To The Editor:
Last week, a postcard arrived from the “Friends” of Lot 4… in the main, their argument states the EPMC/Anschutz Wellness Center is a risky concept.
Here are the facts:
In the 2013 Global Wellness Tourism Economy Report Executive Summary, WELLNESS TOURISM is defined as “All travel associated with the pursuit of maintaining or enhancing one’s personal wellbeing. WELLNESS TOURISM is already a US $439-billion market—or more than ONE in SEVEN of all tourist dollars — and is set to grow in the US to $678.5 billion in three short years (by 2017). And the wellness tourists spend, on average, 130% more than the average global tourist.”
The Stanley Hotel is the flagship hotel of the Grand Heritage Hotel Group. In the 17 years of ownership, The Stanley has been beautifully renovated, has risen to become the premiere wedding venue in Colorado, provides the second largest source of sales tax revenue to the Town, has the highest bookings of any Estes Park lodging and has the highest number of website hits in the nation. Grand Heritage has created a powerful, proven marketing program for The Stanley AND its entire international network of over 22 very successful hotels. That same EXISTING marketing program will profitably nourish the EPMC/Anschutz Wellness Center while anchoring Estes Park as a destination for WELLNESS TOURISM.
The combination of this skyrocketing new market, WELLNESS TOURISM, and the incredible success of the Grand Heritage Hotel Group’s proven marketing program assures the prosperity of the EPMC/Anschutz Wellness Center. It is a privately-funded concept that will provide a conservative estimate of $1.5 million dollars annually to our financially struggling hospital, immediate revenue to the Town to satisfy road repair debt without increased taxes, increase permanent jobs in the valley AND provide new business to every facet of our community. There is no risk and no expense to the people of Estes Park, unlike the risk and never-ending expense of making Lot 4 a permanent conservation easement.
This is a solid business plan that will benefit the Estes community for years to come which is why so many Estes business associations have endorsed it.
I urge you to VOTE YES for the EPMC/Anschutz Wellness Center on Lot 4 and VOTE NO for a conservation easement on Lot 4.
Gail Willwerth Upp