Andaz Los Angeles (West Hollywood) - Review

Discussion in 'Hyatt | Gold Passport' started by peteropny, Mar 6, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. peteropny
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    I stayed here on Tuesday night on my 5th or 6th stay since the property completed its total overhaul/renovation in early 2009.

    In my opinion this is probably my preferred property in "central LA" over the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza (about 3-4 miles away in Century City). This is primarily due to "cost" differences - usually the revenue rate at the Andaz is slightly lower as well as being a lower category for award redemptions.

    As a Diamond, I received the "usual" upgrade to one of the "View" rooms in front of the building. These rooms are slightly larger than the standard ones in the back of the building since those do not have the enclosed "sun"/sitting room that were formerly the open balcony on the front side of the building. The positives of these "view" rooms are that they are slightly larger with the sitting room (also has a small TV in the area) and have a view towards downtown LA (the back side rooms simply have a view of the Hills up above the property). The downside is that these rooms are noisier since they directly overlook Sunset Boulevard (the Strip area with several bars and nightclubs). Some Diamonds seem to get complimentary upgrades to a suite (there are 2 on each floor - at the ends of the building). The suites were created from 2 rooms after the remodel (probably realized they needed more suites in the property than the large Sunset Suite on the top floor) and consist of a large living room area in the front (room feels a bit sparse of furniture though) with a full bath. The small bedroom is on the back side of the property and has another full bath. I've stayed in one of these suites once using my Diamond Confirmed Suite upgrade. All rooms have a large flat panel TV (42 inchers would be my guess). Non-alcoholic drinks in the mini-bar as well as snacks are complimentary as with all Andazes.

    It should be noted that all baths in this property (with the possible exception of the Sunset Suites) are shower only without tubs. These showers have a half wall of glass with the rest of the area remaining open - it's tough to feel really warm in the shower. Also, for my last 2 stays, I noticed that there was not a proper shower head but the "wand like" handheld unit was held up by the handle. In my opinion, this does not provide a satisfactory shower. I could swear that the rooms that I have gotten prior to the last 2 stays had both a proper shower head and the handheld unit.

    Check-in at this property can be a bit confusing with the Andaz model of not having a "front desk" but having the "hosts" wander around with handheld small laptops to check people in. Since the "hosts" are not in uniform (and not all wearing one color - black at the Fifth Ave NYC property), it can be hard to tell who actually the hosts are. Helpfulness of the hosts also range quite a bit - some are very helpful and knowledgable and some others "clueless" (including one after my first stay in conjunction with an official Hyatt function telling me that they were not part of Hyatt). The "lobby" is setup as a living room area and most of the time the hosts would offer a drink - water or wine that is complimentary in the afternoon/evening. The counter area also has two laptops for guest use that print to a printer located in the corner - it should also be noted that wifi is free for all guests staying at the property.

    Diamond amenity at this property is a choice of 1,000 points (1W) or $15 hotel credit towards incidentals (supposed to be for restaurant charges but there have been reports that they often apply it to the valet parking charge which is $32 / night). I chose the $15 credit this stay but the entire $15 credit was not given (just the tax and gratuity for the dinner was taken off).

    Inconsistencies is the most frustrating aspect of this property. Breakfast is another area of inconsistency. In the past, I've had to argue with the checkout clerk that breakfast is a perk for Hyatt Diamonds (they sometimes claimed they're not part of Hyatt), other times a fixed credit is taken off if charges exceed the allowance, other times the entire breakfast charge never make it to the folio. Recently, they've started saying that Diamonds can only take the buffet plus an egg dish for the breakfast perk. They allowed me to order the Poached Egg Perigourdine and Orange Juice "one final time". It should be noted that my order was $5 less than the Buffet + Egg option. If this continues, it could force me to take another look at the Century Plaza property - which at least used to upgrade Diamonds to the Century Suite (true large suite) if available. Normally, I prefer a restaurant breakfast to club lounge access.

    Finally, I would like to note that the hotel restaurant RH (named in tribute to the property's colorful history as the Riot House Hyatt) has excellent food and currently is on Open Table as a 1,000 points (equivalent to $10 discount if you accumulate enough points) restaurant.
     
  2. RichardInSF
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    Did they fix the inadequate lighting in the rooms? How about the problem of the HVAC motion sensor not seeing the bed (and hence turning things off in the middle of the night)?

    I'm not happy with the parking situation at either Century Plaza or the Andaz. My preference is for self-parking with in and out privileges, something that neither hotel seems to offer.
     
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  3. peteropny
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    There is no change in either the lighting (on the dim side but adequate in my view with bright spotlights over the bed for reading - YMMV) or the HVAC motion sensor. Since I was in a regular "view" room the HVAC sensor does see the bed (I believe that you are referring to the former front corner rooms which are now the living areas of the regular suites). I did notice that the HVAC sensor does shut off and comes back on if you move to get up etc (I did wake up and get up a few times due to messed up sleep from jetlag - this stay was basically a layover on the way home from an Asia trip).
     
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  4. chanp
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    chanp Silver Member

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    I havnet stayed here in a few months, but the last time I did, I had $50 to spend on my breakfast and everything was taken off. I even had 2 rooms booked, they took $100 off. I've been pretty happy w the WeHo property and will continue to stay here when I'm in the area.
     
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  5. Concur that service at breakfast can vary widely. Last time, I was so fed up I simply walked out.
    Also concur that showerhead is suboptimal and should be replaced ASAP.
    I have yet to have a stay post normally; I've always had to call Hyatt CS.
    I do like the setup and the renovation, and the valet service is very good.
     
  6. ezraulo

    ezraulo Active Member

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    i'm staying there tomorrow - friday and hoping for the best. i've stayed at the andaz san diego which i thought was nice enough, albeit not much going on.
     
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  7. Wurm
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    Wurm Silver Member

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    There was a big self-parking lot in the back of the property for seeral decades, on the land where the MGM Studios office tower now sits.
     
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  8. Sweet Willie
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    Sweet Willie Gold Member

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    thanks Wurm for the post, anyone confirm?

    I have a reservation coming up soon and do not want to have to pay for parking.
     
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  9. mowogo
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    mowogo Gold Member

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    Should be interesting to see all of the reviews of this property after the launch party there in a couple of weeks.
     
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  10. chanp
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    chanp Silver Member

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    Stayed here again last weekend. Still a decent property. Upgrades are not as great as they used to be. The breakfast is sure different than the past, but they still do a decent job.
     
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  11. peteropny
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    That is at the Century Plaza property not the Andaz. There is a charge albeit lower than valet but without in/out privileges.
     
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  12. peteropny
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    Could you please elaborate on the upgrade and breakfast for your stay?
     
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  13. chanp
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    chanp Silver Member

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    Sure. My last stay here, they had a menu I think from RH, nice a la carte menu. Now its basically a breakfast buffet and you can choose a hot item. Omelette, waffle, pancakes, etc. You get juices, bread, tea, coffee, etc. Upgrade, I almost everytime got a nice suite, towards the end of the hotel, separate bedroom. Now upgrades are to the sunset strip, but it is an upgrade as I usually book the cheapest rate I can find. As I said before, still a property I like.
     
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  14. peteropny
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    Ok - thanks - that's what I thought about breakfast they were directing towards the buffet with one ordered item. While I'm not really a regular here, I've never gotten one of the suites (except one time when I used my suite upgrade) - so they still upgrade to the View category (in accordance with Hyatt T&Cs which is best non-suite room - basically the property only has 4 categories anyways - the basic back side of the building, the View over Sunset, the regular suites at the ends of the building, and the Sunset Suite).
     
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  15. Quasiconvexity
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    Quasiconvexity Gold Member

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    +1. I have never been auto-upgraded to the suites as well - usual upgrade is to a view King, and I quite like that room, especially the small sitting area right next to the windows overlooking the Strip. Used a suite upgrade certificate once to get into a suite - it was spacious but otherwise not that much better in comparison to the regular room (e.g. still no tubs - both bathrooms were small and had showers)
     
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  16. Sweet Willie
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    Sweet Willie Gold Member

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    I burned a couple of free suite nights (from Hyatt CC) & used points (normal room rate) for 3rd night, the property kept us in the same suite (NICE !). The sitting area in our room was put to great use, we split a bottle of bubbly to end each night. Speaking of bubbly, do yourself & pocketbook a favor, bring your own. There is a Pink Dot convenience store located a short walk away from the hotel but their booze rates are 2-3 times what I was willing to pay (Korbel was $20+ a bottle for instance, Veuve Clicquot was $70+) so we just waited until we drove past a less expensive liquor store. There was a nice small fridge in our room to keep our bottles cold. All items in fridge (except booze) were complimentary & replaced each day, a nice perk no doubt.

    Bed/linens were very comfortable. Showerhead wasn't the greatest.

    Our suite was on the end of the building which is across a parking area from a comedy club, there will LOUD music until 1am (at least there was each night we were there). We normally get to bed early & this would have bothered me, however we were on a tear this past weekend so didn't get to bed until very late each night.

    I did look for some parking options but it was a PITA so paid for valet :mad:

    We loved the breakfast, high quality meats & good breads. Mrs Sweet Willie ordered a la carte off of menu & all breakfast charges were removed at check out.

    Pool/rooftop area is very nice but VERY small, we were fortunate & were able to nab a cabana when we wanted to sun. Pool temp was a bit chilly but personally I like it like that. Waitstaff was hit or miss, a couple of times the waiter would walk past our cabana w/o so much as pausing to see if we were interested.

    FWIW, we stopped at Canters www.cantersdeli.com before our evening flight out for dinner. Awesome as always.

    The drive to get to the property isn't the best, Santa Monica was horrible each time we were on it. I've come to the conclusion that there are more clueless drivers in LA than anywhere else.
     
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  17. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Is it correct that Andaz bathrooms have bathrobes but not slippers?

    Also, can someone please confirm if their suites and rooms (does it make a difference?) have coffee makers and coffee supplies? Is is the one cup coffee maker like I've seen in Hyatts or does the coffee maker make a large or small pot of coffee? Or perhaps is there an electric kettle and French coffee press? Do they provide real cups, or just styrofoam/paper?
     
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  18. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I'm staying here for the launch party and so far I'm not at all impressed by the staff. It's now been more than four days, I've talked with four people, and no one will (or can) send me a correct confirmation email after I've told all of them about the three things that need to be corrected on the email confirmation that was sent by the property. Perhaps I'm just not hip enough in that I expect an accurate written confirmation for every travel reservation I make and when a hotel sends me a confirmation with mistakes, I expect to receive a corrected written confirmation promptly without argument. Someone telling me that they have it correct isn't enough in such a case. I want to have the correct written documentation in hand when I arrive in case there is a problem.

    Moreover, when I telephone the property about a communication that was sent by the property I do not want to be transferred into a holding queue for central reservations. If I had wanted to talk with Hyatt Central reservations, I would have called the toll free number for the Diamond Line myself.
     
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  19. From NYC
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    Stayed there for one night for the OWMD Launch Party, my first stay in several years. Had many a night there when it was the Riot Hyatt or the Riot on Sunset. I liked the look of the new interior spaces, especially the restaurant and bar. Miss having the balcony overlooking Sunset, but the little day room/nook they’ve created out of it was fine.

    Room was comfortable, and the staff were fine and helpful. I didn’t bring a car, and they sorted out for me the buses to take to get back to airport, based on when I wanted to get to LAX. The fact that it’s valet only now if you want to put the parking charges on your bill is a pain. Used to love just being able to drive up and into the garage on my own back in the day.

    Breakfast was terrific, and the nibbles I had in the evening were very good as well.

    I’d happily go back there and am glad the Party gave me the opportunity to try it out again.
     
  20. mowogo
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    mowogo Gold Member

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    Because of the limit on pictures, I have deleted some here but you can find this review and all its pictures on my blog
    Check-In
    This is something that a lot of people complain about with the property, and it can be difficult when there are a lot of people in the lobby, but the agents have no uniforms, no nametags, and about the only way you can recognize them is that they carry iPads to check you in. Check-in was simple, and I was given my room key, as well as a complimentary glass of wine, which is available every night.
    The Room
    Now this is where it gets interesting. This property was an old Hyatt and famous for the parties that rock stars would throw at the hotel. I was fortunate enough to get on the special rate, which was the view rooms, and was given a room on the 11th floor, notorious for being rented out by Led Zepplin for their parties.
    [​IMG]
    Now one of the interesting things is that they glassed in the balconies and turned them into a sitting area.
    [​IMG]
    And the view from my room
    [​IMG]
    Now, the door key is different than most, and has them set up for the future. Inestead of a magnetic strip, it is RFID and so eventually you could use your phone to unlock your door. Now the hallways are a little dark, and takes some work to find your room since the doors don't have the numbers in a traditional location.
    [​IMG]
    The bathroom is another area with complaints, and while clean and good amenities, I absolutely hate the design of the bathroom.
    The water comes from a small bar, which is decent. The shower itself is just a glass divider, and it has no door, so if you are tall, it is almost guaranteed that you are going to have water all over the floor of the bathroom..
    One of the unique features of Andaz is the free minibar. Everything except the alcoholic beverages is free.
    And to build on the rock and roll theme of the hotel, the hotel guide is in one record sleeve, with actual records in the others. I feel that the only thing missing was a record player.
    Facilities
    Here is the nice rooftop pool, and it also has a bar.
    [​IMG]

    Summary
    Overall, a very nice hotel, with a lot of character. I was quite happy with my stay, and the prices are reasonable for the area.
     
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  21. Sweet Willie
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    Sweet Willie Gold Member

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    actually went straight through to the morning one night:D this was the view from our room Sunrise over LA.jpg
     
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  22. THREEA4ME
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    THREEA4ME Silver Member

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    I'm arriving friday and was wondering

    a) I used confirmed suite upgrade to King Suite 800 sq feet. Anyone stay in one of these suites and, if so, is there one worth recommending

    vii) Is breakfast taken off each day or only one hot item?

    3) Is there anywhere to park that is not $32 a day! and

    codisel ii) Are the appys in the afternoon worth it?
     
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  23. peteropny
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    The suites are at the ends of the floors - I believe on every floor - higher floors would be quieter - the higher number one probably has a slightly better view. I've only stayed in a lower number one on a higher floor.
     
  24. THREEA4ME
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    THREEA4ME Silver Member

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    Used my diamond suite upgrade for a tremendously fun suite overlooking the strip. Really worth it. I found everyone to be really cool there. Free wine between 5-7. Breakfast is in the restaurant and you can have the buffet plus an egg dish and juice and coffee and it is free for two guests so you can't beat that. The only downer is the parking -- just nowhere really to park overnight. But for friends visiting, they can park at the Carney's next store or 2 hours street parking and it's all good.

    the pool with the cabanas you don't have to reserve are heavenly. For $240ai with a suite, this is a great LA deal if you are a Hyatt Diamond and use a suite upgrade. For those who don't have the suite upgrade, I did see the upgraded Diamond room and it is nice, but would I recommend it? Maybe. You have to like the Sunset strip: Bar Marmont (models galore), Sky Bar, Whisky-A-Go-Go, Viper Room and House of Blues are all really fun if you are into that kind of thing.
     
  25. Jenny & Curt
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    Jenny & Curt Gold Member

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