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Century City Marriott Under Way : Work Started on Chain's 18th Hotel in State

May 25, 1986|EVELYN De WOLFE

The Century City Marriott Hotel, on which construction began earlier this month, is expected to both contrast and complement Westin's Century Plaza Hotel and Tower complex when completed in early 1988.

It will be the third full-service hotel in Los Angeles for the Marriott Hotels & Resorts chain and its 18th in California.

The 375-room Century City Marriott, designed to project the feeling of a grand estate, will be situated on a 2.7-acre site on Avenue of the Stars, between Pico and Olympic boulevards at Galaxy Way. It will be owned and operated by the Marriott Corp.

Industry sources estimate the construction cost at $40 million.

Century City Expansion

The hotel's stepped design by Gruen Associates of Los Angeles was created to act as a bridge between the commercial and the future residential projects to the south and west. The firm laid out the original 20th Century Fox Studio master plan for development that will eventually replace the motion picture facilities as an expansion to Century City.

In accordance with Century City's South Specific Plan, housing development will occur immediately south and west of the hotel. "With this knowledge, we have deliberately conceived a hotel design that reinforces the upscale residential appearance of that projected portion of the community," explained Allen M. Rubenstein, Gruen's partner-in-charge of the project.

"To accomplish a smooth transition from the commercial and residential sectors, we have varied the height of various components of the building, from seven to 17 stories, and we have created a stepped profile in a series of slender, smaller towers. The look is also made more residential in feeling with the addition of balconies to all the guest rooms, some with planters."

Extensive landscaping and water features will serve as focal points to the hotel's main entrance courtyard, reached by a curved driveway similar to the grand entry to estate grounds, the architect explained. A broad, cascading glass skylight will act as both the hotel entrance canopy and as the ceiling for its spacious, 30-foot-high lobby.

Suite Accommodations

As for the size of the hotel, compared to the 1,000-room Century Plaza and Tower complex, Rubenstein said the Marriott will lend a more residential feeling to the neighborhood, both in size and in space planning.

"It is not quite correct to say that it is a 375-room hotel," he said. "There are 375 keys, which means that nearly one half of the guest rooms will be suites, including 182 junior and luxury suites, a spacious vice presidential suite, and a luxurious 2,200-square-foot presidential suite.

"Seven oversized executive suites and a 4,230-square-foot meeting room will also be available, but the conventions and large gatherings are being underplayed."

For dining, the hotel plans feature a 150-seat, multipurpose restaurant, offering unobstructed views of a garden court, with waterfall, natural stone terrace, pond and a path meandering through California sycamore and coast redwood trees.

California Developments

Recreational and fitness facilities will include outdoor and indoor pools, health club, saunas and an activity court. Other common-area features will include small shops, a beauty salon and barbershop and valet parking for 300 cars.

In California, Marriott currently has 14 properties, reports Jim Reed, regional vice president of Marriott Hotels & Resorts. Developments that are scheduled to open include the Long Beach Airport Marriott, in the spring of 1987; Marriott's Desert Springs Resort & Spa, opening this winter, and the San Francisco Marriott Moscone Center, scheduled to open in 1988.

At South Coast Metro Center in Costa Mesa, a major Orange County urban center development, a 200-room Marriott executive suite-style hotel is soon to break ground.

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