Los Angeles Travel Guide
The 388-room hotel was supposed to open this past summer but instead, it looks like the hotel will open on December 11th with a special opening rate of $195 a night.
Done as a collaboration between the Sydell Group, chef Roy Choi, nightlife brother-duo Mark and Jonnie Houston, and interior designer Sean Knibb, the hotel sports not just a nifty logo and a killer location in K-town but also a rooftop pool deck, a lounge hosted by the Houston Brothers, a Pot restaurant and lobby bar from Choi featuring late night street eats, the Commissary greenhouse serving fruits and vegetables in salads and juice formats, as well as delivery service from the hotel with "the ease that mirrors a pizza shop or NYC Chinese take-out."
There are several room categories and clearly the ones to book are the ones with the view of the Hollywood Hills. Amenities include floor to ceiling windows, a large desk and seating area with Negril Chairs by Knibb, Baxter of California toiletries, bathrobes, curated minibar with American & Korean drinks and snacks, original artwork and best of all, free WiFi. Looks like our holiday hotel wish list is coming true a little early this year.
[Photo: The Line]
Most of the hotel ghosts that we hear about here are pretty harmless. They are more poltergeisty rather than in-your-face frightening. But at the Cecil Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles, there's clearly something that is at best, haunting and at worst, downright evil at play.
You may remember this hotel from earlier in the year when a young woman was found dead in the hotel's water tank. As if that wasn't tragic enough, her body had been in there for two weeks. It was only until guests and residents at the Skid Row hotel noticed the water had a black color and a foul odor. You're already creeped out. But now VigilantCitizen.com has found something even more disturbing--a video surveilance tape that shows the young woman, Elisa Lam, in the elevator shortly before she lost her life.
If you watch the video, you will see that Lam was not in her right mind. She entered the elevator and pushed all the buttons. Then when the doors wouldn't close, she peeked around the corner to see if someone was coming but yet she also hid herself and acted afraid that someone might see her.
Things get weirder still. She steps out of the elevator and begins waving her hands in a strange fashion and they appear to be a little warped. Finally, she walks away from the elevator and out of the camera's sight. The elevator then closes its doors and takes off.
Later, she somehow found a way into the gated water tank area, that's also protected by an alarm system and into the water tank where she drowned. Her death was ruled by the coroner's office as an accidental drowning but no drugs or alcohol were found in her system.
Hotel Openings / Hotel News / Ace Hotels / Hotel Opening Rates / Los Angeles Hotels / Downtown LA Hotels / → All Tags
The Ace in DTLA in early August
Good news has come for hipsters who wait--The Ace Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles is now taking reservations for JANUARY 15, 2014 and beyond. But there's a catch.
You can't make these reservations just by going to the hotel website. Instead, you can only make a reservation through a link that was sent out to Ace's e-mailing list, called The A-List. Oh don't worry, we've got the link for you right HERE. Even better, the Ace DTLA is offering a special rate for opening night--just $129 for a small or medium room. A medium room with a terrace is just $149.
Some other good things to know about the Ace--WiFi is free (woot!), pets under 25 pounds are accepted for $25 (woof!), valet parking is available (not sure for how much yet) and all rooms are non-smoking rooms (whew!). The amenities will also include Rudy's Toiletries, Pearl+ soaps and a Revo Radio as well as a flat-screen and a fully-stocked minibar. We're so there, will you be?
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Does The Sofitel LA still have that certain je ne sais quoi we've come to love about Sofitels? A HotelChatter Review
We noticed earlier this year that some changes were afoot at Sofitel Los Angeles, with both a new restaurant and bar coming to the Beverly Hills outpost of the French brand, replacing SimonLA and Rande Gerber’s Stone Rose. Just this past weekend, we had a chance to check it out in more detail, spending the night here while in town.
Check-In: We drove to the Sofitel from LAX, which takes about 45 minutes if traffic isn’t too bad. Valet parking is $34 a day (with in and out privileges), which adds up quickly. Reception is to your left as you enter the black marble lobby, with a beautiful black and white drawing of Los Angeles behind the desk, contrasting with deep purple flower arrangements. After the typical bonjour-greeting, we were on our way to our third-floor room in minutes.
When we used the word "intimate" to describe the spa above, we weren't just throwing around a trendy adjective. The spa is truly that, with just two treatment rooms and two private locker rooms, which are called Wet Room 1 and Wet Room 2. But don't let the small size put you off. It's actually a far more relaxing and serene experience than entering some of the super spas we see in hotels today.
When you arrive at Mr. C Spa & Beauty (just one level down from the lobby and next to the fitness center), you'll be taken to one of the Wet Rooms which feature their own shower/steam rooms, a locker complete with a robe and slippers and a vanity sink lined with Mr. C toiletries. And guess what? You're the only one in the room. No awkward exchanges with near-naked guests or long walks to find the showers.
Then once you're ready for your treatment, you can walk mere steps to the relaxation lounge, which features mosaic tile walls and a "starry ceiling" where you await your therapist.
Hotel Rumors / King and Grove Hotels / Ed Scheetz / Chetrit Group / Joseph Chetrit / Hotel News / → All Tags
On Monday, we were wondering what was going on with King & Grove's first Los Angeles hotel, The Hotel Clark. During a recent swing by the property, everything looked good and ready to go. But we couldn't determine the hold-up. We had heard whispers of city approval and union issues but it may have been more complex than that.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Ed Scheetz who co-founded the brand with Ben Pundole, (who has since fled to Edition Hotels) and Robert McKinley who has continued to work on Ruschmeyer's in the Hamptons, has just bought the five hotels currently under the K&G brand back from owner Joseph Chetrit of The Chetrit Group. That includes the troubled Hotel Chelsea which Scheetz is now "rebuilding from the inside out."
What that doesn't include, as far as we can tell, is the Hotel Clark nor the second LA hotel K&G was planning for downtown. Which would leave The Hotel Clark without a management company. This probably explains the delay in opening but still, we doubt the Hotel Clark would have a tough time finding a management company for very long. Surely, someone out there must have signed a deal with the Chetrit Group. Hey, super secret hotel tipsters? We're all ears.
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Construction began on the hybrid Residence Inn/Courtyard by Marriott Hotel across from the Ritz-Carlton and JW Marriott at LA Live just last March but the hotel looks nearly finished, at least on the outside.
We snapped this pic from the 10 Freeway the other day (Shh! Don't tell the CHP) and the hotel looks nearly identical to the rendering put out last year. And no, it's not your eyes or your computer screen, we think those rooms windows are supposed to have that haphazard look. (Or maybe that was just because we were in motion when we took this pic. Oops.)
When it's completely finished, the 24-story building will house a 174-room Courtyard by Marriott (hopefully with these new "Gen Next" rooms) and a 218-room Residence Inn. Word is the hotel should be done by Summer 2014.
Meanwhile Marriott isn't done with Downtown LA. They are still building a Renaissance Hotel across from the JW Marriott on the northeast corner of Olympic Boulevard and Georgia Street. The hotel will have 450 rooms when it opens in 2016. Construction is expected to start next year. Perhaps Downtown LA should automatically sign you up for Marriott Rewards when you visit.
[Photo: HotelChatter, while driving. Don't do this at home, kids.]
The Hotel Clark doesn't quite have the green light.
UPDATE: The hotel might not be a King & Grove after all. Read the latest here.
From what we could tell, things look practically ready to go. The signage is up and looking good and we even spied some fancy spherical lighting fixtures at what looks like the entrance. Except it was all gated off.
We drove by the hotel at 933 S. Broadway yesterday and saw most of the old United Artists building under construction, leading us to wonder if a fall opening will really happen. The Ace is currently working to transform the historic 1927 theater and office building into a 180-room hotel with a pool, restaurant and bar onsite. They also plan to restore the original United Artists theater to its former glory. And this being Ace, we suspect a coffee shop will open inside as well.
Check out some more snapshots of the construction below.
If you're feeling a little, um, gross after last week's Hotel Cocktail Week, we've got just the remedy for you--juicing..
Yes, juicing is the latest health craze and these Los Angeles hotels are already on top of it. Here's where you can cleanse out your system from last night's binge.
· Greens 2 – Kale, spinach, romaine, Parsley, Cucumber, Celery, Apple and Lemon
· Roots 3 – Beet, apple, lemon and ginger
· Roots 4 – Carrot, Apple and ginger
· Citrus 4 – Cucumber, Pineapple, Lemon, Coconut water, and Aloe vera
· Watermelon Mint
· 8 oz Almond Vanilla milk
MONDRIAN WEST HOLLYWOOD: The chic Sunset hotel has introduced a new Grab N Go menu with freshly squeezed juices on it like the Caribbean Zinger, made with carrot, orange, lemon and ginger. The menu is also serving smoothies like the Singapore Burst made with fresh whole berries, banana, almond nut milk, and a little agave nectar. Juices cost $9 while smoothies are $12 and can be ordered from the new lobby bar or from room service.
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The extremely rare bottle of cognac, one of 738, arrived at the hotel in a Rolls Royce Ghost, whose Inca Gold color interior matches the 22-carat rose gold neck of the Rare Cask 42,6 decanter, designed by Baccarat. It was carried by Yves de Launay, Rémy Cointreau's USA Vice President of Prestige Brands.
Why is this cognac so special that it deserved a ride in a Rolls Royce Ghost? Here's a brief explanation:
LOUIS XIII RARE CASK 42,6 celebrates the classic LOUIS XIII blend of 1,200 eaux-de-vie, 100 years in the making, here featuring salient aromas that are unique to this one precious cask. Discovered in the fall, it appropriately features autumnal notes of plum and dates, mingling with flavors of gingerbread, prune stone and ginger, and punctuated by a final touch of tobacco leaf.
The iconic black crystal decanter for the LOUIS XIII RARE CASK collection was created exclusively by Baccarat, utilizing all the skill and expertise of the famed crystal house’s talented masters. A team of more than 20 master craftsmen complete more than 50 steps in creating a single RARE CASK decanter, all of which must be carried out while maintaining the opaque crystal at a constant temperature.
As for what 42,6 means, that's the percentage of alcohol by volume--42.6--making it slightly higher than the 40 percent found in the classic Louis XIII cognac.
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The 88-year-old, vintage building is now part of a central marketing ploy for the re-launch of Hostess' iconic Twinkies, CupCakes and Ding Dongs. After closing down due to a labor strike last November, today is the day America can sink their teeth again into the bakery's sinful (and processed) treats. In an interesting historical twist, the golden sponge cake of Twinkies was first introduced during the 1930s which is around the same time the building went from a YWCA to a tourist's hotel, so the advertisement seems fitting.