Inside the New $180M Hotel in College Park

Hotel at the University of Maryland UMD Route 1

The new $180 million Hotel at the University of Maryland, which opened last week, is upping the standards for the area in more ways than one.

The Hotel at UMD is the first new high-end hotel in College Park since the College Park Marriott Hotel and Conference Center, which opened in 1963.

With its high-end rooms and amenities, the hotel will help give a good impression to campus visitors, especially Silicon Valley types visiting the new Iribe Center across the street. And it will be just a few stops from the new Purple Line when it begins service in a few years, being nearby the College Park Metro and the university’s Discovery District.

Aside from its everyday customers, the hotel will also draw visitors to College Park from out-of-town. The rooftop terrace, second-floor ballroom and other meeting spaces could turn into a lucrative side business, and managers say they already have more than a dozen weddings booked for next year.

And the hotel has already kicked the local dining scene up a notch, with Mike Franklin’s Old Maryland Grill and an outpost of the trendy Kapnos Taverna, which will hold a soft launch Monday, both located on the first floor.

The University of Maryland is trying to make College Park one of the best college towns in the country. The new hotel will take it several steps in that direction.

And more is on the way. Southern Management Corp., which developed the Hotel at the UMD, is also planning a more limited-service upscale hotel just up Route One at the intersection with Berwyn Road. And a 120-room Hyatt House Hotel is slated for Riverdale Park Station.

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