LA Live Developer AEG Proposes 450-Room Marriott Projects, Even As Korean Air 'Deconstructs' Wilshire Grand To Build Tallest Building West of Chicago
High-rise buildings continue to see a renaissance of sorts in the Los Angeles CBD. The latest proposal actually is a Renaissance, a 450-room, $200 million Renaissance Hotel that will be the fourth Marriott International flag located at the gateway of L.A. Live, home of Staples Center.
The project is anticipated to begin construction in first quarter of 2014 and completed by early 2016.
The second project is of an immensely bigger scale. Demolition, or more accurately, deconstruction, continues steadily on the former Wilshire Grand Hotel, slated for a $1 billion conversion by Korean Air to a new mixed-use retail, office, and hotel project in Los Angeles' financial district in a $1 billion project.
The project designed by AC Martin Partners will make the project at 900 Wilshire Blvd. the tallest U.S. building west of Chicago at 1,100 feet when it opens in 2017, surpassing the U.S. Bank Tower, also in downtown Los Angeles.
Korean Air and its parent company Hanjin International, serving as developer on the 71-story project, oversaw the design that will include street-level retail and restaurant space, 400,000 square feet of offices, and a luxury 900-room hotel at the top with a lobby on the 70th floor.
Timothy J. Leiweke, president and CEO, AEG, said the Renaissance project will help deliver "much-needed high quality hotel rooms in downtown to support the anticipated modernization and expansion of our Los Angeles Convention Center."
"Beginning with Stapled Center and then L.A. Live and our hotels, each development has resulted in substantial increases in new events for our city, an escalation in overnight stays at all of the downtown properties and an even greater demand for new quality hotels to meet these needs," Leiweke said.
There is plenty of demand for the rooms, according Bruce Baltin, senior vice president at PKF Consulting.
Baltin has consistently projected that downtown requires 2,000 to 3,000 new hotel rooms, excluding the rooms that will be replaced through the redevelopment of the former Wilshire Grand site, to remain competitive in attracting large conventions while enabling Los Angeles to join the nation's top tier of Convention Centers in conjunction with the recently approved Los Angeles Convention Center Modernization and Farmers Field project.
The Wilshire Grand hotel and office building
closed in 2011 to prepare for demolition. The hotel opened in 1952, played host to presidents, popes and the Oscars.
Overseeing construction is Turner Construction, while Cushman & Wakefield will handle leasing.
The project is expected create more than 11,000 local construction jobs and contribute $80 million in tax revenue through the construction phase along with more than 1,700 new permanent local jobs and $16 million in annual local revenue once completed.