Hotel Bel-Air, Los Angeles CA

The Hotel Bel-Air opened its doors in 1946 and quickly became a favorite of the Hollywood elite including Grace Kelly, Cary Grant, Marilyn Monroe and Audrey Hepburn. Purchased in 2008 by Dallas businesswoman Caroline Hunt, the hotel became a member of the esteemed Dorchester Collection of hotels which includes the Dorchester in London, the Hotel Plaza Athenee in Paris, the Hotel Eden in Rome and others.

The hotel closed in 2009 and reopened in 2011 after a renovation project with revered interior designer Alexandra Champalimaud and the Rockwell Group. All 103 guest rooms and various public spaces were updated yet retained the charm of the Golden Age of Hollywood.

Today the property sits on 12 lush acres just a short distance from Beverly Hills. Paths wind through the gardens bordered by beautiful flowers and bushes in vibrant colors of the season. Swan Lake, with its graceful swans skimming across the water, epitomizes the tranquility and privacy of this secluded setting in the Hollywood hills.

103 rooms and suites are scattered about the property gardens affording maximum privacy. Starting at a generous 430 sq ft, the rooms feature custom limestone floors, natural wood ceilings and a soft palette of tans, browns and whites. Beds are draped in luxury Fili d’Oro Egyptian cotton bed linens. Marble bathrooms come with with heated floors, rain head showers and Anne Semonin bath amenities. We loved our Grand King Room that had a sitting area around a fireplace and French doors leading to an an outside patio.

The warm and cozy Bar and Lounge has a wonderful fireplace, Norman Seeff’s iconic photographs and a grand piano for nightly entertainment. Great drink and wine menu. Small plates including cheese, caviar, oysters and more.

In a spectacular outdoor garden setting with an outside bar and booths and private alcoves overlooking Swan Lake, Wolfgang Puck at the Bel-Air is a popular dining choice for guests and locals alike. The food is what one would expect from Wolfgang Puck, creative, well prepared and delicious. I enjoyed a fantastic Toriliia Soup, with Roasted Chicken, Crema Fresca, Avocado, Crispy Tortilla Strips, Cilantro and Guajillo Chilies and a wonderful Organic Jidori 1/2 Chicken, that was cast iron roasted with natural jus.

The staff is friendly and pleasant and greets you by name. There are excellent children’s and pet’s programs. The hotel provides transportation to anywhere within a 3 mile radius. A concierge can make travel arrangements, provide baby-sitting and dog walking services, can secure difficult reservations and more.

Puck and his team have created a gourmet à la carte menu for hotel guests to build their own picnic basket for a romantic picnic around Swan Lake. The experience comes complete with dining trays, blanket and plush pillows.

From $634 Peak Season Weekend

AAA Five Diamond Award – Lodging
AAA Four Diamond Award – Dining
Forbes Five Star Award – Lodging
Forbes Five Star Award – Spa
Forbes Four Star Award – Dining

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