Midwood Investment & Development is nearly finished building a retail center at the site of Studio City’s Sportsmen’s Lodge, and is seeking to add apartments to the complex.
The New York-based firm wants to demolish the 190-room hotel at the Ventura Boulevard property and replace it with a 520-unit apartment complex, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Midwood expects the approval process to take around two years and the firm may reopen the hotel in the meantime.
Midwood CEO John Usdan said the property struggled in the years before it closed because of the pandemic.
The hotel opened in 1962 and was once a hotspot for celebrities of the era. John Wayne, Bette Davis, and Humphrey Bogart were all regulars.
Usdan said that its main clientele before the pandemic were visitors to the Universal Studios Hollywood theme park, which also closed during the pandemic, and reopened in April.
“When you are dependent on a single driver of business, it is a high-risk enterprise,” Usdan said.
The hotel also hosted unhoused people during the pandemic through the state’s Project Roomkey program.
Midwood is betting that apartments will be in greater demand than hotel rooms in the coming years.
The design from architecture firm Marmol Radziner calls for three buildings ranging from three to seven stories. Units would be a mix studio to two-bedroom apartments.
[LAT] — Dennis Lynch