W Hotel – a place where
revitalization goes on apace
The Hollywood Boulevard entrance to the W Hotel. Interesting artwork spans the space between the two towers. © SGE, Inc.
FOR TWENTY YEARS, Hollywood – the community not the concept – has been undergoing a major revitalization.
The most recent addition is the spectacular W Hotel on Hollywood Boulevard opposite the historic Pantages Theater.
It is intended to anchor the eastern end of the revitalization area, already dominated by the Hollywood/Highland complex in the west.
I blogged about this structure on May 5. Check out “Hollywood/Highland.”
I had the good fortune to attend a “Get Centered” luncheon event at the W Hotel sponsored by the Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center on April 24.
It was the first time I had ever been in the high-rise.
(Check out more images below the fold)
The lobby bar is used by those in business attire during the lunch hour. Could the three-Martini-lunch be coming back into vogue? © SGE, Inc.
AS YOU CAN tell from the images with this post, the décor of the public spaces on the ground floor is beyond post-modern.
The atrium rising three or four stories is filled with stunning artworks. Hollywood obviously!
There is nothing at all subtle about what the visitor can view.
It is not gaudy, rather it is opulence on a grand scale. No costume jewelry here; it’s all sapphires and diamonds.
I attended the event more out of curiosity than anything. I am certainly not one of the highrollers who could afford to write a check with four zeros in it, as could most of the others in attendance.
But I believe it is time for me to begin making a contribution to the community of which I am part.
By good fortune and happenstance, I was seated next to Jim Key, public affairs director of the LAGLC.
I immediately became acquainted and told him some of my story. I invited him to check
Don’t I look spiffy in my luncheon attire? This photograph was taken by the event’s official photographer who had just taken one of me. © SGE, Inc.
some documentation on my iPad. But he had forgotten to bring his glasses.
“Borrow mine,” I offered. He did.
The presentation during lunch was absolutely Hollywood style. Production values were top of the line.
The Center’s Chief Development Officer Bill McDermott provided the statistics.
“The center has 390 employees and 3000 volunteers,” McDermott said. “It is the largest LGBT organization in the world.”
Some 25,000 client visits are held each month, and hundreds of LGBT senior citizens come to the center for support.
“The center has become someone’s therapist someone’s lawyer someone’s doctor,” McDermott added.
“I have the best job in the world. I get to see people’s lives change in amazing ways.”
Quite a powerful pitch.
Of course the collection plate was passed after lunch, and I made a small contribution.
But the real star of the show was the building itself. It is a remarkable addition to the Los Angeles area’s architecture and design.
There is no doubt that it is an improvement
The view from the hotel shows the historic Pantages Theater across the street, and a construction site next door. © SGE, Inc.
for Hollywood that will generate further redevelopment in an area that desperately needs it.
Congratulations to all involved.