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Oxford Stories: Some Predict Graduate Hotel Will Contribute to Oxford’s Growth

oxford stories graduate hotel

Whether it’s welcoming tourists for a weekend stay or providing students with a calm study area, the Graduate Hotel has made a dynamic early presence in Oxford.

Located on the corner of North Lamar and Jackson Avenue, the Graduate Hotel’s modern atmosphere brings the small town, college feel to Oxford’s Square, holding 136 rooms, including numerous suites, and two authentic restaurants.

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Natalie Gagliano, a University of Mississippi sophomore international studies major, does homework at the new hotel hotspot a few times a week.

“It’s nice to have that, you know? Just a unique place to unwind and knock out some homework,” Gagliano said. “Several people do it, which is neat, because it’s a hotel too, and you see a lot of people coming in and out who are on business trips, and almost anything in between.”

The hotel’s lobby and main area have a pink interior with many seating options. There is also a lounge area and a bar.

“I think that the atmosphere is all the fun, plus you’re practically on the Square,” Gagliano said. “It’s very Oxford.”

“Very Oxford” is an idea many locals understand, but to tourists like Sarah Gaudet, who visited the Graduate Hotel on a weekend trip, it was a new experience.

“Oxford, itself, is like no other, I’d heard that,” said Gaudet, a New Orleans native. “I visited for the first time this past year, and I’d always wondered what the fuss was all about. I just didn’t imagine this.”

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Gaudet said that the Graduate Hotel topped her visit to Oxford. “The staff was so accommodating and friendly for our two nights there, and the rooms were really authentic. I even heard some Hotty Toddy chants from [my room], which was pretty special,” she laughed.

During her stay, Gaudet also tried out Cabin 82, a cafe located just inside the hotel with a Neshoba County Fair theme. The fair is held annually in central Mississippi.

“It’s got this cool Southern vibe, and the food was like a home-cooked meal. We all really enjoyed it,” Gaudet said.

The Graduate Hotel is also home to The Coop, an elegant terrace restaurant located on the roof of the hotel. The Coop serves drinks and hosts live music while overlooking the college town.

“It was absolutely marvelous,” said Reba Gray, who went to dinner at The Coop for an office get-together. “The weather was great, and the food was just to die for. We all said several times how much we loved the setting. Oxford needed this.”

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Ethan Yates, a local and former student at Ole Miss, said the Graduate Hotel will help Oxford grow.

“There’s a lot of change going on in Oxford,” he said. “Some people see the additions as the worst thing that could happen. Then there are people like me who want to see it keep growing.

“I believe that the Graduate is going to really gain a lot of praise. It has already, but now we have a very nice boutique hotel, and it fits like a glove on top of all that.”

The Graduate Hotel offers king- or queen-size guest suites, and room rates start at $237.26.

olivia wells

Olivia Wells can be reached at otwells@go.olemiss.edu.

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