Winnipeg hotel morphing into Indigenous wellness centre

According to CBC News, a business group that includes members of a northern Manitoba First Nation has taken over the Balmoral Hotel, in a bid to transform the central Winnipeg hotel into a wellness centre.

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"This is a positive opportunity, where we had a window of opportunity to take part in such initiatives and we capitalized on that," says David Muswaggon, a member of Pimicikamak Okimawin's executive council responsible for urban economic development.

Muswaggon, Winnipeg entrepreneur Kam Khaira and psychiatrist Dr. Antonio Paletta are leading the project to redevelop the 44-room hotel, which will be renamed the Pimicikamak Wellness Centre. They took possession of the property at at 621 Balmoral St., at the corner of Cumberland Avenue, on Nov. 1.

They plan to turn the beer vendor currently operating on the property into a walk-in clinic. A drop-in centre offering meals and Indigenous-focused programming will take over the basement space that once operated as a bar and strip club.

The hotel will also have space for Pimicikamak's transportation agency. There are also plans for a daycare and a 28-unit apartment project in a nearby building, Muswaggon said.

The transformation is set to be complete by the end of 2024, but it won't take that long for some parts of the plan to begin operating.

Read the full story here.

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