On a clear night in the fall of 2018, a new ocean villa in the upscale Westgate Shopping Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, was the highlight of a two-day vacation for a few hundred guests.
It had been designed by American firm Calfa, which built and sold villas in the Caribbean and elsewhere for years.
But unlike most luxury resorts in the United States, Westgate didn’t open until early 2019, two years after the resort was established.
When it did, it was the latest in a string of Westgate-inspired projects.
The villas are a blend of contemporary modern design with an old-world charm that includes a massive ocean view, palm trees, a lush garden, a water feature that lets guests enjoy an uninterrupted stream of water and a water fountain with a pool.
It’s a beach paradise for the whole family.
Calfas, whose other villas include the Grand Pompidou, the Grand Hyatt, the Marriott Marquis, the Holiday Inn, the Hyatt Regency, the New Orleans Marriott and the Resorts World resort, declined to comment.
(Its new Westgate resort, called Westgate Beach, is scheduled to open in 2019.)
In addition to Westgate, Calfases has been building villas for years at resorts in New York City, Las Vegas and other big cities in Europe.
But the resort at Westgate was the first Westgate in North Carolina.
In 2018, the resort opened a few miles away in the city of Charlotte, where residents have long complained of noise and air pollution, including frequent smog alerts.
A few months later, the state announced that it would build a $6 billion, 4,500-room hotel and convention center there.
That project has stalled.
The state also has a new $1 billion resort planned in the nearby town of Hilton Head Island.
The resort there opened in early 2019 and the Charlotte Convention Center opened in 2018.
As a result, the new Westgates in North America are being built on reclaimed land near Charlotte, not in the heart of the city, said Mike Hagan, president of Westgate Development Corp., which is the developer of both the Charlotte resort and Hilton Head.
It also didn’t provide details on when the Charlotte Westgate would open.
The hotel and the convention center will be built on a 7.3-acre plot of land that was once part of the former Hilton Head Hotel site.
But since the resort is located on reclaimed property, it’s unlikely to be built there.
Hagan said the hotel is “very close” to the Hilton Head project.
Westgate has also been developing a smaller beachfront resort in Charleston, South Carolina.
The two sites are adjacent to the same city park.
The new Westside villas will be designed by the same designers who designed the Hilton head and Charlotte villas.
“They’re both very similar,” Hagan told me.
He added that the resort would be open at the same time.
The first Westgages will be constructed in 2019 and built in phases.
The Westgate beaches and the Hilton villas would open by 2023.
The second phase of the project, the Hilton Westgate Summer Beach, would open in 2028.
The final two phases would open later, Hagan added.
The Charlotte Westgacy has a total of 2,600 rooms and suites, according to a report from a state review board.
The average room cost in the resort ranges from $89,500 to $128,000, according a 2018 review of hotel occupancy data by the hotel industry trade group.
In the Charlotte area, the average room price is $107,500, the report said.
The Hilton Westgasy has been expanding the resort for more than a decade.
In 2013, it added a 10-acre stretch of land in the town of Charlotte that has been vacant since 2010.
The expansion includes a new restaurant, new shops and a bar.
It includes a water park with slides, a spa, a pool, water slides, an indoor-outdoor basketball court, a gym and a volleyball court.
The city council approved $30 million in incentives for the project.
Haggans family owns the company that built the Hilton-head hotel and is running the new resort.
Hagans told me that the Westgate vacation is a perfect fit for the hotel.
“We wanted it to be a place where you could really live and work in an environment that’s very conducive to family time,” he said.
Hags resort will have six rooms and four baths and two meeting rooms.
It will have a swimming pool with a 50-foot-wide shallow pool.
Guests can also enjoy the beach from the beach, Haggons said.
“It’s an island paradise,” he added.