Durham College extension includes model hotel room

WHITBY, ON—An apple orchard and extensive agricultural fields will surround Durham College’s Centre for Food.

WHITBY, ON—An apple orchard and extensive agricultural fields will surround Durham College’s Centre for Food, offering hands-on experience and an in-house food supply network for the school’s various culinary, agriculture and hospitality programs. Encompassing four production kitchens, a full-service restaurant and a model hotel room, the centre welcomed its first batch of students in early September.

In its first semester, the 36,000-square-foot building opened to 685 students, and will eventually expand to 900 students. As well as Durham’s Culinary Management, and Hospitality Management – Hotel, Restaurant and Tourism programs, the centre will house a new program for the college, Horticulture – Food and Farming.

“Hospitality is such a broad term. Everything that we’re doing here is hospitality, from agri-tourism to foodservice,” said Don Lovisa, president of the college. 

Off of the main atrium, at ground level, a wine tasting lab will serve both students, for the wine and food-pairing component of their programs, as well as the public, in community education courses. 

Down the hall, past a living wall of plants reaching up to the second floor, a fully-accessible model hotel room offers all of the amenities of a standard hotel. Lovisa joked that its purpose isn’t a refuge for the weary-student, but a learning lab, giving Hospitality Management students an opportunity to familiarize themselves with that sort of space.