November 30, 2022

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Renovations aim to bring life back to mid-century hotel > Charleston Business Journal

A pale pink mid-century contemporary motel on Rivers Avenue in North Charleston developed in 1961, which relished its heyday through the 1970s, is set to arrive back again on the net this tumble soon after new entrepreneurs full a total historic renovation.

Proprietors say the Starlight Motor Inn at 3245 Rivers Ave. — formerly Star of The us — will include things like 51 rooms, a cafe, a cocktail lounge, a pool (to be open up in spring 2023) and a poolside bar at an economical cost position.

The new proprietors approach to retain the motel’s pink coloration, neoclassical facade and attractive lattice exterior beams, and will lean into the mid-century topic with its decor.

Longtime close friends and associates on the venture are Ham Morrison and Walker Lamond. Morrison has renovated numerous attributes he owns in the Charleston location, including historic renovations of a 32,000-sq.-foot creating that houses the Redux Present-day Arts Center on King Road.

The Rivers Avenue inn initially piqued Morrison’s interest many thanks to its control charm, regardless of currently being shuttered to the community because the 1990s and a portion staying utilised as a residence.

“With the pink and white, it appeared like it was suitable out of South Florida,” Morrison claimed.

After mastering that proprietor Jay Patel was open up to advertising, Morrison asked Lamond to come on board and guide the imaginative and branding facet.

Extensive renovations to the Starlight Motor Inn in North Charleston are underway. The historic building, once slated for demolition, will be remodeled to include 51 rooms and a swim-up pool bar, among other planned improvements. (Photo/National Register of Historic Places application)  “We talked to the initial proprietor who mentioned that back in the ‘60s and ‘70s, the bar was packed with Navy sailors and contractors and family members by the pool. It truly arrived from an era when (nearby) Reynolds Avenue was truly the Major Avenue of North Charleston,” Lamond explained.

The duo ramped up renovation programs just after finding out the motel, which experienced fallen into disrepair, was slated for demolition. In accordance to Charleston County land documents, Star Motel LLC bought the residence for $800,000 in March 2020. Morrison claimed the home sits on about an acre of land.

The initial buy of enterprise was to get the lodge onto the National Sign-up of Historic Places and use historic tax credits to help fund the whole renovation.

“Historic tax credits can be the big difference in a project doing work out or not,” Morrison said.

Morrison mentioned he worked with historian and guide Brittany Lavelle Tulla, whom he labored with through the Redux Modern Arts Middle renovation. Tulla uncovered that the The usa Motor Inn was very likely the first prefabricated motel in the region, a be aware that went into its Countrywide Sign up of Historic Places application.

“They manufactured this steel framework and like an erector established, introduced in these rooms that were being produced in a manufacturing unit in Ga and delivered by railroad, and like drawers, slid them into the rectangular composition,” Morrison mentioned.

That exclusive history “added to the allure of the property — it felt crucial to save,” Lamond stated.

Getting the residence off the record of condemned sites was a lengthier method, in accordance to Morrison. The house owners needed to employ a forensic engineer to prove to the city that the making could in fact be saved.

“We had to establish it wasn’t just a pipe aspiration we experienced to present results to a committee. Learning the constructing could be set on the Nationwide Historic Registry was a massive aspect of convincing them to get it off the condemned list,” Morrison explained.

Key renovations above the previous two several years on the one-acre web site involved including a new roof, new electrical work, plumbing, heating and air and renovating the pool and pool property bar, which was built with historic bricks. The proprietors plan to revive the full-support cafe on the floor ground of the inn and retain the initial bar’s name, Burgundy Lounge.

Jay Patel’s son, who grew up in the motel and is now in his late 20s, is functioning carefully with the duo on the venture, Lamond explained.

In addition to the motel, the house owners program to at some point open the Starlight Village, a selection of restored two-bedroom cottages instantly upcoming door. Managed by StayDuvet, all of the rooms will have high-stop touches at an very affordable value point, owners claimed.

“There are loads of motels getting rehabbed all over the place with $350 price tag tags for every space, and that’s not our transfer,” Lamond stated. “Ham (Morrison) mentioned from beginning that in trying to keep with the spirit of this property and this neighborhood, we really should cost these as Days Inn premiums, to hold it economical for households and men and women traveling to Charleston by vehicle, families in North Charleston acquiring household reunions, people coming to operate in city — that is what will established us apart. We hope we can fill that gap and attraction to folks on a spending budget.” 

An inside designer whom Morrison has worked with on furnishing brief-tern rentals has been tasked with outfitting the inn with a mid-century modern day vibe.

“We’re leaning into mid-century classic, but also want to seize what is quintessentially South Carolina and Southern about these areas and also replicate the local community in North Charleston,” Lamond mentioned. “There will be texture and wooden and cane and a lot of vegetation. It will have a pleasant southern patina to it all. We want it to sense vintage, lived in, comfy and accessible. … It will be really ‘Instagrammable’ for confident.”

Morrison stated he hopes the reopening of the Starlight Motor Inn will spur other improvement in the corridor.

“We sense we can provide life again to the corner of Rivers and Reynolds Avenue,” Lamond stated. “We’re on a mission to activate this complete neighborhood mainly because we enjoy it so substantially and it has so much of the outdated Charleston spirit in it and it’s brimming with likely. If we can polish up the landmark on the corner, we hope it has an influence of acquiring much more storefronts happening.

Make contact with Jenny Peterson at 843-849-3145.