The Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles
Los Angeles, California
By Elyse Glickman
900 W Olympic Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90015
CSQ Contact; Javier Cano
Given that Downtown Los Angeles is both a seat of local government and a business epicenter, and the city has always had a “glamour capital” image from its entertainment industry connections, it is surprising that lodging options have been somewhat lopsided, with much of the flash and sparkle planted on the West Side in the latter half of the 20th century. With that came an image problem where visitors and locals would never consider going east of Highland or La Brea Boulevards unless it was necessary.
Granted, properties like the landmark Millennium Biltmore and the Omni and its acclaimed restaurant Noé offered glimpses into Downtown L.A.’s potential. Over the last decade, The Standard (Hotel) Downtown, Staples Center, and entertainment complex L.A. Live were major game changers. Gentrification, loft apartments, sleek condos, and the arrival of innovative dining were also a big part of the solution. Existing treasures, including the public library and an arts and culture complex that included Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and Disney Hall, started bringing people back.
As old perceptions are at long last giving way to a new reality, The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles Hotel, and The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, the jewel of the L.A. LIVE crown, has opened its doors, and along with it, a most luxurious way to experience Downtown that adds to the dazzling array of offerings that make the area a true city center.
Putting on the Ritz…For Real
With stunning futuristic architecture by the firm Gensler (that’s soon to be LEED certified) and interiors by Barry Designs, a new era commenced with The Ritz-Carlton April 2, 2010 opening alongside sister property J.W. Marriott. Though the Ritz’s roommate possesses its own brand of luxury (see our hotel guide following this story), the Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles revealed itself to be quintessential L.A.—luxury, business, and pleasure in one very sexy package—appealing to both hotel traditionalists and mod/boutique hotel fans alike. Its amenities address the long-desired demand for a property that could be a destination on its own and not just a room to hang one’s suits.
The property also is a living metaphor about where Downtown Los Angeles is heading, with the recent additions and improvements of the past decade. The hotel is situated on the upper floors of a 54-story tower that it shares with The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, who want the perfect balance of luxury and convenience for a longer-term or permanent stay. The hotel component includes 110 guest rooms, 13 suites, and a 3,000 square-foot Ritz-Carlton Suite with incredible northern and western views—a bird’s eye view of the city’s constantly changing and improving face. A CEO or dignitary can entertain in style, thanks to above-and-beyond amenities that include piano and entertainment room, media corner, lounge, kitchen, and formal dining area.
Their Way of Doing Business
While The Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles is well-equipped for conferences and business travelers, the “Gallery Collection” reflects the notion that there should be an element of pleasure within the experience of doing business. The lush-but-efficient meeting complex within the hotel is organized into three levels of stacked meeting rooms, with direct hotel access. The nearly 100,000 square feet of indoor meeting and event space includes the Diamond Ballroom (25,086 sq. ft.), the Platinum Ballroom (20,792 sq. ft.), the Gold Ballroom (17,072 sq. ft.) and nine meeting rooms and two boardrooms encompassed into the remaining 14,000 square feet.
Though the hotel has well-equipped spots where a guest can have his or her professional needs met (including a business center, audio visual equipment rental and a conference concierge), other rooms and amenities make the whole experience of hotel business meetings more convenient and impressive for colleagues and co-workers. The Club Lounge has only one small boardroom adjacent and really serves more as a hotel lobby within a hotel…with a dedicated concierge, complimentary culinary presentations and wine and cocktail service, computers for guest use, etc.
The new Wolfgang Puck establishment WP24 Restaurant & Lounge not only offers romantic ambiance and sophisticated modern Chinese fare, but also a lounge, wine cave, and two private dining rooms ideal for both small meetings and post-convention/conference celebrations. The restaurant is an urban oasis perched on the 24th floor of the hotel with awe-inspiring views of the Los Angeles skyline. The Lounge provides a more casual menu of sushi and light bites.
An Upscale Approach to Downtown Downtime
While The Ritz-Carlton Los Angeles is a stone’s throw from the L.A. Convention Center, blocks from cultural institutions such as the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA), and an integral part of L.A. LIVE’s playground of attractions for foodies, sports enthusiasts, and music lovers, it is also equipped to handle the needs of guests preferring quiet time.
The 26th floor rooftop pool is outfitted with cabanas, conversational seating arrangements and a pool bar serving refreshments and swanky cocktails. The hotel also houses The Ritz-Carlton Spa, a lavish 8,000-square-foot sanctuary that, according to the developers, is “designed to reflect the glamour and excitement of Los Angeles in a calming yet sophisticated environment.” The décor of the spa bears a “Champagne and Shimmer” theme, highlighted with signature treatments such as the Glowing Gold Facial and the Champagne and Citrus Scrub, and nine treatment rooms with iPod docking stations that enable guests to customize their music to their treatments. Guests can also be pampered or revitalized via two customized aromatherapy steam rooms, cold plunge showers, and two relaxation lounges.
Guests interested in more active pursuits can take advantage of a 2,000-square-foot fitness center on the 26th floor, outfitted with state-of-the art equipment and dramatic cityscape views.