Loews Hollywood Hotel Rating: 3.5 Pearls
Hollywood, Los Angeles, California

This hotel has undergone significant renovations since our visit.
We will update our photos and review as soon as we can.

Oyster Review Summary

Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators

Pros

Cons

  • Mediocre beds
  • Internet fee (Wi-Fi or wired)
  • High valet parking fees per night.

Bottom Line

A large, midrange chain property that draws primarily business travelers, the Loews Hollywood lacks the glitz and glamour that Hollywood connotes. Still, it boasts a luxury spa, inviting rooftop pool, and prime piece of real estate one block from Hollywood Boulevard and its attractions. Besides, the only competitor in the area is the pricier -- and noisier -- Roosevelt. A full-scale renovation of the restaurant, lobby, guest rooms, and fitness center will take place throughout 2013.

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Oyster Hotel Review

 Scene

A solid but undistinguished 600-plus-room property drawing mostly business travelers, one block from the Walk of Fame

The Walk of fame is a block away
The Walk of fame is a block away

The two most noteworthy elements of the Loews Hollywood Hotel (formerly the Renaissance Hollywood Hotel and Spa) are the location in the heart of Movieland -- a block from Hollywood Boulevard and its many attractions -- and its luxury spa. And even though it offers clean, comfortable rooms; amenities aplenty, including a nice rooftop pool; reliable service, and some of the drawbacks are the generic decor. Since changing ownership in 2012, however, the hotel announced plans to undergo a massive $26 million renovation by the end of 2013.

As for now, the Loews Hollywood may feel rather nondescript, but you have to credit the hotel for incorporating its famous locale into as many aspects as possible. Staffers are known as "cast members"; housekeepers are called "room stylists." Famous Hollywood goodbyes ("Farewell, Mr. Bond"; "That's all folks!"; "Hasta la vista, baby") crowd the envelope that holds your receipt on the morning you check out. The on-site spa -- which joined the luxe exhale chain in 2013 -- has hosted Millionaire Matchmaker and The Bachelorette, and some of the suites and Executive Bedrooms include makeup rooms that performers use to prep for TV and film appearances.

In more ways than not, the Loews Hollywood is a solid but run-of-the-mill hotel dominated by business travelers five days a week most of the year. Still, the only other major hotel in the area is the iconic Roosevelt, so if you want to be near the Walk of Fame, Kodak Theatre (home of the Oscars), and other Hollywood attractions, the Loews Hollywood is your only midrange option. And, to be fair, a totally solid one. Generally, though, you'll find better deals and more interesting hotels a few miles west, in West Hollywood.

 Service

Efficient and cordial, but nothing extraordinary

The service is what you'd expect at this price point: solid but unspectacular. The bell staff will greet you at the curb, help with your bags, open doors, and flag taxis; the concierge knows her stuff. Just don't expect any above-and-beyond service or surprising extra touches.

  • Room service available for breakfast and dinner
  • Valet parking is pricey -- even for L.A.
  • Extremely friendly service at the restaurant, Twist
  • Turndown service upon request; includes small bag of snacks
  • USA Today or Wall Street Journal available

 Location

In the heart of Hollywood, close to many attractions

The Loews Hollywood is literally attached to the Hollywood & Highland Center, a block from Hollywood Boulevard and its Walk of Fame. The once-infamous Boulevard has been revitalized over the last 20-plus years, and it now sports more dudes in SpongeBob and Spider-Man costumes than prostitutes and drug dealers. Other tourist(y) attractions on the stretch of Hollywood Boulevard just steps from the hotel include Grauman's Egyptian Theatre, the Chinese Theatre, the Knitting Factory, El Capitan Theatre (where Jimmy Kimmel Live! is filmed), and the Kodak Theatre, where the Oscars are held.

  • Hollywood & Highland Center, adjacent to the hotel, features dozens of shops and restaurants, along with a multiplex and a famous high-end bowling alley, Lucky Strike, where Vinny Chase & Co. once bowled on HBO's Entourage.
  • Universal Studios is three miles away, a short drive on Highway 101.
  • The Hollywood Bowl concert venue is a 10-minute drive.
  • Rodeo Drive shopping in Beverly Hills is five miles away, at least 15 minutes by car.
  • Santa Monica and L.A.'s beaches are 11 miles, or at least 30 minutes, away by car.
  • Bob Hope Airport in Burbank is a 10-mile, 25-minute drive from the hotel.
  • In traffic, it can take 90 minutes to reach the hotel from Los Angeles International Airport, which is 25 miles away.
  • Finally, be sure to pick up an "in the know" sheet from the concierge. It includes a list of nearby shops, restaurants, bars, and tourist attractions, as well as the shows that are currently playing in theaters close by.

 Rooms

Bright, spacious, and high-tech, but subpar bathrooms and mediocre beds

The Standard Room
The Standard Room

The rooms are hit-and-miss. Unlike many hotels, the Loews Hollywood hits on the details and misses on a few of the basics. First, the hits. The rooms are large (standard rooms run 456 square feet), well lit, and, despite not having been fully renovated since 2001, still in good shape (see Cleanliness, below). Mostly, the rooms succeed in the details, notably the technology -- flat-screen TVs, iPod docks, and fast, reliable Internet (either wired or Wi-Fi). Unfortunately, the rooms fall short in two important facets: the bathrooms (weak water pressure in the shower; thin towels) and the beds (cheap- and foamy-feeling, generic-brand mattresses; cotton-polyester blend sheets). It even took five minutes for the water to heat up in my bathroom, something I would have brushed off as an isolated phenomenon had I not called down to the front desk and learned that it "happens sometimes." Funny, I thought I was in L.A., not Saskatchewan.

 Features

An impressive array: gym, business center, and meeting rooms, plus a luxury spa and a lovely rooftop pool

Spacious, sunny deck at the rooftop pool
Spacious, sunny deck at the rooftop pool

In addition to the standard big-city big-hotel collection of amenities -- fitness center, business center, and meeting rooms -- the Loews Hollywood boasts a luxury spa and an inviting rooftop pool, complete with a view (albeit partial and distant) of the Hollywood sign. The pool would be quite inviting on a warm day -- a spacious, sunny deck with shaded cabanas and comfortable lounge chairs.

  • Luxury spa -- a member of the renowned exhale brand -- has hosted episodes of The Bachelorette and The Millionaire Matchmaker before.
  • Modern, reasonably well-equipped fitness center, though the free weights and strength-training machines are outside by the pool. Also, bring your own headphones if you want to listen to music or enjoy the TVs on the cardio machines.
  • 65,000 square feet of meeting space, including a 25,000-square-foot ballroom. For more info, click here.
  • Well-equipped business center, but services cost extra
  • "Indie Thursdays" (tagline: "so very indie. so very Hollywood."), in the lobby bar showcase local musicians. No cover charge; all ages welcome.

 Family

A good place for kids, mostly because of the location

Kid-friendly attractions on Hollywood Blvd.
Kid-friendly attractions on Hollywood Blvd.

The hotel's proximity to Hollywood Boulevard makes it a solid choice for families. That sentence may strike some readers as preposterous, given the Boulevard's once-notorious reputation as L.A.'s epicenter of seediness. But the area has been revitalized, and it now sports more dudes in SpongeBob and Spider-Man costumes than streetwalkers. Also there: a host of kid-friendly tourist(y) attractions, including the Walk of Fame, the Chinese Theatre, and Madame Tussauds wax museum.

  • The Hollywood & Highland Center, adjacent to the hotel, features many kid-friendly shops and restaurants, along with a multiplex and a famous high-end bowling alley, Lucky Strike.
  • The hotel's pool is less sceney than those at most hotels in Hollywood & West Hollywood. Kids should feel welcome.
  • Cribs (free) and rollaway beds (charged per night) both available
  • Suites include pullout sofas.
  • Adjoining rooms

 Cleanliness

Quite clean

Despite not having been fully renovated since 2001, the Loews still looks sharp. I found some small stains and a few nicks and scratches in my room, and the light on the magnifying mirror in my bathroom didn't work. But overall the property is very well maintained. An extensive renovation to the property is slated to be complete by the end of 2013.

 Food

An unexceptional restaurant on-site, but plenty of options nearby, starting with the Hollywood & Highland Center

Breakfast at Twist
Breakfast at Twist

The hotel's eatery, Twist, is your standard big-chain hotel restaurant: i.e., totally decent but generic and overpriced, and it's not open for dinner. You're better off dining off-campus, especially since this is one of the few spots in L.A. where you can find a host of options within walking distance.

The hotel also has a tapas joint called Preston's. The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

  • Room service available for breakfast and dinner
  • Twist features health-conscious American food; open for lunch and breakfast, where you can order a la carte or the buffet ($22 per adult; $10 per child).
  • Cafe Fama, the lobby bar, serves dinner as well as Starbucks coffee and drinks.
  • Champagne brunch with live jazz music every Sunday at Twist.
  • Lots of cafes and restaurants along Hollywood Boulevard and at the Hollywood & Highland Center, but for high-end dining, you'll want a car.

 Bottom Line

A large, midrange chain property that draws primarily business travelers, the Loews Hollywood lacks the glitz and glamour that Hollywood connotes. Still, it boasts a luxury spa, inviting rooftop pool, and prime piece of real estate one block from Hollywood Boulevard and its attractions. Besides, the only competitor in the area is the pricier -- and noisier -- Roosevelt. A full-scale renovation of the restaurant, lobby, guest rooms, and fitness center will take place throughout 2013.

Things You Should Know About Loews Hollywood Hotel

Address

  • 1755 Highland Avenue, Hollywood, CA 90028

Room Types

  • Club Level Guest Room
  • Guest Room
  • Guest Room, City View
  • Guest room, Hollywood Hills View
  • Larger Guest Room
  • One Bedroom Junior Suite

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Hotel Features

Number of Rooms: 632
Pool: Yes
Fitness Center: Yes
Spa: Yes
Internet: Yes
Cribs: Yes
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Hotel Information

Location: Hollywood, Los Angeles
Address: 1755 Highland Avenue, Hollywood, CA 90028
(See Map)
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