Tuesday, December 06, 2005

The Rat Pack's Last Stand

Franklin Avenue/The Ambassador's Last Stand reader Tess was recently shooting photos at the Ambassador, and realized that she could see the back wall of what used to be the master bathroom of what was once Sammy Davis Jr's apartment.

Sammy had a sixth floor place above the Cocoanut Grove back in the day, notes Tess, who had shot the inside of the building on a previous visit earlier this year.















9 Comments:

Anonymous Victor Atomic said...

I go to school next door and I will greatly miss walking by and seeing this great sight of the past. A sad time for LA and Hollywood. Im glad I was able to take some last photos as they were begining to take down the spanish tiles. Much Love - Vixs Atomic

12:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the people who live in Los Angeles who wrote in about the Ambassador Hotel care about it as much as they say and I believe that their feelings are very sincere, then what they should do is what an anonymous writer said and see if they can get a company like Inter-Continental Hotels or Renissance Hotels or Ritz-Carlton Hotels to build a new Ambassador Hotel that looks just like the old one. There has to be somebody out there who has the pull to get this done. I agree with the one writer that said a new Ambassador will never be the same as the old one, but since there have been so many wonderful stories about the Ambassador, they could be incorporated in the new hotel.

3:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been watching developments at the Ambassador for the last year from over here in the UK. The whole affair is really rather sad; I even lobbied the LAUSD on the matter as to the complete wipeout of so much history at one fell swoop. Some contributors have picked up on the idea of a hotel chain bulding a new Amdassador but in the old style - perhaps a rather romantic notion as it would have to be sited elsewhere and it's the patrons that stayed and the events that were held that contribute so much. For an example though of one such rebuild I'd point anyone to the former Huntington Sheraton in Pasadena, demolished because of new earthquake regs and rebuilt in the old style - renamed the Huntington Ritz Carlton. At least one example of Myron Hunt's hotel legacy survives. Please keep the site going, it's fascinating to see all these contributors comments and pictures coming in. Neil UK

11:10 AM  
Blogger jay at 35.5 said...

It doesnt matter if another company builds a replica of the hotel somewhere else. Its not the same and it never will be. The hotel is special for many reasons and one of them is the location. There will never be a way to recreate the feelings one had when they walked thru the doors of that lobby. Look at the examples of the Brown Derby. All 4 of our derbys are closed here. But there is a replica of the Hollywood Brown Derby at the MGM Gtand in Las Vegas and another at Disney Studios in Florida. Ill never understand why we dont have a derby here but we can have fake ones all over the country

8:43 AM  
Anonymous Sean Harrington said...

This whole thing has me really sick, all the history! I woke up at 5 this morning, wondering, "where will all the ghosts go?"


Back in the early 90s, maybe '91 or '92 I was at the sale they had of the contents, glasses, trays, tablecloths, etc, and a security guard took me up stairs, to the top floor, to an apartment, it was on the front of the bldg, East side, it had a bar, and a balcony, it was done in early '70s cheap paneling. He told me it was the Kennedy's place (ICK! those people again!) Was this actually Sammy's place??

12:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jay is right that a new Ambassador will never be the same. He is also correct about the location if a new one is built. But I think that the writer who siggested that a new Ambassador be built was trying to re-capture a time and a place that had so much history. My wife and I stayed at the Willare Inter-Continental and the Mayflower Renissance in Washington, D. C. and those companies went to great care to re-capture the grandeur that those hotels had in the past. Yes, the Willard and the Mayflower are at their original sites. The sensitivity that those companies had in restoring those hotels may have mad that writer to believe that those companies, along with Ritz-Carlton could do the job. I would have like for any of those companies to have bought the Ambassador and restored it, but unfortunately, they did not. In closing, the person suggesting that a new Ambassador be built is an incurable romantic, but I believe that that person's heart, as well as Jay's, are in the right place. It is a shame about the Brown Derby. I get the impression that Los Angeles does not appreciate its past. With the sincere feelings that Jay, myself and others have, a new Ambassador could not only thrive, it could be used as a teaching tool. People young and old alike would have the chance to learn and see the history of the old Ambassador. But with the new one, people could see the passion that many others have about the old Ambassador that made people want to build a new one.

Thanks,

Scott

2:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a 52 year resident of Los Angeles, I am sorry the hotel is gone, but the neighborhood has gone to the dogs. There was no hope. Even if the property had been fully restored, I believe it would not have been a "destination".

11:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think rebuilding the hotel like they did the Ritz Carlton in San Marino would be a great idea. Sergeant Klinger from Hogan's Heroes saved the Sunset Tower appartment from demolition by fighting his eviction before demolition in 1985. He did a great job and after first being the St. James's Club (of London) with a 25 mio$ investment and then the Argyle it is now home of the world's most coveted party: The Vanity Fair Oscar Party. Does not get much better.
The only drawback about the Ambassador is the area it is in. Not very popular with tourists. That could be the only reason why no major hotel chain has invested any money yet.
It is really a sad story.

9:37 PM  
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10:23 AM  

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