New Indian Falls Chalets open in Springdale for start of tourist season | The Western Star
SPRINGDALE, N.L. — It may look like just one business, but the owners of Indian Falls Chalets hope to help boost the economy of an entire community.
“It is going to attract more people to the Springdale area this summer,” Shawn Rowsell said. “Those people are going to have to buy gas and groceries, they will be interested in the walking trails and the other attractions.”
On May 18, Shawn and Michelle Rowsell opened the doors on their new luxury chalets on the Indian River, and they feel their 4.5 star accommodations could provide a tourism boost for the whole area.
Glenn Seabright, president of the Springdale and Area Chamber of Commerce, agrees that any new tourism venture can benefit the business community as a whole.
“Tourism is very important,” Seabright said. “It adds additional commerce to the area for all the business community.”
In addition to the economic boost their guests will bring, the Rowsells expect to provide some employment — they plan to hire one or two staff members as soon as they are needed. The couple will also work with a variety of local businesses as opportunities arise.
“We will be partnering with other people in Springdale, as well,” Shawn said. “For example, there’s someone who does catering at the Irving who will be preparing picnic lunches for our hikes and we’ll partner with Rob Clarke for tours.”
When developing their plans for the business, the Rowsells did not want to compete directly with existing rental properties, so they consulted the Department of Tourism to maximize their potential for success.
“Tourism did a survey and told us what would work for the area,” Shawn said. “There are no luxury chalets within 100 kilometres, so they felt that was needed here.”
The Rowsells have built three of the recommended five chalets, and intend to build two others in the near future.
The Indian Falls Chalets are built on a parcel of land that has been in Shawn’s family for the past 35 years. He spent a lot of time there as a child, and even after he and Michelle moved away from Springdale, they returned to the family cottage often. The Rowsells now live on-site to provide for their guests.
Shawn feels that the unique location, combined with their familiarity with the area will allow them to offer something different to their visitors.
“We’re right on the banks of the Indian River in Springdale, sitting right on top of the falls. It’s a unique area, very scenic,” he said. “We will be offering adventures, doing some guiding on the river, and we’ll do a walking trail following the river right to Springdale. I’ll be offering a smoked salmon workshop, taking it from raw to a finished product.”
The Rowsells hope that the combination of luxury accommodations with events tailored to their guests will bring a variety of tourists to the Springdale area.
Seabright thinks that is a likely outcome.
“The new chalets will draw additional tourism due to increased capacity and will possibly draw new people to the area due to the chalet’s location and amenities,” he said.