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Hospitality and Tourism

Apartment-style hotel under construction in North Charleston

Hospitality and Tourism
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Gary A. DeLapp, a veteran of the hospitality industry, set out to reinvent long-term lodging with apartment-style hotels intentionally designed to feel like home.

The stayAPT Suites president and CEO is now bringing his new concept to North Charleston, which keeps the company on track to have 25+ locations open by the end of 2022, with 15+ more sites in development, according to a news release.

The hotel will include suites of 500+ square feet and will each feature a full-size kitchen with appliances, a living room with a sleeper sofa, a separate bedroom with a work area, a walk-in closet and two smart TVs.

The idea is to abandon the traditional one-room hotel in lieu of a “residential-feeling suite with intentional spaces,” stayAPT Suites said.

“Next year, Lowcountry area travelers will have access to our unique, apartment-style hotel, which is ideal for any length of stay,” DeLapp said in a statement. “We’re excited to bring stayAPT Suites to this vibrant community, and we look forward to serving Charleston residents and its many year-round visitors through not only our hotel offerings, but the relationships we build here.”

The new chain located at 9331 Blue House Road was selected for its close proximity to Boeing, Volvo’s manufacturing plant, Charleston Southern University and Trident Medical Center, the company said.

StayApt Suites, based in North Carolina, opened its first Palmetto State location in Greer in 2020. The 50-unit hotel was constructed across from BMW’s Upstate plant.

A Greenville-Haywood Mall location is opening soon, with bookings available starting Nov. 15. Hotels in Columbia and Rock Hill are anticipated to reach completion in the winter or early 2022. 

The chain plans to build a portfolio of 100+ corporate-owned hotels, with a goal of more than 200 franchise locations within the next five years, the company said.

“We saw an opportunity to reinvent long-term lodging and to provide our guests with what they really want — and that is the space and in-room amenities to truly live comfortably while traveling away from home,” DeLapp said in a statement.

As part of its model, stayAPT Suites offers two- and three-story construction models, ranging from 59 to 89 units.

“Our lean, efficient labor model, depending on room count, calls for an average of 2.5 to five employees and provides very appealing cash-on-cash yields,” DeLapp said.

The hotel serves guests of all kind, but in particular looks to serve business, relocation and leisure travelers, whether for a night, a week, a month or more, all at a moderate price, the company said.

“Most long-term lodging accommodations consist of a single room with a bed steps away from a small kitchenette,” DeLapp said. “We’ve created an environment that goes well beyond that, giving travelers a better way to stay and live while away from home.”

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