For the first time in 57 years, Georgetown has a hotel on Front Street

1 Mar

For the first time in 57 years, Georgetown has a hotel on Front Street

It’s finally open! The George, the long-planned, long-talked-about boutique hotel, has officially opened on Front Street in historic Georgetown.

Offering 56 rooms, 42 of which will have stunning waterfront views of the Sampit River and the city’s harbor, The George Hotel ushers in a new chapter in the historic city’s tourism efforts. Located at 615 Front St., the hotel is located where offices for The Georgetown Times once stood. The Times is South Carolina’s oldest newspaper and now has offices outside the historic district.

The demolition of the Times’ large waterfront office space made room for The George Hotel and a new era for the historic district, which is now visited throughout the year by tourists to South Carolina’s Hammock Coast.

The George Hotel opened March 1 on Front Street in Georgetown. (Photo by Clayton Stairs/Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce)

Joe Keenan, developer and general partner with Winyah Hospitality LLC, owners of The George Hotel, said, “We feel like The George Hotel brings a lovely amenity for the city and its guests.”

Winyah Hospitality has contracted with The Indigo Road Hospitality Group to manage the hotel, as well as The Independent, a restaurant on the first floor, that opened Feb. 14, in advance of the hotel’s opening.

Chris Styles, the hotel’s general manager, said the reception from the community has been very positive and welcoming.

“We are glad to be part of the community,” he said. “We are not only bringing this boutique hotel to Front Street, but to the city and county in general.”

He said The George Hotel is a unique option for people seeking lodging on Front Street in downtown Georgetown.

“The George Hotel will offer an elevated level of Southern hospitality for people visiting South Carolina’s Hammock Coast,” Styles said. “As we attract new travelers, those people will explore Georgetown and the surrounding areas, and local businesses will certainly feel the impact.”

Al Joseph, Main Street director for the City of Georgetown, said he is very excited about the opening.

“This is a big deal for the city and I couldn’t think of a better location for a high-end boutique hotel like this,” he said. “I think The George Hotel is going to be a catalyst for more economic development and tourism in the city.”

The Independent, a restaurant on the first floor of The George Hotel, served its first meals on Valentine’s Day, two weeks before The George officially opened.

The George will offer guests a variety of king rooms, queen rooms and suites on three floors, with different types of balconies on each floor. Rooms that do not have water views will overlook historic Front Street. Three of the rooms will be handicapped-accessible.

Guests can also relax in an outside courtyard with a bar and firepit or gather inside in a meeting event space that seats up to 100 people.

Beth Stedman, president and CEO of the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce, which operates a visitor center beside the hotel, said The George is a welcome addition to the city.

“We are excited to help promote this hotel with gorgeous views of the waterfront, as well as the restaurant, meeting space and outside event space,” Stedman said. “The George is going to be a valued accommodations partner and a destination for people visiting South Carolina’s Hammock Coast in the months and years to come.”

The Gladstone, torn down in 1967, was the last hotel on Front Street.
(Photo courtesy of the Georgetown County Library Digital Archives)

The George will be the first hotel on Front Street since The Gladstone was demolished in 1967. The Gladstone was one of the few Front Street buildings that remained unchanged by the desire to modernize the business district that swept Georgetown at the turn of the century, but, in the end, the hotel was closed. The ground floor had a café where “Miss Nettie” Gladstone served red rice and duck every Saturday. The second and the third floors housed the guests.

Now, with The George, this historic district of Georgetown will, once again, be a calling card to tourists coming to South Carolina’s third-oldest city. For many, “George” is going to be a very welcome guest.

“The George Hotel is going to be a game-changer for Georgetown tourism,” said Mark A. Stevens, director of tourism development for the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce and the Hammock Coast. “Georgetown is already home to wonderful B&Bs like 620 Prince and Baxter’s Brewhouse Inn in the historic district, and The George adds a whole new dimension for accommodations. It’s wonderful to have so many varied and wonderful options for visitors.

“What’s especially nice is the care and attention to detail the owners of The George and manager Chris Styles have taken to make sure the hotel is a beautiful addition to Georgetown. To say it’s exciting is an understatement.”

The George Hotel offers beautiful views of Georgetown Harbor from its rooms and courtyard. (Photo by Clayton Stairs/Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce)

By Clayton Stairs / tourism manager for the Georgetown County Chamber of Commerce and South Carolina’s Hammock Coast®

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