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New hotels move ahead with plans

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A Tru by Hilton is being built in Rocky Mount.

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BY WILLIAM F. WEST
Staff Writer

Monday, June 24, 2019

Construction of a future hotel has started along Gateway Boulevard on the northwest side of Rocky Mount, while plans for a second new hotel in the same area are pending approval at City Hall.

Crews are working at the site of what is going to be a Tru by Hilton. A sign at the edge of the site states the plan is for the future Tru by Hilton to be open for business by early autumn 2020.

The site is on the south side of the Homewood Suites by Hilton.

City spokesman Jessie Nunery said the Rocky Mount Planning Board has approved a site development plan for the future Tru by Hilton.

Meantime, an avid hotel is proposed to be built on grassy space on the northeast side of the Homewood Suites.

Nunery said the site development plan for the future avid remains under review by the local developmental review committee. The committee is comprised of officials from a variety of departments and offices.

The Tru by Hilton chain can be traced back to May 2017, when the first hotel with that brand opened near the Will Rogers World Airport in Oklahoma City. The opening marked the 5,000th hotel in the overall Hilton corporate network, which is based in McLean, Va.

A Tru by Hilton spokeswoman provided the Telegram with information showing the Tru by Hilton brand is presently serving guests at more than 60 properties in 30 states, as well as in Canada’s Alberta province.

The Tru by Hilton spokeswoman said another 325 Tru by Hilton hotels are in the pipeline to open.

The spokeswoman said the developer for the future Tru by Hilton along Gateway Boulevard location is Bharat Patel.

Attempts to obtain further details from Patel for this story were unsuccessful. The Telegram reported Patel as the owner of the Homewood Suites when that hotel opened for business in January 2018.

Nunery said the municipal government does not have architectural drawings of the future Tru by Hilton, but does have preliminary architectural drawings of the proposed avid.

A copy of the preliminary drawings shows the proposed avid would be four stories high and have 105 rooms.

Avid is the newest brand in the portfolio of the British-based InterContinental Hotels Group. The first avid hotel opened in August 2018 in a suburb of Oklahoma City.

An IHG spokesperson, in an email to the Telegram, said the plan is for the avid along Gateway Boulevard to be open by sometime between May and June in 2021.

The IHG spokesperson said the plan is for the avid along Gateway to be an independently owned and operated franchised lodging establishment.

Specifically, the IHG spokesperson said the plan is for the location to be owned by AD1 Global under a license agreement with IHG.

The spokesperson said there are more than 180 signings for avid hotels across the U.S., Canada and Mexico and noted there was a signing earlier this year for an avid hotel in Germany.

And the spokesperson said nearly 50 avid hotels are either under construction or have planning approved.

The Tru by Hilton and the avid, if approved by the Rocky Mount Planning Board, are going to join a DoubleTree by Hilton, a Comfort Inn, a Residence Inn by Marriott and a Courtyard by Marriott along Gateway Boulevard.

Gateway Boulevard is on the southeast side of the U.S. 64 and Winstead Avenue interchange, which is the first U.S. 64 exit for Rocky Mount east of Interstate 95.

To find out more about Tru by Hilton, visit https://www.hilton.com/en/tru/.

To find out more about avid, visit https://www.ihg.com/avidhotels/hotels/us/en/reservation#.

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