Charlotte is in the midst of a major hotel boom that will increase the number of hotel rooms in Uptown by about 40 percent.
Expect major luxury brands and diverse projects that range from a small, 42-room property in a restored historic building to a slick 20-story glass tower rising up over the old Carolina Theatre.
It’s major, and not just for travelers. These hotels bring with them a slew of amenities that appeal to local residents and travelers alike, including new restaurants, bars, rooftop decks and event space. They also create demand for hospitality pros and ramp up local hiring with an influx of job openings.
Here’s a recap of what’s coming Uptown’s way through 2019.
Where: 127 N. Tryon Street
What’s cool: Sophia’s Lounge, an intimate cocktail bar dripping in crystals and covered floor to ceiling with wall art (opening soon)
Why it matters to you: The $25 million Ivey’s renovation is an exquisite example of historic preservation in a city that likes to bulldoze and build new. The building originally opened in 1924 and served as the home of Ivey’s department store until it closed in 1990.
Where: 401 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard
What’s cool: QC Lounge, a craft cocktail bar in a soaring atrium with floor-to-ceiling windows. Also the fact that they named their second-story terrace “The Meck Deck,” a nod to the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence.
Why it matters to you: The hotel brings with it Suki Akor, an adjacent Japanese steakhouse opening later this year. Read about it.
Status: Open, newly renovated 2016
Where: 100 W. Trade Street
What’s cool: Several things. Marriott went hard on concepts that would draw locals to the property and make it relevant to more than just travelers. The renovation added Coco and the Director, a much needed non-Starbucks coffee option right at the heart of Trade & Tryon, and Stoke, a restaurant under the direction of acclaimed chef Chris Coleman (formerly The Asbury). There’s also The Dock, a tiny, prohibition-style speakeasy accessed through the loading dock out back and only open Saturdays from 9 p.m. – 1 a.m.
Why it matters to you: The recent renovation, dubbed M-Beta, turned the Charlotte property into an innovation lab where new concepts are launched and tested before rolling out to other hotels in Marriott’s more than 500-property portfolio.
Status: Under construction, target open Fall 2017
Rate: The Kimpton Aertson in Nashville shows rates of $270-$450/night
Where: 300 S. Tryon Street
What’s cool: A stunning rooftop bar overlooking Romare Bearden Park and BB&T Ballpark.
Why it matters to you: This will be the first Kimpton property in Charlotte and only the second in the state (the other is in Winston-Salem). A second Charlotte Kimpton in Dilworth is on hold indefinitely.
Status: Pre-construction, estimated completion 2018
Rate: The Grand Bohemian Charleston shows rates of $550-$650/night
Where: Corner of W. Trade and S. Church
What’s cool: For starters, everything. Grand Bohemian is a rare luxury brand with a limited number of properties. Getting one in Charlotte is extremely cool. Plus, it’ll add yet another rooftop bar to Uptown’s portfolio. We’ll take it.
Why it matters to you: There are only 10 Grand Bohemian properties in the country. It’s an extremely high-end brand that will rival The Ritz and elevate Charlotte’s positioning as a destination for luxury travel.
Status: Under construction, estimated completion 2018
Where: 210 E. Trade Street
What’s cool: Buckle up, there’s another rooftop bar. This project will also add ground floor retail space.
Why it matters to you: The site was originally planned to be a 51-story condo tower, but that project crumbled in 2008 when the recession hit. The exposed concrete has been a lingering reminder of that tough economic time for nearly a decade, and the new build signals a new beginning.
Status: Pre-construction, estimated completion 2019
Rate: The InterContinental Buckhead Atlanta shows rates of $160-$4,100/night
Where: 224 N. Tryon Street
What’s cool: The hotel is part of the renovation of the historic Carolina Theatre, which opened in 1927. The theatre will be restored to its original glory with a new 20-story hotel tower on top.
Why it matters to you: This is a very interesting project that marries historic preservation and a modern skyscraper in one building.
Header photo of 300 S. Tryon and future Kimpton Hotel via Spectrum Properties