Hotel One75 to Open at the Former Wendt University Inn

Ethan Cherry, Editor-In-Chief


Colgate families, alumni and visitors will soon have another hotel to choose from in the Village of Hamilton. Hotel One75, located in the former Wendt University Inn at 175 Utica Street, will open officially to guests on Aug. 15 after an extensive overhaul of its interior.

When it opens, the new hotel will offer 94 updated guest rooms across two floors that surround a courtyard that has been refreshed into “The Quad,” an outdoor space will lounge furniture, games and refreshments. Renovations included a “facelift” to the lobby and other public spaces, as well as an update to each of the guest rooms.

Charlestowne Hotels is a hotel management service based in Charlestown, SC that, in addition to overseeing the Colgate Inn and the Tavern at the Colgate Inn, will manage Hotel One75. Colgate University will remain the owner of the hotel, following the same structure of ownership as it has in place at the Colgate Inn.

Colgate Inn General Manager Kendra Young, who will also manage Hotel One75, said she is excited that the addition will more than triple the number of hotel rooms in Hamilton.

“One of the greatest struggles for visitors to the area is that there is a real lack of places to stay. The Colgate Inn only has 40 rooms, and they go in a heartbeat,” Young said. “We, and Colgate, have long identified the need for more hotel rooms in the area, and we are really excited about the new personality of Hotel One75.”

Colgate University has owned the property since the Summer of 2020, shortly after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The former inn has seen multiple different uses, ranging from student quarantine in the 2020-2021 school year to an alternative student housing option in the fall of 2021 and back to quarantine and isolation space until the end of February 2022.

Charlestowne Hotels and operations team members from the Colgate Inn, led by Young, officially took control of the hotel on March 1, 2022, to begin renovations. The new property will be managed in conjunction with the Colgate Inn, sharing a General Manager and the majority of its Operations Team. The hope, according to both Young and Charlestowne Hotels Corporate Senior Marketing Manager Jackie Mann, is that all of their staff, particularly housekeeping and front desk staff, will be familiar with both of the sister hotels.

Renovations began in early March on a tight timeline with the goal to have the new hotel operational for guests of the University’s two commencement weekends and two reunion weekends. In a normal year, Young said, the University would only host one of each. However, this year, the extra weekends are serving as make-up opportunities for events canceled early on in the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We needed to be up-and-running by the beginning of May to be able to accommodate this higher-than-usual influx of guests for these significant events,” Young added. “We’re about 95% complete as we wait for the last of the furniture, curtains and guest room chairs to arrive.”

The hotel will be open to select groups and summer programs for Colgate University until it opens to the public in August.

Updates to guestrooms included a new coat of gray paint to replace the previously light yellow walls and all new mattresses, linens, terrycloth towels and furniture. During the renovation, old mattresses, linens and furniture were donated to different organizations across Madison County, according to Young.

Mann led the refresh of the hotel’s identity and gave three pillars that she said guided the overhaul: “friendly and approachable,” “reliable value” and “fun factor.”

“We wanted this hotel to feel fun and laid back, but have that distinct collegiate feeling. It is low-key and approachable yet youthful, giving our guests something new to be excited about in the area,” Mann said.

The branding for the new hotel is built off a color palette of what Mann describes as a “Colgate maroon” and a “pencil yellow.” Their brand imaging features black and white photos from archived issues of Salmagundi, Colgate University’s yearbook, with pops of yellow colors, gridlines and highlighter strokes.

Hotel One75 was designed as a mid-range hotel compared to its sister property the Colgate Inn, offering a value option with lower nightly rates and complimentary breakfast. Numeric price comparisons are not immediately available due to the fluctuating nature of nightly rates managed by Charlestowne Hotels and on-property revenue managers.

“When thinking about positioning and brand standard, we wanted to create a mid-range option. We did this with a fun approach to branding that had a uniquely academic feel,” said Young. “Hotel One75 has its own personality and unique identity, but it still feels familiar to the Colgate Inn.”

The new hotel ups the room count for the Village of Hamilton from 40 to 134, significantly increasing the number of available rooms close to the Colgate campus for events. General Manager Kendra Young said that these newly available rooms will allow the two properties to end the lottery practice for major event weekends such as graduations and arrivals.

Currently, guests wishing to stay at the Colgate Inn can enter into a lottery often years in advance in the hopes of securing one of the 40 available rooms close to the campus, leaving those who do not win the lottery to stay at rental options or other hotels as far as Cazenovia, Syracuse or Cooperstown. The new policy will make major weekends available to book at a released time, making it first come, first serve. The Colgate Inn and Hotel One75 will open reservations for the following events on July 11, 2022:

  • Homecoming: September 23-25, 2022
  • Family Weekend: October 21-23, 2022
  • 2023 Graduation: May 19-21, 2023

These extra hotel rooms will ease travel for families visiting campus, allowing them more options to stay at a standard hotel in Hamilton rather than non-hotel rentals or properties in neighboring areas, according to Molly Dillon, parent of a current rising Colgate University senior.

“This is terrific news! Having to rely on the ad hoc bed and breakfast and the short-term rental situation is really difficult for families, especially if, like us, you are from the West Coast and need a reliable place to stay in order to visit the school,” Dillon said.

The renovation, entirely funded by the university, had to be completed in a matter of two months, challenging Charlestowne Hotels and Young and her team to meet the tight deadline.

“Timing has been our biggest challenge,” Young said. “Our timeline was constantly changing due to factors outside of our control with May still remaining as our deadline. We are happy, however, to have overcome all of those challenges, which is largely due to the great team we have in place.”

Hotel One75 hosted guests for each of the major back-to-back events that had renovations for Commencement and Reunion Weekends for their originally scheduled dates in 2020 at the Wendt University Inn prior to its closure and handoff to the University later that year. The feedback, Young said, has been overwhelmingly positive.

“We have gotten numerous letters from our guests that say just how appreciative and overjoyed they were to have been able to have this new option. What it really does is it gives more time for people to be in Hamilton and enjoy what they came to visit for because they got to stay in, well, Hamilton,” said Young.

The hotel is now accepting reservations and will open officially on Aug. 15, 2022. Parents, alumni and guests can sign up for the hotel’s email list on their website and follow the hotel on Facebook and Instagram for the most accurate information about offers and availability.