The first two four-star hotels are going up in the East County.
Construction for a Marriott Courtyard next to El Cajon City Hall is set to begin in the fall. Mayor Bill Wells says this is part of a bigger plan.
"We're doing many things to try and increase the livability of El Cajon," said Wells. Adding two four-star hotels to the mix is part of that plan.”
A second hotel site is the old El Cajon Police Department near Parkway Plaza Mall and Gillespie Field. That site plan looks to be an 80-room Hampton Inn and Suites. According to city documents, neither hotel will cost taxpayers a dime. But that doesn’t take away some skepticism.
"I think people will use it. I think it's going to bring a lot of garbage to it and it's not going to be a four-star hotel for long," said one longtime El Cajon resident. "I mean, if you're a tourist, you're not going to want to come to El Cajon to stay," she added.
Mayor Wells said it’s not about attracting tourists. It’s about providing an option for local businesses.
"People come in to do business and if they want to stay at a decent hotel, they've got to go all the way down to Mission Valley,” he said. “ And that's not really conducive to doing business locally."
He adds that both four-star hotels will give residents an option to put family and friends up in a nice hotel, closer to them.
The Marriott Courtyard site is set to be completed towards the end of 2016. The Hampton Inn and Suites should be completed several months after that.