Nunatsiaq Online
NEWS: Nunavut August 04, 2017 - 10:00 am

Inuit org’s business arm buys Iqaluit hotel building for $14.9M

Qikiqtaaluk Corp. won't reveal plans for building, but it won't be a hotel

STEVE DUCHARME
The Inuit-owned business arm of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association, the Qikiqtaaluk Corp., is the new owner of the Hotel Arctic building in downtown Iqaluit. (FILE PHOTO)
The Inuit-owned business arm of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association, the Qikiqtaaluk Corp., is the new owner of the Hotel Arctic building in downtown Iqaluit. (FILE PHOTO)

The Inuit-owned business arm of the Qikiqtani Inuit Association, the Qikiqtaaluk Corp., is the new owner of the Hotel Arctic building in downtown Iqaluit.

Harry Flaherty, president of Qikiqtaaluk Corp. confirmed QC’s purchase of the building Aug. 1 on CBC radio, ending weeks of speculation after the building’s previous owner, Northview Apartment REIT said last June that it was negotiating a sale of the building.

Flaherty has not returned multiple calls this week from Nunatsiaq News, which attempted to seek comment on QC’s purchase of the building.

Northview is a publicly traded real estate investment trust whose units are sold on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

The Northview president and CEO, Todd Cook, said in a letter to shareholders Aug. 2 that it had disposed of Hotel Arctic for $14.9 million, and bought 327 residential units in Moncton, N.B. for $31.4 million.

“The sale of the Hotel Arctic and acquisition in Moncton, N.B., continues our focus on strategic capital deployment,” Cook said in a statement.

Cook described the hotel as a “non-core asset.”

Until now, the identity of the hotel’s buyer was kept confidential until July 28.

Renovation work inside the building began shortly after the sale was finalized, with a dumpster placed outside the Hotel Arctic to collect waste material.

Linay Freda, Northview’s northern regional vice president, said in an affidavit filed in court that the new owner will not use the building to operate a hotel.

Another condition of the sale is that the building be handed over vacant by the end of August.

That’s been a sticky issue for the operators of the hotel’s restaurant and bar.

The owners of the Waters Edge Steak and Seafood and Kickin’ Caribou pub argued in court that their lease didn’t expire on Aug. 31, as Northview had claimed, and instead allowed them to negotiate a lease extension until 2023.

Following an expedited civil trial, a Nunavut judge ruled against the restaurant owners.  However, they’re attempting to appeal that ruling.

James Morton, the lawyer representing restaurant owners Kim and Donna Waters, told Nunatsiaq News that his clients are asking that the court grant an expedited hearing for their appeal prior to the conclusion of the lease.

Pending any intervention from the courts, the Waters Edge confirmed it would remain open until Aug. 20.

Both QC and Nunavut Arctic College were named as possible buyers in court during a civil hearing over the restaurant lease, during testimony given by Kim Waters in early July.

The QC is also involved in plans to build a conference centre and possible hotel along Federal Road, on Inuit-owned land, as part of a larger project proposed with the City of Iqaluit.

The Hotel Arctic was built by Nova Builders of Yellowknife in 2006-07 and was originally called the Nova Inn.

Northview’s predecessor company, Northern Properties REIT, acquired the building in 2011, when they bought Nova’s Iqaluit properties, which included the Nova Inn, the Navigator Inn, the Qamutiq office building and some apartment buildings.

NPREIT changed its name to Northview REIT in August 2015, following a merger with companies in southern Canada.

Email this story to a friend... Print this page... Bookmark and Share

 THIS WEEK’S ADS

 ADVERTISING