Wintertime ice skating rink installed on Fairmont Empress Hotel lawn

Dec 19 2017, 12:50 pm

An authentic traditional Christmas experience would not be complete without an outdoor ice skating rink.

The Fairmont Empress Hotel in downtown Victoria has expanded its annual “winter wonderland” celebrations with the installation of a new outdoor covered ice skating rink. Christmas lights are strung overhead to further enhance the magical experience.

Earlier this week, the temporary rink was flooded with water to create a real ice skating surface. The attraction is located on the front lawn of the hotel facing Victoria Inner Harbour and the B.C. Legislature.

According to the Empress, the rink is a present to visitors and local residents by Nat and Flora Bosa, who founded and own Vancouver development company Bosa Development and purchased the Empress in June 2014.

“The holidays are always a special time for our team at The Fairmont Empress and our new skating rink will add to the magic,” said Don Fennerty, general manager of the hotel. “We hope that everyone will make it part of their tradition and drop by for a skate.”

The rink measures approximately 60′ x 90′ and will be open from November 20, 2014 to mid-January 2015. As the holiday season progresses, there will be special events such as Sunday Skates with Santa and Christmas Eve Skating with the elves.

Fairmont Empress Hotel Ice Skating Rink

  • Dates: Daily from November 20 to mid-January 2015
  • Times: Public skating from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on weekdays; 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. on weekends
  • Admission: $10 per adult; $5 per children aged 10 and under
  • Rentals: Ice skate rentals are available for $5 per pair
  • Website:

Just watering the ice rink… #yyj #EmpressSkate #fairmonthotels #countdown

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A few more finishing touches and we’ll be ready for opening! Staff skate today! #empressskate

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Today is the first time we’ve both cut the grass and zambonied an ice rink on our front lawn. #yyj #EmpressSkate #countdown

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It’s sure looking a lot like an ice rink now! #yyj #EmpressSkate #countdown

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Feature Image: Doug Clement Photography