As a Resort Municipality, Whistler is a unique town with its own particular zoning and land use restrictions. The Municipality has carefully and deliberately designated property use to ensure that there is a large enough supply of nightly rental bed units, while restricting nightly rentals in other areas to maintain residential character of certain areas.
Many of the condominium complexes in Whistler are zoned as Tourism Accommodation and are affected by rental covenants, designating them as either Phase I or Phase II properties. You might have come across some condo units with prices that seem “too good to be true”—these are typically Phase II units.
Phase I is the more common of the two restrictions, and permits unlimited use by owners. Owners can occupy their unit year-round if they choose, or they can rent it out on a nightly or monthly basis. Phase I units are typically found in non-hotel complexes throughout the Village and the Benchlands.
Phase II units are less common but are more restrictive and are typically found in hotels units. Owners are permitted to use their units up to 56 days per year, consisting of 28 days in the winter (October 15 to April 15) and 28 days in the summer (April 15 to October 15). Owners must pre-book their time in advance. The remainder of the time, the unit must be made available for nightly rentals. Owners may be able to use their units for short term bookings beyond the 56 day limit if the complex’s occupancy rate is less than 80%.
Complexes with Phase II restrictions include: Cascade Lodge, Holiday Inn, Westin, Adara, Whistler Village Inn & Suites, The Coast at Blackcomb Springs, Delta Whistler Village Suites, the Four Seasons Resort (separate from the Four Seasons Private Residences, which are not Phase II), Alpenglow, Pinnacle International, Carlton Lodge and both Pan Pacific hotels.
If you plan on coming to Whistler frequently and want the flexibility to use your unit whenever you want, you will probably prefer a Phase I unit. If you don’t anticipate using your unit more than 56 days per year and are comfortable with it being rented out the remainder of the time, a Phase II unit might be a better option and can offer some excellent value.
For more information on Phase I or Phase II units, or to do a search on one particular type of property, please contact us.