AKA: Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Beverly Hills, CA; Four Seasons Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Beverly Hills, CA

Structure Type: built works - dwellings -public accommodations - hotels

Designers: Aufferth, Charles J., Interior Designer (firm); Becket, Welton D., and Associates, Architects (firm); Heinsbergen Decorating Company, Interior Designers (firm); Walker and Eisen, Architects (firm); Williams, Paul R., AIA (firm); Charles J. Aufferth (interior designer); Welton David Becket Sr. (architect); Percy Augustus Eisen (architect); Antoon B. Heinsbergen (interior designer/muralist); Albert Raymond Walker (architect); Paul Revere Williams (architect)

Dates: constructed 1926-1928

9500 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA 90212-2405

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Southwest corner of Rodeo Drive and Wilshire Boulevard; the address is 9528 Wilshire Boulevard on the National Register of Historic Places.

Building History

The real estate development firm of Walter G. McCarty Company erected this well-known hotel on a portion of the former Beverly Hills Speedway site. The cornerstone-laying ceremony occurred on 04/16/1927. The Los Angeles Times described what the ceremony would entail: "The Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce will take part in the cornerstone laying of the $2,000,000 Beverly-Wilshire Apartment Hotel, Wilshire Boulevard and Rodeo Drive, Saturday at 2 p.m. Fred Niblo will be master of ceremonies. Mrs. Walter G. McCarty will seal the corner-stone in which documents will be placed. The structure will be nine stories above the ground and two below. It will have 400 rooms in two to ten-room apartments. The Walter G. McCarty Corporation is building it. It is to be ready for occupancy December 1. Walker & Eisen are architects and William Simpson Construction Company, general contractors. The steel work for the structure already is up." ("Hotel Corner-Stone To Be Laid Saturday," Los Angeles Times, 04/13/1927, p. A14.) The hotel had a total of 395 rooms, 120 of which were suites.

In 1945, Arnold Sigurd Kirkeby (1901-1962) bought the Beverly Wilshire, adding it to the portfolio of owned by his Kirkeby Hotel Company. The Kirkeby chain would control 28 hotels across the US and in Cuba by 1954, including the Palmer House and Drake in Chicago, IL, and the Waldorf-Astoria, Plaza, Roosevelt, Sherry-Netherlands and Hampshire House in New York, NY. According to author Gus Russo, the Kirkeby Hotel Company was intertwined with many leading organized crime figures. (SeeGus Russo, Supermob: How Sidney Korshak and His Criminal Associates Became America's Hidden Power Brokers, [New York: Bloomsbury, 2006], p. 97-98.)

Hotelier Hernando Courtright (1904–1986) and an investment consortium bought the hotel in 1961, and a decade later embarked on an ambitious expansion project. Courtright sold the property to Hong Kong-based Regent International Hotels in 1985 for $125 million; this new owner poured another $100 million into its renovation. After the remodeling, it was rechristened the "Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel." The Hong Kong group sold it to the Four Seasons Hotels, Limited, of Toronto, ON, in 1992. The Four Seasons owned it for only four years before selling it to another Hong Kong investment consortium; Four Seasons remained, however, as the hotel's management company.

Building Notes

The Florentine Room operated in the Beverly-Wilshire Hotel in the 1930s, and attracted well-known entertainers, such as Judy Garland who performed there 10/24/1934. The Dutch-born, Southern California artist, Anthony (Antoon) B. Heinsbergen, painted murals for the interior of the Beverly-Wilshire Hotel.

A Renaissance Revival Style building, the Beverly-Wilshire Hotel, Beverly Hills, CA, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places, level of significance: Local.

The Richard Meier-designed steakhouse, CUT, opened in the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in 06/2006. The famed restaurateur Wolfgang Puck, managed the 104-seat eatery, that became a chic destination for the city's glitterati.

Tel: (310) 275-5200 (2007).

Alteration

Between 1946 and 1957, the Los Angeles architect Paul R. Williams made alterations and additions to the Beverly WIlshire Hotel. According to the web site, Paul R. Williams, American Architect, "Williams’ initial renovations cost the owners over $3,000,000 but his subsequent renovations would include a grand ballroom to accommodate dancing to the big bands of the 40s and 50s, the Copa nightclub, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, and tennis courts." (See Paul R. Williams Project.org, "Gallery Beverly Wilshire Hotel, Beverly Hills, CA," accessed 04/13/2018.)

Courtright expanded the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in 1971, with the addition of a new, 248-room, tower named the Beverly Wing. The Los Angeles architect Welton Becket (1902-1969) designed this new 12-story tower, which took the place of tennis courts, and an Olympic-sized swimming pool and attendant cabanas. Suites at the top of the Beverly Wing were two stories in height. The Penthouse Suite in this wing was claimed to be the largest guest room in any hotel in Los Angeles, at 5,000 square feet. A cobbled, covered walkway, dubbed "El Camino Real, " edged by gaslights, joined the old and new towers.

Renovations occurred in the 1989 and in 1998; the earlier work, reworked the original 1928 Wilshire Wing at a cost of $100 million; the latter, costing $35 million, focused on the 1971 Beverly Wing.

The creation of CUT accompanied a larger $35 million renovation of the Beverly Wilshire that happened betweeen 2005 and 2007. During this remodeling, it became known as the "Beverly Wilshire, a Four Seasons Hotel" in 2006. This renovation was kicked off by the opening in 03/2005 of the 140-seat Blvd Restaurant and Lounge, a street-level restaurant, bar and outdoor patio that focused on the ambiance of Rodeo Drive. A new spa, ironically called, "The Spa," was also added to property at this time. This 8,000-square-foot facility contained a pool equipped with a cafe and bar, a "tranquility lounge," nine spa treatment rooms, and aromatherapy steam chambers.

National Register of Historic Places: 87000908 NRHP Images (pdf) NHRP Registration Form (pdf)

PCAD id: 1595