CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Charleston's Fairfield Inn is now the Charleston Capitol Hotel.
The nine-floor, 136-room hotel located near the Clay Center on the corner of Washington Street East and Leon Sullivan Way was rebranded over the weekend and is no longer a part of Marriott International, Inc.'s economy-brand franchise.
While the name has changed, neither the hotel's ownership nor management team has changed hands.
"What we're changing is strategy," said Ash Patel, CEO of Southwest Hospitality Management, which oversees operations at the hotel.
Patel said the company is trying to create a new identity for the hotel, one that is free of the requirements that come with being a part of a franchise brand.
"What we're trying to do over the next couple of months is roll out a program where we're providing a more personalized service and boutique feel that is not dictated by what a national chain is telling you to do," he said.
Southwest manages both the Charleston Capitol Hotel and the neighboring Best Western Charleston Plaza Hotel.
The two hotels are part of a hospitality property investment portfolio; the former Fairfield Inn is owned by Silver Creek Charleston A, LLC while the Best Western is owned by Silver Creek Charleston B, LLC.
Patel said the hospitality industry -- both locally and nationally -- suffered a severe slowdown following the Great Recession and financial crisis in 2008.
"Coming out of the recession, we saw our numbers dwindle," he said.