It goes without saying that urban revitalization in Downtown LA is as much about fixing up our current existing buildings as it is about building new ones. A mix of new and old is really what makes a city dynamic and interesting. Think New York, Chicago, or London. With as many historic structures as we have here in Downtown LA — many still sadly in dilapidated condition — rehabbing them all will be an important part in the grand scheme as the downtown renaissance continues. For example, this past summer the 1925 Barker Brothers building at 7th and Flower received a detailed facade restoration treatment that really made a positive visual impact to 7th Street.
Now a similar restoration process has occurred near 9th and Grand at the Stillwell Hotel. The century old edifice (built in 1912) — an affordable hotel that’s also home to the tasty Uncle John’s Chinese restaurant — started work on the new paint job in July 2012. Once a faded peachy pink color (click here to see its original color), a new darker coat of beige/tan covers the entire facade on all four sides. The building’s architectural details have been painted in a taupe and dark brown color for a nice contrast.
In addition, elements of red have been incorporated throughout the new color scheme. The hotel’s vertical and horizontal signs have been converted to red. The green awnings that once covered the hotel entrance and restaurants on both sides have been replaced with striking red ones for a real visual pop.
The investment into the Stillwell Hotel will be a prelude for other great things to come. The immediate area surrounding the Stillwell will be a lot different in the next few years as large scale projects are completed nearby, within a block radius, including the new Empire Hotel across the street; the “Angelena” project by Carmel Partners (with plans for a new grocery store); as well as the Onni Group’s 32-story tower with plans to break ground in November 2012.