K-town developer envisions new hotel on Olympic

Dale Kim wants to replace industrial building with 143-key establishment

Rendering of 2641 West Olympic Boulevard (CORbel Architects)
Rendering of 2641 West Olympic Boulevard (CORbel Architects)

A new hotel might soon rise in Koreatown.

Developer Dale Kim has filed plans with the city of Los Angeles to construct a 143-key hotel at 2641 West Olympic Boulevard, a site currently occupied by an old industrial warehouse. Kim did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The six-story hotel would total 75,000 square feet, with an underground parking level and bicycle parking.

Kim bought the site for $10.5 million in October from a Glendale-based entity linked to Jong Kim, public records show. It’s unclear whether the two are related.

In his application, Dale Kim said the hotel would be located in “an area that does not currently offer high-quality accommodations for professionals and tourists.”

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The closest hotel is located across the street at 2666 West Olympic Boulevard — a mid-tier establishment called New Seoul Hotel. Other hotels in Koreatown include The Line LA, a four-star, 388-key hotel owned by Yucaipa Companies, and Oxford Palace Hotel & Galleria, a standard for business travelers, with meeting space often used by community groups for press conferences.

Developers are flocking to Koreatown, with most buying up older industrial properties or unused infill sites and planning apartments. Since March, three different developers have filed applications with the city to build apartment buildings, taking advantage of local transit incentives.

This month, the city of L.A. approved a mixed-use project from Jamison Properties — a development that would include 127 residential units, commercial space and parking spaces.

Few developers have filed plans for new hotels in Koreatown, as the pandemic halted and plummeting occupancy rates put a damper on development in the hospitality sector. Development didn’t halt entirely — in October 2020, an entity managed by Kyong Baek and Jai Baek filed plans to build a six-story, 96-key hotel at 956 Menlo Avenue, about a quarter-mile away from Dale Kim’s project.