Friday, April 11, 2008

Beverly Hills gets Waldorf Astoria, Luxury Condos and Bump in Traffic

Robinsons May Development Site Beverly Hills, California - Home of future luxury residential and retail
For those Beverly Hills residents who viewed the community as an austere bastion of refined taste and low-rise buildings, be prepared to take a deep breath and watch the construction cranes arrive. The Beverly Hills City Council has given the go-ahead to two major projects near the corner of Santa Monica and Wilshire Boulevards in the 90210.

At the former Robinsons-May site, fabled firms Richard Meier Architects and London's Candy & Candy have the greenlight to build 235 ultra-luxury condos and a small amount of retail and restaurant space. A short distance away, at the Beverly Hilton site, the city has approved the addition of condos and the West Coast's first Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. (See a map of ongoing development here.)

These projects have been in the pipeline for years -- now they have the authority to proceed. As the developments get underway, expect road rage from Bentley- and Maserati-driving BH'ers -- and ordinary commuters who use the Santa Monica and Wilshire axes to traverse from East to West and back.