Hyatt House, adjacent to FAMU’s campus, set to open

The newly constructed Hyatt House sits on the corner of Railroad Avenue and t he round-about. Photo by Kylii Clay

For the first time in recent history, there will be a franchised hotel across the train tracks, within walking distance of FAMU. The completed construction of the hotel is coming just in time for FAMU’s 2021 football season, with a spring game scheduled for March 27. 

The Hyatt House is a small sector of the World of Hyatt franchise, which includes up to 18 derivatives. The Hyatt House is located on the appropriately named Railroad Avenue, on the northwest corner of the FAMU roundabout. 

The relatively new Hampton Inn sits some 50 yards north and across the tracks. The placement of this hotel sticks out in particular because similar franchises such as the Marriot or Hampton are located on the opposite side of FAMU’s campus. In fact, most of the higher-end hotels are located in College Town, the adjacent area to Florida State’s campus. While the hotels in the College Town area are closely located, franchises have failed to open up a facility on the FAMU side of the tracks — until now.

On the outside, the newly constructed hotel appears lofty and hip. The architecture of the building does not stray away from the adjacent businesses, keeping up the chic rustic theme of the area. 

The inside is still under construction, with plastic covering the new furniture. The hotel has more suit-style room options, which is suitable for possible student or family lodging. Suite-style rooms are typically geared toward five night stays or longer. Regional manager Bo Schmitz said he anticipates the customer base will be diverse: one traveler could stay there for a business trip, while another traveler is staying at the hotel in between apartment moves, while yet another traveler is there for residence hall accommodations. Either way, both Florida State and FAMU are big business drivers and the hotel is looking forward to the upcoming football season, he said.

Building a hotel this close to FAMU was a bold business move,  and it may affect the rent of the surrounding apartment buildings. Currently the rent for nearby complexes such as  Citivue and Elevate are priced between $590 and $615.  While the complexes only have the two-bedroom two-bathroom layout that tend to be more expensive, there is still a cause for concern. However, according to both Citivue and Elevate, the rent will not be raised. A representative said that they are excited for the opening of the new hotel, and would like for the housing to remain affordable for students. 

The Hyatt House construction seems to be a positive beam of light. There will finally be a franchised establishment for FAMU students, families of FAMU students and alumni. Rent for off-campus housing will remain the same. However, with the football season coming in the fall, only time will tell if the virus will spike or be subdued. Hopefully, the pros of the hotel will heavily outweigh the cons. 

The Hyatt House will be accepting reservations starting Feb. 24.