Worth a Read: Businessweek Story on Sunset Strip Hotels Reveals Imminent Demise of House of Blues

An illustration of the proposed James Hotel, 8950 Sunset Blvd., looking north west from Hammond Avenue. (Three: Living Architecture)
An illustration of the proposed James Hotel, 8950 Sunset Blvd., looking north west from Hammond Avenue. (Three: Living Architecture)

While the Sunset Strip used to be known for its rock music, Businessweek says the sound that best identifies it these days is that of “buildings being demolished and new ones developed.”

Those new ones are hotels. In an article published today, writer Nadja Brandt cites the impending closing of Larry Flynt’s Hustler store at 8920 Sunset Blvd. near Hilldale (rumored to be replaced by a hotel) and quotes an official of Combined Properties Inc. as saying the firm and its partner, AECOM Capital, will begin next year to demolish the iconic House of Blues on the Strip at North Olive to erect a hotel and condominiums.

The story also notes other hotels under development or being planned by CIM Group (Sunset at La Cienega) and a partnership of Marriott International and Ian Schrager (the southeast corner of Sunset and Doheny).

Why hotels? The story cites a study by STR Global Inc., a hotel research group, that reports WeHo hotel occupancy rates were up 6.4 percent last year to 82 percent. That compares with 77 percent in greater Los Angeles as a whole.

While many residents will decry the increase in traffic, an increase in hotel rooms will put more money in the city’s already full coffers if occupancy rates remain high. Hotel room taxes are the largest single source of city revenue, projected to contribute $20 million to the city’s General Fund this fiscal year.

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Karen Lo
5 years ago

If the city’s coffers are so full, why can’t they adjust the stoplights so there is a left turn arrow at every intersection! This would so cut down on accidents, road rage and illegal turns running red lights.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
6 years ago

The opening of the House of Blues in 1993 represented a high point of City incompetence and corruption. A 3,000 person capacity club with only a handful of parking spaces. The opening months had patrons overrunning all of the residential streets. It was chaos. It was later revealed that the Club gave Abbe Land $13,000 for a failed bid for the Assembly. It was one of the first documented reports of the “pay to play” culture that has come to dominate West Hollywood politics. Of course the new hotel will feature a 13 story electronic billboard. Thank the Goddess we… Read more »

Martin W.
Martin W.
6 years ago

i think the City ought to pass a Work Hours Quality of Life ordinance that all residents of WeHo should not be compelled to work more than 40 hours a week and that their employers can’t fire them if they choose not to work more. All the fees that the City collects for hotel tax should be distributed to the residents who suffer from loss of their job or a decrease in their take home pay.

wehoray
wehoray
6 years ago

Excellent idea Todd!

Todd Bianco
6 years ago

These new hotels are inevitable. The Sunset Strip continues to be a desirable worldwide destination. Since 100% of the TOT goes to the City, it will be a windfall when all these new hotels come online (assuming there isn’t another major recession). If you add the Robertson Lane hotel project and the San Vicente Inn reboot, there will be even more pricey rooms to generate gobs of TOT. Perhaps the City should reconsider its reliance on gigantic parking ticket revenue and buck the trend by reducing fines, eliminating the parking meter extended hours or by directing its subcontractor (the money-hungry… Read more »

mike dunn
mike dunn
6 years ago

While I’m not looking forward to the construction of a hotel and condominiums at Sunset and Olive I will be elated when that pain in the a** club is gone. From the time it was constructed to this day the management has catered to low class patrons who have no respect for our neighborhood. Yelling, fighting and vandalism is the norm. Good by to a club that has paid off someone to remain open.

Jerome Cleary
Jerome Cleary
6 years ago

yes a once charming city with unique small businesses has turned into high end hotels and big box condos and makes West Hollywood into another city’s over developed suburb