It had to happen, it was in the race cards.
For years now the volunteers involved with managing Desert Park, the horse racing track overlooking the town of Osoyoos and Osoyoos Lake, have been looking at various ways, means, concepts and schemes to better monetize their community’s beautiful Exhibition Park.
“It was on their Bucket List.”
Much to the chagrin of nearby locals now enjoying one of the best loved valley-below, mountains-above views, a developer is in the completion stages of a design concept for an eleven-story, Horse Highrise Hotel in the middle of the Desert Park’s racetrack’s centre field.
This will be another first for Osoyoos and environs and its expected that the combination horse-stall-suites, ten on each floor, each designed for two horses, will attract equine lovers from all corners of the Pacific northwest and generate all important revenue for the facility.
The Horse Highrise Hotel will provide horse owners and their trainers the ease of unloading horses and tack at a convenient front door lobby, elevator entrance then riding up to their prebooked suites. While tenants will be responsible for providing fresh hay daily, specially formulated bales can be ordered up from stall service and free cold water is readily available in auto-fill buckets.
Like most full-service hotels, suites in the Horse Highrise Hotel will be maintained daily by a equine-trained housekeeping staff.
All manure is shoveled into a convenient chute on each floor and deposited in a basement containment hopper. This provides the furnaces with adequate fuel for both heat and electricity throughout the Hotel complex. This state of the art, self-sustaining system also eliminates odours as the gasses travel up gas lines for use in the kitchens of guest suites and outdoor barbecues.
All 110 horse suites have private grassed decks with sweeping views of the valley, lake and mountains. Guest horses have access to a VIP rooftop area with a Jacuzzi whirlpool to sooth training aches and stiffness and a horseshoeing sandbox. As well the hotel’s walkup Oats Bar provides vet-selected extra nourishment beside adequate turnout space for socializing and casual grazing with newfound friends.
For years now Desert Park has hosted horse races, rock concerts, baseball practices; there’s been dog training classes and agility programs, an early morning Eclipse of the Sun party, and of course those fully-armoured knights jousting on horseback right in the midst of a Medieval Faire. Desert Park barns have seen their fair share of many a tail-gate and barn dance and local children have bobbed for apples at town organized Halloween events.
Horse people organize both club events, gymkhanas and training sessions in the outdoor arena with the mini-grandstands and come winter the barns start filling up with chomping-at-the-bit, itching-to-gallop thoroughbreds from Alberta and beyond all hankering to sweat it out on the track at the crack of dawn every morning. Many of the trainers make good use of the modest Desert Park RV sites just walking distance from their horses.
Once the various zoning jumps and hurdles have been addressed, it’s expected that grass-breaking will begin next April 1st.