(Update: KTVZ's Blake Mayfield will have update on the resort's timeline to reopen. His report will air tonight at Five)
Developers say progress is evident on long list of improvements
WARM SPRINGS, Ore. (KTVZ) -- A major restoration and renovation project underway at Kah-Nee-Ta Resort on the Warm Springs Indian Reservation is proceeding in numerous ways, but damage from a severe storm last month means this year's expected reopening will be delayed, officials announced Tuesday.
Using $4.58 million in funds from the American Rescue Plan Act, the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs is partnering with Mt. Hood Skibowl to restore and manage the village, which closed in 2018 after the tribe said it wasn't generating enough revenue to stay in operation. The renovation and reopening plans were announced early last year.
KTVZ's Blake Mayfield will be at the resort site Thursday to examine the damage, see the progress made so far and get details on when the upgraded resort may officially reopen. His report will air tonight at Five on NewsChannel 21.
Here's the update released on the project and the progress made so far:
Kah-Nee-Ta Hot Springs Village Resort first opened as a Tribally-owned development in 1962. For decades, the beloved resort’s cultural experiences and community made it a popular travel destination. With a $4.5 million investment in renovation and restoration underway for this historic property, Kah-Nee-Ta is moving forward with construction after an extreme weather event damaged progress to the project.
Sadly, the Warm Springs community and the Resort experienced severe storm weather on May 19th which resulted in significant damage to facilities and infrastructure. To recover from the storm's impact and complete the remaining work, the anticipated 2023 reopening will be delayed.
“We’re grateful for the expertise of our partners and the support of our local community, given the setbacks we’re facing from the extreme weather event,” said Jim Souers, CEO of the Warm Springs Economic Development Corp. “Bringing a beautiful property like Kah-Nee-Ta up to its full capacity comes with challenges given the historic nature of its origin, and despite those challenges we’re excited and encouraged to see the immense amount of progress we’re making toward opening and bringing Kah-Nee-Ta back into the community.”
Current facilities improvements underway include the following. We welcome you to join in our effort and be forever recognized as a partner of the resort by becoming a “Kah-Nee-Ta Forever Club Member” and purchasing a “Kah-Nee-Ta Personalized Paver” stone for placement in our courtyard.
- Seven pools are 75% completed and 15 VIP poolside cabanas will be included
- Children’s spray pool & a sports pool with volleyball court and basketball area
- Children’s hot springs soaking pool
- Lazy River pool
- 3 large leisure wellness hot springs soaking pools ranging from 92 to 103 degrees
- New sports bar and restaurant are currently under construction
- The 30-room motel has been remodeled
- New RV Park Clubhouse with restrooms, shower and laundry facility and the all age Arcade Game Room located at the RV Recreational Center are 90 percent complete
- Teepee Clubhouse with restroom and showers fixtures have been updated
- The 20 Teepee area is prepped, landscaped and ready for new Teepees
- The outside food court with food trailers, children’s pizza snack bar and pool bar are at final design phase
- The pool clubhouse with bathroom, showers, lockers with concierge service remodeled is 80 percent completed
- The new Kah-Nee-Ta pool entrance courtyard area is redesigned with Tribal salmon bake fire pit and tribal celebration area
- Upgrading the original underground sewer and stormwater systems from the 1960s to bring it to full capacity
- Addition of an updated heating and air conditioning system in all buildings and in every motel room
- Rebuilt underground irrigation systems
- New commercial laundry facility is finished and awaiting arrival and installation of new laundry equipment
- Remodeling administration building, with operation and accounting offices, first aid center and employee area is being furnished
Topping the long list of new and updated amenities planned for Kah-Nee-Ta is a seven-pool complex that includes three pools fed solely by the mineral-rich waters of the area’s hot springs.
Guests can enjoy in one of the three natural mineral-enriched wellness hot springs soaking pools at various temperature ranges, one large leisure pool at 90 -95 degrees and two others ranging between 95 to 103 degrees. Otherwise relax poolside at one of the 15 luxurious fully-equipped cabanas.
With a renewed focus on the therapeutic benefits of the mineral-rich hot springs, Kah-Nee-Ta plans are to offer more than 20 private six-person soaking tubs and a spa featuring tribal therapies that include hot springs baths, steam and ice baths and professional massages where guests can relax, rejuvenate and detoxify.
Continuing along the theme of relaxation, both kids and adults can enjoy a carefree hot springs heated water float along Kah-Nee-Ta’s lazy river. The gentle current carries guests around a dedicated sports pool that can host water volleyball, basketball, and morning water aerobics classes. For the more active water enthusiast, the new hot springs spray pool will be a big hit with its water buckets, mushroom waterfall and bubble fountains and shade.
For Warm Spring River enthusiasts, we will now offer a refreshing three-mile river adventure tube float where guests can enjoy the painted mountain landscape, then be picked up and transported back to the village by our shuttle.
The Kah-Nee-Ta of years past was known for the strength of its cultural experiences, attracting travelers from around the world.
“Kah-Nee-Ta provided an important opportunity for our people to show the world that our traditional ways are still alive and well,” said Tribal Member Starla Green. “I look forward to our younger generations having that same opportunity with the resort’s reopening.”
Development partner Kirk Hanna of Skibowl says, "We are excited to be part of the relaunch of Kah-Nee-Ta to promote the cultural heritage and bring visitors back to experience the natural, restorative powers of the Hot Springs, which dates back 10,000 years."
Be the first to receive important updates by signing up for our newsletter at this link or support the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs and the revitalization of Kah-Nee-Ta by purchasing a personalized paving stone that can be engraved with a personal message up to three lines or 20 characters. Corporate sponsorships in support of Kah-Nee-Ta are also available. Join the Kah-Nee-Ta Forever Club Membership for advanced opportunities to make overnight accommodations at Oregon’s cultural hot springs tourism destination. Please contact sponsorship@Kahneeta.com.
About the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs The Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon is based in Central Oregon, with a membership of more than 5,000 Tribal Members from the Warm Springs, Wasco, and Paiute Tribes. The Reservation was created by the Treaty of 1855 between the Indians of Middle Oregon and the United States Government. Learn more at https://warmsprings-nsn.gov/
About the Warm Springs Economic Development Corporation
WSEDC is a wholly-owned enterprise of the CTWS with the purpose of creating sources of Long-Term Revenue and Employment opportunities for tribal members through enterprise business developments. For more information contact Jim Souers, CEO Warm Springs Economic Development: email@example.com