"No girls allowed!" — a caption on one of the photos of the pillow fort Gord Edwards built at Winnipeg's Fairmont Hotel. The online gallery of Edwards' photos went viral Aug. 8, 2012.
WINNIPEG -- When Calgary resident Gord Relph booked a room at Winnipeg's Fairmont Hotel, there was an option to provide special instructions.
"So I wrote down, 'Pre-made pillow fort, and a vanilla Coke'."
Little did he know, staff at the downtown hotel were willing to rise to the occasion, providing about 10 pillows left stacked on his bed when he arrived with a note saying, "DYI (sic) fort."
Relph was floored, then set to work. He chronicled his fort-building efforts in an online photo gallery that attracted nearly 300,000 hits in 18 hours.
"I consider myself a man of action, so when I saw the tools before me, I knew I had to make it happen," he said Wednesday of his decision to follow through and build a pillow fort.
"As a kid, I used to make them all the time with my twin brother, Cliff. We didn't really have any toys growing up, so we had to make the best out of everything we had."
He capped off the job with a "No Girls Allowed" sign designed to tickle his girlfriend, Katie.
"Based on how much coverage I have received, I consider this the best pillow fort of all time," Relph said.
In addition fulfilling his pillow fort request, Relph was provided a coupon for not one but two vanilla Cokes, made by Fairmont chefs, plus plenty of candy to fuel his mission.
That's just part of the Fairmont experience, said Jacques Lavergne, the hotel's sales and marketing director.
"As I'm sure you can imagine, with the clientele we have, we have all sorts of odds and ends-type requests. This is one of the more original ones," Lavergne said.