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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.
WSJ reports that it is New York real-estate investor Joseph Chetrit, the man who is responsible for the recent turnaround of the Empire Hotel aka Chuck Bass' hotel on Gossip Girl. And despite the presence of long-term tenants, Chetrit is going to keep the Hotel Chelsea a hotel.
Mr. Chetrit intends to keep it as a hotel, upgrading and modernizing it, according to people familiar with the matter. That will likely come as some relief to the hotel's regular tenants and other fans of the 127-year-old property who had been worried a new owner might convert it into condominiums.