Elation and tragedy, the Ambassador Hotel, Los Angeles…

From 1921 until 1989 the Ambassador Hotel was THE place to be in Hollywood. It housed dignitaries and stars and in-laws, and played hosts to weddings and the Academy Awards. It had a post office, a spa, a barbershop, restaurants, and of course – the famous Cocoanut Grove. It saw elation and tragedy (the assassination of Robert Kennedy) and it was woven tight into the fabric of Los Angeles.

Designed by Myron Hunt and pictured in 1937:

A ghostly picture of the main lobby in 1930:

The Lido Club:

Next up… The Cocoanut Grove.

14 Comments

  1. November 10, 2012
    Reply

    Gorgeous. Just gorgeous.

  2. November 10, 2012
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    I learn something new every day – Feminine Conditioning! Who knew! Beautiful pictures and so different to the wreck that it became. I would always look out for The Ambassador sign as I rode the bus along Wilshire Blvd hoping that one day it might be rescued and restored. . . .

    • November 10, 2012
      Reply

      The Ambassador Campus belongs to the Los Angeles School District now – not rescued but put to good use.

  3. November 11, 2012
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    I saw it many times from afar but never went in. I sure missed something.

  4. November 15, 2012
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    Feminine conditioning. I misread it at first as “Feminine air-conditioning”….I wonder what that would be exactly?

    • November 16, 2012
      Reply

      Either way, when I first saw it I found it slightly alarming 😉
      They must be referring to the benefits of swimming.

  5. March 31, 2013
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    What a fabulous looking place.The pull of the Grand Hotel is very similar to the appeal of The Grand Liner.I prefer my hotels and liners vintage of course.

    Am I write in thinking that the hotel has hit the skids in some way.Sad news of course, but can someone please give me details of its decline?I would be most grateful.

  6. September 11, 2014
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    Loved that place! So much history. What the heck is “feminine conditioning”? And isn’t that a man in the photo?

  7. September 11, 2014
    Reply

    Sigh….. of this dreams are made.

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