Grand Canyon National Park awards temporary hospitality contract
Xanterra to continue running concessions at Grand Canyon through 2015
GRAND CANYON, Ariz. - Grand Canyon National Park Superintendent Dave Uberuaga recently announced a temporary concession contract was awarded to Xanterra South Rim, L.L.C.
The one-year contract allows Xanterra to continue to provide lodging, food services, retail, transportation, mule rides, and other services on the South Rim. The park awarded the temporary contract in order to continue visitor services after Dec. 31, when Xanterra's current long-term contract expires. The temporary contract will go into effect on Jan. 1 though Dec. 31 of 2015.
The temporary contract was needed after the park received no responsive bids for the three proposals issued for a new long-term contract. Three companies including Xanterra expressed interest in the temporary contract.
The temporary contract ensures hospitality services will continue for visitors to the Canyon.
Services in the temporary contract include lodging, retail and food service at Phantom
Ranch, the El Tovar, Bright Angel Lodge, Thunderbird and Kachina Lodges, Maswik Lodge, Hopi House, Lookout Studio, and Hermits Rest.
The historic Desert View Watchtower, currently a Xanterra Parks and Resorts' gift shop, will be transferred to the park and will remain open to the public.
There will be a short-term closure of the Watchtower, for the transition, which should last no more than five days, beginning on Jan. 1.
The temporary contract will continue to include transportation services such as bus tours, taxi service and mule rides.
Services in the temporary contract generate approximately $66 million in gross revenues annually.
Prior to the award of the temporary contract, the park will pay Xanterra close to $100 million towards buy-downs of its investments in facilities at the Canyon.
The park believes this reduction will make a future long-term prospectus for this contract more competitive.