Guests can relax in the Living Room Bar located just off the lobby. // © 2016 W Hotels
Feature image (above): The W Los Angeles - Westwood opened in 1999, and was rebranded as The W Los Angeles – West Beverly Hills in 2015. // © 2016 W Hotels
Read an on-site review of another W Hotels property: W Amsterdam
The W Los Angeles - West Beverly Hills has come a long way since its college days.
Formerly a dormitory for nearby University of California, Los Angeles, the boutique property has been a hotel staple in the Westwood/West Beverly Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles since it opened as The W Los Angeles - Westwood in 1999.
And now, returning guests will experience the effects of the hotel’s sophisticated $25 million makeover.
In June, the hotel, rebranded as The W Los Angeles – West Beverly Hills, emerged from its top-to-bottom renovation that included a refresh of all 297 suites, a reimagined lobby — affectionately called “The Living Room” by hotel staff — and the opening of STK LA, a high-end steakhouse with a club-like atmosphere.
“The completion of this multimillion-dollar renovation marks the beginning of the next chapter for W Los Angeles,” said Mark Eberwein, general manager of the hotel. “Whether [guests are] visiting us for work or for play, our stunning new design and prime location allow guests to find a true escape in bustling Los Angeles.”
Guests who are loyal to the W brand may first be struck by the updated color scheme of the lobby. Vibrant, pulsating lights mimic the beat of the lobby DJ and transition from warm to cool colors as day transitions into night. Guests will also undoubtedly recognize the same cutting-edge, modern design typical of the Starwood Hotels & Resorts’ brand.
Also in The Living Room is a new 12-foot water wall; Wired, the property’s business center; and the Living Room Bar where guests can enjoy a nightcap after an evening swim in the outdoor, ground-level pool that is surrounded by cabanas.
Once upstairs, the ambiance softens noticeably. The hallways, which have a fresh coat of charcoal grey paint, have been newly outfitted with ethereal portraits taken by New York City-based photographer Amber Gray. Once in the guestrooms, a mix of light greens and blues provide a soft, relaxing tone intended to exude the feel of a “Beverly Hills garden retreat.” Each suite comes outfitted with sectional sofas and louvered windows that further evoke a sense of seclusion from buzzing surrounding city.
The property’s refresh also included a complete update to the 1,400-square-foot Extreme Wow suite (the W’s take on the classic presidential suite). Clients staying in this two-bedroom suite will have access to a wet bar, a separate office, two bathrooms and — quite fitting to the destination — a brand-new, gold-paneled, state-of-the-art screening room.
The property has plenty to offer corporate travelers, too.
During my visit, I was pleasantly surprised at how comfortable and accessible
the event spaces were. Conference rooms are spacious and equipped with
high-speed Wi-Fi and updated technology for projecting slideshows and
presentations. Additionally, the hotel’s convenient location made for a nice
midday break; there are several restaurants, boutiques, coffee shops and juice
bars within walking distance.
“This renovation signals the next era for the hotel,” said Anthony Ingham, the global brand leader for W Hotels. “As part of our overall strategy alongside our ownership groups, we continue to invest in our North American portfolio ensuring first-class service, modern design and an innovative guest experience.”