Protestors gathered outside the Trump International Hotel and Tower Tuesday, while an invite-only launch happened inside. (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press)

Protesters target Trump hotel in Vancouver on opening day

Singing, chanting crowd rejects U.S. president’s brand

Demonstrators gathered outside the new Trump International Hotel and Tower in downtown Vancouver on Tuesday, as the invitation-only grand opening took place inside.

U.S. President Donald Trump’s two sons, Donald Jr. and Eric, were expected to attend. Police were on scene, both in front and behind a waist-high fence blocking the hotel’s entrance on West Georgia Street.

More than 100 people stood outside, holding signs and singing the Canadian national anthem.

The $360-million hotel and condo development, with a unique twisting design by late architect Arthur Erickson, had a soft launch last month.

The 69-storey building has become a destination for protests over the president’s anti-immigrant rhetoric, comments about women and promises to build a wall on the border with Mexico to keep to keep migrants out of the United States.

And Tuesday’s protest was no different than the handful of others in recent months.

“It’s a way to get under his skin – which he deserves,” said one protester wishing to go by the name Fatimah.

With a sign in hand that read “Trump: A bad brand for Vancouver,” she said she had nothing against Trump’s two sons, but doesn’t believe the 49th U.S. president has truly disentangled himself from his company.

“That [sign is] a symbol, and so is my presence here,” she said.

Some critics of Tuesday’s protest argued this isn’t the leader of Canada, and boycotting the hotel will only hurt Vancouver’s tourism industry.

RELATED: Racist incidents in B.C. spark concern among defenders of tolerance

“If the Hilton’s can have a hotel then why can’t Trump have a hotel here?” asked Vancouver resident Joe Taylor.

“[His] presidency and business are two different things… if he keeps that separate he’ll do fine,” he said, adding that Trump doesn’t actually own the hotel.

Another protester, Michelle Fortin, said it’s imperative that people put “their money where their hearts are.”

“I think if you are informed, and you understand that behind the brand is also a belief system, if you choose to stay at any of his hotels or purchase any of the clothing line or home line, what you’re saying is mysogony, racism, homophobia and lack of inclusion is what you stand for,” she said. “There are other really great hotels that don’t have those things attached to their brand.”

Just Posted

Curtis Sagmoen to appear in Vernon court

The man associated with an Silver Creek farm where human remains were found last month is set to appear in court

New hotel planned for Salmon Arm

Fairfield Inn & Suites Marriott to build, applying for rezoning with city

Brewers create anti-fascist ale

Not For Nazis Nut Brown Ale will be ready in time for Christmas

Traci Genereaux remembered at Vernon vigil

Family and friends remember Genereaux as a “fiery red-head with the best sense of humour”

Angler fined for over-fishing on Gardom Lake

It was an expensive fishing trip for an Okanagan man this weekend.… Continue reading

Tattooing couple opens new shop in Lake Country

Cody and Fabiana Philpott opened NSI Tattoo in August

B.C. snow plow operator helps save elderly man

The 73-year-old man had fallen at his isolated home, and finally was able to call for help

Wildlife group challenges B.C.’s interpretation of law on destroying bears

Fur-Bearers are challenging a conservation officer’s decision to kill a bear cub near Dawson Creek

Tourism numbers continue to climb in B.C.

The majority of international travellers to British Columbia are coming from Australia

Canadian screen stars want ‘action’ from industry meeting on sexual misconduct

‘Of course there’s been sexual harassment here. Absolutely. No question.’

VIDEO: Search for missing B.C. dog walker remains a ‘rescue effort’

Annette Poitras was last seen walking three dogs on Monday afternoon

Accused in violent Kamloops burglary charged with attempted murder

Accused in violent Kamloops burglary, home invasion charged with attempted murder; victim remains in hospital

B.C. cat torture recorded on Snapchat, sent to owner

“I can’t stop shaking,” Haglund said. “Last night was so bad my teeth were clattering.”

Fundraiser to family with cancer battle

Sicamous steps up with event at Moose Mulligan’s on Satuday, Dec. 2

Most Read