I should begin by acknowledging that some of our complaints about our stay (see below) resulted in an adjustment to our daily rate by the Operations Manager at the hotel, Sherwin Banda. The General Manager, Reginald Archambault, seen defending the hotel in numerous posts on TripAdvisor, was not at the property when I inquired.
I also can echo comments made by other guests that the location is extremely convenient if your plans include visits to the Getty Center or Bel Air, Beverly Hills or Hollywood. The valet service, while expensive and your only parking option, was very efficient and courteous. The housekeeping was generally very good although they frequently left all of the lights on in the room (not our problem but not very energy conscious). In general, the staff at the front desk was well-intentioned.
Having said all of the foregoing, I can think of no circumstance where I would recommend to anyone that they stay in this hotel. First off, the structure is poorly suited physically to be a luxury hotel. We were told by hotel staff that the property started life as student housing for UCLA in the 1950s. As noted by others, the rooms are contained in two unconnected, two-storey buildings separated by a steep hill others have estimated as being 200 meters. The front desk, underground parking, “business center”, restaurant and some guest rooms are located in the lower building while the balance of the guest rooms, the “gym”, pool and spa are located at the upper building. As other reviewers have noted, the walls apparently are paper thin as you can hear your neighbors talking, coughing and using their toilets.
Upon checking in, we elected to avail ourselves of an upgrade to an Executive Suite for an additional $40 per night. The room was larger as was the bathroom with a double sink; however, the bed was immediately in front of the door allowing any passerby a view of the occupied bed if the door was opened which would make most women, in particular, quite uncomfortable. There was a seating area located in an alcove in the room but there was a pillar in the middle of it suggesting that perhaps the area, at one time, had been part of another room or an outside patio that had been enclosed. The bathroom lacked sufficient counter space and had only a single towel bar.
There was a single rather than a double connecting door with the next room. For room security, rather than the common swinging latch seen in most hotels these days, there was an old fashioned chain lock but only a single screw held the mounting in place on the door frame. Also, in the hallway leading to our room, a service door to the outside was repeatedly left ajar further adding to one’s sense of insecurity.
One morning a roach appeared on the bed (fortunately, no bed bugs). After killing it, I showed it to management whose defense was that it wasn’t a roach but wasn’t really sure what kind of bug it was. We were also told that when it rains, insects find their way into the rooms. My view is that this would not be the case if (a) the sliding glass doors in the rooms were properly fitted and (b) the hotel had regular service from an exterminator.
There were repeated problems with hot water in the shower. On two days, only one of us could take a shower as the hot water ran out. On another occasion, the water kept getting hotter and hotter suggesting that there was no scald protection in the plumbing fixture. In addition, at all times, there was weak water pressure.
On two of the four days of our stay, there was no paper delivered to the room. They “ran out”.
The entrance to the hotel restaurant is a sliding glass door leading from an outside courtyard. The restaurant is effectively “land locked” with no interior entrance for guests (inconvenient to uncomfortable if it is raining or cold outside). The floors are uneven in both the rooms and in the restaurant. The sliding glass doors in both leaked when it rained. One restaurant patron complained his feet were getting wet because he was seated near the windows. Workers from the hotel put up a makeshift barrier outside of our room by placing a sheet of plastic film along the sliding glass doors and pinned it in place by moving the plastic patio chairs close to the doors. The carpeting in our room appeared to have been recently “restored” (but still stained) following likely flooding from torrential rains in Southern California the previous week. Further evidence of poor attention to detail was the fact that light fixtures, a/c vents, mirrors, etc. were rarely level or square.
The workout room or “gym” was located in a converted small guest room with limited equipment. The walk up the hill on several cool mornings was quite “brisk”. The “business center” was the size of a modest, windowless closet where one of the two computers available was out of service during our entire four day stay.
Finally, for breakfast one morning in the hotel restaurant, I found that the milk on my cereal had soured and curdled. Because the regular coffee was awful, I ordered a latte but the milk in it had also gone sour. Both items were readily replaced by the attentive wait staff.
Based on reviews on TripAdvisor and comments from some local residents, it would appear that the nearby Hotel Angeleno (a former Holiday Inn) would be a much better alternative to the (mis-named) Luxe on Sunset.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Luxe Hotel Sunset Boulevard is an in-town boutique resort, situated on seven secluded and beautifully landscaped acres in one of Southern California's most accessible and exceptional locations. Located at the entrance to the exclusive suburbs of Bel-Air and Brentwood and just below the famed Getty Center, and minutes from UCLA, the hotel is at the gateway to Los Angeles and its surrounding communities. The hotel offers a stylish and supremely comfortable California-modern look and welcoming, professional, personalized care. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Luxe Hotel Los Angeles