

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

(Black Press Media file photo)
Court-registered sex offender arrested for breach of parole in Langford

Cameron Ratelle returned to correctional facility after female youth approached at bus stop

Marc Porpaczy said he’s glad he delayed his daily walk with his dog, Juno, after a car crashed just outside his driveway just before 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 25. (Aaron Guillen/News Staff)
VIDEO: Dramatic crash highlights need for sidewalks, say Colwood residents

‘The residents have gone from frustrated to angry’

Jerry Dyck plans to purchase a new RV to drive across Canada in, once it’s safe to travel again. (Courtesy BCLC)
Victoria man plans post-pandemic cross-Canada RV trip after $2M lottery win

Retired electrician bought the winning ticket in Duncan

Crews with Discovery Channel film as an Aggressive Towing driver moves a Grumman S2F Tracker aircraft around a 90-degree turn from its compound and onto the road on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. It was the “most difficult” part of the move for the airplane, one organizer said. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: Vintage military plane gets towed from Chilliwack to Greater Victoria

Grumman CP-121 Tracker’s eventual home the British Columbia Aviation Museum on Vancouver Island

Residents of the Cowichan Valley decorated more than 55 vehicles with anti-racist slogans for a car rally in support of Cowichan Tribes on Saturday, January 24. (Kevin Rothbauer/Citizen)
Dozens join anti-racism car rally and virtual panel in Cowichan Valley

Provincial ministry and BC Green caucus issue joint statement detailing concerns

Jesse Savidant, 31, is wanted by the RCMP after failing to appear in provincial court in Nanaimo in December. Police warn Savidant should be considered violent. (Photo Submitted)
Warrant out for man accused of stolen property offences across Vancouver Island

Jesse Savidant did not appear for court date in Nanaimo last month, say RCMP

Rolling seven-day average of cases by B.C. health authority to Jan. 21. Fraser Health in purple, Vancouver Coastal red, Interior Health orange, Northern Health green and Vancouver Island blue. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
2nd COVID vaccine doses on hold as B.C. delivery delayed again

New COVID-19 cases slowing in Fraser Health region

The Pacific Rim National Park Reserve is urging visitors to stay on designated trails after a hiker became injured in an unsanctioned area last week. (Westerly file photo)
Injured hiker rescued in Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

“Safety is everyone’s responsibility.”

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry talk about the next steps in B.C.’s COVID-19 Immunization Plan during a press conference at Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Friday, January 22, 2021. Two more cases of the COVID-19 strain first identified in South Africa have been diagnosed in British Columbia, bringing the total to three as of Jan. 16.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. now has three cases of South African COVID-19 variant, six of U.K. strain

Both variants are thought to spread faster than earlier strains

Rodney and Ekaterina Baker in an undated photo from social media. The couple has been ticketed and charged under the Yukon’s <em>Civil Emergency Measures Act</em> for breaking isolation requirements in order to sneak into a vaccine clinic and receive Moderna vaccine doses in Beaver Creek. (Facebook/Submitted)
Great Canadian Gaming CEO resigns after being accused of sneaking into Yukon for vaccine

Rod Baker and Ekaterina Baker were charged with two CEMA violations each

Police discovered a makeshift nightclub in a Vancouver apartment on Jan. 23, 2021, and say it wasn’t the first time this month officers have been called to the unit over social gathering concerns. (Phil McLachlan - Capital News)
Doorman of makeshift ‘booze-can’ in Vancouver apartment fined; police look to court order

This marks the fourth complaint about social gatherings inside the apartment in January

Local musician and artist Daisy Melville created a watercolour portrait of U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders from the recent American inauguration, and with help from her mom, is now selling t-shirts and more with funds going to the Comox Valley Food Bank. Image submitted
Island artist turns Sanders inauguration meme into art for good

All proceeds from the sale of shirts, sweaters and more will go to the Comox Valley Food Bank

Most Read