August 31, 2018
Why we believe in change
Everything in nature tells us that change is inevitable - and typically part of something beautiful. As we enter into a seasonal shift, things at our Fort Frances hotel follow suit. Annual maintenance procedures are acted upon. Room temperatures are set accordingly. Guest demographics change. No longer do we welcome trucks with boats behind them, but we start to see hunters, hockey teams, and people traveling for the holidays.
We believe that change isn't something that should be reacted to, but something we should anticipate and look forward to. As a business, we believe that change is part of our culture, and our ability to adapt to change is a key to our success. Although it can sometimes feel uncomfortable or unfamiliar, our openness to change allows us to better serve our guests and the community of Fort Frances. We're a living, growing part of our community!
August 28, 2018
Ready to relax?
We believe our hotel should be a place where you can drift off to sleep, snuggle, and sleep in an extra five minutes. Here's our Sleepy Owl remedy when work + life tries to steal your relaxation.
1. Brew some tea in your room! The smell will invite you to breathe deeply. Text the front desk for our selection.
2. Run your bath! Every morning our expert housekeeping staff work hard to make sure that the tubs are sparkling clean and ready in case you want an evening soak.
3. Use our complimentary products. With awesome herbal components like tea tree oil and lavender, they'll nourish your skin and give you peace of mind.
4. Get close. Our sheets and towels are dried with hypoallergenic softeners so that they're gentle on you.
August 26, 2018
We didn't forget about breakfast
So you may or may not know that our hotel no longer has a restaurant onsite. As of last week, we decided it wasn't benefitting our hotel guests in the way we wanted and we believed there something better! So while we work on creating a new and awesome experience, we just wanted to let everyone know that we still have breakfast. We know that it's important to feel nourished and energized when you're on the road so fear not - we've got you covered. From protein packed hard boiled eggs to creamy yogurt and a tempting array of baked goods and more. Is there anything special you'd like to see on the table at breakfast time? Let us know. We're practically family. :)
Oh, and if you're leaving before our 7 am breakfast starts - ask the front desk when you check in about getting a brown bag breakfast so we can send you on your way with something to keep you going!
August 16, 2018
We're up at night so you don't have to be.
Just like the owls in the wild, our staff are busy working during the night so that our guests can conquer the daytime. Whether we're quietly cleaning in all the corners and crannies of the building, doing heaps of laundry, or learning how to make our nest even better - we're wide awake and ready if anyone needs anything.
Remember, you can now text us at 807 274 5500 if you need something - even at 3 in the morning.
Sleep well friends!
August 15, 2018
Owls don't whistle, but we do.
So here at The Sleepy Owl we're trying to figure out that magic intersection of home-y hospitality and high-tech in the hotel world. And it looks like we've just killed two birds with one stone (umm, that's not what I meant).
As of this weekend we're now offering our guests instant access to us via their own phone! Say hello to "Whistle." It's a new kind of app that's changing the way hotels can engage with their guests and we think it's pretty amazing. Whether you're looking for more towels in your room or want to know what the special at the Flint House is down the block, all you need to do is send a quick text message and we'll take care of it!
How cool is that?
August 11, 2018
Are the Jetsons coming to Fort Frances?
Probably not anytime soon. But robots are making their way into hotels around the world. Japan, Las Vegas, and elsewhere are incorporating robots into their guest services. Ordering room service, running errands inside the hotel, even in-room mini bars all have the potential of being run by little Rosie Jetsons so keep your eye out!
August 8, 2018
"Oh gosh, the people here are great."
Near the end of her night shift and after 4 and a half cups of coffee, Sydney from The Sleepy Owl's Front Desk Team talks about what's the most important thing for people to feel when they walk into a hotel. (We also talk about corn dogs and how much love our family, fyi.)
I've stayed at a lot of hotels and it's nice to feel welcomed. That's important. Me on evenings? I'm your girl. I'm like, "Hey you want to check in? I got everything ready for you!" I'm not good at remembering specifics so I need to make myself cheat sheets, like which side the even and odd numbers are on and making sure to write hotel room numbers on the wifi passes. Oh and all of these American families that come in - I love them.
Good morning! - she interrupts our chat to issue greetings to the guests heading off to work early in the morning and runs to make coffee for the guy who requests it.
I just like being helpful.
August 4, 2018
Keep cruising, travel warrior
Travel can be tough. Whether you're getting here by car or plane, it can make for a long day. Delays, interruptions, hours on the road and in the air - it's all a little out of the ordinary. If you're visiting us because you have big business to attend to, it's all the more important than you're refreshed and ready.
You and I and everyone else knows that exercise helps to relieve stress, clears your mind, and gives you a big ol' boost of endorphins circulating through your cellular network. So we at The Sleepy Owl invite our guests to take advantage of our city bikes - perfect for a brisk morning spin or lazy afternoon cycle around town to put you back in the right place.
July 29, 2018
How to feel at home when you're not
It's no secret that the hotel business makes its money by being hosting people for night. There are, of course, different kinds of hotels from bare basics and scratchy bed sheets to chilled champagne by the fireplace, but each has built their reputation by providing specific services to their guests. It's a pretty standard transaction.
But when we started thinking about what The Sleepy Owl could be, we thought about people, not services. Mostly, we thought about what it means to belong somewhere and how it feels to walk into the home of a loved one after a long travel day. We're in the process of dreaming and planning how to make our hotel feel like home, even if it's just for a night.
July 28, 2018
The best hotel I ever stayed in.
Melissa, one of the members of our leadership team, shares about one of her favourite stays in a hotel and how the experience made her feel more than just rested.
Where did you stay?
In 2011 I took a 4 day trip to Cartagena, Colombia to learn more about the work of a micro-finance organization. The city is such a beautiful contrast of new industry and old colonial architecture. Plus there are distinct cultural influences from the Caribbean islands and Spain. Oh and it's located on the deliriously gorgeous Caribbean Sea. It's the place I would end up falling in love with limonada de coco and coconut pie and the flair of a well pronounced Spanish phrase dancing across my tongue. I met the group at the Casablanca Belle & Boutique just inside the old city walls.
What was so special about the hotel?
Just like the city, the hotel paid homage to the architecture and ambiance of the past but it was totally modern and luxurious at the same time. I remember the bathroom was insanely huge and everything was glass and concrete. The door to my room was at least 10 feet tall and so I couldn't reach my arms across it, but it was so easy and gentle to open and close. I had a window with shutters that opened to look over the pool below. Of course the bed was amazing. The whole place was white and crisp with these little meaningful touches of colour or texture. Fresh flowers! Exposed red brick walls! Antique room keys! I remember snapping pictures immediately and sending them to my cousin who is a designer. The sweetest surprise was this freshly made lime and mint drink waiting on the little side table in my room when I walked in - it was still cold!
What will you remember most about it?
How I felt like such a grown up. I think that trip was the first time I'd flown internationally on my own. I was only 20 years old at the time but I was on a trip with some of Canada's most successful entrepreneurs and executives. Every morning the dozen or so of us would gather around the hotel's table and eat fresh, seasonal fruit and buttery soft pancakes while discussing the day's objectives. I was like a little sponge! That stay redefined the whole hotel experience for me.