Culpeper welcomed its newest hotel recently, while the owners announced plans to expand to Bealeton in the future.
A ribbon cutting was held Sept. 12 for the Hampton Inn, where Sunset Hotel Group announced that a new Hilton product - Home 2 Suites - will hopefully be open in the Bealeton area next year.
“We have the land done, the franchise approved and we hope to begin next year,” Sunset Otel Group Chief Operating Officer Lee Keller said.
Sunset Hotel Group owns 11 properties in the region, and reaches into Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania.
Sunset Hotel Group Chief Executive Officer King Patel and Chief Financial Officer Dan Patel and Keller welcomed a group of about 35 dignitaries to the ribbon cutting - for the hotel that opened officially in May.
Paige Read, Director of Tourism and Economic Development for the Town of Culpeper, said that tourism in Culpeper is growing and last tourism revenue reached $44.5 million.
“Without partners like we have this morning and our existing partners, Culpeper would be seen a lot more burden on their local tax dollars,” Read said. “It’s wonderful to welcome tourists to our downtown and it makes us all very proud of this community.”
Keller said Sunset Hotel Group was excited to bring a Hampton Inn to Culpeper. They started working on the project in 2014, took a year to do market research, bought the land at 18411 Gate Road in 2015, started building in 2017 and opened earlier this year.
“This is our first Hilton, we just wanted to go with a quality product,” Keller said. “We’ve done a lot of Holiday Inn stuff. We wanted to kick it up a bit.”
Keller said they are hoping to attract more business travellers with a Hilton product.
“If you want upper echelon, the business traveler, you’re going to do it with Hilton,” Keller said.
This is the first product Sunset Hotel Group has done in the Culpeper area and were encouraged by the early response.
“It’s a good market, there’s a lot of opportunity,” Keller said. “Culpeper has grown faster than most places in Virginia. We’ve already done a couple bus tours and weddings.
“It’s ramped up fairly well, we’ve had all positive comments. I think we made the right decision.”