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This particular HotelChatter-er has been out of the loop a bit on the Los Angeles hotel scene in the past few months so when we rolled by the Sofitel Los Angeles the other day we noticed the hotel's signage on the corner of La Cienega and Beverly Boulevard. Namely the sign for the Stone Rose nightclub from Rande Gerber was gone.
It turns out the celeb-favored lounge has closed. Perhaps it was one cocktail waitress' illicit relationship with Tiger Woods that began the hotel's downfall. Never matter, in its place is now Riviera 31, which is pretty much the same old space, just a new name. And judging by pics from its recent opening party, it's still gonna be a place for the celebs.
But that's not all that's changed at the hotel heading into awards season.
Putting the drama behind them for now, The Hard Rock San Diego has announced that it will reopen its bars (formerly known as the Sweetwater Saloon and the Moonstone Lounge) on April 3rd and 4th. The new names are now 207 and Float, the latter being the rooftop pool lounge.
According to the website, big music names like Scott Weiland, Lil Jon, Ludacris and DJ Am will be performing.
This ain't no surprise considering that for the hotel's opening weekend, The Black-Eyed Peas put on an exclusive show, complete with songs from Fergie's solo album. (We were there. It was awesome.)
But we want to know, how will the new clubs be different from the old Rande Gerber clubs?
Hotel Nightclubs / Hotel Bars / Hotel News / Hard Rock Hotels / Rande Gerber / Tarsadia / → All Tags
It's been a tumultuous week behind the scenes at the Hard Rock San Diego. Currently, the hotel's owner Tarsadia is locked in a legal dispute with nightlife impresario (and Mr. Cindy Crawford), Rande Gerber over the hotel's two bars--The Sweetwater Saloon and the Moonstone Lounge.
We have a few updates about the situation although we are trying not to get mired too much in this. We are a hotel blog afterall and we want to update you on what you can expect when visiting hotels, not who is suing who. We can tell you that as of today the Moonstone and Sweetwater lounges will no longer be operating under those names, as per a court ruling. And of course, they will no longer be a part of the Gerber Group's portfolio.
A rep for Tarsadia told us that the hotel is currently working on coming up with new names. Lynn Kozlowski, VP of Marketing for Tarsadia Hotels, said:
It will take a little research and brainstorming to come up with new names and then we’ll want to re-open with a splash. So nothing to report at this time but stay tuned.
The hotel is also looking to hire new employees for the rooftop bar (formerly known as Moonstone), so if you're looking for a job in San Diego, you can start here.
As promised, we have an update on what's happening with the Sweetwater and Moonstone Lounges at the Hard Rock San Diego. Yesterday, Page Six reported that the lounges' operator Rande Gerber was at odds with the hotel management company, Tarsadia. Tarsadia has effectively shut out Gerber and his crew from the bars and Gerber himself seems resigned to settling the matter in court.
But here's how it all went down, according to a source inside the hotel. Apparently, last Thursday employees arrived at the hotel for work to find the doors to Sweetwater and the upstairs roofdeck pool lounge, Moonstone, locked. Tarsadia allegedly fired 150 employees, from waiters to alcohol buyers, and then rehired only about nine employees back on their team. Apparently, Tarsadia has reached out to the club operators behind Body English at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas to rework their nightlife.
According to Page Six, Rande Gerber's two bars inside the Hard Rock San Diego have shuttered because Gerber's bouncers "physically and verbally abused clubgoers." The Sweetwater Saloon and The Moonstone Lounge opened inside the hotel in December 2007 and were considered a pretty big deal for San Diego. Afterall Gerber is a well-known bar impresario who has done several of the nightlife options for W Hotels.
But the hotel management company, Tarsadia Hotels, says that the Gerber Group's security staff were anything but hospitable to guests.
According to a press release sent out by Tarsadia Hotels, which runs the Hard Rock chain, Tarsadia has videotapes showing "extremely brutal physical abuse by Gerber Group security staff against Sweetwater patrons, including choking, blows with fists, knees and objects, and in one case, a patron handcuffed during his beating."
Of course, there are two sides to every story and Rande Gerber insists that the reason his bars have closed inside the hotel is because Tarsadia has been jacking up the rent from $400,000 to $900,000. He then told Page Six the matter will be resolved in court.
As of this morning, the hotel's website still lists the bars as open and there is no mention of either one of them closing. Coincidentally, we have an operative in San Diego right now so we'll update you on what's going on there. In the meantime, if you've got your own Sweetwater or Moonstone experiences to share put 'em in comments below.
Helmets off to South Beach's Royal Palm Resort. Not only are they bringing sexy back to South Beach with Rande Gerber's first-ever Maxim Lounge, but they've also selected Super Bowl weekend to debut the hotel's revamp into a men's sanctuary. (The hotel has been undergoing a multi-million dollar refurbishment for the past six months.)
Maxim's famed Super Bowl party is rumored to be booked at this new lounge at Royal Palm along with a promise of celebrity friends, a la Carmen Electra and Eva Longoria, stopping by on any given day or for next year's Maxim "Hot 100" party.
Scheduling the Maxim party now ensures that the hotel will finish all their condo-tel construction and open up by the end of the year, as expected. Sirius radio and iPod docking stations will be featured in all guest rooms, while celeb skin-care specialist Sonya Dakar, whose clientele includes Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, Drew Barrymore and everyone's favorite Laguna-Beach-star-turned-tabloid-whore, Kristin Cavallari, will operate the spa and showcase signature male treatments. Detox scrub anyone?
Book your rooms now because like all things associated with this sexier-than-thou mag their availability will probably only last a matter of minutes.
Image via Ten AngryMen/Flickr