Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Lakeview to hear Monday if court approves of Hecla deal

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A division of Lakeview Hotels has made an offer to purchase the Hecla Oasis Resort out of receivership.

The troubled Lake Winnipeg resort about one-and-half-hours north of Winnipeg has been closed for business for two years after the previous owners failed to make a go of it.

Keith Levit, president of Lakeview, said the company won’t hear until Monday if the court has approved the offer.

"There are several stages in the process," Levit said. "The first is getting the court to approve and that decision has been adjourned until Monday. Then we would have to deal with the province. It is a long way from getting the deal done."

Levit would not comment on the company’s plans for the resort but there have been reports that Lakeview would like to reopen it next spring but wants the provincial government to allow more video lottery terminals to make the business more viable.

Former city council candidate Ian Rabb had previously made a $3.1-million offer to buy the property and convert it into a high-end drug and alcohol addictions treatment centre.

The resort’s former owner, Paletta & Company Hotels Ltd., is involved in law suit with the province which owned the property before Paletta bought it.

The court-appointed receiver had been unsuccessful in soliciting offers for the property despite a process that was consistently lowering the price.

The Business Development Bank of Canada had loaned Paletta $8.5 million and the province — which sold the property to Paletta for $1 — is out another $5 million.

Its relative isolation and the fact that the property is in a provincial park which limits development are some of the factors that have made it difficult to find a credible purchaser.

 

- staff

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