Hollywood Travel Guide
We've already told you about one big rock star touch at the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Fla.--the free WiFi. But during a recent stay in this sprawling casino hotel just outside of Fort Lauderdale, we discovered a few more rock star amenities that got us amped up.
Of course, these room items shouldn't come as a surprise from a Hard Rock Hotel, where the entire guest experience revolves around music. Yet after a few not-so-good experiences at the Hard Rock in Vegas, the Seminole Hard Rock has restored our faith in the entire rock n' roll hotel concept. And best of all, none of these rock star touches involve loud music or wild parties. Well, not if you don't want them to.
Keep reading to see how the room is a-rocking at the Seminole Hard Rock
While Hard Rock Hotels might be the perfect place to party, it's not a brand that we usually associate with free WiFi. Typically, it's an additional charge or folded into a resort fee.
But lo and behold, when we signed on to the network at the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Florida, this is what greeted us:
Hard Rock Unplugged: Free Wireless Internet Access for Our Guests
Party on! For us, working nerds anyways.
In the mood for a quickie tonight at the Seminole Hard Rock? The property is actually sold out this weekend (weekends are typically sold-out at this resort.) But a deluxe room is available on Monday for $189 a night and there's no resort fee. Rocking.
We'll have more on the other rock star touches at the Seminole Hard Rock for you next week.
When Thompson Hotels' Jason Pomeranc and his partners left the Commune Hotels collection the other month, they walked away with Thompson's prized NYC properties but had to leave a few choice hotels behind as well as the beloved Thompson name.
Now, as Pomeranc and co. toil away on their new boutique hotel brand, we're getting word from some super secret hotel insiders that the Hollywood Roosevelt wants out of the Commune. We're not exactly sure of the reason but there is speculation that the hotel's owners liked the Pomeranc association. But again, this is purely speculation.
Indeed, a spokesperson for Thompson and Commune told us that the Hollywood Roosevelt "will remain a Thompson-branded property under Commune's management."
Keep reading for some hotel rumor mongering!
The new music video for the popular Australian band, The Rubens, was recently filmed at The Redbury. The concept for the video was actually conceived by the hotel's designer himself, Matthew Rolston, who has an impressive list of music videos on his filmography resume.
The song, "The Best We Got", is a little too emo for our tastes but the video is super sexy and it was shot entirely at The Redbury--in the lobby, on the rooftop, and of course, in the guestrooms. They even have the band dining with some hot girls at the hotel's restaurant, Cleo (girls who later get nearly naked on the beds.)
No doubt, this video will fuel the rock star dreams of adolescent boys everywhere. Not to mention, it's a clever way of enticing Australians--the #1 international feeder market for LA--to come stay at The Redbury.
The Chateau Marmont is nearly synonymous with celeb-sightings but today, we're not gonna talk about Lindsay, or Gaga, or Depp or Belushi or even the man pulling the strings behind the curtain, Andre Balazs.
No, today is all about admiring the hotel's historic look.
Here are few snapshots taken the other week when we popped in for a delicious breakfast. While there were overeager fans waiting outside, the courtyard was peaceful and serene and blissfully, paparazzi and celeb-stalker free. (Note to dieters with special requests, aka, most of LA: they do carry almond milk and cold-pressed juices.)
The hotel, which was built as an apartment building in the late 1920s, was designed to look like an "infamous" royal residence in France's Loire Valley. Yet according to Balazs (ok, we have to mention him once!), who spoke about the hotel for the Sunset Strip documentary, the stock market crash scared away any potential tenants. Ultimately, the owners ended up furnishing the place with antiques from estate sales in the Hollywood Hills and turning it into hotel. And the rest is history.
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We've griped about housekeeping busting in on us when we were sleeping (or naked) but what would you do if it was Khloe Kardashian and momager, Kris Jenner, breaking down your hotel room door?
The tabloid magazine's newest issue features a woman named Polina Polonsky (real name, we think) who claims that she had a six-week affair with Khloe's husband, Lamar Odom. Polonsky gives a detailed description of the affair complete with dates and places (she even passed a lie detector test), including the hotel where Odom reportedly shacked up when the troubles with Khloe got to be too much. Daily Mail did the dirty reading so we didn't have to. Here's what happened:
In an attempt to confront Lamar while he was in the midst of being unfaithful, Polina claims Khloe and her mother Kris Jenner made an impromptu visit to The Roosevelt Hotel.
Getting no answer after knocking on what they believed to be Lamar's door, Khloe allegedly kicked down the door, before realising she had the wrong room.
Khloe and Kris then found the right room and reportedly confronted Lamar, who was on his own as Polina was at her apartment at the time.
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Ever since Rudy's, a Portland-based hipster barbershop chain, vacated its spot at The Standard Hollywood earlier this year, the hotel has been experimenting with different pop-up concepts. And currently, an LA-based art book shop called Book Stand has installed a 30-day retail residency in the space, based on the theme of plants.
Yup, plants. An entire assortment of art books, magazines, vintage tomes, films, art, pottery and "ephemera" all glorifying nature's different forms of greenery. Kind of a nice change of pace for a hotel mainly known for blacklisting guests and publishing ads of people peeing and drooling.
Out of curiosity, we hunted down a few of the titles that will be included in the shop, and found neat-o items like the zine Sunday Mornings at the River, or photographer Arno Fischer's 1978 monograph The Garden, or Avec, the first issue of a Korean lifestyle magazine devoted entirely to flowers.
Attention "Mind Body Spa" junkies! Exhale Spa is now officially open at Loews Hollywood (formerly the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel), so Core Fusion fans no longer have to trek to Santa Monica for barre squats. We do love the beach but you can bet we're signing up in Hollywood STAT.
Exhale had a grand opening party on February 13 and we are officially regular customers. The 7,000-square-foot spa has men and women's changing rooms equipped with glass-wall steam rooms, a relaxation lounge with clove-spiced, hot-neck pillows and another lounge with all sorts of munchies and beverages. There are seven therapy rooms (two that have showers), including a couple's room with jacuzzi tub. Clean up them nails in the mani/pedi station and, should you need to cool off, the outdoor swimming pool with cabanas is plunge-worthy.
Exhale means serious business here. As in, they knocked down three hotel rooms to accommodate for their cultish classes (ahem, Core Fusion), so expect that to roll out this summer. In the meantime, get a massage, facial, acupuncture, whatever you need to restore Zen. If you require some inspiration, there's a Buddha statue in the hallway. Namaste!
Rates from $249 a night.
[Photo: Exhale Spa]
We just drove by the newest hotel to open in Hollywood, The Moment Hotel, and it was not the moment we'd been waiting for.
The site, initially expected to open this month, is still heavily under construction. It did look like one wing of the former 1950s motel known as the Sunset Inn & Suites was completed and we even spied curtains in the windows. However, the entrance and the funky rooftop bar are still taking shape.
A sign out front is now saying The Moment will open sometime this spring but according to the hotel's website, reservations open as early as March 1.
We're guessing the hotel and its 39 rooms will soft-open around then as there's no way the entire spot can be finished in 10 days. But with rates starting around $220 a night, we say save your $$ and wait until it's completely finished before spending the night.
[Photo: Juliana Shallcross for HotelChatter]
We've long wondered how Lindsay Lohan has managed to fund her lengthy and frequent hotel stays, given that her finances are in dire straits. But eventually we just assumed that either the hotel was doing it for the publicity or that Lohan had managed to butter up the hotelier (see Vikram Chatwal).
Yet apparently, the Chateau Marmont is through playing the victim.
TMZ has posted a copy of the letter that the exclusive hotel's general manager Philip Pavel sent to the actress after she's failed to pay her $46,000 hotel bill.
As you are aware from our previous correspondences starting on July 8, you currently owe the hotel a grand total of $46,350.04 in charges for your stay starting on May 30, 2012.
As we have made repeated attempts to resolve this pressing matter over the last few weeks without any resolution, I regret to inform you that we will no longer be able to extend any further credit for you to remain in the hotel.
Please have all your belongings removed from Suite 33 by 12pm, Wednesday, August 1, 2012. Furthermore, until we get the matter of your outstanding debt paid, know that we will be unable to host you on the property or the restaurant.
AMAZING. And it gets better. There's an ITEMIZED COPY OF THE BILL.
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Starting at noon and running until 8pm, a giant hotel door will be placed on Hollywood Boulevard in front of the Hollywood & Highland complex. Hotel Hell bellhops will hand out branded keycards to onlookers and challenge them to see if their key will open the door.
Only three of these keys will actually work and those holding the keys will win an all-expenses paid trip to the U.S. destination of their choice. No word on what hotel they will stay in.
In the meantime, we'll be anxiously awaiting the premiere of Ramsay's show. Wethinks we might need to come up with a drinking game of some sort. We'll work on putting that together this weekend but just remember, you're always encouraged to share your own personal hotel hell with us anytime!
[Photo: Hotel Hell/Facebook]
Welcome to another hotel dispatch from our newest special contributor, The Smooth Operator. We can't divulge his identity but we can tell you he's spends about 70 percent of his time on the road, staying in all the hot hotels and checking out their restaurants and bars to see if the social scene is up to snuff. If you're deciding whether or not to take a chance on that hip boutique hotel in the city, read The Smooth Operator for his opinion first. (Or send us an email and we'll have him answer it for you!)
The W Hollywood Hotel and Residences is the one Starwood Hotel that came with a "warning" three days prior to my visit. If you’re looking for "adult entertainment" and want to "live large, you’ve come to the right place." (see the notice I received before my stay in the gallery of photos below.)
At check-in, I was upgraded to a premium Spectacular room with a city view – which was exactly the same room I had last time and upon entering the room it was pretty obvious there was no city view – just a view of the fair going on in the parking lot across the street.