Homecoming trips to my alma mater (go Badgers!) have historically involved plenty of shenanigans, mountains of fried cheese curds and a mediocre night’s sleep in a boring, dreary hotel room. Graduate Hotels is hoping to change that last part by opening geek chic, almost-boutique hotels near college campuses across the country. The new chain is drawing inspiration from the university experience itself, focusing on alum-friendly details like locally inspired art collections and incorporating accessible community spaces like coffee shops and bars.
You don’t you don’t have to fully relive your college glory days (thank goodness) by sleeping on a beer-soaked futon and eating ramen from a microwave. You can, however, expect quirky little details like designer dorm-inspired furniture, red solo cup artwork and full-service restaurants serving up local classics. They’ve done their homework, though methinks there’s a disappointing lack of Weezer posters.
Graduate Hotels’ Tempe outpost opens in October right in the middle of the Arizona State action and fully equipped with nostalgia, visiting food trucks and walking tacos. According to their site, their “whip smart staff (#humblebrag) can guide you around Tempe’s finest — so that you feel like a local, at home again — even if it’s your first time here.”
The construction is far from over though, as Graduate Hotels has raised around $500 million to expand and has already announced opening semesters for locations in Athens, Charlottesville, Madison (yay!) and Oxford. They plan to open a whopping 20 budget-friendly hotels over the next five years.
Would you give this hotel the old college try? Let us know in the comments!