Upstate Headlines: Embassy Suites months from opening downtown, will create 175 jobs

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A collection of the top Upstate headlines for the week of March 21, 2016

635941681569678512-GreenvilleFromNewEmbassySuites-0AEmbassy Suites months from opening downtown
One of Greenville’s newest downtown hotels is just months from opening, bringing at least 175 jobs. The Embassy Suites Greenville Downtown Riverplace is on track to open by August 2016, with 156 suites overlooking the city skyline with views of the Blue Ridge foothills. A Ruth’s Chris Steak House will be right off the main lobby, and a lounge and restaurant will occupy the building’s rooftop. The hotel will have 75 full-time positions and the two restaurants will employ about 100, according to David Berger, vice president of operations at Hospitality America.

womentechReport: Tech growth in South Carolina better than national average
South Carolina’s growth in the tech industry outpaced that of the national average last year. The U.S. tech industry grew three percent, according to a Cyber report released in February by CompTIA. South Carolina’s tech industry grew by about four percent. By comparison, North Carolina was one of the top five states for employment growth in the tech sector with a 4.5 percent change over last year.

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 3.51.02 PMFive key redevelopment areas for downtown Spartanburg
The potential redevelopment of the Montgomery Building could be a major boon for the revitalization of downtown Spartanburg. Plans to transform the historic 10-story office building into apartments could help connect multiple efforts to re-energize vacant properties and aging buildings throughout the city’s central business district.

635938168452297091-9385a225-df07-4633-9d2a-1f1d4b41fe62BMW exports its 2,000,000th vehicle from South Carolina
The South Carolina Ports Authority exported the 2,000,000th BMW manufactured in South Carolina Thursday amid celebration of the port’s longstanding partnership with the nation’s top vehicle exporter by value. The Space Grey Metallic BMW X5 M50d was loaded in Charleston for export onto the Elektra vessel operated by Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics for delivery to a customer in Germany. With the help of the inland port in Greer, the SCPA exported a record of more than 250,000 BMW vehicles in 2015.


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Eat, drink, dance: Swamp Rabbit Cafe grows again
You might know it as a stop at mile marker 31.3 on the Swamp Rabbit Trail, or you might recognize the rooftop bike visible from Pete Hollis Boulevard, but many folks know at least a little something about the Swamp Rabbit Cafe & Grocery. When co-owners Mary Walsh and Jac Oliver opened, the plan was to offer a location that was bikeable and more affordable than downtown. That was fall of 2011. The building was condemned until the owner decided to renovate and mentor Walsh and Oliver as they started their business inside. Now, Walsh and Oliver are about to expand for the third time.