Holland America Line has reached an agreement in principle to acquire the McKinley Chalets Hotel in Denali National Park from Aramark Sports and Entertainment Services. Holland America Line will develop the property further for inclusion on its Land+Sea Journeys that combine an Alaska cruise with an overland tour to Denali National Park.
Details of the McKinley Chalets Hotel purchase agreement and plans for future enhancements are ongoing, and once the purchase is completed later this fall, more information will be made available to the public.
The agreement to purchase McKinley Chalets Hotel is part of an enhancement program that also will see modifications to Holland America Line’s Alaska hotels at Fairbanks, Skagway and Whitehorse. The renovations, which will take place over the next few years, will include extensive room updates and upgrades to soft goods and hotel decor.
“Acquiring the McKinley Chalets Hotel provides Holland America Line with great potential for growth in Denali and enables us to expand the appeal of our brand as a leader in Alaska travel,” said Stein Kruse, president and CEO of Holland America Line. “This purchase will help us deliver the finest destination resort and experience in Alaska at the highlight on Land+Sea Journeys — Denali National Park.”
Spanning more than 42 acres, the McKinley Chalet Resort features 345 rooms, fine and casual dining, an on-site dinner theater, on-site raft departures and walking trails on the Nenana River. Holland America currently owns 26 acres adjacent to the chalets, including 135 additional guest rooms that have been operated by Aramark as part of the McKinley Chalets. Total rooms are 480.
In 2014, Holland America Line is rebranding its popular Alaska CruiseTour program with the new name Land+Sea Journeys. Now with more time in the marquee destinations and less overland travel time, Holland America Line guests will have more opportunities than ever to explore and personalize their Great Land vacations.
With 12 options ranging in length from 10 to 20 days and featuring a three- to seven-day cruise, Land+Sea Journeys offer the benefit of combining the “must-see” of Denali National Park with the “seldom seen” wonders of the Yukon. Among the most significant program enhancements for 2014 is a convenient one-hour flight that brings Fairbanks, Alaska, and Dawson City, Yukon closer together — replacing up to two days of motorcoach travel and a hotel overnight.
Other notable elements include revised departures for the McKinley Explorer dome rail schedule between Anchorage and Denali to maximize guest time in both locations. For travel between Denali and Fairbanks, luxury motorcoaches will be introduced to also increase guest time in both Fairbanks and Denali.