New cats-only hotel opens in West Michigan

The Cat’s Pajamas in Grand Rapids is now open and exclusive to feline friends.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A new business is opening just in time for the holiday season, as West Michigan residents look for a place for their feline friends to stay while on vacation.

There are plenty of places to board your dog in the area, but there are fewer spots out there to take care of your cat. That’s the market that The Cat’s Pajamas wanted to jump in on.

“I just wanted to create a really nice place for cats to go to while the owners went away,” owner Jill Hathaway says.

The first guest at The Cat’s Pajamas in Eastown is a black cat named Jack.

They like to move, they like soft things [and] they like little nooks to curl up in,” Hathaway says.

So far, Jack has really liked the tall cat tree inside the new cat hotel. His new friend, Tulip, loves watching TV.

“The concept of cat boarding is not something that’s brand spanking new,” Hathaway says. “But I think it’s something that is going to start growing quickly. So, it’s kind of new.”

She’s new to West Michigan, but Hathaway has always been an animal lover. She’s worked with cats and dogs in shelter and foster care for years.

“I wanted something a little on the smaller scale, something very personal and intimate where I could really pay close attention to the cats’ needs and their individual personalities,” Hathaway says.

She wanted to create a space exclusive to cats, and she has room for eight guests right now. While some pet parents prefer to hire a sitter when they go out of town, Hathaway knows many cats can be more social than their owners might think.

“A lot of cats might surprise the owner and actually like the atmosphere and being able to be free and move around with the other cats that they don’t know,” she says.

As a new business owner, Hathaway hopes to see more cat naps in the kennels and prowl on the catwalk. She also would like to partner with local animal rescues and shelters.

“I would like to be very busy,” she says. “I’d love to get to the point where I can expand and actually have a couple of locations.”

The Cat’s Pajamas is the third new business to open on Robinson Road Southeast in Eastown in the last month. For the rest of the month, the cat hotel is running a promotion for two-night stays.

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