Odyssey Hotels is building a four-story Hampton Inn at 2610 Airview Blvd., adjacent to the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport. Part of the airport can be seen at left in this May 8, 2014 photo.
(Al Jones | MLive/Gazette)
KALAMAZOO, MI – A growing, Chicago-based hotel management company plans to open a new Hampton Inn just north of the Kalamazoo airport in October.
Odyssey Hotels, operating as ANR Kalamazoo Hotel 2 LLC, is building the four-story inn at 2610 Airview Blvd., adjacent to the Kalamazoo/Battle Creek International Airport and has set an opening date of Oct. 31.
The development will be a 78-room hotel, primarily outfitted with standard rooms, but including some suites. It will will have a swimming pool and feature a new interior design by Hampton Inn called "Forever Young," described as clean, fresh and crisp.
“I believe that the hotel will do pretty well with what we have available in the market,” said Odyssey Hotels spokeswoman Carrie Oberthaler.
She said the inn will strive to attract business travelers Monday through Friday and target families, sports teams and other leisure travelers on weekends.
Odyssey Hotels is a 10-year-old company led by Chicago-based Rachit Dhingra, who is its owner and chief executive officer. An opening date has been set for Oct. 31. Odyssey Hotels also owns the Residence Inn on Kilgore Road in Kalamazoo.
Oberthaler, regional director of sales and operations for Odyssey, would not say how much the company is spending on the project, which started in late 2012 when Dhingra acquiring 1.1 acres of property on Airway Boulevard, including a building that used to house office products company D.L. Gallivan Office Solutions. That business is now located at 1424 W. Centre Ave. in Portage.
Work to build the 14,860-square-foot hotel began last fall after the D.L. Gallivan building was demolished.
Why build now?
“I believe that corporate travel is getting back to more of a normal pace," Oberthaler said. "It went down after 9/11 will all the markets. … But everything has been picking back up.”
Well-known hotel brands such as Hilton and Marriott are having success in various markets, she said, “which shows us there is the capacity for another well-known hotel brand to be successful.”
Hampton is not an unfamiliar name in Greater Kalamazoo. A Hampton Inn & Suites opened in 2007 at 5059 S. 9th St. and was renovated about a year ago and continues there. The America's Best Value Inn & Suites, at 2615 Fairfield Road just north of where the new hotel is being built, was also at one time a Hampton Inn.
Oberthaler said the new Hampton will employ 20 to 25 workers, full- and part-time. Hiring will start with the selection of a general manager and his staff in July. The bulk of the staff is to be hired in September, she said. A job fair will be conducted to help recruit workers. More information is likely to be available via Odysseyhotels.com.
“We currently have six hotels and we are rapidly looking to grow our portfolio," she said of Odyssey Hotels.
They include properties in Milwaukee and Germantown, Wis., Columbus, Ohio, Indianapolis and the Residence Inn in Kalamazoo. The Residence Inn, at 1500 E. Kilgore Road, is about 25 years old and was owned by Marriott until it was acquired four years ago by Dhingra. It is an all-suites, extended stay that has 83 rooms.