This cathedral of creativity occupies the former United Artists theatre in LA’s gentrifying Broadway district, providing a welcome pocket of inspiration among the skyscrapers and city folk that dominate Downtown LA. Simultaneously minimalist and elaborate, brutalist yet welcoming, the Ace Hotel’s “interpretative restoration” of the building – think terracotta, concrete, tiles, columns and stained glass – is an ode to architecture and design, attracting local and international creatives for both work and play.

Reasonably priced rooms and a killer rooftop bar, complete with a swimming-pool-cum-hot-tub, make it one of the most desirable places in town to kick back and people-watch with views across the perennially sun-saturated city. If you need a room downtown, we don’t think you can do better.


Thoughtfully understated yet achingly cool, stripped-back concrete provides the shell for minimalist warehouse-style interiors of exposed pipework, fibreboard furniture, brass light fittings, large windows and low, wide beds. Bathrooms, separated by a painted black steel partition, channel a barber shop in Hackney or Bushwick, with Rudy’s Barbershop toiletries completing the air of insouciant confidence found throughout the hotel.

What’s for breakfast?

You’re in America so you’ll be having brunch, which could be anything from blueberry and ricotta pancakes to “merguez scramble” (lamb sausage, pistachio houmous, mint, pickled piquillo peppers in a warm pita). Alternatively, hit up the coffee counter and get something to go.

How about lunch and dinner?

“Best Girl” is a neighbourhood brasserie which spills out onto the street and is completed by a versatile mezzanine area. Visit at lunch for sandwiches, salads and burgers, while more refined plates such as black cod and spicy pork ragu join the menu at dinner.

Is there a bar?

Several – this is one of LA’s prime party spots, after all. Head to the succulent-strewn rooftop to “vogue out” while you sip gibsons and admire the bright lights of Tinseltown.


Heated rooftop pool with sun loungers, café, gym, shop, theatre.

Things I should know…

Sound-absorbing homasote boards line bedroom walls. Make of that what you will.

Within a short walk I can find…

The Fashion District; over 100 blocks overflowing with stores selling fabric, beading crafts, home décor and various curios.


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Wake Up Here: Petit Ermitage, West Hollywood

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