Incorporated in 1835, Aiken was named after William Aiken, the president of the South Carolina Railroad. That fact should come as no surprise, as the community sprang up around the South Carolina Canal and Railroad Company terminus. Among the community's first commissioners were three African-American legislatures, including the first black man admitted to the South Carolina Bar. As a planned town, Aiken features many historic streets named for other counties and cities in South Carolina.
Today, Aiken is known for its polo matches. Founded in 1930, the Aiken Steeplechase Association hosts the annual Imperial Cup and the Holiday Cup, drawing more than 30,000 spectators. Other notable events include the Bluegrass Festival, The Whiskey Road Race, The Lobster Races, and the Battle of Aiken Reenactment.
Whatever your reason for visiting Aiken, you'll want to find the perfect hotel that allows you to explore everything this vibrant Southern city has to offer.
What Aiken, SC season is most appealing?
Summers in Aiken are hot and muggy with high temperatures averaging 93 degrees in July. To beat the heat, book a hotel with a swimming pool and stick to the indoor, air-conditioned attractions. Just keep in mind that summer is peak tourist season throughout the South, so don't be surprised if you end up paying a little more for your hotel reservation.
Visit in the spring or fall to enjoy more competitive rates and pleasant temperatures. Highs settle around 86 degrees in both May and September, making the shoulder seasons a little more bearable for those intolerant to heat. Visitors who love soaking up the sun will find that spring and fall provide ideal weather for exploring the area's many outdoor attractions, including the downtown historic district.
Winters in Aiken are mild with average highs settling around 58 degrees in January. Evenings can feel quite chilly, however, so pack accordingly. Dressing in layers is a must when visiting South Carolina from November through March. On the bright side, hotel rates hit rock-bottom prices during the winter months. If you're trying to visit Aiken on a tight budget, you can't beat a trip during the off-season.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in Aiken, SC:
Aiken, SC: Prices by Star Rating Class
Below are 3 charts illustrating avg. price trends by star rating class in Aiken, SC. Browse these line graphs to determine the best dates to book a room in Aiken for your upcoming travels.
Is there a luxury hotel in the Aiken area?
4 Star Average Prices: $100.84
When you want to splurge on extra amenities, you won't have to look far to find an upscale accommodation in Aiken.
Nestled in the heart of Aiken, Carriage House Inn is a stunning historic inn close to fine dining, shopping, and cultural opportunities. The property features 37 uniquely appointed guest rooms ranging from deluxe queen rooms to king whirlpool suites. All guest rooms feature flat-screen TVs, wired and wireless internet access, rainfall showerheads, designer toiletries, and private balconies or patios. Featured amenities include a rooftop terrace, a fireplace in the lobby, a safe deposit box at the front desk, free parking, and a complimentary full breakfast.
Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Aiken is another upscale option with great guest reviews. The hotel features a 24-hour health club, an indoor pool, a business center, express check-out, free Wi-Fi, and meeting facilities. A complimentary continental breakfast is served daily. Guest rooms include flat-screen TVs with satellite programming, well-lit work desks, deep soaking tubs, and complimentary toiletries. Certain rooms feature sofa beds.
Business travelers will love Hilton Garden Inn Aiken, which features event facilities, a business center, and dry cleaning and laundry services. All guests can enjoy the outdoor pool, the on-site fitness center, and the hotel's Great American Grill restaurant with limited room service. Guest rooms include LCD TVs, MP3 docking stations, designer toiletries, hair dryers, work desks, and both wired and wireless internet.
Are there budget-friendly hotels in Aiken, SC?
3 Star Average Prices: $80.60
Finding an affordable hotel in Aiken is easier than you might think.
Knights Inn Aiken is one of the city's most affordable hotels, offering free parking, a 24-hour front desk, and a complimentary continental breakfast. Other guest amenities include a computer station, free newspapers, an outdoor pool, and free wireless internet access. Guest rooms feature flat-screen TVs with cable programming, mini refrigerators, microwaves, work desks, coffee makers, hair dryers, toiletries, and phones with free local calls.
Located near the Aiken Center for the Arts, Hotel Aiken is a historic accommodation that's a bit more dated than other options, but it's hard to beat the room rates. The site features the main historic building, which was built in 1898 and is undergoing renovation, and an exterior corridor motel that offers some of the best rates in town. Enjoy a 24-hour front desk, laundry services, free newspapers, a nightclub, concierge services, and a complimentary continental breakfast. Guest rooms include cable TV, Wi-Fi, coffee makers, hair dryers, and free toiletries.
Days Inn by Wyndham Aiken Interstate Hwy 20 places you just 15 minutes from DuPont Planetarium. Guest rooms feature mini fridges, microwaves, cable TV, coffee makers, hair dryers, and work desks. Take advantage of the seasonal outdoor pool, free newspapers in the lobby, a business center, ample self-parking, and a complimentary breakfast buffet.
2 Star Average Prices: $74.18
How can you find the best discounts in Aiken, SC?
Seniors, AAA members, military families, and government employees can all qualify for special rates at many hotels throughout Aiken.
Days Inn by Wyndham Downtown Aiken is just one option offering AAA discounts, helping you save an average of 10 percent on your stay. This hotel features a 24-hour front desk, coffee in the lobby, a meeting room, ample parking, an outdoor pool, a picnic area, and a complimentary continental breakfast. Guest rooms offer microwaves, mini fridges, satellite TV, deep soaking tubs, and rainfall showerheads.
AAA members can also save at Howard Johnson by Wyndham Aiken. This affordable lodging offers a business center, laundry services, a 24-hour front desk, an outdoor pool, a fitness center, and a complimentary breakfast buffet. Guest rooms feature updated decor, mini fridges, microwaves, toiletries, hair dryers, safes, and coffee makers. Cribs are available upon request.
If you're planning an extended trip, consider a stay at TownePlace Suites by Marriott Aiken Whiskey Road. In addition to offering special rates, this hotel provides a business center, free newspapers, express check-out, a health club, an outdoor pool, a picnic area, barbecue grills, and a complimentary continental breakfast. Guest rooms feature kitchenettes with stovetops and refrigerators as well as 32-inch LCD TVs and well-lit desks.
Does Aiken, SC have some of the best hotels?
Aiken offers many mid-range hotels that give you plenty of extra value for your dollar. Clarion Inn & Suites is a centrally located option located just 5 minutes from the Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame and Museum. Featured amenities include a spa tub, a garden, a picnic area, free newspapers, laundry services, a 24-hour front desk, and a complimentary breakfast buffet. Guest rooms feature TVs with cable programming, coffee makers, ironing facilities, and complimentary Wi-Fi.
Quality Inn & Suites is a highly rated accommodation near the University of South Carolina - Aiken. Enjoy a seasonal outdoor pool, a TV in the lobby, a computer station, free newspapers, laundry services, a poolside bar, and a lounge. A complimentary continental breakfast is served daily. Guest rooms feature flat-screen TVs, mini fridges, safes, desks, hair dryers, and toiletries.
Country Inn & Suites by Radisson Aiken SC boasts an outdoor pool, a 24-hour fitness center, a fireplace in the lobby, an area shuttle service, a business center, and a complimentary breakfast buffet. The guest rooms are well appointed with LCD TVs, digital programming, desks, newspapers, designer toiletries, and hair dryers. Upgrade to a whirlpool suite to enjoy even more amenities.
What are the top attractions in the Aiken area?
When visiting Aiken, it would be a mistake to overlook the city's attractions in favor of the more popular destinations in nearby Augusta. DuPont Planetarium, for instance, is a state-of-the-art facility that presents public astronomy shows every Saturday. The facility's RPSEC Observatory is also open to the public on Saturdays for viewings, weather permitting.
To learn more about the area, plan a visit to the Aiken County Historical Museum. Set within one of the city's famed “Winter Colony” cottages, the museum charms visitors with its informative displays on the city's past, present, and future. This living museum features exhibits that change frequently, so repeat visits are never the same.
If you want to cool off during a hot South Carolina summer, head to Richardson's Lake Water Park in nearby Warrenville. The lakefront swimming spot boasts water slides, diving boards, volleyball, billiards, sandy beaches, and a concession stand. Bring the whole family for an exciting day of fun in the sun!
It wouldn't be a trip to Aiken without a visit to the Aiken Thoroughbred Racing Hall of Fame and Museum. Located at Hopelands Gardens, this museum pays homage to the city's extensive horseracing history. View the Hall of Fame, the trophy collection, and numerous other exhibits that detail Aiken's beloved pastime.
No matter what your itinerary includes, Aiken offers something for everyone. Search for the perfect hotel that matches your needs and budget and start exploring this vibrant community.
FAQs about hotels in Aiken
How much does a cheap hotel in Aiken cost per night?
In the last year, a 2 star hotel in Aiken can be as cheap as $74.18 per night. (based on HotelPlanner prices)
How much does a 3 star hotel in Aiken cost per night?
In the last year, the average 3 star hotel in Aiken has been $80.60 per night. (based on HotelPlanner prices)
How much does a luxury hotel in Aiken cost?
In the last year, the average 4 star hotel in Aiken has been $100.84 per night. (based on HotelPlanner prices)