Until this past September, finding a swanky spot to rest your head in Oxford, Mississippi was a challenge. Lodging options in this college town — rich with history — mostly included charming B&Bs or budget chains. What Oxford needed was a boutique hotel, filled with reading nooks, locally commissioned art, and a killer cocktail bar. Enter: The Graduate Oxford — the newest addition to Graduate Hotel’s chain of collegiate boutique beauties. Flanked by the historic town square, this hip hotel is where the action happens. We checked in, and here’s what we loved about our stay.
Best Feature: The design is tops. Guests are welcomed with pink oak floors, seersucker drapery, and a check-in desk that’s stuffed with books. The Southern-chic preppy style continues throughout the hotel. Essentially, it’s Instagram gold.
The Rooms: The 136 rooms feature collegiate-chic interiors. Think: polka-dot carpets, modern sofas, and ultra-comfy beds — each topped with white duvets and cozy plaid throws. The walls are dressed with silhouettes of hometown heroes Archie and Olivia Manning.
The Food: Bring your stretchy pants to Oxford. The hotel is home to Cabin 82, a café and coffee shop that serves fried chicken biscuits — along with chicken skin nachos topped with pimento cheese sauce, jalapenos, tomatoes, scallions, and sour cream. Thanks to stylish touches like damask wallpaper, crystal chandeliers, and taxidermy foxes, The Coop is currently Oxford’s hot spot, along with a huge outdoor patio. Here, it’s all about the cocktails.
Who Will Love It: Design geeks and bookworms will appreciate all the little details. College kids (and their parents), along with any road-tripper passing though, will find the hotel as charming as the town it calls home.
Who Might Not: The hotel lacks a swimming pool and other kid-friendly amenities (though we saw tweens enjoying the chess tables in the lobby).
Deals and Special Offers: You’ll find plenty of reasonable rates around $150 per night, but be sure to check social media for deals and offers. For our stay, a 30 percent off deal on Twitter for Cyber Monday brought the price down to just over $100 — a great steal.
Getting There: 400 North Lamar Boulevard, Oxford, MS 38655