OROVILLE – The Camaray Motel in Oroville is under new management and they want the business to become a valuable part of the community.
Clyde and Sandy Andrews come to Oroville from the Vancouver-Portland area where they sold real estate before setting out to try something different. They searched Craigslist and found an advertisement for managers of the Camaray, as well as several others in the Washington area.
“There are so many realtors out there. We were doing okay working for Zip Realty, which is strictly online 24-7. We decided that wasn’t cutting it and we wanted to try this and see,” Sandy Andrews said.
The couple met in Spokane and married 34 years ago. She grew up in the Portland suburbs and he grew up in Centralia. They lived in a rural community in Illinois for seven years, but never anywhere so far from a big urban center of some kind, she said.
The Andrews plan on fixing the motel up as financing becomes available, but Clyde Andrews points to the new carpet, tile and paint work that was done by the motel’s Canadian owners prior to the couple arriving in Oroville. He also said the majority of the heater and air conditioning units have been replaced with new ones. The motel also has a fairly new roof.
Some of the rooms have kitchenettes as well, which is new for the motel. There are also two large suites with separate bedroom areas. The Andrews were working on one of them last Monday to get it ready for some long-term guests who are working on a project in Oroville over the winter. In the summer the suites will be available to rent to families.
The Andrews say that while the rooms are being updated the exterior of the building could use some sprucing up as well and that is part of their long term goal. He also said that they’ve started a “hit list” marking down all the small things they see with fresh eyes that need to be addressed because after six months they might get to the point where they don’t see them there anymore.
“The owners, also recommend we do as much business locally as we can… it’s part of changing the culture of the motel, changing the way people look at it,” Clyde Andrews said. “We have years or reputation that we have to overcome.”
The motel, Oroville’s only remaining motel, is owned by a family that lives in British Columbia and lately has taken a renewed interest in the motel they built in Oroville in 1976.
Clyde Andrews added that for now it will just be the two of them working the front desk as there is no budget at this point for hiring extra help. He added that they turned down two other motels with larger budgets because they saw the potential in the Camaray.
“Right now we’d rather any extra money go into the rooms rather than the staff,” he said. “We are a couple with no young children who have life experiences and hospitality experiences that we’d like to share.”
The Camaray is located at 1320 Main Street in Oroville. The new managers can be contacted by phone at (509) 476-3684 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. More information on the Andrews and the Camaray is also available at the motel’s new website www.orovillemotel.com.