Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

Punk’d ™ by!

Lurking somewhere in the forgotten depths of is a list of hotels which allow non-guests to use the pool areas. When I read this, I was stoked – there’s a pool where I work out, but it’s a typical gym pool (and not too clean in the summer when it’s heavily used), so no languishing poolside with a cocktail and relaxing, jumping in every so often to enjoy a dip – which is, of course the point of hanging out poolside at any hotel.

Two of the hotels on the list were the Bel Age and the W, both within striking distance of my house, so I thought I’d swing by after today’s podiatrist appointment to enjoy a pool not filled with testosterone-jacked lap swimmers (the other two hotels listed were the Standard Downtown which I hate and the Lowes Santa Monica which requires a $25 day pass).

Did I mention that I have no air conditioning? I suppose that’s the price I have to pay for a charming 1920’s-era pad with loads of ‘character’ and French windows throughout (so no window-mounted units for me). My place doesn’t have heat, either, but that’s much less of a problem.

My first try was the W Hotel in Westwood. I marched into the lobby and cheerfully informed the concierge that I was there to use the pool – after all, said it was okay, right?


“I don’t know who told you that”, she said. “Our pool is for guests only. During the winter, non-guests may use the pool if they lease a cabana (for $300 per day), but during the summer, I’m afraid it’s off-limits unless you have a room here”.

For the record, she was very nice, but damn. The W has a terrific pool – I should know. I once worked on a movie that shot there, so I got a good look at it while I was wrapping cable and wishing I could jump in without having my toolbelt drag me to a watery grave in the deep end (or being drowned by my boss had he discovered me swimming while I should have been working).

Next stop, the Bel Age:

“Absolutely not” sniffed the guy at the front desk. “Besides the liability issue, we’d prefer our pool area remain exclusive. Which website was it that listed us? Our management would like to correct that error.”

Double damn.

I’m sure at some point in the past, these places did allow non-guests in, otherwise a fine, upstanding website such as wouldn’t have listed them.

Which means I missed the boat and am condemned to swelter this summer.

Triple damn.

Couch of the day:


Filed under: couches, life in LA, Non-Work

7 Responses

  1. Afsheen says:

    I’ve heard the Roosevelt Hotel pool is open to non-guests, but I have absolutely no idea if that’s true or not.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Sounds like a better plan is to just act like you’re a guest.

  3. Dave2 says:

    The W L.A. is one of my all-time favorite hotels. Outrageously expensive, but oh so sweet. Just staying there makes you feel like a better person. :-)

  4. Anonymous says:

    I have a pool. Doesn’t get much use, but I pour lots of money and effort into maintenance. Feel free to use it anytime you like.

  5. Tiffany says:

    you just have to sneak in. Enter the W’s main entrance instead of the side pool one. Wait…how can you live near the W and Bel Age?

  6. ecco21 says:

    Try the argyle. I think we used it last summer. I too, have no pool.

  7. The Roosevelt doesn’t allow non-guests as policy, but I used to sneak in quite often. The trick here was, partly, to liberally tip the poolside waitstaff. They don’t care who’s at the pool, so long as they tip and aren’t a pain in the ass. And having a friend there is nice…
    Unfortunately, since the renovation they have suited security keeping watch, but I don’t know how commonplace this is.

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