Sunset Tower Owner Buys WeHo’s Tarnished San Vicente Inn

Thu, Jun 13, 2013   By Staff    2 Comments
San Vicente InnThe San Vicente Inn, a “clothing optional” gay motel at 845 San Vicente Blvd. north of Santa Monica that has become known as a haven for drug users, has been purchased by the owner of Sunset Tower Hotel.

Jeff Klein, whose Sunset Tower is one of Sunset Boulevard’s most famous hostelry’s because of its Hollywood clientele, already has undertaken a rehabilitation of the 26-room property. While it once was a popular destination for gay travelers, Yelp reviews of the San Vicente Inn in recent years have focused on the poor quality of the rooms and the drug use by visitors.

Oddly, Klean, a drug and alcohol rehab facility, has occupied the westside units of the motel, which have an entrance from Hilldale Avenue and will remain there. Klean itself has been controversial, with the residents of the Norma Triangle neighborhood unhappy about the presence of recovering addicts on the property. The city filed suit against Klean, claiming that it was taking over units designated for affordable housing.

While West Hollywood has numerous other hotels and motels that cater to gay visitors, the San Vicente Inn is the only one that operated as “clothing optional,” a practice common among gay resorts in Palm Springs.

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2 Comments

  1. Todd BiancoThu, Jun 13, 2013 at 2:59 pm

    The “long-term residents” of the SVI were evicted last week. The mattresses have been thrown out. But what about the real long-term residents – the mold? The whole place needs a thorough gutting, new bathrooms, new fixtures, etc. I hope it becomes a decent gay hotel as there are none left in LA.

    It isn’t clear if Mr. Klein bought all the properties that used to make up this cluster. Does he now own the Hilldale properties occupied by KLEAN? How about the Victorian-ish blue home across San Vicente Blvd? The long-term residents of that building didn’t get evicted. I hope that the disappointed tweakers who used to hang around the area find another place to go, or better yet, rehab.

    Mr. Klein has a good track record with historic properties. I believe two or all three of the buildings that make up the SVI were given a historic designation many years ago, but the owners never applied for the Mills Act property tax reductions. All they need to do is maintain the facade to get the reductions and hopefully that will happen. The last thing we need is for them to be bulldozed to build another monstrosity like The Desmond.

  2. Bishop Tom PolcariSat, Dec 07, 2013 at 11:30 pm

    Actually, me and my guy have stayed at the San Vicente Inn many times. It is and old classic in need of some rehab, but still a great place to stay. In terms of drugs, just visit any frat house or college dorm. Why pick on this one hotel? Besides, it saves us a trip to Palm Springs as we are from the San Francisco area. Whats wrong with the drug rehab facility? These are people who are trying to get their lives back on track. That word bulldoze is just what they did to the classic Mack Sennet Studio to put up a strip mall and its what they did on Sand Canyon Road in Orange County to an 1800s stage coach stop and general store cuz it was too old and didnt fit in with the fast food places being built…If anything happens to the SVI, we will have no reason to visit LA at all unless to buy another new Chrysler product in Huntington Beach…Bishop Tom

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