BEREA – Olympia Hotel Management (OHM) has announced that it will operate the Historic Boone Tavern Hotel & Restaurant, which is owned by Berea College.
Now a LEED Gold-certified green hotel, it is located in Madison County, central Kentucky, where Bluegrass meets the Appalachian foothills. Berea is the folk arts and crafts capital of Kentucky and is home to many artists and artisans.
“We are delighted to bring in Olympia Hotel Management to manage the historic Boone Tavern Hotel and Restaurant, the centerpiece of our campus,” said Berea College President Lyle Roelofs. “Olympia Hotel Management has achieved great success managing hotels on college campuses like Duke University in North Carolina; the University of Chicago in Illinois; Kent State University and Oberlin College in Ohio; and Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania. We look forward to a long and successful partnership that will make Boone Tavern a popular destination in our area.
The Boone Tavern Hotel has 63 guest rooms and six suites furnished with antique American-style furniture handcrafted by Berea students through the College’s Student Craft program. Two miles from the hotel is Pine Croft Cottage, adjacent to the Berea College Forest and The Pinnacles hiking trails, named “Best Hike in Kentucky” by Outside magazine. It offers three bedrooms, two bathrooms and a kitchen, dining room and living room.
The hotel has 8,552 square feet of meeting and event space across seven separate rooms, with each space accommodating up to 150 people for weddings, meetings, conferences, and other gatherings. The kitchen sources hyper-local organic produce from the 500-acre Berea College Farm, one of the oldest continuously operating educational farms in the United States. The award-winning restaurant has been serving the legendary cornbread soufflé known as Boone Tavern Spoonbread at the start of every lunch and dinner for over 75 years. It’s one of many dishes made with regional “Kentucky Proud” ingredients.
One of nine federally recognized work colleges, Berea hires every student to work a minimum of 10 hours per week on on-campus jobs to support college operations, making it one of the first true country work-study programs. Approximately 50% of the hotel staff are students enrolled at Berea College meeting the school’s work program requirements.
“It is an honor to partner with Berea College and add this distinguished historic property to our growing campus hospitality portfolio,” said Sara Masterson, President, Hotel Management, for Olympia Hotel Management. “This hotel aligns perfectly with our expertise in running campus properties that are successfully integrated into the community and have such great stories to tell.”
OHM currently manages campus properties such as The Alfond Inn at Rollins, The Hotel at Oberlin, The Inn at Swarthmore, and Kent State University Hotel & Conference Center.