Fab 40: Hotel Erwin, Venice Beach
Sun, surf and style are served by the bucket-and-spadeful at Hotel Erwin, located a stone’s throw away from LA’s Venice Beach and its iconic boardwalk. Named after the original builder, Erwin Sokol, and now forming part of Joi de Vivre’s portfolio of boutique Californian properties, Hotel Erwin combines shabby surfer style with sleek contemporary chic.
The interiors are courtesy of local design firm Cole Martinez Curtis and Associates; think sand-coloured yellows and ocean-hued blues, kitsch fixtures and counter-cultural fittings, with a vibe that favours casual flip-flopped bohemian types over try-hard Louboutin-wearing glamourpusses. There are 119 rooms in total, the best of which is the Casa Erwin Penthouse Suite with picture-postcard views out over the Pacific from its balcony, a circular king-size bed (not revolving, we hasten to add) and a two-person bathtub.
Hotel amenities include a gallery-style meeting space that exhibits the work of a local artist and an on-site gym for those who daren’t brave nearby Muscle Beach and the steroid-pumped trunk hunks and silicone-stuffed bikini babes who frequent it. There is also the Hash dining room, headed up by former Gordon Ramsay chef Micah Fields and offering a menu that champions homestyle cooking. Main dishes revolve largely around ‘hash’– explained on the menu not as the substance smoked by beach-loving hippies but as food chopped into small pieces – such as the Angus corned beef hash, comprising corned beef, potatoes and caramelised onions.
Sunsets should be taken in upstairs at the High rooftop lounge – a tongue-in-cheek reference to the restaurant’s cheeky name, no doubt - which is the perfect place to perch and people-watch with an ice cold artisan beer or three.