Today in NC State History: John Yancey Motor Hotel goes North

August 2, 2014
By Chris Saunders

historyIconNorth Residence Hall doesn’t take reservations, and there’s no nightclub to entertain Raleigh’s politicians on the premises.

That wasn’t always true, though. North used to be a hotel, first called the Lemon Tree Inn and then the John Yancey Motor Hotel. There was a restaurant and even a night club known as Merry Monk that, according to an NC State facilities website, served as “a favorite establishment among legislators and other politicians during the 1970s.”

And it was on this day in 1979 that the university completed its deal to buy the hotel and convert it into a residence hall.

North Residence Hall

North Residence Hall

The deal came in at $3 million and held the promise of offering 362 students newly converted hotel rooms for their housing, according to the Technician.

Regular dorm rooms were priced at $245 per student per semester in 1979, but a room in North cost a student $450 per semester. Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Banks Talley defended the price due to the building’s built-in amenities.

“Each room, [Talley] said, has wall-to-wall carpeting, air conditioning and a private bath,” the Technician reported. “Also, residents of the North Building will not be subject to the annual lottery and can retain their rooms as long as they are students.”


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