The GM of the Montrose West Hollywood in Los Angeles gives insight on the thinking behind the hotel’s redesign and rebrand.
LOS ANGELES—In the summer of 2018, West Hollywood property the Le Montrose Suite Hotel underwent a complete property redesign, re-emerging as the Montrose West Hollywood, a hotel with an urban residential style that caters to artists and young creatives.
In this virtual Q&A with Hotel News Now, Montrose West Hollywood GM Andrew Maffei walks through the thinking behind the rebrand and redesign and why it fits in with the local neighborhood. The property is currently still open and operating through the pandemic.
Q: How did you come up with the name Montrose West Hollywood, and why was it a good fit?
A: “Many of our guests have been staying with us for decades, so we felt it was important to retain an original part of the hotel’s name. ‘Montrose West Hollywood’ is a freshened-up version of our old name.”
Q: What amenities were added through the renovation and rebrand? How exactly do these amenities help tell the story of the hotel as an upscale, urban residential-style hotel for artists and creatives?
A: “The property’s interior design is very eclectic with a musical influence, featuring interesting design pieces and furniture throughout the hotel. Upon entering our property and suites, guests get a sense that they’re here to be creative. We wanted to celebrate the past, present and future of Los Angeles’ artists by adding new amenities that inspire guests to get creative and celebrate all types of art, whether it’s music, writing, cooking, fashion, tech, etc. A few new standout amenities include Vino & Vinyl: Our Tone Lounge kicks off each evening with a manager-hosted ‘Vino & Vinyl,’ a happy hour blending complimentary wine with a different music selection from Montrose’s vinyl library. Examples of music-themed evenings include ‘Totally ’90s Tuesdays,’ ‘Throwback Thursdays’ and ‘Funk Fridays.’ For those who would like to nosh while they sip, Timbre Café serves specially priced small plates paired with the evening’s wine selection.”
Q: How did you rethink food and beverage through this rebrand and redesign? Can you talk a little bit about the thinking behind take-and-make meal kits and why that approach works for guests at the hotel?
A: “Many of our guests choose to stay at Montrose for our residential feel. We wanted our guests to feel like Montrose was their home away from home in West Hollywood, and that idea extended into our F&B concepts as well. We offer a variety of guests-only dining options with a restaurant-lounge, convenient cafe, in-room dining and rooftop bar. Our cuisine can be described as global comfort food with an upscale twist that provides an approachable yet memorable dining experience.”
Q: Do you have other F&B outlets at the hotel or are meals just offered through take-and-bake meal kits?
A: “With the rebrand and redesign, Montrose introduced an updated lounge-restaurant, brand-new cafe and updated rooftop pool bar. Tone Lounge restaurant is designed for casual work and meeting during the day and play in the evening. There’s a shuffleboard table, outdoor patio seating and a large projector screen available for movie premieres or sports-watching parties. Located off the lobby, Timbre Café offers an all-day dining menu, serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, in addition to a grab-and-go section for travelers to pick up pre-made sandwiches, snacks, fresh smoothies and fine Italian Lavazza coffee. The refreshed Tonic Rooftop Bar offers stunning views of West Hollywood while guests dine alfresco by the heated pool or linger over a cocktail at sunset.”
Q: Can you explain the marketing efforts that went into getting the word out about the hotel’s rebrand and redesign?
A: “We launched a PR campaign around the relaunch of Montrose that helped get the word out about our new look and amenities. We had press features in influential media outlets. … The sales and marketing team conducted aggressive campaigns with existing and new clients. Marketing partnerships were created with the West Hollywood and Los Angeles tourism boards. Sales trips and local events were strategically planned to ensure a successful relaunch.”
Q: Does the hotel work with other hotels in the West Hollywood collection? If so, in what ways do you partner with the three other hotels?
A: “Yes, Chamberlain, Grafton and Le Parc Suites are our sister hotels. Like Montrose, they each have their own independent style and personality, so our sales teams work together to ensure our guests and groups are booked at the hotel that is best suited for their wants and needs while in West Hollywood.”
Q: What’s the overall vibe of the hotel, and how do you reflect the local area the hotel is located in throughout the hotel?
A: “Montrose was reimagined as an apartment-style retreat for artists and musicians. A color palette of neutral shades with pops of vibrant reds, blues, yellows and oranges provides an environment that blends relaxation with creativity, while uses of leather and mixed metals bring an upscale industrial vibe to the suites. Entertainment-inspired décor and artwork by local creatives add a sense of place to the contemporary space. Standout pieces include a large, psychedelic painted portrait of a woman over cassette tapes and a gold throne in the shape of a hand.”
Q: Is there anything else you would like to add?
A: “Since we’re located in the heart of West Hollywood, our hotel has always been LGBTQ+ friendly, but after the rebrand and redesign, we really made a conscious effort to become a part of our local LGBTQ+ community. Soon after our relaunch, we hosted Los Angeles’ first-ever all LGBTQ+ fashion show on our rooftop. The designers, models, hosts, makeup artists and entertainment were all members of the local LGBTQ+ community, and it was a fabulous way to showcase the array of talent here in Los Angeles. We’ve also done multiple partnerships with LGBTQ+ influencers to help promote Montrose and Los Angeles as a top destination for LGBTQ+ travel.”