On January 7, 2010, the Jekyll Island Authority celebrated the opening of the Hampton Inn and Suites, the first new hotel to open on Jekyll Island since 1974. The 138-room, beachfront property is jointly owned by Jekyll Ocean Oaks, LLC, an affiliate of the ownership group of the Jekyll Island Club Hotel. New Castle Hotels & Resorts, a leading hotel development and ownership company and third-party manager, will operate the hotel.
“Hampton Inns combine quality, service, comfort, and plenty of value-added extras,” said Gerald P. Chase, president and chief operating officer of New Castle, which will manage the property. Based in Shelton, Conn., New Castle owns and/or operates 31 hotels and resorts throughout the United States and Canada. “That’s why Hampton is the brand of choice in the marketplace today.”
The new facility will offer 138 guest rooms, 88 of which are suites with balconies. Amenities include a lobby bar, beach access, revitalized nature trails, an expansive pool deck, a kid’s pool, and a large hot tub. The hotel, which utilizes solar panels for water heating, will be a member of the Green Hotel Association, a group of environmentally friendly properties whose managers are eager to institute programs that reduce solid waste and save water and energy.
“The Hampton Inn project is an excellent example of what our intention is for the overall revitalization of Jekyll Island,” Bob Krueger, Chairman of the Jekyll Island Authority Board said. “These additional rooms are vital as Jekyll Island once again becomes a choice destination for conventions and family vacations. This is a win-win-win - a win for the Jekyll Island Authority, a win for the hotel owners and a win for the guests who choose to stay at this hotel.”
The opening of the Hampton Inn & Suites is the first of several projects intended to bring about the revitalization of Jekyll Island. The Jekyll Island Authority officially broke ground on the beach village project on December 7th with a ceremony attended by Governor Sonny Perdue, state dignitaries and hundreds of guests. Construction is now underway for the new 20-acre Great Dunes Park, which along with a new 78,000-square-foot convention center will be a key component of the new beach village. The facility will be integrated into its natural beachfront location in a manner that minimizes impact on the environment while creating a wonderful and unique guest experience. Also included in the plans are improvements to the island’s entry corridor. Improvements will take advantage of existing live oaks to enhance the intimate character of the Jekyll Island entry experience. Designs for a new gas station and convenience store are nearing completion, and soon site preparation and construction will begin on the first of several projects that will return modern facilities to the island.
“The opening of the first new hotel on Jekyll Island in over 35 years is a landmark event,” said Jones Hooks, Executive Director of the Jekyll Island Authority. “In addition to offering more lodging, the architectural design and commitment to the environmental sensitivity represent a significant step forward in the revitalization of the island.”
Guests of the Jekyll Island Hampton Inn will enjoy peaceful surroundings and easy access to a pristine stretch of beach. The upgraded pool amenity features zero entry pool, separate kiddie pool, outside dining areas and a wonderful fire pit and gathering space. Some of the first guests will take advantage of the Golfer’s Heaven promotion, offering free golf on Jekyll Island with a hotel stay. Others will thrill to find an Island Treasure, secretly-placed glass floats along the beach awaiting a lucky guest.
“The winter months are actually a wonderful time to visit the Georgia coast,” explained Eric Garvey, Jekyll Island marketing director. “The weather is often very pleasant, the beach is serene and the golf is excellent.”