Tempo by Hilton Raleigh Downtown Opening This Summer

Retreat, revive and rest up at DTR’s new destination hotel + rooftop bar.

Setting the, well, tempo for DTR as a destination, enter Homewood Suites and Tempo by Hilton Raleigh Downtown, bowing as early as end of August. Only the fourth Tempo in the world—and CN Hotels’ first dual concept—the McKibbon Hospitality-managed brand chose Downtown Raleigh as one of its premiere properties for its competitive growth, propelling the city into the ranks of other upper-class East Coast markets—and alongside the likes of Tempo’s premiere trio selects Manhattan, Louisville and Nashville

“We feel we’ve been received by Visit Raleigh and the other Downtown hotels as a new partner that’s going to grow the area and enhance their hotels,” says Dual General Manager Robert Ambersley. “The excitement from Visit Raleigh specifically over getting the Hilton brand Downtown has been stated very clearly to us.”

Not just a place to lay your bags and rest your head, the lifestyle hotel is an experience, serving at once to reimagine an overnight—weekend, week or even monthlong—stay while also leaning into the community aspect via public spaces that’ll appeal to Raleighites as well. 

An architectural beacon from ground to sky, Tempo is primely positioned at the intersection of West Davie and South McDowell streets, with easy access to the Warehouse District, Fayetteville Street and Glenwood South. 

The dual concept boasts 134 Homewood Suites and 127 Tempo rooms—the former geared toward more transient family travel, weddings and the like with homey accommodations feat. a couch, TV, wardrobes and a flex table, while the latter boasts upgraded materials and accouterments for the biz-savvy travel. Think a backlit “power-up” zone for taking Zoom meetings, bathroom mirrors with built-in speakers, and a cozy “power-down” zone a la beds with wraparound headboards and ample USB ports positioned in front of a 65-inch TV. And for those who never skip a workout, wellness suites offer an in-room Peloton, resistance bands and free weights. 

Doubling down on that healthy lifestyle, Tempo’s downstairs all-day open-to-the-public Moonsong Cafe will offer freshly made ops like protein shakes, fresh coffee and avocado toast—plus cocktails and mocktails. Positioned in the expansive natural-lit lobby, the lounge allows patrons to relish in some of the hotel’s many “look-up moments,” including ~100 art pieces by local artists—the most prominent of which is a Sir Walter Raleigh mural adorning the decorative stairs. “The goal is for [guests] to stop looking at their phones and look up at all these beautiful surroundings,” emphasizes McKibbon Hospitality Dual Director of Sales Laureen Cooney. 

But where visitors and Raleighites alike will really be able to enjoy a breathtaking respite is at Tempo’s rooftop Urban Oak, aka the City of Oaks’ tallest lounge and bar. The intimate space serves up incredible views of the city via its two patios (one covered, the other open-air)—plus a stunning interior bar, lounge seating and even wicker swings, with an indoor oak tree and unique light fixtures serving as added primo look-up moments to take in while indulging in small plates and cocktails. 

“We definitely view [Urban Oak] as for the community, for Raleigh,” maintains Ambersley of the aptly dubbed restaurant in the sky. “This is not just for our hotel guests to hop on the elevator and grab a drink. We see it as a destination”—whether for a light dinner or pre-/post-meal cocktails.

So while you might not think of Raleigh as a tourist town—yet—Tempo is here to turn the tide, attracting both out-of-towners and residents alike to a one-of-a-kind destination helping put the City of Oaks on the map. hilton.com

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Angela Brown
Angela Brown is the author of our Business & Economy section.