Casino website photo of the hotel.

The Grand Falls Casino in Larchwood had an unwelcome waterfall in the hotel right before the New Year.

General Manager Sharon Haselhoff says the extreme cold led to pipes breaking. “We ended up having two frozen pipes in our fire suppression system,” Haselhoff says, “about 3:30 the morning of the 30th they ended up breaking and caused damage throughout our hotel.”

Haselhoff says water poured down from the third floor and damaged 18 rooms, the spa and a meeting room. “We have anywhere between a half million and a million dollars worth of damage to get repaired quickly,” Haselhoff says.

She says the water not only drenched drywall and furnishings, it also left an unpleasant odor. “Our fire suppression system is fed from our lake — so not the prettiest of smells,” Haselhoff explains.

The casino is in the far northwest corner of the state where some of the coldest weekend temperatures hit. “Negative 27 without the windchill,” Haselhoff says of the temperature. “We were one of a number of businesses up in that area that had issues with their fire suppression system freezing.”

Haselhoff says they have started ripping our the drywall on the third floor and will work their way down to make repairs. She is not sure how long the repairs will take. Haselhoff made her comments at the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission meeting in Altoona.