August 23, 2023

Your weekly round up of BizNews from throughout Greater Victoria!

Our sold-out August business mixer is set for tomorrow at Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse. The always popular venue is a great opportunity for getting together in-person on a beautiful summer evening. This event is at capacity so if you have registered but can't attend, please let our staff know so we can make room for another member on the waitlist. And be sure to register early for all of our great Chamber events coming up this fall!

How to help BC communities devastated by wildfires

Travel restrictions are being lifted tonight for many areas of Interior BC devastated by wildfires, but for people and businesses forced to flee their homes recovery will take time.

“The emergency order we put in place on Saturday has had the effect we required and thousands of hotel rooms were made available for people forced from their homes, as well as the many firefighters and emergency crews who are protecting us during the worst wildfire season in our history," BC's Minister of Emergency Management and Climate Readiness said in a news release.

The Chamber has been in conversation with affected chambers to offer support during this difficult time.

"We know that Greater Victoria is an exceptionally compassionate and generous community," Chamber CEO Bruce Williams said. "There are ways to help now, and there will be a need to help communities as they work to recover from so much loss."


How to help:

Upcoming Events


September Emerge Connector at Pacific FC

5 Chamber Mixer at Camosun Interurban

Hire a Co-op Student to Benefit Your Team - Webinar

Wisdom for Family Enterprises - Dinner with David Bentall

August Business Mixer at Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse - Sold out

Check our Events Calendar for updates. 

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Housing supply solutions require working together

Housing supply is at the core of Chamber advocacy. Greater Victoria, like much of North America, is facing a crunch — not enough homes are being built to meet demand. This affects the cost of living for employees, delays people from starting a family and impacts the availability of shelter for people experiencing homelessness.

A group of Canadian housing sector organizations recently released the National Housing Accord: A Multi-Sector Approach to Ending Canada’s Rental Housing Crisis. The report offers 10 solutions that aim to focus the efforts of all levels of government and industry on policies to support more building.

"It's a bit of a Catch 22 in that we need skilled tradespeople to build homes so that the market has enough supply for skilled tradespeople to be able to afford to live here," Chamber CEO Bruce Williams said. "The lack of housing affects people at all income levels but is particularly concerning for people early in their careers and those who have the added costs that come with raising kids."

Tourism slowly returning to pre-pandemic levels

High-interest rates and uncertainty over the state of the economy are behind the tourism industry slowing down after its fast recovery from the pandemic. A report by TD titled "A Slow Road to Recovery for Canadian Tourism Spending," states the industry won't fully recover until about 2025.

Current tourism spending is at about 87% of where it was in 2019.

"Although more price-conscious tourists could weigh on profit margins in the sector, slower demand growth may allow the industry time to overcome labour shortages," the report states.

In BC, tourism employment is the highest its been since 2018 as employers work to overcome challenges finding and keeping staff.

TD Canada Trust: Member since 1913

Greater Victoria tourism earns environmental rep

Back in May, Greater Victoria received some love from a feature in Vogue about how we "became a sustainable travel hotspot." the article identifies a number of Chamber members who have helped make Greater Victoria green, including:

Chamber Members featured in Vogue:

Destination Greater Victoria: Member since 1988

Inn at Laurel Point: Member since 1991

Fairmont Empress: Member since 1913

The Parkside Hotel & Spa: Member since 2013

Oak Bay Beach Hotel: Member since 2011

Orca Spirit Adventures: Member since 2011

Eagle Wing Whale & Wildlife Watching Tours: Member since 2013

Prince of Whales Whale Watching: Member since 2002

Ride the Glide – RTG E-Bikes Inc: Member since 2012

Big Wheel Burger: Member since 2020

Songhees Tours: Member since 2022


Songhees Nation: Member since 2017


Be Love: Member since 2015


Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse: Member since 2022

Phillips Brewing & Malting Co.: Member since 2020

YYJ hotel will add much needed rooms to region

Some good news for Greater Victoria's tourism economy as the Victoria Airport Authority approved a proposal to build a 129-room hotel. The three-storey hotel, one of Marriott International’s extended stay brands, will be located on 3.5 acres of commercial zoned land at the corner of Highway 17 and Beacon Avenue West.

“The addition of the TownePlace Suites Hotel at YYJ will provide travellers and visitors to the region with convenient access not only to the airport and Sidney, but also to the many amenities and services in the area and the Pat Bay highway into Victoria,” Victoria Airport Authority President and CEO Geoff Dickson said in a news release.

The all-suite hotel will have studio, one-bedroom and two-bedroom units with fully equipped kitchens, a gym, pool and 1,500 square feet of meeting space. There will also be a full-service restaurant.

Preparations for construction on site will begin in the fall and the hotel is expected to be completed in time for summer 2025.

Victoria Airport Authority: Member since 1981

Chamber Chats with CEO Bruce Williams
Rob Germain from CHEK News with Bruce Williams from The Chamber

Sea Cider Farm & Ciderhouse: Member since 2022

Phillips Brewing and Malting: Member since 2020

Chamber Chats

Think local, drink local: supporting craft beverages

We all know how important it is to support our family, neighbours and friends by shopping local. And when you think local also drink local. In this Chamber Chat, CEO Bruce Williams speaks with Kristen Needham of Sea Cider and Jim Lister with Phillips Brewing and Soda Works about what their products mean to our local economy. 

Special thanks to our series sponsor: Island Savings

Songhees Nation welcomes new executive director

The Songhees Nation Chief and Council have announced on LinkedIn that Rosa Horne will be their next Executive Director. "Rosa is a Member of the Stz'uminus First Nation in Ladysmith and acknowledges her gratitude to live, work, and play in the W̱SÁNEĆ territory over the last 19 years," states the post.

Rosa has a Master of Business Administration with a specialization in Indigenous Business Leadership.

Songhees Nation: Member since 2017

Do you want to be on a Chamber committee?

The Chamber has a number of active and engaged committees that report to our Board of Directors. Each year, our committees will have a few openings for new members. If you're interested, we are recruiting now for Jan. 1, 2024, for at least a two-year term. Here are our committees:

  • Ambassador Committee
  • Finance and Audit Committee
  • Emerge Committee
  • Public Policy and Advocacy Committee
  • Inclusion, Diversity & Equity Advancement Committee

The opportunity to apply for any of the above committees will be open from Aug. 25 to Oct. 6. At the end of the application period, the chair of the committee will review your application and you will be contacted by email or phone.

Upcoming Events

To find out more or register for an event, click on the corresponding graphic below.

2023 5 Chamber Mixer - Biz News

The Chamber Auction is back this November

Showcase your product or service

It's back! We are excited to announce the return of our Annual Auction, taking place Nov. 5 - 12.


This is a major fundraising event for The Chamber, with all proceeds supporting our work as the largest and most influential advocate for businesses in the region. Last year, we received thousands of visits to our auction platform for an action-packed week of bidding on fabulous gifts and memorable experiences.


Do you want your products and services featured in the auction?


From gift cards to great local items and everything in-between, reach hundreds of potential customers by donating a prize today. Keep an eye on our social media feed to see some of the incredible Auction items that will be featured this year.

Sponsored by:

As an event sponsor, Maximum Express, Courier, Freight and Logistics is offering donors complimentary delivery of their auction item to The Chamber office.

Any questions? Please call (250) 383-7191 or email [email protected]

Donate Today!

Find great new staff on Chamber Job Board

As an exclusive member benefit, use the code INTRO2023 at checkout to receive a free 30-day listing on The Chamber’s job board.

If you have any questions or need help uploading your job, email The Chamber at [email protected]
Chamber Job Board 

Vice-President, Development, Western Canada - Starlight Developments

Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) - Berwick Retirement Communities

Executive Director - University of Victoria

Team Manager - HR & Payroll Services - TELUS Business

Administrative Assistant / Coordinator - Rewilding Water & Earth

Marketing Manager - Dance Victoria

Member News @VictoriaChamber

Click the image to read and share the Member News story on Instagram

Our Place Society:

Member since 1981

Camosun College:

Member since 1981


Member since 2022

Huntingdon Manor Hotel: Member since 1981

Share your good news so we can share with other members! 

Member to Member Discounts

Iron & Wood Golf Simulators - Free Rental Golf Clubs with any Simulator Booking

joni - 10% Off Your First Order

MetCredit - Special Chamber Rate of 22.5%

Moe's Home Victoria - 20% Off Regular Priced Items

Monk Office + Art - 15% Off Monk Office & Art Supplies

View all Member to Member discounts

Members can post Coupons and Discounts free

Welcome to our Newest Members!
Chamber Member Events
Want to know what events are happening in the community? Check out The Chamber's Community Calendar to stay up to date with plays, seminars, grand openings and more.
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