(Photo: The London)
Every now and then, even if you go to a city so often it feels like a second home, you find a few gems you have somehow overlooked. This is what happened to me in Los Angeles last week. I fly to the west coast quite often, as two of my sisters live in the city and my company has a huge office there. I prefer to stay in West Hollywood near my family and usually camp out with them or in the Sunset Tower Hotel… but this time I thought I’d try something different (read: The Sunset Tower was totally booked and my sisters had friends in town). And I’m glad I did, as I found two dog-friendly gems I’m now mildly obsessed with — one high end, one affordable — but both treasures.
This luxury mammoth is huge yet somehow hidden on San Vicente near Sunset Boulevard. Because it used to be a condo building, the David Collins Studio-designed suites are also ginormous — with a minimum of 725 square feet of living space (larger than most New York City apartments). The rooms have private dressing areas, balconies, and bathrooms that I still dream about.
The lobby sets the tone for the London.
These rooms are twice the size of my apartment.
Check out these cabanas. I want to be there RIGHT NOW.
The Brit Bar Lounge, located on the rooftop next to the pool area, is the perfect place to have an evening drink or supper. If you want something fancier, dine at Gordon Ramsay’s namesake restaurant on the first floor. In the morning stop by the Breakfast Table which serves unlimited fresh fruit, sweet and savory pastries, farmhouse cheeses, and charcuterie accompanied by specialty coffees prepared by your own personal barista.
The view is to die for!
On the opposite end of the spectrum — in every way, are the San Vicente Bungalows. Also hidden off of San Vicente, just down the street from the London, the bungalows are a “pop-up” hotel, a shabby-chic middle zone that offers 23 rooms situated in several cottages all located around a central pool which is shaded by palm trees and wisteria. Parking is haphazard (you park in one of the several driveways and hand your keys to the front desk attendant who moves it if another guest — whom you have blocked in with your car — needs to leave), but the aura is genial. Guests are mostly European and there is a convivial air about the place. It feels like coming home.
A bungalow at the Bungalows.
My own private cottage.
Paper lanterns adorn the trees and twinkly lights hang from the trellises.
Karl, the Yahoo Travel mascot, loved the Bungalows.