The new Century Square mixed-use development in College Station, on the corner of the Texas A&M University campus, is all about location, location, location! Right across the street from campus, the development includes two hotels to service the ever-growing community. Servicing a campus of 68,000 students, there was surely a need for two very different styles of hotels, not only for overnight stays, but also for events. We mentioned the two newcomers in our fall/holiday special travel issue article about College Station. Now, here’s a more in-depth look at what we love about these two new hotels.
The George: Named after all the great Georges in our Texas history, but especially after former President George H.W. Bush (who has his presidential library on campus), this 162-room boutique hotel wows with unique style.
On entering, you’ll see the most interesting art installation I’ve ever laid eyes on in a hotel lobby, a Texas star wall made of 10,000 red, white and blue books. The books, that come from all over Texas, are nailed into the wall to create the most Instagrammable spot in town. Created by Houston artist Thedra Cullar-Leford, the piece is titled “#GoBig.”
Also, in the lobby, you’ll see the hotel’s cheeky mascot, sheep. The movable sheep can be found throughout the lobby and are also in some guest rooms. Some of the sheep are even graffitied by Houston artist, GONZO247. The sheep represent the agriculture component of Texas A&M. (The ones in the guestrooms are “separated from the flock.”
Opened in August 2017, The George features a lively bar just off the lobby, called 1791. (This was the year of the Whiskey Rebellion.) We love the eclectic design features like the clear bottle light installation above the bar and the fun shoe shine seats.
Another unique design experience is the train theme on the guest room floors. College Station was so named because it was the station where young men got off the train to go to college. As you exit the elevator, the scene is unique. To your left, a projection screen runs footage of old trains, in front of you are chairs resembling those from an old train station, and to your right there’s carpet featuring an old train schedule—complete with towns and times.
You’ll also find the train theme in the elevator cars, where you press “PLTF” buttons, not floors; there’s a track motif in the guest rooms and the mini bar is fashioned after old steamer trunks. We love the black- and white- tiled showers, each with one of four sayings, such as “slick as a whistle.”
You can’t beat the upscale branding of just about everything you see at The George, including their cruiser bikes, the weights in the fitness room and they even have hotel-themed wine bottles. Coming soon: their restaurant, Poppy,, which is the name George H.W. Bush’s grandchildren bestowed on him.
Cavalry Court: With its military barracks theme, to honor Texas A&M’s background and strong Corps of Cadets presence, Cavalry Court is completely different from The George, but in the same price point. Cavalry Court, which opened in November 2016, has some of the most consistent branding of any hotel I’ve seen, such as the coffee table in the lobby filled with little green army men.
“Both The George and Cavalry Court want to create a different experience for guests,” explains Director of Sales and Marketing Lydia Godfrey. “We bring in live music several nights a week for both properties and want guests to enjoy the hotels, not just the rooms.”
Cavalry Court has created public spaces for guests—and their dogs (some rooms are pet friendly)—like fire pits and their expansive pool with cabanas.
“We want to be a chapter in our guests’ vacation, not just a mention.”
—Marcus Latner, Cavalry Court General Manager
From the doors (that open to the outside) to the hanging lamps in the rooms fashioned after army helmets and the one-of-a-kind privacy magnets, the theme is prevalent. If you prefer accommodations that don’t open to the outside, Cavalry Court also has other rooms with doors that open to a hallway, drenched with photos from the armed forces.
The university is loving these hotels, right across from campus. They feed their football team dinner every Friday night before Midnight Yell in The Stable (Cavalry Court’s event space) and have their recruits stay overnight. These hotels and Century Square (which features a myriad of restaurants, too) are a far cry from the old dilapidated married student housing that existed on this same property in the 90s. The hotel duo of The George and Cavalry Court really impressed us; there’s no better place to lay your head in Aggieland!
Marika Flatt is Travel Editor of Texas Lifestyle Magazine and hosts “Weekend Trip Tips” on Texas Standard, a statewide NPR show.
Cover photo • The George Hotel, College Station • Courtesy The Valencia Group