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Trip Tips: A Guide to Luxury Hotels for Hollywood Award Season

- Joy Pecknold, Passport blog editor

With Academy Award nominations announced today and Golden Globes this weekend, award season is in full swing. Los Angeles as its hub makes the next six weeks a golden time for starry eyed cinephiles to touchdown in the city. You’ll need a glamorous, gilded luxury hotel for that, so click in for our picks.

Beverly Hills
This, the glitziest of L.A. neighborhoods, is where the Golden Globes and Oscar Nominees Luncheon are held. It’s also home to the killer shopping street known as Rodeo Drive.

The Peninsula Beverly Hills is closest to the celebrity epicenter, and you’ll truly feel like a celebrity staying here; it’s the only hotel in Southern California to earn the AAA Five-Diamond and Forbes Five-Star rating for 17 years straight and it offers a Red Carpet-Ready Experience wherein guests get styled and photographed like a star.

The Four Seasons Beverly Wilshire, at the corner of Wilshire and Rodeo, gives guests a grand home base for whirlwind shopping sprees (or simply window shopping if you’re on a Chanel embargo) and celeb spotting. You can also spa—take a 20-minute quickie massage or five-hour full body treatment—and sup at CUT, star chef Wolfgang Puck’s modern steakhouse.

The Kiwi Advantage at Montage Beverly Hills encourages a Pretty Woman sort of shopping day with a 20 per cent off certificate for Saks Fifth Avenue (cha-ching). Two blocks from Rodeo, the hotel’s rooftop bar is a perfect perch for taking in the twinkling lights of Tinsel Town. Who knows who else you might see up there? If you should need help looking the part of George Clooney’s next girlfriend, call on the hotel’s in-house stylist, Joseph Katz.

The Thompson Beverly Hills offers sparkle without the splurge (nightly room rates start at $199). The younger, trendier cousin to its Beverly Hills neighbors, the Thompson attracts precisely that clientele.

Others: The Beverly Hills Hotel, L’Ermitage Beverly Hills, Avalon Beverly Hills

Hollywood
The ‘hood that’s home to the Dolby Theater (formerly the Kodak Theater) where the Oscars are held every year, and Grauman’s Chinese Theatre where many a movie is premiered makes it a prime stomping ground for star seekers.

Two words, Chateau Marmont. If you’ve never heard of it, you must have been living under an avalanche in Antarctica for the past 80 years. Too many celebrities have stayed, partied, met and interviewed here to name (from Clark Gable to Kristen Stewart), so not only are guests near famous venues, they’re in one.

There’s a red carpet that anyone can walk—the one in the lobby of the W Hollywood. On Hollywood Boulevard, the hotel is across the street from the Pantages Theater and a short stroll straight west to the Dolby Theater. Shape up at Sweat, their 1,800 sq. ft. Technogym, schmooze at The Living Room lounge and then party poolside at Drai’s Hollywood—now you’re living the star charmed life.

Others: Andaz West Hollywood, Mondrian Los Angeles

South Los Angeles
Not far from Downtown L.A. and adjacent to the University of Southern California, the Shrine Auditorium was a nine-time Academy Award venue and now hosts the Screen Actors Guild Awards to be held on January 27th this year.

The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles, is a six-minute drive from the Shrine Auditorium, so you can watch nominees Hugh Jackman and Jennifer Lawrence walk the carpet. After that, return for drinks at the private Ritz-Carlton Club Lounge on the 26th floor and dinner at the Wolfgang Puck restaurant WP24 on the 24th—either way, you’re sky high.

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