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Running a Remote Tourism Lodge – What It’s Like

Most remote tourism lodge owners would agree with the statement “you need to be the right kind of crazy” to operate one of these businesses.

I’ve never operated a remote tourism lodge, but I have spent a significant amount of time around the industry in various facets: Growing up I held summer jobs at lodges as a dock boy and general labourer, friends of mine had parents who operated lodges and they are now taking them over, I’ve been a guest at several, and I am currently a service provider to this industry.

Through these experiences I’ve observed the inner workings of lodge businesses and gained a good understanding of what it’s like operating one.

I’ve observed the awakening of the lodge from its winter slumber in early spring.  The various “to do” items being ticked off as the lodge, grounds, and equipment are prepped for the upcoming season. I’ve witnessed the excitement as the season opener approaches and I’ve seen the burnout in the fall after a busy year. It’s a roller coast many owners ride for decades.

I openly wonder and discuss regularly what drives these owners to choose this career path because it is not an easy one. I’m not sure a lot of them could definitively describe it. They obviously love the outdoors, get to be their own boss, live a unique lifestyle, etc.

But I think the aspect of it that keeps them in this industry, is they love creating and sharing the remote wilderness experience. If you’ve hung around a lodge for any length of time, then you know the owners/operators are the only ones who don’t get to stop and enjoy the experience. They just love creating it and sharing it with others.

There’s a lot of people out there that have a passion for the outdoors and for this reason they have an interest in operating a remote tourism lodge one day. I think it’s great to tie your passions/interests/hobbies into your career any way that you can. But I think of more importance is to gauge your passion for entrepreneurship and hospitality because that is what is going to carry you through the grind of a season and the ups and downs of the industry.

Below are some great articles on what it’s like operating a remote tourism lodge:

If after reading these articles, you still have an interest in operating a lodge, then check out the marketplace section of the website where you’ll find remote tourism lodges for sale located coast to coast – drive-ins and fly-ins, big and small. If you don’t find one that fits your criteria, then consider posting a wanted ad.

“Making a lodge profitable is challenging. Success sometimes is defined by the amount of enjoyment you get from running such a business.” – Bruce Alverson, The Old Kirby Place

This article has been prepared by Frontier Hospitality Advisor for general information only. Frontier Hospitality Advisor makes no guarantees, representations or warranties of any kind, expressed or implied, regarding the information including, but not limited to, warranties of content, accuracy and reliability. Any interested party should undertake their own inquiries as to the accuracy of the information. Frontier Hospitality Advisor excludes unequivocally all inferred or implied terms, conditions and warranties arising out of this article and excludes all liability for loss and damages arising there from.

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