One of the most unique new cottage resorts in Alberta, Charmed Family Resorts offers a selection of whimsical camping cottages in the Crowsnest Pass. The resort was conceived, designed, and built by Tyson and Audy Leavitt of Charmed Playhouses, a company that builds luxury playhouses for wealthy and famous clients. The pair also has a popular show on TLC called Playhouse Masters.
Each cottage at the resort has its own theme. There’s a cottage inspired by Shakespeare’s "A Midsummer Night's Dream," a Rapunzel cottage, and two elven abodes. The small resort opened in the summer of 2020 in the midst of the global pandemic.
We asked Tyson and Audy to share their thoughts on the tourism industry in Alberta and their place in it.
How did your business evolve during the pandemic? What changes or new aspects to your business will you take with you moving forward?
COVID-19 forced us to pivot from just being a playhouse builder to the hospitality industry. We built our resort in a way that our guests can have their own unique experience, while still maintaining health and safety protocols. We originally planned to have shared bathroom accommodations, but we adjusted that in order to allow guests to maintain social distancing. This ultimately has led to greater customer satisfaction.
We know that Albertans are playing a key role in the initial economic recovery of our local tourism industry. What would you say to encourage Albertans to continue exploring their own backyard, even now that it’s possible to travel elsewhere again?
COVID-19 has been a unique experience for our family. It has forced us to be hyper aware of the amazing locations that were right up the road from us and we weren’t even aware of it, from beautiful hikes and amazing restaurants to unique accommodations and entertainment. Our favourite thing to do each weekend as a family is to go on an excursion to discover new hidden gems in Alberta.