Lights, Camera, Vacation! See which Los Angeles hotels have appeared on the silver screen

by Ben on September 15, 2010

A common occurence for LA hotel-goers

It’s well known that Los Angeles is the center of the film universe, but it is also home to some of the finest hotels in the country. What happens when the two industries collide? Beautiful onscreen magic. Whether it’s Julia Roberts and Richard Gere rolling around the Presidential Suite of The Beverly Wilshire in Pretty Woman or Arnold Schwarzenegger riding a horse into a Westin Bonaventure Hotel elevator in True Lies, Los Angeles hotels always find a way to get their fifteen minutes of fame on the big screen.


The Westin Bonaventure Hotel and Suites

The glass exterior of The Westin Bonaventure

The Westin Bonaventure’s elegant modern glass exterior enclose some of the best views in all of LA. This incredible piece of architecture has become a common backdrop for some pretty memorable movie moments. Clint Eastwood plays Secret Service Agent Frank Horrigan, who tries to thwart a Presidential assassination attempt by John Malkovich’s character Mitch Lear, in In The Line Fire (1993), and arguably the most notable Westin Bonaventure moment is Arnold Schwarzenegger’s horseback ride into one of the hotel’s elevators in True Lies (1994).

Other movies filmed here include:

  • Wonderland (2003)
  • Heat (1995)
  • Forget Paris (1995)
  • Nick of Time (1993)
  • Lethal Weapon 2 (1989)
  • Rain Main (1988)
  • Blue Thunder (1983)

The Millennium Biltmore Hotel

The Rendevous Room at The Biltmore

The list of movies attached to this classic downtown hotel is one of the longest in Los Angeles. Plus, the hotel was a host to the Academy Awards Ceremony eight times in the 1930s and 40s. Most of the hotel can be seen as Dan Akroyd and Bill Murray’s team of paranormal detectives are chased around in the Biltmore’s Main Galleria in Ghost Busters (1984). (Hotel not actually haunted…. we hope).

Other movies filmed here include:

  • Wedding Crashers (2005)
  • Rumor Has It (2005)
  • Criminal (2004)
  • Daredevil (2004)
  • House of Sand and Fog (2003)
  • Cruel Intentions (1999)
  • Independence Day (1996)
  • The Bodyguard (1992)
  • Pretty in Pink (1986)
  • Splash (1984)
  • The Sting (1973)
  • Vertigo (1958)

Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel

The Hollywood Roosevelt Sign overlooking Hollywood Boulevard

The Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel sits directly on Hollywood Boulevard and The Walk of Fame, so of course it has found its way onto the big screen. Not only a popular hotel, but a popular party location, The Roosevelt is alive and well with Hollywood culture at all times of the year. Its hallways became a staple in Steven Spielberg’s Catch Me If You Can (2002) as Leonardo DiCaprio’s con-man character Frank Abagnale Jr. has a close run in with FBI Agent Carl Hanratty played by Tom Hanks. It was also seen recently in the revival of famous L.A. based tv-show 90201.

Other movies filmed here include:

  • Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle (2003)
  • Crossroads (2002)
  • Mighty Joe Young (1998)
  • Internal Affairs (1990)
  • The Fabulous Baker Boys (1989)
  • Beverly Hills Cop II (1987)

Chateau Marmont

View of Chateau Marmont from Sunset Boulevard

Located on the north end of the Sunset Strip, Chateau Marmont is a true piece of Hollywood history. This castle-like building was the site of John Belushi’s drug overdose and death in 1982, it’s where Natalie Woods and James Dean first met, and where, as depicted in Oliver Stone’s The Doors (1991), Door’s lead singer Jim Morrison hurt his back while dangling from a drain pipe, trying to swing from the roof into the window of his hotel room. Stone used the actual location for the shot in the movie. Most recently, Sofia Coppola chose the Chateau Marmont as the setting for her new movie Somewhere (2010). The majority of the movie is filmed at the hotel.

Other movies filmed here include:

  • Rock Star (2001)
  • Four Rooms (1995)
  • Myra Breckenrdige (1970)

Beverly Wilshire Hotel – Four Seasons (formerly Regent Beverly Wilshire)

Entrance to The Beverly Wilshire

The Beverly Wilshire is the #1 rated luxury hotel in Los Angeles on Oyster.com, and for good reason. The hotel is located on Wilshire Blvd. directly across from the world famous shopping of Rodeo Drive. It’s a luxury hotel for all tastes, most memorably for Richard Gere and Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman (1991). The fictional couple stayed in the Presidential Suite of the hotel while staying in Beverly Hills (and you may remember Julia scribbling Reg. Bev. Wil. on a pizza box in red lipstick).

Other movies filmed here include:

  • Bulworth (1998)
  • Beverly Hills Cop III (1994)
  • Beverly Hillbillies (1993)
  • Beverly Hills Cop (1984)

The Beverly Hilton Hotel

The front view of The Beverly Hilton

The Beverly Hilton is a true staple of Hollywood glamour, and has been host to the Golden Globes since 1961. The hotel recently laid the backdrop for Frost/Nixon (2009), which tells the story of the 1977 interviews between British reporter David Frost and former President Richard Nixon.

Movies filmed here include:

  • To Live and Die in L.A. (1985)
  • Bigger Than Life (1956)

The Beverly Hills Hotel

Nightime at The Beverly Hills Hotel

This pink palace is one of the most famous and historic buildings in all of Beverly Hills. Famous for its beautiful grounds, elegant restaurants, and excellent service, this place was made for the camera. Detroit Cop Axel Foley (Eddie Murphy) can be seen on these famous grounds as he tries to solve his best friend’s murder in Beverly Hills Cop (1984).

Other movies filmed here include:

  • Anywhere But Here (1999)
  • Beverly Hills Cop II (1987)
  • The Bad and the Beautiful (1952)

The Sunset Tower – Argyle

View from Sunset Boulevard of The Sunset Tower - Argyle

The Sunset Tower is an iconic piece of West Hollywood Art Deco architecture and is designated as a National Historic Place. Located directly on the Sunset Strip, it’s beautiful weather and surroundings lent themselves to memorable poolside scenes in The Player (1992), starring Tim Robbins and Peter Gallagher.

Other movies filmed here include:

  • The Italian Job (2003)
  • Get Shorty (1995)
  • Strange Days (1995)

RIP: The Ambassador Hotel

The hotel famous for Senator Robert F. Kennedy’s tragic assassination and the Coconut Grove nightclub was also famous for opening its doors to the film industry. During its 85 years of operation, it was the backdrop for close to 100 television and movie shoots, 25 in the new millennium alone. The unmistakable castle like building was unfortunately torn down in 2005 to make way for a new school.

Movies filmed here include:

  • Bobby (2006)
  • The Island (2005)
  • S.W.A.T. (2003)
  • Catch Me If You Can (2002)
  • Minority Report (2002)
  • Heartbreakers (2001)
  • How High (2001)
  • Blow (2001)
  • Almost Famous (2000)
  • Man on the Moon (1999)
  • Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998)
  • Se7en (1995)
  • Apollo 13 (1995)
  • Forrest Gump (1994)
  • The Graduate (1967)

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Madeleine Ludlow September 15, 2010 at 10:35 am

I like this and look forward to more posts

Dirk Diggler September 15, 2010 at 7:44 pm

Hi Benjamin!!!

Love the Post!!!

<3 Dirk

daniel martin September 23, 2010 at 11:02 pm

It’s is awesome, i like biltmore, motion pictures
daniel martin
Cheap Hotels Windmere

Grant May 21, 2012 at 8:57 pm

Well of course you’re going to find some cinematic pieces of history if you take a Los Angeles vacation. You might pay a bit more for some, but it’s worth every penny. That’s why I always plan ahead at http://myhollywoodvacation.com/

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