Heiltsuk Nation buying eco resort in BC's Great Bear Rainforest

May 18 2021, 2:11 pm

The Heiltsuk Nation is purchasing an eco-tourism resort inside the Great Bear Rainforest ahead of a planned tourism relaunch in the region.

Shearwater Marine Limited is located inside the Heiltsuk territory, on beautiful Denny Island, just a few kilometres east of Bella Bella in BC’s central coast region.

The purchase will be made using funds secured through a 2019 reconciliation agreement between the Heiltsuk Nation and the federal government.

In an interview with Daily Hive, Marilyn Slett, Chief Councillor for the Heiltsuk Trial Council, said this purchase aligned with their values, had good environmental benefits and would give back to her community.

“We usually talk about reconciliation with larger contexts such as financial institutions, or governments, but it really does start with people,” said Slett.

“When we tell our story to people that visit this part of the world, they will learn that we are so connected to our land and our seas — being able to share that is reconciliation.”

Shearwater is a 70-year-old company part of BC’s thriving eco-tourism destination that offers sportfishing and wilderness tours and also features restaurants and bars.

You can stay at Shearwater Resort in a waterfront lodge, vacation rental, hideaway floathouse, or an RV — all in the heart of the Great Bear Rainforest.

During your stay, you can enjoy BC’s wildlife with an all-inclusive wildlife trip, or fishing tour. If you feel like relaxing, you can check out their local retail stores, or enjoy something to eat at the Fisherman’s Bar & Grill.

They are still closing the deal and planning, but once the resort is open, anyone is welcome to visit to learn about their culture, stories, and connection to the land.


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The intended purchase of Shearwater is the nation’s largest investment in the House Post of Economic Development, to date.

The Haíɫcístut Incremental House Post Agreement provided $42.72 million to address priorities of housing, infrastructure, economic development, language revitalization, and preservation.

The final purchase for Shearwater is expected to be completed by June 30th, following a regulatory review.

“It really has been something that we feel supports the values that we have, and we are really excited to share it with everybody,” said Slett.

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