St. James continues serving guests

Published 12:00 am Monday, April 16, 2007

To the Editor:

Mr. Looper: In your column on April 8, 2007, you stated that that St. James Hotel is “practically out of business.”

Let me assure you that this is not so. We continue to host overnight guests visiting Selma for business and pleasure. On April 1, we were the host hotel for 150 students and chaperones from all over the country. This group stayed in the guest rooms and enjoyed dinner and breakfast in the ballroom.

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We continue to serve many weddings, family reunions and business meetings that take all available rooms and enjoy meals in the ballroom. On a daily basis, we are the home away from home to many business guests and tourists that come to this area.

The restaurant and lounge are presently closed but we continue to serve food and beverages to private parties in the ballroom and the restaurant and lounge ar now available for private parties as well. Weddings and family reunions are booked throughout 2007 and 2008.

Of course, you know that private parties continue to be served as you are a member of Rotary International, a group that meets and has lunch at the hotel every Monday as Kiwanis does on Tuesday.

Also, please remember that most of the hotels in Selma are limited service and do not have restaurant and lounge facilities and I would hardly consider them “practically out of business.”

You quote a report that appears on the International Trip Advisory web site giving the example: “Don’t make reservations here.” You fail to mention on the same web site appears the following: “We had a wonderful time” and “I hope we get to stay at the St. James again someday and I would definitely recommend it to others.”

I might also mention that the same site rates the hotel as No. 2 in Selma with the newer modern Hampton Inn being No. 1 and the remaining properties below the St. James.

Each month, hundreds of guests stay in the St. James guest rooms and hundreds more dine while attending private events in the ballroom, and overwhelmingly their comments are very positive.

A recent wedding reception for the daughter of a well known radio personality was held at the hotel and his on air comments were very positive and complimentary. It is unfortunate that the comments you seem to remember are only the negative ones.

I always suggest that everyone think of the bottle as half full instead of half empty. Positive thinking makes positive things happen.

The St. James is in business and the entire staff of the St. James Hotel looks forward to serving the guests that will be staying overnight as well as those arranging and attending private parties and events in the future.

Shane Armstrong

General Manager

St. James Hotel