While many people say rock ‘n’ roll is dead, it’s more alive than ever at the Ziggy Hotel in Los Angeles’ famous sunset bar. Located at 8462 Sunset Boulevard, the hotel has 108 rooms, a cocktail lounge, a music venue called Backbeat, and an aptly named pizzeria. Beside Pizzalobby bar, “Shred Shed” and salt water pool, one of the largest of its kind overlooking Los Angeles.
The building was formerly Grafton, renovated right down to the studs and opened frequently in April 2022. A star-studded event thrown by The Influence, it was an unforgettable night, complete with formal dancers, jello shots, tarot readers, pool performers, lollipops, and a buggy Street-side pretzel, 20-foot LED neon palm trees, among other things. Guests included Malin Ackerman, legendary rock musician Matt Sorum of Guns N’ Roses and Velvet Revolver, Rudy Mancuso, and Audrina Patridge, as well as James Kennedy, who recently topped his first night swim gig, among a slew of other names. The entertainment included a stunning performance by Billboard artist Haley Reinhart with Scott Page’s Pink Floyd on saxophone and Nine Inch Nails Alex Carapatis on drums.
Designed by DDA Architects, the Ziggy Hotel still feels luxurious, which is a great feat for a themed hotel. Named with inspiration from David Bowie, the concept was created to push boundaries and have an experimental atmosphere. It walks the line between counterculture and comfort.
While most themed hotels seem tacky and unoriginal, Hotel Ziggy manages to feel authentic and fun, while honoring the past in a way that feels cool and new. Some of this can be attributed to the historical location close to all rock ‘n’ roll attractions. However, while traces of the past decorate nearly every inch of the hotel’s public spaces, it feels exclusive and modern, and is emblazoned with the “Free Music” slogan throughout. While it is sure to appeal to fans and musicians alike, anyone who simply wants to stay in a boutique hotel on the Sunset Strip will appreciate all that Ziggy Hotel has to offer.
Since its opening, it has become a popular venue for rock stars including Dave Navarro and Leif Garrett. The hotel has also continued to organize events that attract locals and tourists alike, such as the live music series “Sundays On The Strip”, DJ nights at Backbeat and weekend parties at the pool.
“We created Ziggy to spark stimulating, meaningful conversations with the goal of sparking curiosity and comically challenging viewpoints. What better location than the Sunset Strip to celebrate the rebellious spirit of the norm-busting musicians who changed the way we live?” says John Portz, President of Imagine Hotel at Pebblebrook Hotels. “The Ziggy Hotel is just down the street from the former sites of two world-famous music destinations: Tower Records and House of Blues. As these and other symbols are now gone, a legacy must be remembered here. We’ve gone too far with our hotels, and we’ve definitely done that with Ziggy.”
One of the first things guests will notice is a decoupage wall next to the lobby. Each piece of memorabilia is arranged by era with oldest first. While the designers emphasized the bands and musicians that came out of Los Angeles and the sector’s heyday (the 1960s, ’70s, and ’80s), they also wanted to be inclusive of music from Latin and Asian bands, among other cultures, even though this kind of memorabilia was hard to find.
The wall was created by San Francisco artists Julie Coyle and JCAA Studio who also designed the mural for the stage. There are plenty of murals throughout the property including two by CJ Hungerman who painted the mural on the outside as well as in the pool.
“It was essential that this hotel not take itself too seriously,” says Andrea Sheehan, Founding Director and Artistic Director of DDA. “We kept things simple so the art could speak for itself. We stripped away all previous attempts to make this quirky building look modern. Instead, we exposed its flaws and embraced the awkward structure for what it was—authentic, just like our guests and the musicians we celebrate.”
Influenced by the music, art, and glamor of a bygone era, the guest rooms at the Ziggy Hotel are a far cry from the average hotel room. With period furniture and boho chic elements, the rooms feel warm and embrace the ambiance found throughout the hotel. While the furniture is mostly neutral tones, the bright 60s-style murals create a cheerful balance. However, there are practical pieces that travelers need such as offices.
The fourth floor, which is one level above the lobby and the lobby floor on the main floor, stands alone with additional amenities and unique rooms. Being able to sell entire space and rooms to one group that wants more privacy or security [such as celebrities] However you are still in touch with what is happening on the lobby level. We made all the rooms different because once again we emphasized the residential aspect of the fourth floor and wanted to personalize it more, making Ziggy more unique,” Sheehan says.
“[The fourth floor also has] Media room, a small meeting room that can be converted into a dining space, often used by artists as a podcast recording room. With its inviting seating area and pool table, the entire floor becomes a loft-style living room space for private groups or simply an extension of the foyer when sold as single rooms.”
The hotel also offers a “Swim Up” room package that features poolside rooms available as a cabana-style setting with bottle service for weekend pool parties. Featuring large pass windows that open towards the pool for a unique VIP experience, bartenders can serve liquor and full menu offerings so guests can party like rock stars.