1. What has prompted Larco Investments to proceed with a proposed addition to the Fairmont Château Laurier?

The hotel has seen a number of changes over the course of its 104 year history in Ottawa. In the 60’s the parking garage was added to the back of the building. It has come to a point where this structure needs replacing. With this in mind and with the growing need for long-term stay accommodations in Canada`s capital, the proposed project is one we feel will benefit the operation of the hotel, guests and the community.

2. Why has Larco opted for a more modern architectural design for this proposed addition?

The approach that Larco has taken with the design is to honour the hotel by using similar materials and not in an attempt to mimic the hotel. A modernist approach is also consistent with Standard 11 from The Standards and Guidelines for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada. The addition will offer a modern interpretation of the heritage character of the Château, with a vocabulary of Indiana limestone, glass and copper. The separated wings, massing and set-back upper floors are compatible with the Château’s existing roofscape silhouette, and provides a dignified and deferential response to this iconic building.

3. Are you changing the front of the building?

No, the front does not change; we are maintaining the beauty and grandeur of the current building. The addition simply removes the aging concrete parking facility located at the back of the building that is connected but not attached the hotel.

4. How will hotel guests and the Community benefit from this proposal?

The proposed addition offers the community beautiful connectivity between Major’s Hill Park and the hotel, something that is lacking due to the parking structure. Bringing the parking lot underground and reworking the current loading dock will help visually enhance the North side along Mackenzie Street. This project also helps in adding to the vibrancy of our downtown core, hence benefitting the business community in and around the hotel.

As for our valued guests, suites will be designed larger than regular sized rooms and feature amenities considered for longer stays, hence appealing to families and business travelers who are in Ottawa for extended periods of time.

5. What other retrofits or improvements are being done to the building and why?

Larco Investment Ltd. has committed to a variety of renovation and refurbishment programs since purchasing Fairmont Château Laurier in the fall of 2013. The goal throughout this process has been to maintain the beauty of Ottawa’s “Castle”, marrying together modern day amenities with the hotel’s historic charm. Larco is proud to say that

it is weeks away from completing the renovation of the hotel’s prestigious Fairmont Gold rooms and lounge, this project, along with other guestroom renovations adds up to 287 rooms thus far.

Projects continue including the completion of the room renovation program, changing of the air conditioning units and refurbishing the meeting rooms and ballrooms. The next phase, as presented, is the removal of the aging parking structure and replacing it with an underground one, and to construct beautiful long-term stay suites and an edifice that will enhance Ottawa’s landscape.

6. What has been done so far with this proposed addition?

Larco Investments Ltd., has presented in a pre-consultation capacity, its conceptual designs to the National Capital Commission’s Advisory Committee on Planning, Design and Realty (ACPDR) and to the City of Ottawa’s Urban Design Review Panel (UDRP) and as of today, pre-consulted with some of Ottawa’s downtown Community Stakeholders.

In December 2015, Larco hosted a Heritage Roundtable meeting to seek feedback from heritage authorities which included representatives of Parks Canada, the National Trust/Built Heritage Subcommittee, Heritage Ottawa, and the National Capital Commission along with the City of Ottawa.

7. What other hotel properties does Larco own in Canada?

Larco also owns the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver.

8. How will this impact the hotel’s business during the construction?

We will be working closely with the operations team at Fairmont Château Laurier to build a comprehensive plan that helps ensure the best possible guest experience.