Vancouver Island Events Website


For Immediate Release

Monday 16th  July 2007


NANAIMO, BC - Hostelling International Canada (HI-C) - part of the world's leading budget accommodation organization, awarded the Painted Turtle Guesthouse HI-Nanaimo best Canadian property under 10,000 room nights at their recent annual general meeting in Banff, AB.  

Owners, Bruce Barnard and Angie Gottenberg were thrilled and were amazed to receive such a top honour on their third birthday.  Only three years ago, Barnard and Gottenberg put the finishing touches on a $350,000 renovation of a heritage building in downtown Nanaimo realizing their vision of a guesthouse/hostel that would raise all standards for their guests.

"They undertook an incredible redevelopment of their property," explains HI-C spokesperson Robb Cryder, who was in Banff to announce the award.  "No one is more deserving.  We noted Bruce and Angie's energy and enthusiasm for their product - they are great ambassadors of HI-C and of the tourism industry in British Columbia."

Cryder says that in choosing finalists, HI-C chose recipients based on the standards and conditions of the hostel, amenities offered, and a high level of customer service.  He adds, "It was really a strong combination of these attributes that won them the award."

The Painted Turtle Guesthouse is centrally located downtown Nanaimo next to trendy cafes, independently owned stores and Nanaimo's bustling waterfront.  It is also proximate to bus, ferry and float plane terminals for ease of access.  It is in a unique 20-room heritage property with a combination of family rooms, private rooms and dorm beds.  Open 24-7, 365 days of the year, guests have access to a travel and information desk, free wireless and internet, lounge with fireplace, full modern kitchen, laundry, and free day storage.

For owners Barnard and Gottenberg, offering exceptional service is key to the success of their business.  "Angie and I believe in hosting our guests and establishing relationships with them by catering to their travel needs," says Barnard.  "Our guest book is filled with exceptional comments about the friendliness, efficiency and knowledge of our staff."

And, their personality is catching.  Thirty percent of business is from local families and residents, according to Barnard.  "We're glad Nanaimo has embraced us the way she has."  The award further proves to him that the 'Guesthouse' concept works, and that he and Gottenberg have "listened and responded to the diverse needs of travelers, whether they be corporate travelers, groups, tourists, people visiting family, and so on," he says.

The Painted Turtle has had a recent run of accolades, including Nanaimo's Downtown Heritage Improvement Award, and the #1 position on online travel site Trip Advisor.  

Barnard invites sightseers and the curious, regardless of whether they need a room, to stop in and see this award-winning location for themselves.  "Our staff love to give tours and show off our rooms.  We are located downtown at 121 Bastion Street, across from the Flying Fish.  Come check us out!"

Angie Gottenberg, Your Host                    

Painted Turtle Guesthouse                        

121 Bastion Street, Nanaimo B.C.,  Canada                     

Telephone (250) 753-4432                        

E-mail [email protected]


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