Luxury Hotels


It’s an over-used phrase but it’s true. Service makes all the difference. At Pendry West Hollywood – 149 bedrooms and 40 serviced residences – the 250-strong team genuinely seems to enjoy what they are doing. At front desk, Tiffany went out of her way to follow through on a request, and later the concierge did the same. They are chosen carefully, they have extensive onboarding and events include table tennis tournaments with management. The team is led by Anne Marie Doyle, above, who diverted to hospitality from a planned career in music: she still plays the harp and the piano – the grand in the hotel’s soundproofed Sun Rose music club comes in more than handy from time to time.

Really, the facilities are splendid here. For consumers, here’s two-lane bowling, and a screening room with comfy sea green velvet seats, and a big 24/7 Technogym with twice-daily classes, and a spa with Drip Hydration. Live musical entertainment happens Fridays, and some Thursdays. The nerve centre of conviviality, however, is undoubtedly the rooftop. There’s a magnificent pool surrounded by sunbeds. At one end designer Martin Bruddnizki has come up with an indoor-out parlour with plausible log-look fire, shown below.  Go through this to Merois, the restaurant overseen by Wolfgang Puck.

The Austrian-American here shows versatility, combining mostly-seafood with Chinese-Asian. Dishes include blue fina tuna sashimi with sweet onion pickle and garlic, mushroom tempura with shiso leaves and dashi soy, and, on to dry land, wood-grilled Jidori chicken with nam pla, snap peas and baby kale – onsite chef Nicole Abisrir. Girlahead tried an American Rosé, Liquid Farm 2020 Vogelzang Vineyard, Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara.  Breakfast, by contrast, is purely American, say coconut yoghurt parfait, and an everything-flavour bagel, an unidentifiable American blues over the speakers.

Talking of music, those staying in the hotel can borrow Taylor guitars (and Cadillacs, real size, for local journeys). It’s also worth noting that not only does Pendry West Hollywood have a serious-musician as GM, the brand’s owning family are pretty on the ball, or in key, as well. Guitar players Mike Fuerstman and his father Alan and some of his three siblings perform as Maximum Occupancy. Which they seem to achieve in their growing portfolio of Montage and Pendry hotels….