Trader Vic's to be demolished?

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Trader Vic's to be demolished?

Postby OceanBoy » Sun Jan 29, 2006 12:06 am

Yes, it's true. The Beverly Hilton is developing plans to demolish Trader Vic's in order to build a hotel tower in its place. How can we stop this?

It's too sad to contemplate. They have done an incredible job of renovating the hotel... I think its MCM roots had already been pretty much ruined during the last reno, but the hotel looks great now. I just can't believe they are going to get rid of Trader Vic's, one of my absolute favorite places in all of L.A.

P.S. Sorry for posting a new topic, but I think this is worth it. Trader Vic's at the Beverly Hilton is a landmark...

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Postby seabeaconhillguy » Tue Feb 14, 2006 10:15 am

They also closed the Vic's in the Palmer House Hilton in Chicago. Ridiculous move, since that hotel has probably the worst restaurants of any Loop Hotel. Vics was a nice little island of sophistication.

We lost our Seattle Trader Vics (at the Westin Hotel) about fifteen years ago when I was working there. That was some closing party!

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Postby Futura Girl » Tue Feb 14, 2006 1:38 pm

i had a dream/nightmare last night about the beverly hills location... the good part is that modcommers salvaged most of the tiki decorations,

....but it was sad to know we were visiting a very special cool place on the last night of its existence.

wait - that was no dream at all.
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Postby classic form » Wed Feb 15, 2006 4:02 am

Check this link out for items from the Plaza...

http://www.christies.com/LotFinder/sear ... False&AN=1

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Postby L.A.kevin » Thu Feb 23, 2006 11:44 pm

So I was at Trader Vic's the other Saturday for the Sci-tek awards, and I mentioned to one of the bartenders that I had heard about this issue. He was like... Whaaaa?!!!!?

So, has this actually been confirmed?

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Postby TCManny » Wed Mar 01, 2006 7:03 pm

Gosh, what sad news! I had a great time there when MODCOM stopped by after the Christmas party...

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Postby googiejackalope » Thu Mar 02, 2006 7:49 am

Has anyone seen any real verification of this...official announcements, building permits filed for, plans filed with a zoning commission...that sort of thing?

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Postby LAOperaMan » Thu Mar 16, 2006 8:18 pm

Image

WE NEED TO HAVE A MASS GATHERING THERE BEFORE THE PLACE COMES DOWN!!!

Image
Image
Watch less Television (save for the Food Network and PBS), go to more art museums, listen to NPR, attend more Theatre and Opera, and you will be a better person!!!!!!!
DO IT NOW!!!!!!

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Trader Vic's is indeed threatened

Postby lasvegaslynn » Thu Mar 30, 2006 9:07 am

Looks like we have some confirmation on this issue.

Kevin Roderick over at laobserved has an blurb (with a link to the story) on the front page of his blog about our beloved Trader Vic's.

It is indeed threatened. The owners will keep the hotel but want to raze Vic's for that hot craze of the moment:luxury condos.

Check it out here: www.laobserved.com
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www.classiclasvegas.com (website)

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Postby nichols » Thu Mar 30, 2006 1:58 pm

Some info on the developer:

Beny Alagem

"Beny Alagem (born 1953) was a former Israeli tank driver and the founder of Packard Bell Electronics, a leading American computer manufacturer during the late 1980s and early 1990s..."

http://www.answers.com/topic/beny-alagem
Last edited by nichols on Fri Apr 07, 2006 12:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby tikiyaki » Thu Mar 30, 2006 4:19 pm

nichols wrote:Some info on the developer:

Beny Alagem

"Beny Alagem (born 1953) was a former Israeli tank driver and the founder of Packard Bell Electronics, a leading American computer manufacturer during the late 1980s and early 1990s..."

http://www.answers.com/topic/beny-alagem


Please don't tell me that the beverly Hills Planning committee is going to actually allow this. Maybe he should build those condos in Israel instead.

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Postby Joe » Thu Mar 30, 2006 4:26 pm

If I was on the Beverly Hills Planning committee, we would hold our meetings at Trader Vics :cheers: :cheers:
Last edited by Joe on Thu Mar 30, 2006 4:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby lasvegaslynn » Thu Mar 30, 2006 4:32 pm

"Forget it Joe, it's Beverly Hills." with apologies to Robert Towne

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Postby Futura Girl » Fri Mar 31, 2006 9:40 am

Published today in the Los Angeles Business Journal

Residences Planned for Beverly Hilton

By ANDY FIXMER

Los Angeles Business Journal Staff

The owner of the Beverly Hilton is planning to bulldoze parts the
famed hotel to make way for luxury residences, according to a report
obtained by the Business Journal.

Packard Bell co-founder Beny Alagem, who paid $130 million for the
569-room hotel two years ago from entertainment mogul Merv Griffin,
wants to knock-down Trader Vic's Restaurant and Bar, the executive
conference center, the Oasis Court and the hotel's 514-space parking
garage.

On those sites Alagem would build two 13-story buildings containing
96 condominiums, a 104-unit, 15-story condo hotel and 96 hotel rooms
in two 3-story structures. The hotel's parking would be put
underground and increased to 1,422 spaces, to meet Beverly Hills'
codes.

A price tag for the project - which also includes a remodeled pool
and traffic improvements - wasn't included in the report, but sources
said the final cost could be in the $200 million range.

The hotel, and its ballroom in particular, has gained international
prominence as the home of the Golden Globe Awards and other
entertainment industry events.

Though the main 353-room, 8-story tower designed by noted architect
Welton Beckett would remain, the plans would result in a net
reduction of 96 hotel rooms.

Alagem's investment firm, Oasis West Realty LLC, is expected to
announce its plans at a joint meeting of Beverly Hills' planning
commission and city council on Tuesday afternoon.

Sources involved in the project provided the Business Journal with a
copy of a master plan that Oasis West Realty distributed to city
officials this month.

Oasis West Realty declined to elaborate on specifics of its plans
until its Tuesday meeting. Hilton Hotels Corp. executives didn't
return calls seeking comment.

Bruce Baltin, a senior vice president at PKF Consulting, said the
firm is working on the Beverly Hilton redevelopment plans, but he
declined to comment on specifics.

"As projects go, this makes all the sense in the world," he said. "It
keeps the best elements of the hotel and replaces those elements that
no longer work."

Hotel owners across the country are considering similar projects that
subtract rooms and add residences, said hospitality attorney Jim
Butler, a partner at Jeffer Mangels Butler & Marmaro LLP.

"This has become a major national trend for any full-service
property," he said. "There are a lot of people who want to live in
condos that have the amenities and security of a hotel. For that
reason, most (hotel owners) are considering a residential component
to increase the economics of the property."

The massive redevelopment plan for the Beverly Hilton's 9-acre
property comes on the heels of an $80 million renovation of the hotel
that Oasis West Realty recently completed. The project is not
expected to compromise that work.

As Oasis West Realty was finishing the renovations, the firm
announced in December that it hired New York-based architecture firm
Gwathmey Siegel & Associates LLC to design residential additions to
the hotel.
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----

Postby modfan » Fri Mar 31, 2006 10:26 am

That's where my HS grad party was held at the hotel ballroom.
So with the proposals and such, seems like the extension of the subway to the sea will have that intersection torn up again some day.
So is anyone purchasing any components of Trader Vics?
Will we be seein any of it on E-Bay.

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Postby Futura Girl » Fri Mar 31, 2006 2:44 pm

on LA Observed it is mentioned that it goes before a BH planning commission meeting on tuesday.

anyone hear of this?
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Postby Adriene » Fri Mar 31, 2006 6:20 pm

Yes -- we'll be there.

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Postby sdmod » Sat Apr 01, 2006 6:08 am

"As projects go, this makes all the sense in the world," he said. "It
keeps the best elements of the hotel and replaces those elements that
no longer work."


This is developer speak for ......yada, yada,yada.........blah, blah, blah.....we want to tear down a good building so that we can make more money for a few years; after that the city will be left with a big ugly neosomething revival piece of 13 story stucco crud.

Trader Vics should be on the city historic registry, bummer of a Saturday morning thread. I am not much of a fan of Mai Tai's but sippin one at Trader Vics always felt just about perfect.

"no longer work" total BS!

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And I thought

Postby modfan » Sat Apr 01, 2006 7:28 am

A 13 story building was bad luck, we'll see.

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Re: And I thought

Postby tikiyaki » Sat Apr 01, 2006 7:15 pm

modfan wrote:A 13 story building was bad luck, we'll see.


Well, I wish them all the bad luck in the world. What "doesn't work" is tearing down of something historical and cultural significance to make room for more living spaces in a part of town that is already oversaturated with people and traffic. THAT doesn't work.
Has Mr former Israeli Tank driver ever had to drive in that area between 3 and 6 in the afternoon ? He'd need his tank to get through that intersection, the traffic is so bad.
The problem is that foreign investors (even though he's probably been here for 20 years, he is STILL a foreign investor) have very little respect for American culture and history...they just see it as the "new frontier"...

My blood will boil when I am faced with the unfortunate circumstance of driving by what used to be Trader Vics of Beverly Hills and seeing a neo-Mediterranian stucco box devoid of anything resembling good architecture towering 13 floors over my head.

I REALLY hope the BH planning commision doesn't lay down and let this atrocity happen.

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Postby Tony » Sat Apr 01, 2006 9:00 pm

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but as far as I know the City of Beverly Hills does not have a preservation ordinance. Curiously, they have commissioned some Historic Site Surveys. Whose only purpose that I see is to document what was lost. It's rather shocking to look at the survey done in the mid-1980's and see how little is left.

Does anyone know who did the site-specific artwork on the side of Trader Vic's?

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Postby nichols » Mon Apr 03, 2006 12:09 pm

Image

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What's up with this?

Postby khummer » Mon Apr 03, 2006 3:29 pm

What is the latest on this cool place? The walls just tell a ton of stories in that place.

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Postby nichols » Wed Apr 05, 2006 10:33 am

Quote in the latest LA Business Journal from Rose Norton, "former Beverly Hills planning commissioner and a veteran community activist"

"...There's one aspect of the project that Norton said likely won't be contested: The loss of Trader Vic's. 'I get the sense that people think Trader Vic's has had it's day,' she said. 'It's really slipped. Nobody will miss it.'"

Vic’s Would Be Traded Away for High-End Condo Project  
Los Angeles Business Journal: 4/3/2006
Beverly Hilton landmarks such as Trader Vic’s could be bulldozed to make way for high-end condos

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Oh No

Postby tikihula » Wed Apr 05, 2006 3:14 pm

What rotten news
I would rather have a bottle in front of me than a pre-frontal lobotomy.

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We need less Trader Joes and more Trader Vics

Postby losfeliz » Wed Apr 05, 2006 5:06 pm

Modcommers,

Please try to keep the xenophobia out of the dialogue, Americans have done enough damage to our own architectural heritage without the assistance of foreign investors. For your information, my ex-boyfriend, also a former Israeli soldier, took me to the Bev Hilton when we moved back to L.A. after two years in Beijing.

Now let me tell you about dropping onto a little lilly-pad of paradise. What an exquisite hotel. But that was in 1997 ...

We need to make friends with Beny, I am sure I can talk some sense into him. Where is our strategic plan for this project ? I look forward to seeing one. Think COALITION like the Derby project.

Debra L.

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Postby Futura Girl » Wed Apr 05, 2006 7:10 pm

thank you for being the voice of reason debra.

that's right folks. you can crumb on the developer, but keep it p.c. please.
and along debra's line of reasoning - it's easier to catch flies with honey...
there has got to be a win-win with this developer.
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If I wind up broke up, well, I'll always remember that I had a swingin' time

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Postby tikiyaki » Thu Apr 06, 2006 10:02 pm

Sorry LosFeliz and Futura Girl, but there is a culture to protect...yes , our country may only be a little over 200 years old, but we DO have a really great history and culture.
That is why there is a Modcom in the first place.
I can't just kick back and watch it get erased and not say something about it..pc or not. It just seems that alot of the developing going on is derived from foreign capital, and yes, it annoys me.
I don't care who builds what, but what makes me angry at how little concern is paid to historical significance.
Do you really think that if this developer was born and raised here in LA, they would treat this Trader Vics situation with the same disregard ?
I doubt it.
It's not the fact that this developer is from Israel (or China, Russia...wherever)....It's just that this person is not from HERE. You can't expect someone who was in another country when Trader Vics and Polynesian Pop had it's Heyday to understand or appreciate how popular it all was in the 1950's.It's a whole other universe. And, yes, trying to educate someone about it is great, but when there is this much money involved, what kind of chance do you think there is of saving Trader Vics?

Being PC is all well and good, but in another 10-15 years, the only remnants of this by-gone culture will be in the books you buy at Wack-o.
That sucks.

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Postby Futura Girl » Fri Apr 07, 2006 3:10 am

i run this forum, so you are preaching to the choir as far as talking about protecting our built heritage. i feel very passionately about trader vics as well...
that is not the issue...
[quote=tikiyaki]Do you really think that if this developer was born and raised here in LA, they would treat this Trader Vics situation with the same disregard ?
I doubt it. [/quote]
actually, i disagree from long time experience.

you do have a valid point about people from other countries not having the same understanding as one who grew up here. it is a good discussion to have in this case, because it seems there is foreign funded development.

HOWEVER... there are plenty of local developers literally born and raised in l.a. who have no regard whatsoever for their own pop culture (often they are the MOST egregious pro-tear down folks - because familiarity breeds contempt), so the point is diluted.

the education process we undertake as preservationists knows no color lines. and i want to insure that Lotta Living is a place without racial bias. we certainly can discuss racial/cultural issues here, but we must make sure not to prejudge or slander individuals in the process.
I'm gonna keep on the run... I'm gonna have me some fun if it costs me my very last dime.

If I wind up broke up, well, I'll always remember that I had a swingin' time

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I often have this same thought too.....

Postby modfan » Fri Apr 07, 2006 6:56 am

Immigrants come from other places (not just countries but states etc.) and they come here and tear down perfectly good cool homes and stuff and build monstrosoties because that's what exudes money and prestige.
I often think one of the way to do outreach is to have them think of what was 'loved and respected' where they came from (easy example for french the Eiffel Tower, Egyptian the Pyramids, Chinese the Great Wall & Forbidden City) in L. A. not being nearly as old as where they came from we have the landmarks and such that we feel the same way about. Perhaps Charles Phoenix can give a specialty tour to immigrants who have no idea of what the natives are passionate about.
Some fellow employees where I work that are immigrants or children of such seems like they don't get beyond their enclaves (yeah it's not just them, we are all probably guilty of that) and they wonder what's the big deal with the Ambassador, of Ship's, of Pann's, of Alexander homes, of Eichler homes. One didn't have a clue as to FLW and Taliesin West (I shoulda had him come with me to see it). I'd love to take my Native of Kansas aunt around but that may yet happen.


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