“Seriously cool adult playground with pool parties, nightly DJs, live performance art, a retro restaurant/lounge and a Sunset Strip club where you’re ‘on the list’”
'Slip it in!' teases your room card. The drapes are Andy Warhol, the matchbox in the ashtray advertises Hollywood Bail Bonds, the climate control is set to Blow (Hard and Harder). Models, starlets and musicians are texting and air-kissing in the shag-carpet encased lobby. Barracudas 'swim' through the Cactus Lounge and there’s a Blushing Blond Bombshell waiting by the pool (or at least The Standard's cocktail version). Good to know that Rudy’s Barbershop does the 'best blow-outs this side of La Brea', because as a guest you’re on the list to party at the Purple Lounge, a Sunset Strip hotspot tucked speakeasy-style behind the 24-hour diner. Best of all, it's reasonably priced considering its hipper-than-hip location and ethos. Sweet!
- Location, location, location - in the heart of Sunset Strip; some book ground-floor rooms just to watch the action, and most of the rooms have great views
- Hip Hollywood hangout for up-and-coming hunks and hotties - tats, hangers-on, accessory dogs and all - sans paparazzi-paranoia
- Clever to the core; the ironies and entendres (the pencil says 'Rub Me') are fresh and fun
- Minimalist-modern rooms are stark but come with free WiFi and a 24/7 room service menu
- Friendly staff welcome guests and regulars as friends (harking back to the hotel’s first incarnation as a hostel)
- The hotel's restaurant is undergoing remodelling work. The kitchen is still operational, and food will be served by the pool or to the Cactus Lounge
- Only those aged 21 and over are allowed, and the hotel's designed for a young, party crowd
- The in-your-face colours, camp décor and unrelenting irony aren't for everyone
- It's very tranquil before noon when 'Do Not Disturb' door knob signs line the hallways; the pool deck closes at 0h30 at the latest to ensure guests get some sleep
- Extra charge for valet parking and hefty phone surcharges
- Prices can vary dramatically throughout the year
Best time to go
Our top tips
- Boutique Hotel
- Restaurant and bar (open daily)
- Only those aged 21 and over are welcome
- Open all year
- Heated Pool
- Spa Treatments
- Pet Friendly
- Disabled Access
- Beach Nearby
- Off-street Parking
- Restaurants Nearby
- Air Conditioning
- Guest Lounge
- Concierge Service
The Standard’s 139 rooms are retro-modern in style. Most have a private balcony or terrace and a view of the Sunset Strip action, or the pool deck and lights of downtown LA.
Like a swinging 60s bachelor pad morphed into an upmarket hostel, each room mixes silver beanbag chairs, Andy Warhol drapes, mirrored walls, IKEA platform beds and floating desks. A racing stripe blazes up the centre of the dorm-issue wool blanket from the foot of the bed to the oversized down pillows. The shower tiles are screaming orange; the bath products soothing organic sage, cardamom and honey.
As you might guess, 'size does matter' at The Standard. The smallest Sunset Rooms face the Strip and sport a balcony. Large Rooms have a balcony or patio facing the pool and city. Doubles have 2 queensize beds, so are perfect for friends here to party. The X-Large Rooms have seating areas where you can enjoy killer views, and some have sofabeds, if you decide to share it with a friend. If you're here for a special occassion, book a Suite, which have wraparound balconies with panoramic views of the city.
All rooms have huge comfy beds, iPod docks (CD and DVD players are available on request), free WiFi, and flat-screen TVs with 55 cable channels. Plus minibars whose 'essentials' range from sake to vitamin water and candy to condoms! Bathrooms are stark (mine reminiscent of a very clean gas station pit-stop), but nicely outfitted with giant bath sheets, bathrobes and organic Kiss My Face bath products. Some have bathtubs, others showers.
Slip into your robe, grab a vitamin drink from the minibar and drag your bean bag chair out to the balcony. The night is young.
- Air conditioning
- Central heating
- Ipod dock
- Safe box
- Satellite tv
The 24/7 room service is popular - especially during the weekend. But the retro-diner restaurant, just off the lobby, is a great place to sip your Hangover Elixir (ty-ku soju, soda and lime - under 100 calories).
Uniformed waitresses serve breakfast, lunch, dinner and cocktails around the clock - whether you’re comfortably ensconced under the pink glow of a petal lamp in a cushy brown leather booth with an aqua tabletop, hanging out in the funky Cactus Lounge (with a desert mural and dangling barracudas) or poolside. After dark, votive candles in frosted glass give the diner and pool a dreamy romance.
Comfort foods fan an international spectrum from hamburgers and pizzas to sushi and penne pasta. To make early morning decisions easier, the full breakfast menu (served 'til noon) includes 2 prix fixé plates: 'The Standard' (pastry, juice and coffee or tea), and 'The Other' (2 eggs, bacon or sausage, fries, toast, juice and coffee).
The eclectic lunch menu includes salads, pizzas, sandwiches and entrées (such as Corona beer-battered fish tacos). Saturday and Sunday brunch combines breakfast and lunch menus. Look for a handful of market-priced chef specialities such as coriander and brown sugar salmon on the dinner menu.
Add domestic or imported beer or wine from an evolving list of Californian and international reds and whites in categories designated 'Good,' 'Better,' 'Best' and 'New'. A short list of rosés and champagnes are also available. Specialty Mar’Tea’Nis and standard cocktails range from the 'Rock n Rolla' (belvedere and Red Bull with a splash of pineapple juice) to 5 flavours of mojitos and Bloody Marys (also available by the pitcher).
- Room service
- At the hotel by day: sleep ‘til 2pm and order room service like a rock star; people-watch in a hanging pod in the lobby; catch up on email on your balcony or in the leopard-and-gold foil business centre; update your look at Rudy’s Barbershop; play a game of ping-pong; make use of the discounted rates for guests at Crunch Gym; and lounge around the pool (there's plenty of seating and good looking guys and gals to admire)
- At the hotel by night: order a pitcher while the nightly DJ spins your favourite tunes in the desert-themed Cactus Lounge, then hang out with a new cast of characters at a weekend pool party or in the exclusive Purple Lounge (open 10pm to 2am Monday to Saturday) - a Sunset Strip hot spot with a purple-lit bar and lounge, hanging swing chairs and dark nooks. Make sure you let the front desk know if you have friends coming to visit as there's a strict door policy for non-residents
- Hit the shops. Browse the designer boutiques on nearby Melrose Avenue, home to names such as Diane Von Furstenberg, Paul Smith and Marc Jacobs; browse art and interior design galleries on Robertson Boulevard; or catch a cab (or chauffeured sedan) to neighbouring Beverly Hills’ Rodeo Drive, where window-shopping is fun (and easier on the pocket)
- Hang out at the beach. Head for Santa Monica, where 3.5 miles of freshly groomed sand await, as well as the historic Santa Monica Pier with carnival rides and games, or cruise the South Bay Bicycle Trail (stretching 22 miles from Torrance to Malibu) by bike, motorbike or self-powered Segway
- Do the tourist thing. A trip to Hollywood isn’t complete until you’ve seen some stars. Tour the Paramount Studios back lot and it’s almost a sure thing; book a tour of the stars’ homes; step into the footprints of Groucho Marx, Humphrey Bogart and Sean Connery outside Grauman’s Chinese Theatre; and follow the Hollywood Walk of Fame, studded with more 2,000 bronze and marble stars honouring celebrities real and cartoon characters like Bugs Bunny and The Simpsons
- Score a ticket to the legendary House of Blues on the Sunset Strip, which serves up addictive ribs and performances by the likes of Billy Ray Cyrus, Robin Trower and Morrissey
Activities on site or nearby include:
- Museums / galleries
- Shopping / markets