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Inside The Club Lounge at The Ritz-Carlton at LA Live

July 19, 2011 at 10:35 AM | by | Comments (0)

Over on Jaunted, you can get our inside looks at some of the world’s best airline lounges, so we thought we’d do something similar here and start talking about some of the hotel lounges we’ve frequented lately for our new series on Hotel Club Lounges. Today, we do the white glove test in the Ritz-Carlton at LA Live.

The last time we stayed in a Ritz-Carlton was back in 2007 at the Ritz-Carlton Battery Park where we were unexpectedly upgraded to a club floor room with a view of the Statue of Liberty. We had a great stay yet we didn't take much advantage of the club floor perks.

Fast forward to late June 2011 when we checked into Ritz-Carlton at LA Live for a two-day staycation and found the Club lounge to be our savior.

Located on the 23rd floor, the Ritz-Carlton Club is dominated by killer views of Los Angeles, looking west. After gawping at the view for a second, the next thing that strikes you is the abundance of comfortable places to sit and read the paper (or more likely, your iPad). Reading not your thing? You can watch whatever you like on one of the flat-screen TVs.

Now let's talk about the food. The Ritz-Carlton Club serves small bites five times throughout the day as well as gives you free reign on the mini-refrigerators stocked with juice, water, soda and booze. We hit the club up twice during the day for their mini-sandwiches, hand-made potato chips and cheese and crackers, capped off with a nice Stella Artois. We're not saying you should visit the club in lieu of going out to dinner but you can certainly fill yourself up for lunch here.

Yet what really won us over was the incredibly helpful staff. Each time we visited, a staff member or concierge came over to introduce him or herself and not only asked if we needed anything but also updated us on the services of the Club lounge. We observed them doing this to other guests as well.

Sometimes the staff bordered on "overservicing"(please we just want to eat our mini-sandwich in peace!) but when we mentioned we were going to a wedding that night and had to blow out our hair, the concierge not only told us that the spa downstairs could do a blowout but she also arranged the appointment for us in a matter of minutes.

One final perk of the Club lounge that we enjoyed (no, not the champagne bar although that's there if you want it) was the free WiFi. Now, it's not the same as surfing the web from your hotel bed but it does allow you to check your email, read the latest magazine off your iPad or microblog your life on Twitter. And there's no silly two-hour time limit either.

Booking a Ritz-Carlton Club room is about $70 more than booking a regular guest room and you are truly paying for the club access as the rooms are not much different. Given that the hotel is right next to LA Live and sister hotel JW Marriott (which has a very cool lobby scene complete with two bars and a restaurant), you could decide to spend that $70 elsewhere.

But there's something to be said for the convenience of the Ritz-Carlton Club, not to mention the dedicated service and that "I'm important" feeling you get when you step off the 23rd floor.

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