I have a people-watching problem. Admittedly, it’s a bad habit that I can unabashedly do for hours. As an introvert, I much prefer to observe people than to have actual conversations with them. The latter induces panic and as soon as I start chatting with a stranger, all I can think of is how to end the conversation.
To indulge my gawking habit, I took my talents to the Beverly Hills Hotel, arguably one of the best people-watching spots in the country. Not only is this hotel favored by Instagrammers who go to pepper their feeds with pictures of the Hotel’s millennial pink decor, but it is also popular with celebrities and reality stars that want to be seen. Both make perfect people-watching candidates.
Obviously, my primary reason for going was to observe these machinations from the inside, but I still wanted a good hotel stay. I should add that my husband and I were there as part of our wedding anniversary trip, so our expectations were a little higher. Hotels usually give you better service if they know you are celebrating something. Overall, my needs were met, but I do have some nuggets to share if any of you decide to go.
- The property is stunning. Lush tones of greens and pink are tastefully displayed throughout the premises. From the restaurants to the rooms and pool, every corner is a photo opportunity.
- The hotel staff is friendly and cordial and not overly nice, as in the happy medium between pleasant enough to make an impression but not overbearing. The only exception to this is the pool staff. More on this below.
- The rooms are nicely furnished and have amenities like a soak tub, TV in the bathroom, generous portions of body lotion, shampoo, and conditioner (these things matter).
- A complimentary private car is offered from 9am to 9pm. The car is available on a first come first serve basis, and will take you anywhere within a three-mile radius of the Hotel. We used this service several times and by the end of the trip the hotel driver knew our names.
- The food here isn’t exceptional. At the Cabana Cafe, you can order house-made juices for $20, signature flatbreads for $30, $36 omelettes, or fish tacos for $36. All these items sound delicious, but they are all bland and nothing to rave about. The food is overpriced, but considering that the Cabana Cafe has the best view of the pool and is great for people watching, you’re paying for the overall experience.
- Surprisingly, the gym at the Beverly Hills Hotel leaves much to be desired. The space is small and there isn’t a lot of room to stretch, exercise with dumbbells, or just generally exercise without thinking you’re in someone’s way. There are a few cardio machines, but I was expecting a more modern gym given the sophisticated amenities offered.
- The staff at the pool could use more customer service training. One day I arrived at the pool ten minutes before it opened and the pool hostesses refused to seat me, so I had to awkwardly stand there until “it was time.” The experience was disconcerting and made me feel unwelcomed, which as a paying guest is unacceptable. Even the pool boy was mortified by the scene and apologized for their behavior.
- “No pictures” signs are prominently displayed throughout the pool area. Is this a joke? No one adheres to this policy except people like me that follow all the rules for fear of getting in trouble! Other guests were freely taking pictures, but the few pictures I snapped were done hurriedly because I didn’t want to get in trouble.
Overall, it was definitely worth the stay. The people-watching and great photo-ops outweighed the staff blunders and bland food. If you end up visiting, make sure to hashtag the #HenryHive or tag @JennytheHENRY in your posts to keep the conversation going!