For all of us at Tauck, the national parks of Western Canada hold a special place in our hearts, and in the company’s history. It is an understatement to say that Banff, Jasper, Yoho, Kootenay, and Glacier are among the world’s most beautiful alpine playgrounds. Majestic, picturesque, vast and historic, time spent within them is inspiring and revitalizing. The story of Tauck’s first days in Banff (thanks in part to a special publication by the Canadian Tourism Commission) – and some special videos – are as follows:
In the 1950s, “Go West” was the cry of the day – so Arthur Tauck Jr. did. His faith in Canada as a vacation destination was unwavering, and the Canadian Rockies had enormous appeal at that time. But developing business was easier said than done as air travel was still in its infancy. Transportation was almost exclusively by rail, so as a result the railways had a hold on accommodation – particularly in Canada’s national parks. Virtually every hotel room in the Canadian Rockies was linked to a roomette on the train.
However, Tauck tenacity had withstood sterner tests than this. Arthur first applied for hotel rooms for his air/motor coach guests in 1958. He was turned down. He applied again in 1959, with the same result. He was refused again in 1960 and in 1961 – but in 1962, his efforts did finally pay off. The Timberline Lodge, a motel along the main highway outside Banff, gave Arthur the thumbs up. It was managed by Canadian Pacific Hotels (a division of Canadian Pacific Railway), who still refused to give Tauck the space requested inside Banff National Park. Arthur took the offer of the Timberline Lodge, and consistently filled every room allocated to Tauck. Canadian Pacific was impressed – and two years later, gave Tauck space at the Banff Springs Hotel, their showcase location. The close relationship forged with Canadian Pacific Hotels (today known as Fairmont Hotels, part of the AccorHotels Group), continues to this day.
Take a look at our relationship today with Fairmont in Banff, Jasper, and at Lake Louise as told by Tauck Directors Greg Dickie, Sarah Brooking and Sara Eglitis:
Fairmont Banff Springs
Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge