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Downtown LA is hot for boutique hotels. Or maybe boutique hotels are hot for Downtown LA. Either way, the once-forgotten district of the City of Angels is definitely having a comeback moment--as far as hip, design-forward, nightlife-oriented hotels are concerned.
Aside from the big brand hotels near the Staples Center, we've got an Ace Hotel coming in January, a Virgin Hotel coming sometime soon and whenever the owners get their act together, the Hotel Clark with its rooftop pool. Now hotelier Sam Nazarian is sniffing around the area for a possible site for an SLS Hotel.
GlobeSt.com reports that SBE Entertainment is looking at a development site near the Walt Disney Concert Hall in the Bunker Hill neighborhood. While this could definitely be for a new SLS Hotel, remember SBE is spinning off its Redbury Hotel (the one in Miami is currently in a soft opening for family and friends but should be ready to go before Art Basel) and we also uncovered a trademark for Hyde Hotels.
So there's a few ways this hotel could swing. Either way, Someone Likes Surprises and it's us so we'll take either an SLS, a Redbury or a Hyde.
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We've known that SLS Hotels are eager to expand all over the place but we found something a little unexpected today while cruising the U.S. Trademarks website--Hyde Hotels.
Registered in the middle of September, the trademark is owned by SBE, the parent company of SLS. If you aren't familiar with SBE, they also run the Hyde chain of nightclubs found in LA, Las Vegas (at the Bellagio) and in Miami at the SLS South Beach. You can peep some pics from Hyde Beach, the pool and beach scene at the SLS South Beach here.
Interestingly, under the trademark's goods and services, it also includes "gaming development" and "construction of hotel, resort, casino, restaurant, bar, and nightclub property." As SLS gets ready to open their SLS Las Vegas property with a full-fledged casino floor, this has us especially intrigued. Meanwhile, SLS already has another hotel brand in the works, The Redbury, which has a flagship hotel in Hollywood and another about to open in Miami Beach.
Of course, registering a trademark can't be taken as a sign that this hotel brand will actually happen. But if it does, this might be the first-ever, real-life translation of the standard boutique hotel review-- "a nightclub with hotel rooms attached."
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We can hardly keep up with all the new SLS Hotels that have been announced. So far, we've got New York, Las Vegas, Chicago, Seattle and a second hotel in Miami in Brickell. And now we must add Shanghai, Beijing, Wuxi, and Kunming to the list. Oh yes, hotelier Sam Nazarian is taking his SLS brand to China.
The SLS hotels will launch in China by 2015 as part of a partnership with the Chinese company, Palace Hospitality, who have a proven track record for growing hospitality projects. Hence, the four planned hotels and not just one.
The SLS hotels in China probably won't look the same as the ones in the U.S. as they are being tailored for the Chinese market (at least from a design standpoint) but you can expect the SLS trademark combo of restaurants + nightclubs to remain. If all goes well, SLS could open in more additional Chinese markets after the initial four.
Meanwhile, in the China announcement, we noticed a bit on SLS Philadelphia which is expected to open within the next three years. Sheesh. We knew Sam Nazarian had grand plans for 2013 but we really weren't expecting all this. Now, we just need to wait for opening day. That should happen first in Las Vegas sometime next year.
First off, The Redbury South Beach will open this fall. Wham, bam, thank you mam! As you can see from the Twitpic from @DeeTCL, work is already underway. (The hotel is opening out of the old Fairfax Hotel.)
Word is the design will be inspired by its Hollywood roots but will also weave in the art deco vibe of South Beach. All in all, the hotel will have 69 rooms and suites.
Restauranteurs Larry Levy and Bob Heyat are responsible for bringing in the hip food & beverage offerings including the lobby restaurant, Lorenzo, which will be helmed by James Beard Award-winning Chef Tony Mantuano who has four great restaurants in Chicago, include Spiagia and Terzo Piano at the Art Institute. As you can guess, the restaurantwill serve up authentic Italian cuisine.
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The folks over at SLS are on a roll this week. One day after announcing SLS Las Vegas will open in 2014 (allegedly), they're looking even further into the future with plans for SLS Seattle to open in 2016.
Can you say 'overachiever?'
Admittedly, SLS/sbe/Sam Nazarian are in a far better position, with four properties already up and running (SLS South Beach, SLS Beverly Hills, The Redbury, and The Raleigh). So for now, we'll take their word for it that construction on a $400 million development, located at 5th and Columbia in Downtown Seattle, is set to begin at the end of the year, with an anticipated completion of 2016.
The hotel will have 184 rooms (designed by Philippe Starck, of course), and will occupy floors 2 through 15 of a mixed-use tower with a whole bunch of food, beverage and retail outlets, not to mention a spa and fitness center.
Read a quote from sbe founder Sam Nazarian after the jump!
Almost two years after The Sahara, a Vegas hotel-casino owned by Sam Nazarian,
fell apart at the seams shuttered, sbe officially broke ground yesterday to re-adapt the site into the long-awaited SLS Las Vegas. But don't start booking those flights to LAS just yet.
The press release declares a Fall 2014 opening, though our pals at VegasChatter wonder if that might be a little unrealistic, considering how much work has to be done to turn the place into an "entertainment-driven resort and casino" (and how much money has to be spent—a reported $415 million is being pumped into the project).
With our eyes on the next slew of SLS Hotels to open (New York and Las Vegas) as well as a few other hotels from the sbe group, we thought we'd check in on the status of the sbe PREFERRED loyalty program.
Initially introduced back in October 2011, the program allowed members to earn rewards points at sbe properties, including restaurants and nightclubs such as Katsuya and Hyde. However, they stopped taking new members last July after "reaching capacity." They also did away with the rewards points. Sbe promised to re-evaluate the program to "provide you with the best possible hospitality experience." But it looks like that's still an ongoing process.
It's that time of year again: the 2012 HotelChatter Awards! Between last Friday and today, we're showcasing the best (and worst) of hotels over the past year. But we couldn't do it without you! Let us know your thoughts in the comments below, or shoot us an email. And the Award goes to...
2012 was exactly the exciting year for the hotel world we hoped it would be with more new hotels open than we've seen in a long time. And as we've already mentioned, one of those hotel openings that had us crazy excited was the SLS South Beach.
After years of speculation--will it open or will it just fade away?--hotelier Sam Nazarian managed to open the long-awaited spin-off to the SLS at Beverly Hills. And the SLS South Beach does not disappoint from its kinky bedrooms (hello, mirrors on the ceilings) to its so-hot-right-now selection of restaurants and lounges to the celebrity designers who put their rock star touches on the place.
While the SLS South Beach is not for everyone--once could successfully argue that it's just a nightclub and restaurant with rooms attached--the Shah of SLS has managed to transport his nightlife je nais se quoi into the hotel realm. After all, who doesn't want to party in Lenny Kravitz's poolside bungalow or eat sushi at Katsuya and get wasted at Hyde? Certainly most of the people who head to Miami for its lively party scene. And Nazarian's only just getting started.
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Oh boy, we hope the neighbors who are suffering from the Gansevoort Park's rowdy pool parties are stocking up on more ear plugs. That's because another party spot is coming to the block in mid-2013--SLS New York.
The NY Post reports that Sam Nazarian has announced that the Philippe Starck-designed SLS outpost for the Big Apple will open at 444 Park Avenue South, which is literally just a block away from the Gansevoort. The hotel will have 190 rooms, presumably with Ciel toiletries in the bathrooms.
While our source inside SLS says a José Andrés restaurant at the ground-level is not confirmed, we hope it happens as we can't imagine SLS without José. There will also be rooftop scene of some sort and we hear that the S bar brand might be revived. There might even be an outpost of Hyde at the hotel,too.
But that's not all Nazarian has planned for NYC. He's also expanding the LA's Umami burger chain with five Umamis set to open within the next 18 months. (Hint: put one in the SLS and make it a "secret" spot.) He's also hoping to spin off the Redbury Hollywood in SoHo or Tribeca or even open up a second or third SLS hotel down there.
That's right: we're not done babbling about SLS South Beach. There's lots to love about this hotel and we've only experienced some of it.
During our visit, this hybrid pool/lounge/day club wasn't fully operational, but the Katsuya kitchen was sending sushi down and a few of the cocktails were being previewed. Personally, we loved the laidback vibe and were thrilled to get a swim in before Hyde Beach opens for real and becomes the hottest of all South Beach hotspots.
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If you follow our Miami Hotel Mambo coverage, you'll know that the South Beach hotel scene has been dominated by buzz for one hotel and one hotel only in 2012. There's lots of rebrandings and renovations and reality shows going on but nothing has captured our attention quite like SLS South Beach.
We've been dying to see how SBE would build on its Beverly Hills blueprint and what design maestro Philippe Starck could do to top his groundbreaking work on next-door neighbor Delano. This weekend, we finally found out, as we checked into a City View King Room on the hotel's second official night in business.
Not all of the suites are ready yet, but the rooms that were ready were sold out this weekend. The hotel itself was buzzing with chic guests and restaurant patrons, and there was a surplus of friendly, helpful staff on site to kick things off. We'll have more on the restaurants and other public spaces later this week, but for now, take a spin through a room courtesy of our video and photo gallery...
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Forgive this crappy lopsided photo that we snapped on Sunset Boulevard the other week but as the SLS South Beach prepares to open to hotel guests tomorrow, we thought it was interesting to see where and when SLS is opening next.
As the billboard above shows, SLS New York should happen sometime in 2013 while SLS Las Vegas is gearing up for a 2014 opening. Our sibling, VegasChatter has been all over the SLS Las Vegas stuff but we haven't heard much about New York in a while.
According to Curbed.com, the building is planned for 140 6th Avenue which is in Soho between Spring and Broome Streets. Yet aside from the killer location (just a block east of the Trump Soho), there's really not much we can dig up about SLS New York.