Los Angeles's most historic hotels were born in the early decades of the 1900s, just when the film industry was blossoming and gaining national and international acclaim. So it makes sense that the most storied hotel establishments transport guests back to an age of Old Hollywood glamour. Each of these five properties boasts stunning architecture reflective of those times, from Art Deco to Spanish Colonial to Italian Renaissance, even while offering ultra-modern amenities. They also lay claim to impressive guest registers, with everyone from writers to dignitaries and actors to musicians checking in over the decades. Some of the hotels are even considered to be haunted with the spirits of their most famous guests! But not all of the glory is in the past. Many of these are favorite film locations for current directors, and their restaurants, lounges, pools, and other public spaces draw chic modern crowds and contemporary starlets.
Opened in 1923, this downtown grand dame boasts exquisite public spaces, including a Spanish-Italian Renaissance lobby with hand-painted carved ceilings. It hosted the Academy Awards in the 1930s and '40s and has been a popular filming location—you might recognize it from films like Ghostbusters and TV shows like Mad Men.
Celebrated architects Walker & Eisen (the duo behind the Beverly Wilshire Hotel and downtown's United Theater) designed this eye-catching 1926 hotel. A recent renovation spiffed up the Renaissance Revival brick facade and the Spanish Colonial interiors, which whisk you back to the days when Korea town was the posh Wilshire District.
Beverly Hills Hotel and Bungalows
The city of Beverly Hills was literally built up around this sumptuous 1912 resort, whose Mission Revival architecture and pink facade are synonymous with luxury. Countless celebrities have logged time here over its 100+ years, from the Rat Pack cocktailing in the Polo Lounge to Elizabeth Taylor spending six honeymoons!
This opulent hotel, opened in 1927, is the stuff of Tinsel town lore. Marilyn Monroe was once a resident here, and legend has it that her spirit still haunts the premises. The Spanish-style property drips with Old Hollywood decadence, especially in its chic lounges and pool surrounded by palm trees and cabanas.
With its bright turquoise Art Deco facade, it's hard to imagine this 1933 Santa Monica hotel ever wanted to keep a low profile. But during Prohibition, it hosted a popular speakeasy that drew the likes of Bugsy Siegel, along with celebs looking for a seaside escape, including Clark Gable and Carole Lombarde.