Photo and Story by Greg Aragon
Los Angeles has lots of luxurious hotels, but according to developers of the new $200 million Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills, the area never seen anything like their new property.
“Bringing the renowned Waldorf Astoria brand to Beverly Hills has been a dream for many years,” says owner Beny Alagem, “and as we open our doors to this stunningly beautiful hotel, I think every visitor stepping across our threshold will agree that our dream has been fulfilled far and beyond even our wildest imagination.”
I attended the grand opening ceremony for the hotel last week and got to tour the property, and it is truly beautiful hotel. I can’t wait to stay here – hopefully! The event welcomed a couple hundred guests including Alagem, along with the design team, contractor, and two high-flying daredevils kicking things off with a death defying Batman walk down the side of the new 12-story hotel.
Located next to The Beverly Hilton, at the corner of Wilshire Boulevard and Santa Monica Boulevard, in one of California’s highest rent districts, the 12-story Waldorf boasts 119 deluxe rooms and 51 suites. It was designed in a classic Art Deco style by a collaboration between architects Pierre-Yves Rochon Inc. (PYR), Perkins + Will, and Gensler.
To achieve this style and mood, each of the property’s 170 guestrooms are inspired by the contemporary interpretation of Hollywood glamour and the Streamline Moderne style of the 1930’s and 40’s, say project officials. I met architect Pierre-Yves Rochon, principal and global design director for PYR, at the opening, and he told me the team tried to create the feel of a private residence with the property and not “just one more hotel” in Los Angeles.
Rochon, whose firm led the interior design of the project, said the team studied Los Angeles in the 1930’s and its residential architecture and gave the Waldorf some of that same Art Deco / Paris, France-inspired style and color from that period. He says this 30’s feel continues in the interior with design and furniture.
“The design celebrates the history of Los Angeles and Hollywood,” says Andy Cohen, co-CEO of Gensler, who I also bumped into at the opening ceremony. “We spent a lot of time and effort to make sure this project is the pinnacle project in Beverly Hills and LA.”
Every guest room features floor-to-ceiling windows that open onto oversized private balconies, with views of the Hollywood Hills, Rodeo Drive and the Southern California sunset. In public spaces, the property boasts a triple-height lobby with a contemporary Art Deco design, hand painted murals, art pieces, custom crystal chandeliers and elegant Lalique installations.
The LEED Gold hotel boasts Portuguese limestone on the exterior, and finishes such as cherry and sycamore wood, as well as antique bronze, Calacatta marble, Crema Marfil marble, and Noir Saint Laurent marble throughout the interior.
“As the prime architect and master planner for the site and the hotel, Gensler has worked together with Oasis West Realty, Hilton, and PYR to create a world-class urban resort and gateway to Beverly Hills, unlike any other luxury property in Southern California,” said Cohen.
In the public spaces of the Waldorf, guests will discover chic touches throughout, from the triple-height lobby with a contemporary Art Deco design to hand painted murals, custom crystal chandeliers and elegant Lalique installations. Richly upholstered furniture in soothing tones of celadon, taupe and white is accented by spectacular pieces of art, creating an environment that is both sophisticated and relaxing.
And then there is the rooftop pool deck, available only to hotel guests, which officials say is the loftiest and largest rooftop destination of its kind in Beverly Hills. Impeccably landscaped, the rooftop gathering area includes VIP cabanas and a lounge area with panoramic views.
Other hotel amenities include a 5,000-sq-ft spa and salon, a private complimentary Rolls Royce house car for guests, 6,300 sq-ft of meeting spaces, with two ballrooms and three restaurants created by the legendary French chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. The dining venues are the elegant Jean-Georges Beverly Hills, the chef’s signature restaurant, as well as The Rooftop by JG and Jean-Georges Beverly Hills Bar.
The Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills is located at 9850 Wilshire Boulevard, Beverly Hills, CA 90210. For more information, visit: www.waldorfastoriabeverlyhills.com.