Remote camp living isn’t for everyone, but for those who choose the camp lifestyle, it’s not just about the money that can be made or a place to lay a weary head. It’s about knowing that they’re valued as guests and that they have a home away from home in a safe, comfortable and hospitable environment. LandSea Camp Services ensures every guest is indeed a ‘happy camper’, and that is vitally important to clients who aim to recruit and retain a skilled workforce.
LandSea Camp Services, headquartered in Squamish, British Columbia, was established in 2010 by founder and president, Michael Coyne, who previously operated high-end sport-fishing resorts and boutique hotels on British Columbia’s coast for seventeen years.
Michael brings his marine experience to the remote camp industry in British Columbia and parts of Alberta by providing modular land-based and floating camps for projects in the construction, logging, mining, oil and gas and renewable energy sectors. His turn-key solutions exceed industry standards in the provision of complete camp and catering services.
LandSea Camps is capable of handling all projects, from start to finish, providing a fully operational camp that includes design, permitting, installation, catering, housekeeping, maintenance and logistics, security and medical services.
The company offers both land and floating camp accommodations. “The focus was to create both offerings. We’re a niche operator with respect to the marine side. There are not very many [operators] that have the skill set and experience that we do when it comes to developing a marine or floating operation.”
Marine-based camps provide the same offerings as those that are land-based and, “The difference is the knowledge or expertise surrounding the marine portion of floating camps,” he adds. The marine side of his remote camp business has unique challenges, such as access, location, towing, moorage, and inclement weather protection.
He acknowledges that the company has specialized experience in marine-based operations; however, their land-based camps account for the majority of their business, noting, “All of the systems are very similar… it’s essentially the same process on land. It’s just in a different configuration.”
LandSea Camps Services is considered a boutique to mid-level operator providing services to camps capable of accommodating 25 to 500 guests. In the past year, twelve to fifteen camps were in operation throughout British Columbia and Alberta with the primary focus on British Columbia.
“We’re quite diversified,” says Michael. “We’re strong in mining, renewable energy, and in oil and gas with the ability to provide turnkey solutions on both land and sea.
By consulting with clients during the initial stages of camp preparation, the company derives a clear vision of requirements from the onset. “We’re able to be much more competitive than some of the larger operators that contract out a lot of these services,” explains Michael. “We can keep the price down. We can keep it tight, and we can keep it within the same family, which maintains our level of service and friendliness… That’s probably one of the greatest keys to our success – just the ability to do it all and to do it all efficiently and effectively.”
The company realizes that attracting and retaining qualified staff at remote camps requires diligence in order to provide functional, comfortable and amenity rich environments. It strives to hire highly qualified personnel with strong service-oriented backgrounds.
“Our goal is to create the best customer service that we can in all our camps,” shares Michael. “We focus on that during the hiring process. Our service staff and management team are generally all skilled, educated and passionate individuals that support the staff, each other and the clients and guests.”
He also notes that the culture of LandSea Camps is one based on a team environment that aligns itself well to customer service, cleanliness and friendliness. “That’s the type of environment we create within the camp.”
LandSea Camps office team regularly communicates essential camp information to all camp managers and supervisors. Each facility is equipped with satellite communications to ensure the efficient and timely networking critical to the remote camp industry. “We have regular reporting processes and procedures, so we always know who’s doing what, when, where and how,” explains Michael. “Issues and concerns are reported and addressed immediately.”
The company believes that not only meeting but exceeding health and safety standards is an essential component of its business for its staff, contractors, clients and guests. Its management team inspect sites regularly to ensure all health and safety procedures are followed and provide training as necessary.
A health and safety committee, located at each site, will implement improvements if necessary and ensure compliance with all regulations. All staff and guests are obligated to voice any safety concerns to head office. “Safety is always a growing concern and is something that never stops improving,” shares Michael. “We’re constantly updating our health and safety program, ensuring that we’re current.”
LandSea Camps has a mandate to being environmentally responsible. They reduce their environmental impact by means such as progressive recycling, utilizing environmentally safe cleaning products, reducing paper and plastic consumption and use of non-biodegradable products, and well as improving wildlife protection and educational practices.
“Our corporate environmental policy is designed such that all employees and contractors are required to share in a responsibility of protecting the environment,” affirms Michael. “We’re very diligent in our recycling and waste management practices … It all boils down to staff training, education and commitment.”
Michael acknowledges that “many of our remote camp sites operate within the traditional lands of several First Nations. LandSea has established long-lasting and mutually beneficial partnerships with many of these Nation and genuinely value the relationships.” The company feels a corporate responsibility to respect First Nations’ land and culture and to provide them with opportunity during these projects.
This commitment, and LandSea Camps’ contribution through job training, employment and contract opportunities, allows, “the local First Nations to be involved, and to be successful, within a lot of different areas,” explains Michael. “But it also helps to meet specific obligations within the impact benefit agreement that the developers sign with the First Nations. We’re helping to make sure that we enhance the relationship between the developer and the First Nations,” he says.
“Our program is successful; it’s proven; it’s true; it’s genuine,” he says of the support for First Nations, the developer and the projects. “That is definitely part of our success and will continue to be part of our success.”
As to what sets the mid-level remote camp operator apart from the rest, Michael concludes, “It allows us to provide a more personal, intimate and customer service type of experience without feeling too institutional.”