THE WALDORF ASTORIA, BEVERLY HILLS
SPACE editor Can Faik is blown away by Pierre-Yves Rochon’s latest masterpiece: The Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills…
The Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills is a true urban oasis that blends modern luxury with timeless design in a new building that dramatically alters the face of Beverly Hills. At the intersection of Wilshire and Santa Monica Boulevard, Pierre-Yves Rochon’s (PYR) intent for the exterior design of the hotel was to create a striking form befitting the highly prominent location that would also be welcoming and warmly residential in character. Reminiscent of the 1930’s curved buildings in Los Angeles, the sleek Streamline Moderne design of the limestone-clad exterior echoes the glamour of the Golden Age of Hollywood and seamlessly transitions to the interiors, where grand volumes, curved walls and Art Deco-inspired furniture pieces continue to speak to the hotel’s visual identity.
The interior design challenge at the Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills was to create a world-class design unlike any other hotel in L.A. Accordingly, the interiors by PYR were crafted to embody not only an international sensibility in its grandeur, timeless elegance, and artisanship, but also a uniquely Southern California aura with its modern interpretation of ‘Old Hollywood’ glamour and an overall spirit that would be as open, airy and light as its landscapes.
The sense of cinematic glamour begins with the dramatic arrival to the porte cochere with a sweeping bronze canopy; guests are welcomed through bronze doors adorned with Lalique crystal pulls. A soaring entry lobby with a monumental bronze chandelier and onyx fireplace in the lounge beyond anchor the space, while intimate adjacent alcoves allow for a private check-in and concierge experience. The sophistication of the public areas is enhanced by the refined quality of craftsmanship in the FF&E program, including a carefully curated collection of art works, Lalique gold leaf backed crystal panels, hand-selected Italian marble and custom furnishings from around the world.
The atmosphere is exciting, vibrant and full of life; set on an elegantly understated backdrop of creams and beiges accented by cool celadons and golden caramels, and sleek black lacquer finishes – a palette also carried into the standard guestrooms create a cohesive guest experience. Subtle palm prints in a mixed variety of delicate applications in carpeting, wallcovering and fabrics throughout the public areas, circulation, guestrooms, restaurant and spa give a quiet nod to surrounding lush California landscapes as well as a throwback to patterns popular in the 1930’s, 40’s and 50’s Hollywood.
The ballroom pre-function space is dramatic, nearly theatrical, with black painted ceilings dotted with starry LED lights and gleaming gold accessories throughout; handcrafted Verre Églomisé gilded-glass sliding panel doors reveal a cocktail bar. Entry to the ballroom feels as if curtains have been drawn away from a stage; darkness gives way to light in a glamorous function space lined with expansive windows and chandeliers draped with sparkling glass beads.
In the spa, PYR implemented a bold palette of black and gold, in a design scheme that would be unexpectedly intimate, warm, and modern. A European hand-blown, golden glass orb chandelier upon entry is an unexpected focal point; chosen as if in whimsical homage to the caviar treatments offered by La Prairie.
Jean Georges Restaurant at the Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills establishes a casual yet chic atmosphere, with an air of elegance befitting its world-class caliber cuisine. The spirit of the Southern California lifestyle and the grandeur of its landscape is celebrated in the restaurant’s spacious, light, and airy environment, with a free and relaxed flow between indoors and outdoors. The restaurant’s interior architecture blends seamlessly with the hotel’s exterior architecture, while the soaring volumes and bespoke décor serve as a quietly luxurious backdrop to the dining experience.
Guests enter either from the hotel lobby lounge or directly from the auto-court garden walkway, and into an open bar and lounge area. A light and neutral colour scheme of creamy whites and rich caramel accented with bronze finishes echoes the gracefully understated aesthetic felt in the hotel. The sweeping curves in the terrazzo flooring inlaid with bronze usher guests further towards the dining room; the gracious spatial proportions are accentuated by a tall, sloped ceiling that tapers to an expansive window wall softened by linen draperies. Long leather banquettes take advantage of this span and ultimately lead to a semi-private dining room with vibrant green accents and floral draperies, lit by a handmade Murano glass chandelier. Rose wood and pallisander furniture and finishes subtly infuse the overall restaurant with the warmth of wood and a sense of nature. Four large lemon trees flank two sets of double doors that open to a Mediterranean garden-inspired dining terrace layered with more lemon trees and hedges, anchored by a pergola for shade and privacy.
The Rooftop by JG at the Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills is a spectacular outdoor dining experience that is both sophisticated and relaxed in an exclusive garden-like setting. Located at the crown of the hotel, the restaurant acts as an extension of the ground level outdoor dining experience while overlooking the lively intersection of Wilshire and Santa Monica Boulevards, and the lush green hills and landscapes beyond. This distinctly Southern California vista serves as inspiration for the restaurant colour palette, and creates a feeling of an urban oasis accentuated by lemon trees, star jasmine, and French lavender.
Guests enter into a bar and lounge area, beckoned in by plush sofas upholstered in a textural green fabric, and a mix of soft green velvet and palm print cushions. The brushed bronze finish of the modern, low granite cocktail tables add polish to the lounge area, while the illuminated back bar and bar front glimmer with the depth and movement of a continuous green mosaic tile reminiscent of the surrounding landscapes. Teak bar stools are upholstered in textured green fabric, as are the dining chairs with deep green metal legs. Smoky white porcelain wood tile flooring extends throughout and to the dining tables set along the glass balcony perimeter. The dining space imparts a residential sense of comfort, softly lit by modern black floor lamps and warmed by a sleek gas fireplace set in a striking living green wall.