Living Large in LA
The City of Angels has plenty of star quality and welcomes visitorsv to share the spotlight
The City of Angels has star power
Touching down at LAX in the darkening night sky is almost like an extra-terrestrial event. Lights fan out in all directions, grid-like white luminescence against red streams, pulsing, beckoning as the land pulls westward toward the ocean.
Los Angeles, at times described as a great big freeway, is, oh, so much more. Look beyond the tail lights of the traffic buzzing from the beaches to the boutiques and bistros and find the spotlights that have made the city shine since the beginning of the last century.
Los Angeles has always been the city of dreams – and dreamers, beginning with the likes of D.W. Griffith, C.B. DeMille and the brothers Warner shooting on primitive backlots in the Hollywood hills. Since then it has been all about the silver screen and the careers made and shattered upon it in earthshaking celebrity rumbles that to this day continue to shape the city.
Los Angeles was built on far more than movies, it’s true. But for travelers who land in LA for a day or a week or longer, living like a celebrity is part and parcel of the fantasy. Visitors can have their time in the spotlight as well, luxuriating in phenomenal hotel suites like no place else on the planet, and taking in restaurants, attractions and shopping ventures that positively ooze the celebrity lifestyle.
It is not surprising that Beverly Hills would offer the top picks for travelers in search of a luxury experience. Its hotels are the kind of places where guests care less about high-tech gadgets and more about design tastefully returning Hollywood to its Golden Age.The Beverly Hills Hotel &
Bungalows: “The Pink Palace,” now part of the Dorchester Collection and owned by the Sultan of Brunei, might be considered the Grand Dame of this rarefied list if only for its tenure as the home of Marilyn Monroe. Although in its 103 years it has housed the very top of the A-List – Frank Sinatra, Humphrey Bogart and Marlene Dietrich among them (even John Lennon and Yoko hid out here for a week) – it was Marilyn and her amour of the moment, Yves Montand, who kept the hotel’s Polo Lounge abuzz when they lived here during the filming of “Let’s Make Love.”
Today, the Beverly Hills Hotel remains as grand as it ever was, no worse for wear and still keeping its gloss within the buffed up pink and green interiors, palm shaded groves and starlet-studded swimming pools. A Cosmopolitan is still the cocktail to order at the Polo Lounge.
The 23 bungalows here unfold like individual homes, each with separate entrances, living room, dining room, wood-burning fireplace, and a distinct configuration and décor. Bungalow 5, the four-bedroom Presidential Bungalow, offers a private lap pool built in 1991 for frequent guest Walter Annenberg.
The Beverly Hilton: While the Beverly Hills Hotel may be known for its celebrity guests, the Beverly Hilton has always been the hotel of Presidents. Conrad Hilton opened the property in 1955, and every Commander-in-Chief since has stayed in The Beverly Hilton Presidential Suite, oft-tagged “White House West.” Robert Downey Jr.’s favorite room is 815 – Governor’s Suite.
Beverly Wilshire, a Four Seasons Hotel: This property, at the seductive edge of Rodeo Drive and Wilshire Boulevard, is known as the Pretty Woman hotel – referring to the clever romantic comedy that lit sparks between Richard Gere and Julia Roberts in 1990.
The suite where the fictional financial tycoon and simple streetwalker fell in love is still available with few changes – known as Los Angeles, Pretty Woman Suite. Find it on the private, key-accessed 14th floor of the Beverly Wing. Officially the Penthouse Suite, this three-bedroom space on the top floor is among the largest in Beverly Hills at 5,000 square feet. It and Presidential Suites have beautiful wraparound terraces with spectacular views ws (you can see the Hollywood ywood sign on a clear day).
Montage Beverly Hills: Thisis magnificent propertyt on CanonC Drive offers three Presidential Suites, each presenting its own layout and design that can be combined toward a total of 5,000 square feet of staying power. Attractions are the cozy fireplace settings, terraces, views of the Hollywood hills, kitchenettes with valet entrances and large dining rooms, high tech electronics and baby grand piano. Pets are invited into these spreads with lavish pet amenities
Los Angeles has always been the city of dreams – and dreamers
including doggie beds, bowls, treats and added services such as dog walking and babysitting.
The Peninsula: Tucked into a corner of Beverly Hills, the Peninsula is as famous for its Belvedere Room, where movie deal making and breakfast go hand-in-hand, as it is for its fivestar hospitality hospitality. The boutique layout (only 1 193 rooms, suites and villas) hides under shadings of pal palm, ficus and oak that sh shroud suites with that extr extra sliver of privacy.
Four “S Four “Specialty Suites” are on h hand for those special guests. Three of the four grandest suites were designed by Forchielli Glynn (Exclusive Resorts, Four Seasons Prague and Vancouver). The fourth was designed by American interior design icon Nancy Corzine, who is known for her contemporary luxe style and signature line of furnishings, textiles and lighting designs.
All four of these spacious spots (1,500 to 2,250 sq. ft.) feature fireplaces,