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Room at the Inns

Canad Inns' Grand Forks hotel and entertainment complex likely will greet its first overnight guest in the first week in May, company president Leo Ledohowski said Thursday.

Canad Inns' Grand Forks hotel and entertainment complex likely will greet its first overnight guest in the first week in May, company president Leo Ledohowski said Thursday.

The facility would have a "rolling opening," he said, meaning that not all of the restaurants will be opened at once, and not all of the rooms will be available for booking.

The size of the operation, with some 250 full-time and part-time employees, makes it easier to roll out features gradually over several weeks, he said.

Demand has been growing rapidly in the past few months with $1 million in sales booked at last count, said general manager Jeff Jasperson. Many of the guests, he said, will be coming from Winnipeg.

Canad officials offered the news media a tour of the facility Thursday.

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Structurally, the complex appears completed, with most of the work focused on interior features. Most hotel rooms are carpeted and the water park rides installed. The lobby area, the casino, the restaurants and bars still are largely uncompleted.

Groundbreaking on the $50 million entertainment complex began more than a year ago next to the city-owned Alerus Center. The project includes an all-but-free land lease and a five-year, 100 percent tax exemption.

City leaders hope the hotel will make booking major conventions easier for the Alerus Center and attract more Canadian guests who otherwise might head for Fargo.

Reach Tran at (701) 780-1248.

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