Accent Inns celebrates 30 years in business this summer (July 1986, to be exact) and is steadfastly opposed to boring anyone with the typical details of milestones reached and successes achieved.
Instead, Mandy Farmer, Accent Inns “President & CEO” in the formal sense – but “Bike Lover” on her business card – has a few more candid stories to share as the family-owned chain celebrates three decades of innovation paired with challenges, and growth mixed with tough decisions.
“Family-owned companies have some pretty fun, weird, and hilarious stories to tell, and there are definitely some that we only tell at home,” says Farmer. “It is because of this fun approach to our business that I’m proud to see Accent Inns hit the three-decade point, knowing that we’ve got plenty of wind left in our sails. Cheers to the next 30 years!”
According to Accent Inns, here are ten of the most interesting moments from the past three decades:
- A construction guy with his construction partners open up a hotel on a former blackberry patch north of downtown Victoria. People are shocked as it’s on the wrong side of the street and is apparently doomed to fail. Within 10 years the company expands to five locations around the province.
- The huge leap to change the dowdy Stay’n Save brand to the more current Accent Inns. Ack, it begins with an A and people assume we’ve been bought by Americans!
- The first “Treat Time” occurred at the Head Office of Accent Inns. A tradition was born which occurs every Friday at 3 p.m. for the last three decades. Please don’t call at 3 p.m. on a Friday. We’re busy.
- In 1997 we launched our first website. It was pretty lame. It’s much nicer now.
- In 2000, Terry, the President, calls in Mandy the Sales Manager to let her know he does not approve of the man she is dating. She tells him to mind his own business, politely of course.
- In 2010 the rubber duck is born! Who doesn’t love seeing a rubber duck in the bathroom, even if the first time you notice it is when you, ahem, sit down.
- 2011- Accent Inns decides to become the most bike friendly hotel chain in the world! C’mon just try to name another bike friendly hotel chain… we bet you can’t.
- 2014 marked the birth of Hotel Zed, the rebel in the family.
- To generate interest and support couples everywhere, Accent Inns launches the ‘Nooner’ at Hotel Zed, confirming that it is exactly what you think it is.
- 2016 sees the company’s second Kelowna location open – Hotel Zed Kelowna. This brings the total number of Accent Inns’ owned properties to seven, or the addition of one property for close to every four years of being in business.
Of course, you’d have to catch Farmer on her bike to get more of the inside scoop and some stories that aren’t necessarily fit for print.
Celebrating 30 years in business in 2016, Accent Inns likes to describe themselves as not your typical, stuffy hotel chain. Yes, they have modern, clean rooms, but they will also tell you where to go (in a good way). They will give you the down low on where the locals hang – the hot spots for shopping, dining and hitting the town. Oh yeah, they also like to mention that they are also a pint-sized, boastfully BC hotel chain with five locations; Victoria, Burnaby, Vancouver Airport (Richmond), Kelowna & Kamloops and each of them is a winner of the TripAdvisor “Certificate of Excellence.” Stay local. Stay real.