Atherton Hotel joins Choice Ascend elite collection

The Atherton Hotel is at 125 S. Atherton St. in State College.
The Atherton Hotel is at 125 S. Atherton St. in State College. CDT photo

The Atherton Hotel has been a staple in the community since the Patt family built it in 1986.

To improve on its stature, the hotel formed a partnership with a hospitality network in November that offered incentives to members and guests that included free stays at selected hotels, said Maggie Patt Biddle, general manager and owner.

The affiliation was one of a handful of domestic hotel partnerships within the year for the Ascend Hotel Collection from Choice Hotels International.

The Ascend Hotel Collection is a portfolio of upscale independent hotels. In 2013, the collection nearly doubled in size and now claims 121 properties worldwide, according to a news release.

“When we first were approached by Choice Ascend Collection, we could immediately see the unique possibilities for independent hotels like ours. ... It’s always been a family business and now we’re part of a bigger family,” Patt Biddle said. “One of the awesome parts of the Ascend Collection is that it provides independent hotels to tap into global distribution. It’s a great steppingstone to improve.”

Patt Biddle said the hotel was built at 125 S. Atherton St., the site of a former movie theater, by her father, developer P. Jules Patt. The business has been in the family since its inception.

Patt Biddle became owner of the hotel early last year after acting as general manager for 18 years. It was previously owned by her family’s business, the Atherton Street Partnership.

The Atherton Hotel employs more than 80 local staff members, Patt Biddle said. The 150-room hotel also includes the Tarragon Restaurant, Rumors Lounge, and more than 5,000 square feet of meeting and banquet space.

“We feel this new affiliation will benefit not only our guests and staff, but also contribute positively to downtown State College and other businesses,” she said.

Member hotels also benefit from Choice Privileges — a guest loyalty program, the release said.

“Ascend Hotel Collection is experiencing tremendous growth and partnering with some really special hotels,” Michael Murphy, senior vice president of upscale brands at Choice Hotels International, said in a prepared statement. “Each of these new members brings to the collection its own local flavor coupled with an uncompromised commitment to quality service and an exceptional guest experience.”