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Review: Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse London Heathrow
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Review: Amex Centurion Lounge San Francisco Airport
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Review: The Concourse Hotel LAX (Hyatt Affiliated Hotel)
Last July I first wrote about how The Concourse Hotel LAX will become the Hyatt Regency LAX. This property has an interesting history, as it’s truly coming full circle. It was a Hyatt ~60 years ago, then it was branded as a Radisson, then it was branded as The Concourse Hotel, and soon it will be branded as a Hyatt Regency.
Hyatt doesn’t presently have a full service property at LAX, which means they’re really lagging behind the competition. Hilton, Marriott, and Starwood all have extensive portfolios there, while Hyatt up until now has just had the Hyatt Place LAX/El Segundo.
Anyway, over the coming months The Concourse Hotel will undergo a substantial renovation, which should go on through March 2016. At that point it will apparently be rebranded as a Hyatt Regency. In the meantime it’s considered a “Hyatt Affiliated Hotel,” so you can earn and redeem Gold Passport points for stays here.
While the property hasn’t yet been renovated, I figured I’d check it out during my recent visit to LA. I landed at LAX in the evening and had to go into town the following morning, so figured I might as well check out Hyatt’s airport offering.
The rate was ~$150, which wasn’t cheap, but also wasn’t terrible.
The Concourse Hotel is the closest hotel to LAX, and is just about walking distance from Terminal 1 or Terminal 2.
The hotel advertises a shuttle every 10 minutes, and it’s actually shared with the parking garage next to the hotel. The shuttle literally arrived two seconds after I got to the shuttle center, which was pretty awesome. I always seem to have terrible luck with LAX shuttles, whereby the shuttle I need always takes the longest to arrive.
The exterior of The Concourse Hotel is rather drab, though non-offensive.
The lobby is nice enough, though quite dark. The shuttle drops off at the back entrance of the hotel, so you have to walk a ways to reception.
Once there I was welcomed by a friendly associate.
He clearly seemed to know the hotel was a bit of a dump, though also seemed super proud about it being turned into a Hyatt. He thanked me for being a Diamond member, noted some of the recent hotels I’ve stayed at (“I see you recently stayed at the Andaz West Hollywood… how do you like that hotel?”), and familiarized me with the features of the hotel.
“Mr. Schlappig, I have you in a city view room, is that okay?” Works for me!
He informed me that I could have my Diamond breakfast at Palmira, the hotel’s restaurant. And he informed me that the breakfast benefit applied for up to four people, which seemed generous.
Anyway, he was enthusiastic and genuine, and I think that’s worth mentioning (unlike my experience at some luxury hotels, where they seem to try too hard). He quickly gave me a key to my room on the sixth floor.
The elevators are located opposite of reception, and there I also saw a rendering of what the Hyatt Regency would look like after the renovation.
The hallways were rather uniquely colored, with lime-green paint and carpet straight out of the 90s.
My room was #653.
Based on the floorplan it seemed like there were very few “premium” rooms. Then again, I’m not sure the floorplan was really accurate, since it made the rooms look outrageously narrow and long. Pencil rooms, if you will.
Upon stepping in the room I could certainly understand why a renovation was needed to convert this into a Hyatt. The room was… simple… and drab… and just “bleh.”
There was an entryway with the bathroom on the left and a closet on the right.
Then there was a king size bed with a nightstand on each side. There was literally nothing on any of the walls.
There wasn’t even a headboard for the bed. On the plus side, the bed was quite comfortable, and the sheets seemed clean. While I thought the cream-colored walls without any sort of decorations were borderline offensive, they had nothing on the curtains. Ugh, my eyes!
Across from the bed was a mini-fridge as well as a coffee maker and a complimentary bottle of water.
Then there was a flat screen TV, and next to it was a desk with a chair. There weren’t really any conveniently placed outlets, and I had to get on my knees to plug my computer in under the desk.
Then in the corner was a chair with ottoman.
I think calling the room “city view” (as I was told at check-in) would be a bit of a stretch, unless the city of LA simply consists of one parking garage.
The bathroom wasn’t much nicer, unfortunately. There was a sink, toilet, and shower/tub combo.
The toiletries were decent, and I appreciated that there was a complimentary tube of toothpaste available.
The ceiling seemed to have quite a bit of damage, though.
Wifi was free for all guests, and was reasonably fast.
The following morning I headed to the restaurant for breakfast, which was complimentary as a Gold Passport Diamond member.
On the way to the restaurant I passed the Concorde Lounge & Bar. That’s an aspirational name, if I’ve ever heard of one.
The hotel’s restaurant is called Palmira, and it serves breakfast starting at 5AM, which is super early. That’s awesome for an airport hotel, and how it should be, in my opinion.
The restaurant, much like the rest of the hotel, is past its prime.
That being said, the server helping me was extremely friendly and well intentioned, which I found to be a theme throughout the hotel, even if they didn’t have much to work with.
The restaurant has both a buffet and an a la carte menu. The breakfast menu read as follows:
To keep things simple I had the buffet. I had some coffee and then just some granola and fruit for breakfast.
In terms of the cold selection, the buffet spread consisted of several types of cereal, pastries, muffins, yogurt, cold cuts, cheese, and fresh fruit.
Then the hot spread consisted of pancakes, scrambled eggs, breakfast potatoes, bacon, sausage, etc.
All-in-all it was a perfectly fine breakfast, even if the restaurant itself was quite drab. My one major complaint was that wifi didn’t work in the restaurant, which sort of sucks for people like me, who dine alone and like to work over breakfast.
The hotel also has a small gym located off the lobby. I didn’t have a chance to use it, though it seemed kind of small for a hotel of this size.
In the end I was just at the hotel for around 11 hours, and in the morning took an Uber into town.
The Concourse Hotel LAX bottom line
While the staff at this hotel were friendly and well intentioned, the hotel has a long way to go before it’s ready to be branded as a Hyatt. On one hand being able to earn Hyatt points at this hotel is better than not having the option, though on the other hand even affiliating this hotel with Hyatt sort of dilutes the brand, in my opinion.
So while I wouldn’t return until the hotel is renovated, I do look forward to trying it when it becomes a Hyatt Regency, given that it’s the closest hotel to LAX.
In the meantime the Sheraton Gateway LAX will continue to be my “go to” hotel at LAX.
Have you stayed at The Concourse Hotel LAX? What’s your favorite LAX airport hotel?