HOSPITALITYDESIGN: The Redesigned Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles Enters the Spotlight

Originally opened in the spring of 2010, the Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles was calling for a refresh nearly a decade later. Enter: Rottet Studio, the architecture and interior design firm commissioned to update much of the 134,143-square-foot property, which includes a 123-key hotel and residences. (The renovation project spanned lobbies, corridors, the Club Lounge, guestrooms, suites, and elevator lobbies.)

de Gournay’s bold handpainted Rateau wallpaper adds a whimsical touch in the hotel lobby, where sheers were replaced with bronze chains held together with Swarovski crystals

The design team set out to tie the property’s interior design more closely to its location in the heart of downtown Los Angeles’ L.A. Live entertainment district. “Our story is that of an iconic celebrity stepping out into the spotlight of L.A. Live: elegant, cool, reserved, posing in front of a huge crowd of flash-bulb-popping paparazzi jockeying for position,” says Laurence Cartledge, associate principal at Rottet Studio, which operates offices in Houston, Los Angeles, and New York.

Rottet Studio instilled an atmosphere of glamour and elegance through carefully considered design details. In the lobby, for instance, dramatic wallcoverings in gold, black, and white hues complement existing stone and wood walls that were retained while also paying homage to Art Deco style. “The colors [throughout the property] were selected in thoughtful contrast to one another, creating a sense of tailored sophistication,” adds Cartledge.

In the hotel guestroom corridors, illuminated framed metal grillages depicting jumping gazelles stand out against existing dark wood veneer walls

The sparkle of mirrors and Swarovski crystals act as a “metaphor for flashbulbs along red carpet events, which subliminally puts the guest in the spotlight,” Cartledge says. Eye-catching chandeliers, including bird nest-like fixtures installed overhead in the lobby, also create instant focal points.

Artwork adds personality and a deepened sense of place throughout both public and private spaces. Large black and white portraits, which call to mind the work of late fashion photographer and Los Angeles native Herb Ritts, add a dose of drama. And, at the entrance of the Club Lounge, a piece depicting a palm tree comprises thousands of small headshots of the individuals involved in the renovation process—from ownership and hotel management to the design team, general contractor, vendors, and consultants. “It’s a nod to our great team in a fun and subtle way, and holds to our conceptual idea of being a celebrity—putting them in the limelight a little bit among the guests of the hotel,” Cartledge says.

The color palette is dominated by black, white, and gold tones that complement the property’s original finishes

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