A dash of East Coast sophistication in the heart of Los Angeles, the Sixty Beverly Hills is like the backdrop to a Helmut Newton photograph – all dark-toned 1970s-style and black-leather accessories. With a prime location close to Rodeo Drive, as well as a rooftop bar that screams – well, drawls – laid-back cool, it’s fast becoming a scene in its own right.
11am, though a later check-out can be arranged (subject to availability). Earliest check-in, 3pm.
Double rooms from £298.10 ($322), including tax at 15.2 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional resort fee of $32.00 per room per night on check-out.
Rates don't include a $32 a room nightly amenity fee, but do include a free wine hour every day from 5pm to 6pm. Breakfast can be purchased at the hotel for $20-30 per person.
Staff are nattily turned out in bespoke uniforms by Jenni Kayne in collaboration with super-stylist Rachel Zoe. Try to steal one.
At the hotel
Pool, gym, spa and beauty treatments on request, valet parking, laundry service, free WiFi throughout. In rooms: king-size beds, Sferra bedlinen, minibar, 55 inch flatscreen TV with streaming, free bottled water, CD/DVD player, iPod and iPod dock, air-conditioning, Ren toiletries, Sferra bathrobes.
Our favourite rooms
For an absolute blowout, we love the huge Penthouse suite, which comes with a smoky-tinged glass eight-seater table, an infinity pool-style Jacuzzi and 1970s black leather Danish chairs. We also adore the rooms on the east side of the hotel, which offer great views of the Hollywood sign and the mountains beyond.
Part of a two-level rooftop area, the heated outdoor pool, surrounded by sunloungers beneath citrus and olive trees, lies next to a cocktail bar that offers views of the whole city.
Bring some dark and sophisticated undergarmets to recreate your favourite Helmut Newton poses against the sultry backdrop of the rooms.
The hotel has plenty of accessible rooms, as well as an accessible lobby and pool.
Ask for one of the banquettes at the back of the restaurant – they’re the most conducive to people-watching and snuggling.
Think smart and black; the scene is far more NY than LA.
With art deco overtones and ivory, tortoiseshell and ebony accents, Ella's serves up a modern medley of Mediterranean, Asian, and Italian flavors. The restaurant has a comfort-food focus on market-fresh produce, artisan wines and home-made desserts. Our favourite dishes include the whole grilled branzino, thick-cut steaks and toad-in-the-hole. Paying homage to the history of the post-prohibition era, with sleek leather booths and vintage signs, you'll find your perfect pairing.
Buzzing most nights, and particularly between Wednesday and Saturday, both the Lounge and the rooftop ABH serve up cocktails till 2am to a well-heeled hipster crowd of members and hotel guests. DJs create a laid-back, loungey atmosphere with a creative selection of jazz, funk and hip-hop tunes.
The last steak is grilled at 11pm; but drinks are poured til 2am in the bars.
Guests can order from a snack menu 24 hours a day.
Los Angeles International (LAX) airport is 12 miles from the hotel. Get there from the UK with British Airways (www.ba.com), who fly daily from London Heathrow.
LA's main rail hub, Union Station, is 30 minutes away. Amtrak (www.amtrak.com) runs services that link up the country.
If you're driving, the hotel has overnight valet parking (US$55 a night). But taxis and Ubers are plentiful, if you'd rather not tackle the notorious LA traffic yourself.
Worth getting out of bed for
Step outside Sixty Beverly Hills and take advantage of the famous zip code—you’re a 90210 resident for now, after all. Stroll down Rodeo Drive and window shop at designer boutiques or splash out at the likes Celine, Salvatore Ferragamo and Christian Dior. For a change of scenery, meander through Beverly Gardens Park, home to the 12-meter ‘Beverly Hills’ sign and rose and cactus gardens perfect for an afternoon stroll. If you happen to be here during the third weekend of May or October, be sure to check out the Beverly Hills Art Show in the park running four blocks from Rodeo Drive to Rexford Drive.
If that hot SoCal weather gets to be too much, visit the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) for an afternoon. Home to one of California’s more impressive art collections LACMA is located just two miles from the hotel. You can observe over 120,000 pieces of art including work from Diego Rivera and Pablo Picasso. With a permanent collection devoted to Hollywood vehicles and the Streetscape – an exhibit containing 30 detailed dioramas chronicling the evolution of Los Angeles – the Peterson Automotive Museum and its 150 classic rides displayed across three floors are worth a visit.
When the sun goes down, catch a show at the art deco El Rey Theatre on the Miracle Mile, a 1936 monument that now hosts local bands nightly.
Rub elbows with the stars at the Polo Lounge at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Unwind outside in a beautiful garden terrace and sip champagne with breakfast or brunch. Or stop in for afternoon tea after a day shopping on Rodeo Drive. Meander over to the Farm of Beverly Hills, a casual, farm-to-table breakfast and lunch spot less than a mile from the hotel. Request a table on the outdoor patio and fill up on a hearty breakfast of Farmer’s Benedict or nosh on a classic burger for lunch.
For a romantic evening, book one of the 25 nightly spots at celebrity chef Curtis Stone’s popular restaurant, Maude, whose nine-course dinners each feature one seasonal ingredient that changes monthly. Hobnob with the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills on the elegant patio at Lisa Vanderpump’s Villa Blanca and dine on a menu that fuses Mediterranean and Asian cuisine. Acclaimed chef José Andrés’ restaurant The Bazaar at SLS Hotel Beverly Hills offers a take on traditional and modern tapas that will sate even the most voracious appetite. Be sure to book in advance to secure a table.
Momedon South Beverly Drive offers fresh and modern Mediterranean cuisine. Its all-encompassing restaurant/deli/marketplace makes it the perfect place for a relaxed dine-in lunch or a quick stop en route to a picnic.
In a city where cars are practically mandatory, Beverly Hills is a perfect home base for a night out on the town, thanks to a number of nightlife options within walking distance of the hotel.
At lively Pour Vous, try your luck with a Moulin Rouge or a Puff-Puff Pastis cocktail, or take a gamble on the Dealer’s Choice, where the bartender will concoct something delicious based on your spirit of choice. If you’d rather sip your cocktails somewhere more low-key, try the Honor Bar at the South Beverly Grill. Its casual atmosphere blends an aesthetic of red-brick walls and reclaimed wood beams with tasty small plates.
Listen to the smooth sounds of one of two live jazz shows per evening while you drink and dine at HOME, a jazz supper club located in the heart of Beverly Hills.
Sample craft beers at local favourite the Surly Goat in West Hollywood, a chilled-out haunt that gets you out of the typical Beverly Hills scene. Something more swank that eliminates the crowds? Ten Poundat the Montage Beverly Hills may be difficult to find, but a whisky lover will search long and hard for this intimate and refined upstairs bar that specialises in Macallan Single Malt. Even whisky novices will appreciate the views of Beverly Canon Gardens.
It was hardly a taxing invitation. Mr Smith: ‘Fancy popping over to the States for Coachella Festival in the Californian desert?’ Mm. Then we could take Highway 1 to San Francisco, hang out with family, scoot back down to a wedding in Beverly Hills and stay at the much-talked-about Sixty Beverly Hills (formerly the Thompson Beverly Hills) on Wilshire. Where do I sign?
After a couple of weeks on the road, Mr Smith and I rock up at the hotel in our clichéd, but as Mr Smith puts it, ‘entirely necessary’ Ford Mustang Convertible – in a terrifying Eighties’ optic white. Looking very much the tourists on tour, our dwindling cool factor plummets further as we approach the hotel valet past a line-up of cars that wouldn't look out of place on the Beckhams’ forecourt.
Formerly an anonymous chain hotel, the Sixty Beverly Hills in Los Angeles has had an injection of style ever since the eponymous hip hotel group, and designer Dodd Mitchell, got their manicured hands on it. Though large, the hotel has been given a boutique makeover that would turn more intimate properties green. All 107 rooms have been decorated in a colour palette of rich browns and greys, and accessorised with Palamino or Fresian rugs, and chocolate-leather bedheads.
Check-in is swift and despite only one elevator functioning, it’s quickly up to level seven and our king premium room. We ignore a guy in the lift comparing his king premium room, less favourably, to a shoebox. Stifling disappointment we navigate our way down the seriously sexy and dimly lit (at 5.30pm) corridor to our room where we're more than relieved! Our so-called ‘shoebox’ is in fact a light and airy space with enough room for my six pairs of shoes – and many more I might buy. The dramatic black-and-white marble bathrooms are as glamorous as some of the Hollywood A-listers who live round these parts although ‘oversized’ is a small exaggeration, but our bunk-up makes a great base for three days.
Even though our room overlooks a couple of buildings and a rather large roof, a French balcony proves a welcome addition to the room: Mr Smith is even kind enough to let me jump on his back to see the ‘d’ from the Hollywood sign in the distance. Cityscapes, however, don’t come more dazzling as one floor up, care of ABH. Above Beverly Hills is the hotel’s chic bar and pool and in a 360-degrees spin, I can see the Hollywood sign, downtown LA, a bird’s-eye view of the route of my forthcoming shopping expedition. I confess due to the fully stocked rooftop bar (a bottle of Sam Smiths ale is particularly pleasing for Mr Smith), we don’t make it as far as the fitness centre, but a peek through portholes gives me a glamorous dose of the Swarovski-studded pool.
As a rendezvous, the rooftop bar is the winner, and here lounge lizards and Angelino scenesters sip cocktails and gaze out over the city of angels. For us, the restaurant proves no great shakes. Staff are attentive and service is sharp in this tranquil spot– but it’s probably best if you’re popping those tapas-size portions on expenses. Delicious, but definitely best to adopt a sharing-style approach to the size-0-suiting portions. A set ‘Beverly Hills breakfast’ at $80 for two seems more fitting to Chateau Marmont than the Sixty.
Ignoring the many recommendations we’ve had for In-n-Out burgers and their secret ‘double double animal’ recipe – yikes – we explore our locale and end up taking a taxi up into the hills. (Although as we discover later, those two patties doused in dressing, pickles and cheese work wonders on a champagne hangover.) After the bright lights big city, the restaurant Pace in the Canyon is worth the 15 minutes by car and it feels like we’ve escaped to a romantic hideaway. Beautifully lit and intimate, this Italian eatery has been serving organic, sustainable food for over a decade in the heart of Laurel Canyon and it lives up to its rep, the food is delicious, the local Merlot is fantastic and I am sure I spot Leo DiCaprio.
A wedding in Beverly Hills is our main reason to be here, but still we find time to ogle the more plush, polished and plastic parts of Beverly Hills as well as dreamy vintage shops up on Hillhurst Avenue. A stop at Alcove Cafe & Bakery for homemade lemonade and the freshest of salads in their sun-drenched garden is another must.
Botox or a nip-tuck aren’t on my agenda, however it would be rude not to get a pre-nuptials A-list 'blow-out' – as it is in local parlance. JM Blowdry is the brainchild of celeb hairstylist Joseph Martin and he does not disappoint. Situated off North Canon Drive & Dayton Way, this $30 a visit salon gives me Jennifer Aniston hair in an hour, and it stays with me for four days. Even Mr Smith is impressed with the swoosh.
In a city that is as larger than life as you imagine it to be and a little bit more, it is especially difficult to leave that 5am Los Angeles sunrise behind – it looks how I’d picture a Rothko painting to glow through a Diana camera on 120 roll film. As David Lynch says, ‘The light in Los Angeles is different to anywhere else. I’m lucky to live with that light, it’s inspiring and energising’. So if you’d like that extra-special light served with a swanky rooftop pool bar with well-designed rooms and clued-up staff, then open your eyes to Sixty Beverly Hills.