Two new hotels to debut as a new cultural hub in the heart of Downtown Los Angeles
Slated to debut on April 12, the 727-bedroom Moxy Downtown Los Angeles & AC Hotel Downtown Los Angeles will bring a striking 37-story addition to the Downtown Los Angeles skyline and an unprecedented 12 new dining and entertainment venues and 13,000 square feet of meeting and events space to the blossoming neighbourhood.
Designed to draw in travellers and locals alike, the dual-branded hotel is positioned on the corner of South Figueroa and Pico streets, directly across from the Crypto.com Arena and Los Angeles Convention Center. Connecting two powerful and distinct brands under one roof broadens the property’s appeal to a much wider audience of visitors, including business travelers in town for a conference and young nomads eager to explore an up-and-coming part of the city. Making the destination even more captivating is Level 8, the multi-dimensional concept by Los Angeles’ Houston Hospitality, opening later this spring.
Lightstone, developer of six acclaimed Moxy hotels in New York City and South Beach, is bringing the first Moxy Hotels property to Los Angeles, part of Marriott Bonvoy’s portfolio of 30 extraordinary brands. Moxy’s vibrant energy is perfectly complemented by the elevated, residential aesthetic of the AC Hotels by Marriott brand, which was founded in Madrid. Both hotels are designed to appeal to independent explorers who are conscious of value, travel on their own terms, and prioritize thoughtful and intriguing design. The 380-key Moxy will be for those who want a spirited stay with a broad range of options for socializing and dining, and a cozy but smartly designed room. AC Hotel’s 347 guest rooms will cater to a modern, design-conscious traveler who wants the essential elements of an elevated hotel experience at an accessible rate, with its signature AC lounge and AC kitchen and other upscale dining and drinking options at their fingertips, including the sophisticated tapas bar La Lo La Rooftop, situated on the 34th floor with views of the Hollywood Hills.
“For today’s traveler, memorable hospitality means great design combined with the ability to choose from an abundance of experiences,” says Mitchell Hochberg, president of real estate developer Lightstone. “By integrating the two hotels, plus Level 8, into a single building, we’re creating a myriad of experiences never before offered in Los Angeles — and keeping it all affordable. It’s a multilayered, endlessly fascinating destination for both locals and visitors.”
The two hotels will share Level 8, the brainchild of hospitality veterans Mark and Jonnie Houston, known for their immersive and wildly successful restaurants and bars across Los Angeles. Comprising eight distinct dining, drinking, and entertainment venues filling the property’s eighth floor and with its own dedicated entrance, Level 8 channels Downtown Los Angeles’ creative energy, paying homage to its diverse cuisines and cultures while providing a stage for some of Los Angeles’ top culinary talent — and dishing it all up with Houston Hospitality’s signature spectacle.
“Bringing together Moxy and AC Hotels allows guests to make the most of their stay while experiencing two very distinct personalities,” says Matthew Boettcher, Vice President and Global Brand Leader of Distinctive Select Brands at Marriott International. “Guests can take advantage of extra amenities, such as the AC Lounge for co-working during the day, while having more whimsical social options with Moxy in the evening.”
Architecture & Interior Design
Moxy and AC Hotel Downtown Los Angeles were brought to life by Gensler, one of the world’s leading architecture firms, and acclaimed global design studio Yabu Pushelberg. Gensler’s 37-story structure consists of an L-shaped tower, one side for Moxy and the other for AC Hotel, sitting atop an eight-story podium. The podium itself is wrapped in a 15,000-square-foot live LED screen — the largest 3D billboard on the west coast — that transforms the corner of Figueroa and Pico into an illuminated landmark.
Inspired by the spirit of discovery that California stands for, Yabu Pushelberg’s interior design carves out distinct identities for each hotel while remaining cohesive. For Moxy Downtown LA, the firm departed from the typical SoCal formula of palm trees and sunsets, instead evoking the iconoclastic romance and adventurous spirit of the California desert. Inspired in part by Easy Rider, the cult 1969 film that elevated the counterculture and celebrated the great American road trip, the hotel’s interiors are sexy, irreverent, and playful, with references to biker culture, desert reptiles, and the gritty romance of the open road.
The lobby is an expansive space with an open ceiling and an eye-catching jumble of design elements, including a retro-style motorcycle and sidecar. Organic materials, such as rammed-earth walls, reference the desert landscape, while mirrored columns and iridescent mosaic tiles add vibrancy. The snake motif on the lobby carpet connects to the snakeskin-clad bar in the adjacent Bar Moxy. A mezzanine level is home to two Meeting Studios along with additional seating, including oversize lounge chairs; vintage arcade games, an armadillo-shaped LED neon sculpture, and a DJ booth add a playful energy. With reconfigurable furniture throughout, the lobby becomes the living, breathing heart of the hotel, a place for guests to use as a breakfast room, fueling station, or place to connect with friends old and new over a drink.
The 380 cozy bedrooms at Moxy Downtown LA are designed for flexibility and personalization, welcoming modern nomads with a thoughtful balance of utility and panache. Floor-to-ceiling windows allow the SoCal sunshine to pour in. Distressed leather headboards evoke a well-worn motorcycle jacket, and cryptic markings on the wall reference the “hobo hieroglyphics” used by history’s vagabonds. Adaptable, space-saving furniture and storage solutions allow guests to stake their own claim to the space. Industrial-chic bathrooms, lined in iridescent copper tile, feature a rain shower and an elongated sink carved from lava stone. Hanging on one wall is a sculpture that consists of chrome motorcycle handlebars mounted on a taxidermy-style plaque — a clever amalgamation of the twin desert themes of bikers and wildlife.
In contrast, Yabu Pushelberg imagined the interiors for AC Hotel Downtown LA as an artist’s loft, bringing the Spanish roots of the AC Hotel brand into conversation with the Latin heritage of Los Angeles. Warm, light-filled public spaces are contemporary and welcoming, while upscale, serene guest rooms provide a generously sized sanctuary for work or relaxation.
From the ground floor, AC Hotel guests ascend in high-speed elevators to the sun-drenched Sky Lobby on the 34th floor, where they are greeted by jaw-dropping views of Los Angeles that stretch all the way to the iconic Hollywood Hills. Like the foyer of a gracious Spanish hacienda, the lobby features textured plaster walls, box beam ceilings, a sculptural redwood reception table, and striking artwork.
The residential influence is evident in the fluid, open connection between spaces, which encourages guests to explore. Adjacent to the reception area, the AC Library offers a sophisticated locale for creative thinking and comfortable socializing complete with a majestic black steel fireplace as a visual focal point. From the AC Library, guests enter AC Bar & Lounge, a hacienda-style haven that offers breakfast, evening bites, and drinks with panoramic views of the Hollywood Hills as a backdrop. The room is anchored by a monumental 9-by-6-foot work commissioned from Turkish artist Aykut Aydogdu, a surrealist portrait of a woman whose head, tilted back, merges with a sun setting on the water.
AC Hotel’s 347 guest rooms serve as residence-like respites from the energy of the city, with an open-plan design providing a seamless flow. Platform beds are dressed in crisp linens with a rich leather headboard. An integrated bench, closet, and oversize desk along one wall encourages productivity, while a tufted, geometric rug ensures plushness underfoot. Artwork above each bed depicts swimming pools and iconic Los Angeles buildings radically edited to present a new perspective with a splash of color. Dividing the living area from the bathroom is a full-height mirror and integrated stone sink/vanity that seems to float over the shelves below.
“We always think hard about the sociology and strategy around design, how it affects people and how it makes them feel connected to something,” says Glenn Pushelberg, founding partner of Yabu Pushelberg along with George Yabu. “Moxy and AC are different brands, but both appeal to travelers who don’t want to stay in a conventional hotel. They’re both for adventurous, bold, curious tastemakers — so the design can’t be generic.”
Drinking, Dining & Entertainment
With two unique hotels under one roof, guests at Moxy Downtown LA and AC Hotel Downtown LA have access to an astounding 12 dining and drinking options, each celebrating the city’s creative energy and culinary heritage.
At Moxy, drinks flow day to night at Bar Moxy, an energetic oasis for modern explorers. The lobby bar and all-day café provides the perfect venue to grab a coffee and snack and settle into a plush sofa or retro armchair. As night falls, guests can snag a spot at the snakeskin-clad bar and sip a hand-crafted cocktail. Just off the lobby, and with its own entrance on South Figueroa Street, Bluestone Lane Coffee Shop is ready to fuel co-working sessions with all-day Aussie-inspired coffee, brekkie sandwiches, and more.
Guests can also unwind an elevator ride away at AC Hotel’s 34th-floor AC Bar & Lounge, serving breakfast, dinner, or drinks with a view in an intimate, convivial atmosphere. The menu offers Mediterranean small plates alongside artisanal cocktails, including signature gin and tonics. Plush banquettes and a fireside library provide a warm space to grab a drink with friends old and new. AC Bar & Lounge is also home to AC Hotels’ signature European-inspired buffet breakfast as well as a bright red Berkel slicer for jamón ibérico, a festive nod to the brand’s Spanish heritage.
AC Hotel’s crown jewel, La Lo La Rooftop, is an outdoor sanctuary 34 stories up in the sky. The menu offers Spanish-style tapas with contemporary flair and highlights a selection of specialty cocktails, all perfectly complemented by lush plantings and views that stretch to the Hollywood Hills. Overhead, twinkling bistro lights and retractable sunshades keep the atmosphere intimate, while heated seating nooks ensure a cozy evening year-round.
The centerpiece of Moxy & AC Downtown LA’s food and beverage offerings is Level 8, Houston Hospitality’s visionary, multi-dimensional dining, drinking, and entertainment concept opening later this spring. Located on the eighth floor, Level 8 will immerse all senses and desires with a selection of innovative dining and drinking offerings complemented by live performances, music, and entertainment bespoke to each venue.
The 30,000-square-foot floor’s expanse will encompass a journey through cultures and time, beginning at Mr. Wanderlust, a globally inspired cocktail lounge named after the fictional creator of the space and inspired by his travels. From there, guests will have a world of possibilities to explore. South American live fire grill Qué Barbaro, will open onto poolside dining and carousel bar Golden Hour. Guests can feast on French-Japanese teppanyaki cuisine at Maison Kasai, or on traditional seiro mushi and hot pot dishes at Lucky Mizu. They can confess and transgress at Sinners y Santos, a cathedral-inspired nightclub with a speakeasy entrance. With Mother of Pearl, an alfresco oyster & ceviche bar, andBrown Sheep Taqueria on the terrace, the views and vibes are endless. A culinary odyssey with a side of Tinseltown showmanship, Level 8 features a mix of live music, acrobatics, and surprise performances designed to surprise and delight. The spaces were conceptualized by the Houston Hospitality team, with design in collaboration with LA-based interior and architectural design firm Undisclosable.
“What we’ve learned in our 20-plus years of opening restaurants and bars around LA is that people want more than just dinner or drinks out. They want to discover something new and come away with a sense that they’ve done something memorable, something different,” say Mark and Jonnie Houston. “Our trademark is a trifecta of a unique concept, a great cocktail program, and terrific entertainment, and Level 8 is all about creating opportunities for that kind of immersive discovery. The experience of each space is multifaceted and has a performative quality to it.”
Meetings & Events Space
With a concept that pays homage to Downtown LA’s industrial past and present-day spirit of urban renewal, Moxy & AC Hotel Downtown LA’s 13,000 square feet of flexible space represents a bold new approach to meeting and event design. Created by San Diego–based Basile Studios and located directly across the street from the Los Angeles Convention Center and Crypto.com Arena, the seventh-floor facilities were envisioned as the former headquarters of a fictional furniture factory. Modeled on a vintage factory floor, the 600-capacity Main Events Space is a striking hall that can accommodate conferences, banquets, weddings, parties, and other events. The room is surrounded by 16-foot panels of steel and frosted glass that are backlit to resemble exterior walls lit by natural sunlight; the LED lighting can dim to simulate different moods and times of day. The space offers maximum flexibility with the option to divide the room in two or reconfigure furniture to accommodate a variety of uses.
Separated from the Main Events Space by a plaster-coated arch are two boardrooms. The Fig Boardroom is ideal for smaller events or breakout sessions, with floor-to-ceiling walnut panels and cabinetry that exude a 1960’s-era Mad Men-inspired sophistication. The Pico Boardroom can be used for breakout sessions or standalone events in a sleek, sophisticated space inspired by a historic factory “paint booth” and with a sleek, polished look that resembles a contemporary art gallery.
An elevator ride away at Moxy Downtown LA, two glass-walled Studios on the lobby’s second-floor mezzanine, overlooking Bar Moxy, can be reserved for private gatherings. Infinitely flexible, each Studio is designed with modular furniture that reconfigures to fit the needs of meetings, brainstorming sessions, and special celebrations alike. Studios can be combined into one space for larger events, along with the option to include the mezzanine.