The Daily Tar Heel

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Sunday May 28th

Town Talk

Carrboro's first hotel celebrates grand opening

When Kelsey Zyvoloski and her fiance Eddie Di Girolamo get married in October, they will tell their out of town guests to say at Carrboro’s first-ever hotel.

During a ribbon cutting ceremony for the hotel, Zyvoloski and Di Girolamo said they were impressed with the hotel’s beauty and are happy to see the revitalized community — and they’re glad their wedding guests can stay somewhere nearby.

The Hampton Inn & Suites Chapel Hill/Carrboro officially opened its doors to guests on August 28 — Tuesday was a celebration for those interested and involved in the hotel’s construction.

“There is no greater day in a community’s life than the opening of a new business,” said Aaron Nelson, president and CEO of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce.

Nelson was one of the event’s speakers, alongside Manish Atma and Kevin Benedict.

Atma is president of Atma Hotel Group, Inc., which will manage the hotel. He said the entire process was a team effort between the contractor, the designers and engineers and the Carrboro Board of Aldermen.

“Thanks to our neighbors, to our tenants, and to the citizens of Carrboro who had to put up with our mess,” Benedict, a partner at Main Street Properties, added.

One of the new hotel’s neighbors is Julie Tomkovick, the development director for the ArtsCenter.

“We’ve been watching this be built up for quite a while,” she said.

The ArtsCenter and the hotel will be cooperating in the future, Tomkovick said, because the hotel group is a sponsor for some of the ArtsCenter’s upcoming events.

She said she hopes the hotel will provide a place for guests to stay overnight after seeing a show and be a positive development in the community.

“I’m really excited about it,” said Carrboro’s mayor Mark Chilton. “It’s more beautiful than I expected.”

He said the hotel will provide a huge addition to Carrboro’s commercial tax base, as well as a completely new source of jobs and revenue for the town.

Chilton also said the hotel will be a huge benefit to Carrboro’s Fleet Feet Sports location — which serves as the company’s corporate headquarters — when it hosts meetings for company members.

Until now, Chilton said these visitors had to find lodging in Chapel Hill or Durham. This hotel’s establishment was actually one of the factors that influenced Fleet Feet’s decision to keep their headquarters in Carrboro, he said.

“Everything came together,” said Chilton.

And he said he is thankful to see development in downtown Carrboro — not at the city limits.

“It was kind of a long process, but that’s just kind of the growing pains of a town growing up instead of out,” Chilton said.

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