By Dan Archer
Sophie Morrison moved as a child from Calgary to Shaunavon, an oilfield town 188.6 kilometres west of Assiniboia. Morrison, now living in Lafleche, is Canalta Assiniboia’s newest general manager. Morrison has been a Canalta associate for five years, starting as a housekeeper then moving upwards to managerial positions.
Although Morrison has never attended a hospitality course, her personality exudes positive energy – a necessary trait for each employee in Saskatchewan’s developing tourist industry. Morrison’s daily objective is to “create smiles and go above and beyond.” Morrison, a manager who prefers causal wear to uniforms and business dress, wants to make visitors feel welcome in Assiniboia.
Morrison is happy to be employed in Assiniboia, an attractive town with a central location to many southwestern attractions. Given the town’s ready access to natural grasslands, semi-deserts, Badlands and ghost towns in all directions, Assiniboia’s tourist industry will continue to experience upward growth. Over 67, 000 people – an amount constituting 10 per cent of all Saskatchewan workers – are employed in the province’s tourism sector.
Headquartered in Drumheller, Canalta is a family-owned hospitality business with 40 plus properties across Western Canada. In 1974, the Christiansons started their hotel empire with the ownership of a motor inn in Stettler Alberta. The family expanded their hotel empire through each of the prairie provinces, including Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba. Located on 611 Avenue West, the pet and kid friendly Canalta hotel in Assiniboia has terrific amenities such as a guest laundry, the fitness centre, a hot tub and buttery popcorn. The consensus from 198 reviews gives the hotel a rating of 4.5 stars out of five, or a grade of excellent.