The Legend That Is The Shady Rest
Thomas Kinkade was born aboard an eight-ton sloop at Northwest Bay on Tuesday March 18, 1884. He attended the Little Qualicum School, which was the first school in the area, located where the Shell gas station stands today at the corner of Memorial Ave and the Old Island Hwy. Upon completing school, Thomas worked on his father’s farm until 1914. He then became a Fisheries Officer. After 10 years he decided that it was time to change careers, so in 1924 Thomas built the Shady Rest Hotel. Along with the growing community of Qualicum Beach, the Shady Rest prospered, and Thomas ran the business offering travelers a taste of Kinkade hospitality for 20 years. Thomas retired in 1944 passing the business on to his son Gerry who would become the second of three generations spanning 61 years to run the Shady.
Gerald Kinkade was born at the family homestead at Little Qualicum on Sunday March 9, 1913. Gerry attended school in the area, and then moved on to the University of British Columbia. Upon his return, Gerry focused his sights on a career in forestry soon becoming the head sawyer for the Olympic Logging Company. Unfortunately, the Olympic mill burned down and Gerry had to procure work at Buckley Bay, until he fell from a scaffold during some mill repair seriously injuring his hip. Gerry married in 1939 to Emily Higgins and they had three children: Geraldine, Lois and Tom Jr. In 1944, Gerry took over the reins of the Shady Rest and emphasized a keen interest in public relations, which stressed informality and made not only the locals but also the tourists feel right at home. The Shady Rest was a family oriented operation that catered to campers who took advantage of its waterfront cottages. The Shady Rest also boasted of its boathouse and guiding operation that was very popular with tourists in the summer time.
In 1974 Stewart Moore, Gerry’s son-in-law, became active in the operation of the Shady Rest and perpetuated its family roots. Upon Gerry’s passing in 1978, Tom Kinkade Jr., Gerry’s youngest child became actively involved in managing the Shady Rest. Steward and Tom successfully catered to the locals and tourists for 11 years until in late 1985, after much thought, it was decided that the family business should be sold to an interest that could restore the heritage that had begun in 1924.
In 1985 Wayne Duncan, a former partner in the Prairie Inn Brewpub located just outside of Victoria, became the new owner of the Shady Rest Hotel. Extensive renovations commenced in October of 1985 that transformed the Shady Rest Pub. Further renovations in 1994 again transformed the pub doubling its capacity to accommodate the ever-growing demand for its fine hospitality. Regular customers, some dating back 70 years, liked the new look of their old watering hole. As for the restaurant, since April of 1986 extensive renovations have turned what once was a 24-seat café into a fully licensed 120-seat restaurant allowing the Shady Rest to accommodate the demand of both the local and visiting guests.
The Shady remains a legacy of local tradition where great food and good friends come together