Luxury Hotels

LOS ANGELES – 3

Want a Hollywood experience? The first thing that wows when you enter Pendry West Hollywood is the two-metre light installation that takes up most of the main lobby. It’s called Portal Icosahedron, it’s steel and glass and long LED light tubes and it’s by a 50-year old Los Angeles-based Brit, Anthony James. He’s an original guy, by the way. A decade ago he deliberately torched his Ferrari F335 in a birch forest and he put the burned vehicle embers in a glass box with bits of unburned birch (apparently ancient Greeks gave sacrifices to Aphrodite in birch forests: Kalos Thanatos (KΘ), which means ‘beautiful death’).

Nearby is a baby pink car, Gulliver-size. This hotel deliberately defies convention. It embodies lifestyle. It makes you, the guest, want to know more. The man behind the look, 58-year old Swedish wunderkind of restaurant design, Martin Brudnizki, has thought everything through carefully. The main colour of the lobby, dark teal, is, for instance, exactly complemented by the stylish silk gear worn by those working front desk.  Brudnizki has a long-recognized love of big bold colours, as shown beautifully in The Langham London’s Wigmore pub, and, also in the UK capital, Annabel’s and Sexy Fish. So what does he do for hotels?

Managed by the Fuerstman family’s Montage group, Pendry West Hollywood is owned by a consortium of AECOM, Combined Properties, DK and Monarch. It has eleven above-ground floors, 149 bedrooms and an adjacent block of 40 owned residences. Hotel corridors are pink sand walls with two shades of blue carpeting. Suite #818 has duck-egg blue walls, with white woodwork (see a Youtube video), and light wood floors have Scandinavian-look rugs in taupe and shades of blue. Brudnizki touches include statement coffee and small dining tables, cluster light-bulb chandeliers, and a notable minibar cabinet – see below.

On entering the suite, Samsung wall-set screens in the sitting room and bedroom are showing loops of Pendry front man Mike Fuerstman introducing the brand. This is such a personal touch and gives an immediate welcome. The bedroom has a chest with lovely blue leather topping, and the bedhead is matching-blue velvet, rounded at the top in Art Deco style. Drapes in both the sitting room and bedroom are dark-patterned blue with, thank goodness, easy-pullback with long rods. Oh if only all designers and operators realised that those staying in hotel rooms try and pull drapes to and forth anyway, regardless of delicate technology that is supposed to do it for them. Similarly, thoughtfulness for customers means the big containers of MiN toiletries are set on shelves rather than being nailed to the wall. This is actually a very thoughtful hotel, allowing you to experience Hollywood. Be what you want to be….