Anticipation can not help but build as one approaches Lake Louise from the west. The ski area boldly greets all travellers as they leave BC and enter Alberta on Hwy #1.
Chief Operating Officer Rick Werner explains that Lake Louise lies within Improvement District #9 (ID9). It extends from Banff National Park boundary gate to gate, except for the town of Banff. ID9 is home to 1100 residents. Both Rick and Senior Director of Resort Operations Dave Schebek are involved with the local governance body.
Many of the team have been working at Lake Louise for years. Mountain Manager Rocket Miller started in the snow safety programmes. Operations Manager Chris Dewitt worked front line prior to gaining his trades ticket. He has been at Louise for 28 years.
Lake Louise itself employs 680 staff. This is similar to the estimated 650 employees at Chateau Lake Louise. Both organisations play important roles in the local and provincial economy.
The Guest Services office at Lake Louise utilises electronic reader boards. The Exclusion of Liability stickers are fixed to the desk top. This ensures visibility and saves space.
Every daylodge in the ski industry is challenged by providing space for guests. Lake Louise uses signage and paper slip reminders on daylodge tables ask guests to store bags in the storage area, and advises that unattended items will be moved to the bag storage area.
Lake Louise has over 1500 parking spots for guests. It offers Idle Free drop off zones, and pay parking in the spots closest to the daylodges. It is testing VIP parking in conjunction with specific promotions for Alberta and BC mid week guests.
- On a road linking the additional parking lot to the lodge, a ribbon is set up to separate pedestrian and vehicle traffic to ensure safe and orderly movement.
- The large parking lot is marked with 15 location identification banners. This is tremendously helpful finding ones vehicle at the end of a busy day.
Operations Manager Chris Dewitt hides from a photo of his office windows overlooking the maintenance shop. He laughs as he explains how the team disabled the PA system. I could not help think of Danny Devito in Taxi. Chris could not escape all photos as he shows off the Lake Louise carpentry shop.
The maintenance shop includes fluid reels. Each work bay has nozzles that lead back to bulk reservoirs. The lift slides on a track for positioning. Operations Maintenance Manager Patrick Fournier and the team service a fleet of 9 Prinoth cats.
Daycare is housed in this marvelous log structure. Ski school has its own office in the main daylodge.