Meet Sky McLean, founder of Western Canada’s fastest growing hospitality brand. – Women of influence
Sky McLean is a canadian entrepreneur in the hotel space who built a successful empire with his business Basecamp Resorts, a company that offers modern boutique hotels in locations across Alberta and British Columbia. After earning his MBA in Real Estate from York University’s Schulich School of Business in Toronto, Sky moved to Calgary, Alberta to work with a local developer. There, Sky became interested in Airbnb’s business model and managed to secure a bank loan to open its first mountain hotel. Since then, Sky and his team have succeeded in making Basecamp Resorts the fastest growing hotel brand in Western Canada. Currently, Basecamp Resorts operates seven modern mountain boutique hotels and Sky plans to open six more locations over the next three years.
My very first job was… Childcare to 12 years old, every day after school. It was for a family with three children, two dogs, two turtles and a cat. I took care of homework, piano lessons, dates with friends and just about everything else in between! It was a mess!
I first became interested in real estate when… I was a child. My parents liked to watch open houses and I got dragged along with them.
I decided to become an entrepreneur because… I was frustrated with the way other people did things and the way they planned to do business. I thought there was a better way.
I decided to launch my first mountain boutique hotel, Basecamp Resorts, in 2017 because… I believe in the home away from home model. It’s the best way to travel. I was and still am on a quest to brand what I offer with Basecamp Resorts – we provide guests with all the comforts of home in our suites like kitchens, living areas, washer/dryers and multiple bedrooms , but we also have all the amenities and conveniences of a hotel like 24-hour concierges, room cleaning services, hot tubs, and more.
I developed the Basecamp Resorts brand because… I believe that the modern traveler has a desire to stay in this type of establishment, where they feel at home while traveling. Canada is home to some of the most scenic mountain destinations in the world, and I want to provide meaningful experiences for people who come to explore and have adventures in these beautiful communities, from couples to groups of friends to families.
“If I had to choose one thing that has helped me succeed, it would be the fact that I am royally determined to grow this business no matter what.”
I am passionate about hospitality because… I enjoy traveling the world while having the comforts of home while I’m away. I always knew that I wanted to offer this experience to all my guests.
My proudest accomplishment is… Have my two children. In business, he would open the doors to the first Basecamp Resorts property in Canmore in August 2017.
My biggest setback was… Getting debt financing for my first Basecamp Resorts property.
I overcame it by… Persevering.
My advice for budding entrepreneurs is… Listen to your heart and guts, and don’t let anyone influence you on what to do if it’s not what you really think is right.
The only advice I give that I have trouble following myself is… There are times when you have to say no to a deal.
What I love most about what I do is… The people; from working daily with my incredibly talented team to meeting all of the wonderful guests who stay with us.
If I had to pick one thing that helped me succeed, it would be… The fact that I am royally determined to grow this business no matter what.
If you Googled me, you still wouldn’t know… I cycled 8,000 km across Canada on a road bike.
I remain inspired by….. To continue having my passions outside of the company, such as mountain biking and skiing.
The future excites me because… I love what I do and who I do it with.