November, 2011 Archives

3D Pirates. Golf balls and putters. Oh My!

Ahoy Mates! Avast ye scallywags. Okay, I obviously need to brush up on my pirate-talk, but I must say my mini golf is on par after this weekend’s family adventure. I’ve wanted to do the new 3D pirate mini golf at the Fun Factor on Kamloops’ North Shore for a few months now, so what better family activity on a Friday night than a little indoor mini golf. I didn’t quite know what to expect. I’ve been to other indoor mini golf courses in the past with the kids and was disappointed by the décor and how run down some places tend to get, so I was super happy when I walked through the doors of the Fun Factor for our mini golf game. First, they’ve completely redone the place, so as soon as you step foot inside the doors, you have a friendly staff member welcoming you and are greeted by the cool Pirate décor. The boys were so excited because they could catch a glimpse of the mini golf area which was completely dark and lit by black lighting – we couldn’t pay fast enough and get the golfing going.

First, you pay for your round and get a new pair of 3D glasses for $2.00 each, which you can keep for the next time you go so you don’t have to pay for the glasses again. Then, you’re given your putters and golf balls and away you go, down a ramp into the 3D mini golf world. It’s incredible. My husband and I were looking around constantly saying, “This is so cool!”. The putting areas are lined with neon coloured blocks which jump out with the 3D glasses and it’s a somewhat challenging course, but not too hard so the kids won’t get frustrated. When you look up, you’ll see giant sharks swimming overhead and all around are wall murals depicting underwater scenes and pirate adventures and it’s, in a word … AMAZING!

There are a total of 9 putting greens and you could be golfing among shark fins and a giant shark head with a full set of teeth or among alligators acting as barriers to you sinking your putt. There’s cool lighting making some areas look like you’re underwater in a shipwreck and other areas have palm trees and a glowing volcano. The 3D glasses definitely make everything appear that much cooler  - except for you, because NO ONE looks good in 3D glasses! I know that the next time I go back, I’ll see something new as there’s so much there. It’s so professionally designed and would be great for anyone to enjoy. You could truly make this a girls or guys night out if you also do the Laser Tag which is located in the same building and play the midway style games. At the end of the course, they have a pirate mural where you can put your face and take pictures which is always a hit with the kids … and the adults.


Great family entertainment at the Fun Factor! Ahoy!

- Awesome Aleece

Confessions of a Glam Girl: Big Style, Little City

Its more than easy to become overwhelmed in large urban shopping areas.  In Canada we're addicted to malls, likely because we live most of our year at the mercy of winter.  In a few of our warmer cities we stroll streets such as Younge or Robson for the next trend in fashion.  The possibilities are endless as to what you can find, which is exactly the problem.  Big city shopping is great if you can negotiate your way through the crowds, confidently pick your pieces out of the trillions of choices, and if you're still in love with your first impulse purchase by the time you get to the end of the parade of retail stores then you're a better shopaholic than I.  Sure, big cities have little niche boutiques, we've all heard about them through a friend of a friend.  No one ever bothers to give directions to these super chic hideaways.  Alas, the urban boutique remains to most, nothing more than an urban myth.

Kamloops is the answer to 'Big Style in the Little City'.  First, the city enjoys favorable strolling conditions year round.  Low amounts of year round precipitation are perfect for protecting your latest footwear fetish, it also doesn't hurt that shopping, accommodations, spa, dining, and nightlife all fall within a very small downtown quadrant.  Second, MILD WINTERS.  Don't let Vancouverites tell you any differently, they're just bitter that our summers are far better than a coastal summer and they're attempting to halt a population shift to the interior.  Climate conditions contribute to dressing for the occasion; this fall and winter we've spotted plenty of tall boots, ankle boots with wedge heels, and lots and lots of cape coats.  Its very common to see groups of well dressed men and women cruising Victoria Street; in the daytime with friends and small puppies, perhaps lunching at popular spots such as Terra or The Noble Pig, or taking in a speciality coffee or dessert at Blenz or Swiss Pastries.  Think of socializing in Downtown Kamloops as socializing in a 'northern' Scottsdale or West Hollywood, its just that chic.  During the evening hours you'll find beautiful settings and beautiful people at favorite dining locales such as Felix on Fourth, The Brownstone, or The Commodore.  The Commodore doubles as live music and a resto-bar, staying open late for cocktails and mingling.  Other late evening favorites are the rooftop patio at Carlos O”Briens (weather permitting of course), and Rivers Nightclub or Cactus Jacks Saloon.  The most important factor in picking Kamloops as your style headquarters is of course the shopping. Getting away from the hustle of retail meccas; Downtown Kamloops offers all boutique shopping. The beauty of the boutique is that all of the guess work has been done for you. Talented buyers like Anthony from Jardines Domaine or Connie from Main Street Clothing have travelled extensively to view collections by countless brands, picked only the most stylish pieces, and brought them back to Kamloops.  This is a secret most locals would prefer to keep to themselves, we wouldn't want to create a shortage if word was to get out.  Domaine carries the best from fashion lines like- Michael Kors, Paige Denim, Mexx, Billabong, Dex, Gentle Fawn, Hunter, UGG, Mia, the list could go on forever.  The staff is impeccably dressed, friendly and knowledgeable, always offering advice on the next big thing. Main Street Clothing is a great source for high end denim (amongst other great items).  Its actually happened that I've dreamed about a pair of jeans worn by Kristin Cavallari, the next day I walked into Main Street Clothing and I bought them (in case you are wondering the brand was AG).  Also wonderful staff, the mother/daughter style duo that run this boutique are fabulous, friendly and always fashionable.

Finally, if you're really serious about taking in all that Kamloops has to offer you will leave time in your busy day of shopping, dining, and socializing for a little relaxation; the best remedy, a blow dry at the new blow dry bar located in Beauty Code Boutique, or a mani/pedi at Ardeo Spa.  While at Beauty Code check out their fabulous selection of cosmetics, ask Cass for tips on application, she's Kamloops best kept secret having received her Make Up Education in West Hollywood and working in Vancouver, she IS the “Big City Style in the Little City”.  Ardeo also offers spa services, set in a tranquil and modern environment, consider this the perfect escape to prepare you for a busy night out.  Downtown Kamloops has many more stylish secrets, boutiques, consignment, dining, four star accommodations, the possibilities are endless.  My best advice is that if you are really looking for big style, or a fabulous weekend away, everything you need is available and easily accessible in Kamloops.

- Elisabeth Bass

Follow Elisabeth on Twitter @elisabethbass

Let The Good Times Roll!

So, another year older and most of all wiser! ;) This year I lucked out and my birthday happened to fall on a Friday. I love it when that happens! Think of all the possibilities. I contemplated heading to Vancouver and dreamt of going on an all-inclusive (that one may have to wait till the 30th…fingers crossed) but after some thought I realized I would have just as much fun staying in Kamloops and having a night on the town with some great friends.


The day began the usual way... alarm went off, got out of bed, got dressed and headed to work. Happy birthday wishes from everyone made me smile. A surprise lunch catered by Goldies Flavors of India made me smile even more!


The evening began at the Keg Steakhouse located downtown Kamloops where I met up with family and friends to enjoy a delicious meal and some wonderful birthday cake! Afterwards we were ready for some dancing. We started out at the Commodore where we found Kamloops Kendel saving us a table! The Commodore is always a fun time where you can usually find live music or a DJ spinning some great beats.


Our next stop was the Blue Grotto which isn’t even a block away. The Blue Grotto has a live band every weekend. You can check out our events page to see who is playing each weekend.  This is a 21+ night club and has great diversity of people who go and enjoy themselves. We danced until the lights came on!


Overall it was a great night out! I’m already excited for next weekend!

Posted in Press Release, Events,

2011 August Accommodation Tax Revenue in Kamloops up 34.3% over 2010

~For Immediate Release~

November 1, 2011

2011 August Accommodation Tax Revenue in Kamloops up 34.3% over 2010.

Kamloops, BC: Tourism Kamloops is reporting a 34.3% increase in 2011 accommodation tax revenues for August over last year’s August numbers.

The latest accommodation tax revenue report for August has just been released and when calculated into year-to-date numbers, Kamloops has seen an average 17.5% increase over the same period in 2010.

This summer, Kamloops hosted the Kamloops Invitational Soccer Tournament, Watchtower Conventions, Western Canada Summer Games, and the Canadian Harley Owners Group. “The foresight and efforts by the City of Kamloops and the community to make these events a reality cannot be understated.” says Lee Morris, CEO. “The Arts, Culture and Heritage sector of the tourism industry continues to provide outstanding entertainment for the attendees of these events.”

Tourism Kamloops attributes the overall increase in part to an ongoing economic recovery, sport tourism, and tactical marketing by Tourism Kamloops to our markets.

For More Information:

Ms. Lee Morris CEO

Tourism Kamloops

P: 250.319.4247