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Total solar eclipse equals totally sold-out Lowcountry hotels

(WCIV)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) - With the Aug. 21 total solar eclipse just around the corner, many hotels across the Lowcountry have already sold out for the weekend, while others only have a few rooms left.

“We’ve been sold out for the event for two months now," said Chris Harvey, general manager for the Harbor View Inn in Charleston. "So, we essentially sold out three and a half months before that date."

Harvey said it's unusual for his hotel to sell out more than 10 to 14 days out.

"The demand for the Charleston area has been incredible," he said.

That demand is surprising but not unexpected. According to greatamericaneclipse.com, South Carolina is the closest eclipse destination for a whopping 94 million Americans.

The group estimates anywhere between 500,000 and 2 million tourists could travel to the Palmetto State for the celestial event.

While it's tough to know exactly how many of those eclipse-goers will come to Charleston, hotels and event planners are making the most of it.

One such eclipse event is the "Dark Side of the Sun" event at the Charleston Harbor Resort & Marina.

"We're anticipating between the hotel guests and the public about 1,500 people coming out to celebrate the eclipse," said Shannon Hartman, director of sales and marketing for the resort. "We started realizing how big this was going to be as rooms began filling up for the weekend before the eclipse."

Back at the Harbor View Inn, they're planning a smaller event for their guests, who will be able to watch the eclipse from the roof.

"We'll be opening our bar a little early," said Harvey. "We'll have eclipse-themed beverages. We're going to have some passed oeuvres, and we're going to have solar viewing glasses for our guests."

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