Opportunity seen as city grows
By Jeff Simms
A number of hotels, both boutique and market-rate, are coming to downtown Beacon in 2016, with dozens of new rooms.
The 12-room Inn and Spa at Beacon is scheduled to open at 151 Main St. by the summer. Occupying a formerly vacant space on the west end of Beacon’s business district, the boutique will feature rooftop yoga and a downstairs art gallery, along with massage and other spa services.
A second space at 426 Main St., now a single-room occupancy rental facility, is also being rehabbed as a market-rate (not chain) hotel. The turn-of-the-century building will first see its original four-story brick structure renovated, with plans calling for 12 rooms on the upper floors and a restaurant, bar and café on the first floor.
A second phase will follow in the wood-frame eastern portion of the building, which will be demolished and rebuilt with additional rooms and a rooftop restaurant. The interior demolition for Phase One has been completed, Beacon Building Inspector Timothy Dexter said, and the city is reviewing plans for the rebuilding.
Moving eastward down Main, 18 rooms are under construction during the last phase of an expansion of the multiuse Roundhouse complex. The rooms will be located in the mill building.
As its building boom continues, a renewed entrepreneurial spirit has taken hold in the city, said Pat Moore, chairman of the Beacon Chamber of Commerce. “Beacon is a busy place; I think people have a sense of optimism here,” he said. “We’re seeing much more sustainable stuff too — more than people just getting off the train and spending a Saturday with us.”
There have historically not been many hotel rooms in Beacon, particularly on Main Street, primarily because the market hasn’t needed them, Dexter said. But Roger Greenwald, the architect leading for the project at the Inn and Spa at Beacon, believes the time has come.
“It’s clear to me that Beacon has passed that threshold,” where it gets enough visitors to support multiple hotels, Greenwald said. “I’ve seen many neighborhoods turn, and when I came to Beacon two years ago, it was clear to me that it was turning. I think Beacon is going have a period of sustained growth.”