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Snoqualmie Tribe buys Salish Lodge, 45 acres near falls to halt development

The Snoqualmie Tribe purchased Salish Lodge and 45 acres near Snoqualmie Falls on Thursday, stopping plans to build a large hotel and conference center.

The Snoqualmie Indian Tribe has purchased 45 acres of land surrounding Snoqualmie Falls, halting plans for a hotel, convention center, and housing development.

The tribe said it closed on the property Thursday for $125 million.

“This purchase represents the Snoqualmie Tribe’s ongoing work to reclaim its traditional lands and will allow the Snoqualmie people to appropriately care for our sacred Falls and share it with all who wish to experience the powerful connection,” Snoqualmie Tribal Chairman Robert de los Angeles said in a statement.

The purchase includes Salish Lodge and Spa, the Snoqualmie Falls Gift Shop, and property north of and across State Route 202, according to the tribe. Salish Lodge will continue to be operated by Seattle-based Columbia Hospitality.

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The sale is the culmination of years-long tensions over the land between the Snoqualmie and Muckleshoot tribes, who previously owned the property.

The Muckleshoot Tribe said it purchased Salish Lodge in 2007 to build the tribe’s economy.

However, the Snoqualmie Tribe opposed Muckleshoot plans to build a large hotel and conference center, saying it would be placed on burial grounds and was too close to the falls. In 2015, the Snoqualmie Tribe launched a campaign to “Save Snoqualmie Falls.”

In October 2018, Snoqualmie City Council approved the Muckleshoot Tribe’s planned development to build up to 210 homes, a 182-room hotel, and convention center.

One year later with the property secured, the Snoqualmie Tribe said in a statement it was “proud to stop irresponsible development.”

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