Well-crafted cocktails at both Library Lounge and Tropicana
Larger than average pool for L.A., with popular nightly parties
Historically significant building and lobby
Fee for valet parking
Fee for Wi-Fi
Smaller than average rooms for L.A
Poolside rooms can be noisy
This 300-room Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, literally an L.A. landmark, combines the shimmer of silver-screen history with a cutting-edge party scene centered around its multiple bars and massive pool. A terrific casual restaurant is open 24 hours, and service is surprisingly good. The rooms, though well designed, are smaller than average for L.A.
A historic landmark with a modern Hollywood party scene, the Roosevelt is a destination hotel right on the Walk of Fame.
Like an aging Hollywood starlet, the 300-room Roosevelt, which first opened in 1927, still has a spark of something special, even if its special glow has long faded. Host to the first Academy Awards and, over the decades, the temporary residence to a roster of stars longer than a summer blockbuster's credit reel, the landmark hotel sits on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, just steps from today's home of the Academy Awards, the Kodak Theatre. Guests, provided they bring enough cash, can certainly play the part of a movie star in the ornate Spanish-style lobby, or the hotel's numerous bars.
However, the Roosevelt's storied history, massive pool, and prime Hollywood Boulevard location are tempered by small rooms and an exhausting nightly party scene. The party at the poolside Tropicana bar goes until 2 a.m. (Good to know if you book one of the cabana rooms that overlook that scene.) Adding to the teeming nightlife of the Roosevelt is The Spare Room--touted as a modern day gambling and cocktail lounge. Those caveats aside, many guests choose to stay at the Roosevelt specifically for the scene, which often includes internationally known DJs dropping by and celebrities spending the night. The similarly priced Sunset Tower, another historic Hollywood hotel, is much calmer -- in part because it has only 74 rooms.
In the heart of Hollywood, the hotel is close to many attractions.
The hotel is in the heart of the Walk of Fame on Hollywood Boulevard and just steps from the Kodak Theatre, the home of the Academy Awards. Other Hollywood attractions, like Grauman's Egyptian Theatre, the Chinese Theatre, the Knitting Factory, and El Capitan, are also within walking distance. Dining options in the vicinity are plentiful.
Los Angeles is a sprawling city of almost 10 million people and a veritable spaghetti bowl of highways. Traffic can be infuriating -- and parking can be nonsensically expensive -- but renting a car makes touring the city much easier than relying on limited public transportation options.
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 distant, 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.
Smaller-than-average rooms, but stylishly appointed with canopy beds and modern amenities.
At 300 square feet, the king superior room in the main tower is smaller than average for the price. (The London's base room is more than double the size; rooms at the Chamberlain and the Beverly Hilton start at 350 square feet.) But the chic design manages to squeeze plenty into the space. The Tower Rooms, renovated in 2015, have canopy beds, two-tone walls, wooden floors with rugs, leather seating, and quirky pink pour ottomans. The Cabana Rooms, which face the pool, are more streamlined in neutral tones. All rooms have large flat-screen TVs, high-quality linens, iPod docks, fully stocked minibars, Frette robes, and electronic safes. Bathrooms are sleek, with walk-in showers and Davines toiletries.
The Roosevelt's highlights include three bars, two restaurants, and a terrific pool.
There's plenty to do at this iconic property. Three bars complement two full-service restaurants, one of which is open 24 hours. The massive pool is busy, but not packed, at all hours. A relatively large fitness center has top-quality equipment and is well maintained. The historic lobby is a Hollywood Boulevard tourist sight in its own right. The hotel also has the vintage-inspired Spare Room, complete with two-lane bowling alley (which carries a hefty per hour per lane pricetag) and cocktail lounge filled with games.
Two full-service restaurants
Three bars, including one poolside
The Spare Room, a modern-day parlor, offers old-fashioned fun with a wooden bowling alley, backgammon tables, cocktails, photobooth, and food menu.
High-quality fitness center is free to guests and open 24 hours.
Large meeting spaces but no business center
No proper spa, but massages can be arranged in an outdoor but secluded "massage garden."
One of L.A.'s biggest pools also hosts internationally known DJs late into the night.
The massive 80-by-30-foot pool, featuring an underwater mural by British artist David Hockney, is a major draw not just for daytime lounging but also for nighttime debauchery. Before lunch, lithe twentysomethings lounge away the previous night's fun while slowly sipping cocktails. In the evening, groups rendezvous over beers to plan out the night's fun. Even later, big-name DJs and guest hosts like Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke keep the crowds -- including those who might be trying to sleep in their poolside rooms -- energized until 2 a.m.
Surrounding the pool are 60 Cabana rooms. However, they can be noisy, depending on how wild the partying becomes; that said, many guests find the proximity to the pool an asset.
Two restaurants and three bars fuel the party around the clock.
With both fine and casual dining restaurants as well as poolside food service, guests can eat around the clock at the Roosevelt. (Room service is available 24 hours a day too.) A poolside bar, a dimly lit cocktail den, and modern gaming lounge round out the broad array of food and drink options.
25 Degrees, a casual restaurant with an entrance on Hollywood Boulevard, is open 24 hours. Its supremely delicious hamburgers and almost-as-good omelettes have a cult following that extends well beyond the hotel.
Public Kitchen and Bar serves up American fare from lamb t-bone to spice duck steak. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner, during select hours. The bar is open from around 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m.
The poolside bar Tropicana does a brisk business in cocktails and cheaper beers. Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke has done two surprise DJ sets there; he's one of many international talents that drop in to power the party.
A much quieter and more refined scene can be found just off the historic lobby at the dimly lit Library Bar, where bartenders crafts precious cocktails for mixology fanatics; small bites also available from the Library Bar kitchen.
The Spare Room is the Roosevelt's take on a modern gaming lounge and is fully equipped with vintage bowling lanes and other rustic gaming paraphernalia.
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