For whatever reason, the boutique hotel trend passed over Los Angeles and decided to cling on to more dense cities like New York and San Francisco, newly arriving to the Pacific Northwest and Southeast, too. Los Angeles has its fair share of new and hip luxury hotels–The Standard, W Hotel, Redbury, Mondrian, Viceroy, etc.–but none of them are quaint or intimate or boutique, which is something that evokes intimacy and quality. Moreover, none are in parts of town that are both small, cool neighborhoods and in need of an equally small, cool hotel. The Ace has been capitalizing on this for years and, up until recently, have not given Los Angeles the time of day. Why hasn’t anyone stepped in to fill this gap? Well, Paligroup has and they have set the bar very high for future small designer hoteliers with their Melrose and Hayworth Palihotel.
The space, which was formerly a hostel, was acquired by the group behind the hip and undoubtedly WASPy Palihouse in West Hollywood. Between November and just a few weeks ago, a time period that seems like overnight, the hostel was quickly transformed from an economy hostel to a very high end extension of the Pali-brand. The little hotel now stands as a welcome committee for the luxury stores on Melrose between Fairfax and La Cienega: it is destined to be a hot spot this year.
We stopped by yesterday for a quick tour of the new spot and you are going to need to stop by as it is simply not just “a place to stay if you are a hip out-of-towner.” The lobby, courtyard, and casual Palikitchen make this very clear. With high speed internet and comfy leather seats, the space is a welcoming area for guests and neighbors alike to gather and do some work, grab a coffee, and chill. Palikitchen, their in-house food provider that will very soon have beer and wine service, is gearing up to provide breakfast, lunch, and dinner from Waterloo & City’s Chef Brendan Collins, who also created food the menu at Palihouse. There is no table service, which is an intentional move toward casual, neighborhoody, and unpretentious eating. You can also catch some goods from Rolling Greens in Culver City in the ‘kitchen, including oils, candles, jams, and books.
Beyond the attraction of Palikitchen, the hotel also has Thai massage service, a blow-out bar, and a relationship with their neighbors at Nudie Jeans. The Thai massage has its own designated room, softly lit and curtained like traditional massage. We were told that the masseuses were actually former masseuses to monks, which speaks to just how fine their technique is. The blow-out bar is not open yet but should be ready by mid-March, which will have two seats available for drying service. Nudie Jeans, who are located at Melrose and Edinburgh, have partnered with them to give guests discounts and even a free little jean tote for them to use.
There are only thirty two rooms in the hotel, which are all super comfortable and quaint and unique (in that all have artwork that the owners have purchased from various markets from around the world: no two rooms or two pieces of art in the entire hotel are alike). The building is in a U shape, which provides for wonderful views and sunny spaces. The Melrose rooms all have nice street views and, on the second floor, give a view of the strip. On Hayworth and on the back alley, rooms have balconies (which, of course, come at a little bit bumped up rate). All rooms on the second floor have skylights and every room has a mini-bar, Dean and Deluca treats, desk, couch, television, and everything else standard with a hotel room. The rooms are all cute and comfortable and are going fast: the hotel is seemingly booked up for the rest of the month…and it’s only been open for two weeks!! And, with rates from $145 to $325, you can live in opulence or slip in for an affordable slice of luxury.
Palihotel is located at 7950 Melrose Ave. Be on the look out for events and specials coming up from the spot, which we know is going to spark a movement in this city toward similar forms of lodges. Thank God because it’s about damn time people started giving hip little neighborhoods respectable little hotels to match them. Palihotel is a perfect example of this and, who knows, maybe it will inspire someone to give this building a makeover.
Front Desk and Queen Bedroom photo courtesy of Palihotel