Where to stay in Los Angeles, California: Reviewing Avalon Hotel Beverly Hills, the neighbourhood’s trade secret
Blink and you'll miss it. That's the quiet charm of Avalon Hotel Beverly Hills — a pretty boutique hotel on a nondescript street in one of Hollywood's ritziest neighbourhoods. From the outside, it bears no pomp and splendour, and is in stark contrast to the iconic hotel names in the neighbourhood. But Marilyn Monroe, Lucille Ball, and Desi Arnaz were frequent patrons, and if those names mean anything to you, it certainly will up the insider factor on Avalon Hotel.
Once you've gotten your bearings, you'll realise the Design Hotels pick couldn't be better placed. It's a short walk from a spacious Blue Bottle Coffee, Anthropologie, and the renowned Melrose Avenue, where glamazons live it up in the finest stores Los Angeles has to offer. Yet when you don't quite want to be in the midst of cashed-up locals, Avalon Hotel offers that grand respite.
The boomerang-shaped pool and splashes of colour on the walls surrounding it reflect the heart of the hotel. Fringed by private cabanas, the outdoor space is hardly ever empty. Whether it be couples or a girl gang soaking up California's best rays, a lone ranger doing a few laps, or creatives gathering for a meeting, the space is multi-functional at least, and a brilliant hub at best. Contemporary style icon Kelly Wearstler is the genius behind the project, blending Old Hollywood roots with a distinct 1950s vibe. Head up, and that's where the 84 rooms and suites await — the design is kept simple with enough luxury that baits a champagne on arrival. You'll delight at the play on curves, sleek furnishing, and a neutral colour palette that does everything, including soothing the soul.
Avalon Hotel's junior suite is our pick, for its tucked-away seating alcove that offers just enough space for the workaholic to log in for the day (or just general space away from your partner). Pillows are generously oversized and made of hypo-allergenic down, while the marble bathroom features a beautiful rainforest shower and Momo Bath products. It is all very understated, yet wonderfully lavish at the same time.
Power lunches or laidback dinners at poolside restaurant Viviane is the way to go when you don't feel like leaving the hotel. Their smoothies and acai bowls are pleasing to the eye, and are befitting of the Palm Springs backdrop. Otherwise, you can't really go wrong with their salads and sandwiches, which is what majority of the cool Los Angeles crowd imbibe here.
Avalon Hotel thrives on subtlety, intimacy, and a true-blue Californian crowd. It may not be the flashiest board in town, but it certainly is fun, chic, and tranquil — all the things you need after a day out in Los Angeles' magical beaches or coolest hideouts.