History Reborn

BY Krista Simmons | October 23, 2018 | Feature Features

Hotel Figueroa's ambitious makeover means a bounty of delicious dining and drinking options.
A view of Veranda

Until recently, dining at a hotel restaurant, at least here in the U.S., was something seasoned travelers and local diners closeted, seeing it as a cop-out from exploring the culinary culture of the city outside. But the recent trend of hoteliers building locally minded culinary programs into the foundation of hotel concepts means that high-touch food and beverage options are as much a part of a property—and its bottom line—as the overarching concept itself.

Downtown Los Angeles is ground zero for this movement, with hotel brands like Ace, Freehand, and NoMad all centering their business around successful bars and restaurants helmed by big-name chefs with international acclaim. So it’d be a reach to say that Hotel Figueroa, the iconic Downtown Los Angeles property that originally opened in 1926 as an exclusive women’s hostelry as part of the YWCA, is on the bleeding edge, but it sure is in good company.

For anyone that may have visited the property in its more recent years of disrepair, rest assured that the 268 redesigned guest rooms and suites are barely recognizable, save for those gorgeous bones. While the redesign pays tribute to Hotel Figueroa’s rich history, the blending of its original 1920s Spanish Colonial splendor with contemporary Angeleno vibe is incredibly tasteful and undeniably luxurious. The beautiful lobby and its sweeping archways are still in place, but it’s been given a much, much needed makeover.

A tentpole of the property’s revamp is the food and beverage program, led by L.A.-based chef Casey Lane, who made a real name for himself at The Tasting Kitchen in Venice and, more recently, by overseeing the critically acclaimed Viale dei Romani at the La Peer Hotel in WeHo.

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