Time for a road trip! From its rugged mountains, charming towns, to dynamic craft beer scene, the state of North Carolina has a long list of reasons to explore. Next year, seven new or newly renovated hotels will be added, adding a splash to the state’s burgeoning line of contemporary hotels. Most of these properties are located in or near the very popular downtown Asheville.
Here’s your guide to 2023’s “must-stays” in the Tar Heel State.
Due in early 2023, a collection of 18 “invisible” cabin suites from Asheville Glamping feature architectural mirrors that reflect the surrounding nature. In addition to hotel-style amenities, the property will adorn the outdoor space with a large deck, grill and pizza oven, fire pit, hot tub and other amenities. The owners plan to expand the concept to other locations as well. Those interested in booking a stay should join the email list.
Flat Iron HotelAsheville
Come spring 2023, Indigo Road Hospitality Group plans to open this 71-room inn as an adaptive reuse of the Flatiron Building from the Roaring ʼ20s, which sparked a significant building boom in Asheville. The eight-story, wedge-shaped hotel will feature a wood-burning oven and a restaurant with a craft cocktail bar and rooftop bar.
Road’s Motor LodgeBoon
The old 1950s Greens Motel has been stylishly transformed to open in late spring/early summer 2023. Road’s Motor Lodge Lowden Hospitality’s properties include Raleigh’s retro-chic Longleaf Hotel and quaint guest house. With an outdoorsy design and laid-back vibe, the 53-room property appeals to family adventurers, outdoor enthusiasts and casual travelers alike. Plans include a restaurant, bar and outdoor gathering space for locals and travelers alike.
Opening summer 2023, the 20-room hotel will center around the restoration of three historic homes in the South Slope neighborhood by Zelda Fitzgerald and husband F. Tributes to Scott Fitzgerald. Developed in partnership with Atlanta-based Hatteras Ski and Fitzgerald Estate, Zelda Dearest will include 20 rooms, outdoor spaces and food and beverage service by noted local chef Jacob Sessoms. F. Scott Fitzgerald spent two summers in Asheville while his wife was hospitalized at Highland Hospital, a sanatorium where she died in a 1948 fire.
Summer 2023 and this 70-room hotel from Hatteras Sky is replacing a vacant warehouse in the River Arts District. It promises retro-luxe interiors, spacious lawns and outdoor courtyards, and a Jacob Sessoms-led food and beverage program that includes a restaurant, coffee lounge, cocktail bar and rooftop bar.
Cataloochee RanchMaggi Valley
In the fall of 2023, this well-loved rustic retreat on the border of Great Smoky Mountains National Park will reopen with redesigned interior spaces and new terraces where guests can dine and enjoy the warmth of a newly converted two-sided fireplace. Other changes were designed to improve views from the top of the mile-high Phi Top mountain and allow more natural light into the stone and wood structure, which first opened in 1939 for overnight stays. While the lodge is closed, owners David and Annie Colquitt continue to offer horseback rides, including lunch excursions to The Swag, their all-inclusive Relais & Châteaux property nearby.
In late 2023, North Carolina’s oldest continuously operating hotel will begin a new chapter after a full-scale renovation of the 16,500-square-foot Colonial-style inn. In addition to structural work, James and Amanda Keith have been recovering artifacts and collecting stories from history dating back to 1833. As a stagecoach stop en route to Asheville, the hotel boasts a guest list that includes Mark Twain, Elvis Presley, Christopher Reeve and Jimmy Carter. Located about 20 miles from the Blue Ridge Parkway, NuWray offers 24 rooms and suites.