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WNC Business

NuWray Hotel begins operations in the Carriage House

Dec 13, 2023 10:21AM ● By WNC Business

BURNSVILLE - Since purchasing the NuWray Hotel in October 2021, James and Amanda Keith have been working on a full-scale restoration of the National Landmark property, the oldest continuously operating hotel in North Carolina. The Keiths also purchased the 1925 Carriage House building at 7 S. Main Street, just behind the NuWray Hotel, and have begun operations in that adjacent location with rooms for rent on the second floor, and a café, wine and cigar shop, and evening lounge on the first floor. 

Four Carriage House rooms are now available for booking on the NuWray website — two  Double Queens, one Double King, and one two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment with a kitchen as well as a living and dining space, suitable for extended stays. All can be occupied by up to four people, and all are pet-friendly. The rooms are decorated with art by local painters in homage to the building’s prior use as the Burnsville Painting School, and feature mixed elements such as exposed brick, warm wood trim, and original tin ceilings. 

Carriage House Sundries opened in August on the first floor of the building. Chef Peter Crockett runs the open kitchen, and the cafe serves lunch on weekdays, featuring scratch-made soups and hoagie sandwiches made on fresh-baked rolls from the bakery, and brunch on the weekends. In the evening, the bar is open with a hearty lounge menu, specialty cocktails, wine and beer on draft, and an extensive scotch and bourbon list. Weekly features include free wine tastings on Wednesdays, Fish Fry Fridays, and Prime Rib Saturdays. The retail shop features a global wine selection, a humidor for cigars, pipes and pipe tobacco, and accessories. 

Built in 1925, the Carriage House was part of the NuWray property until the Wray family sold  the hotel in the mid-1990s, at which time the buildings were separated into two parcels. When  the opportunity to purchase that building arose at the same time as the hotel, the Keiths saw  multiple opportunities for the buildings’ operations to complement one another. Initially, the plan was to continue leasing the Carriage House as retail space until after the hotel was completed, but when a key tenant chose to end their lease two years early, the Keiths decided to begin work on the Carriage House while the hotel was delayed.

Unexpected structural issues and continued supply chain delays have delayed original expected completion of the main hotel by at least six months, though progress is being made. Structural supports have been added throughout the hotel, new framing is all done, the fire  suppression system is complete, a new roof and gutters were installed this summer, and  electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems are nearly roughed in. Drywall installation will begin  before the end of the year. The current projected opening will be sometime in Spring 2024. 

You can learn more about the hotel on the website — — and follow progress  and opening announcements on Facebook or Instagram: @NuWrayHotel. Carriage House Sundries also has its own website and social media:,  @CarriageHouseSundries on Facebook and Instagram. 

Source: NuWray Hotel