September 24, 2020 Breaking News, Latest News, and Videos

Good Taste Santa Monica: The Georgian – Steeped in History, Poised for Further Refinement

By Barbara Bishop

I love a place with an interesting history. And, I love a good meal. I put them together perfectly this past week, by lunching on the beautiful Veranda at The Georgian Hotel. The well-preserved, Santa Monica Landmark is close to 90 years old, and as I walk in, I feel like I am on the set of a glamorous, romantic movie from right out of the 1930s. A golden, winding staircase ahead of me, a seaside Art Deco-style sitting room to my left, and an intimate dining area and bar to my right. I feel as if I need to be wearing a soft, flowing light blue dress, with a stylish hat and gloves. The Georgian whispers of a refined, classic icon that I would have loved to be part of in its historic heyday. news-georgian111816

“Can I help you?” asks the hostess. I wake from my daydream and am led to a charming table on the veranda for my lunch. The outside has as much character as the inside. Overlooking the sparkling blue Pacific Ocean just across Ocean Avenue, I smell the sea breezes and hear and watch the seagulls soaring above me. Why have I never been here before?

According to santamonicalandmarks.com, The Georgian Hotel was built the early 1930s as a seaside hideaway, nestled in the once-heavily-wooded shoreline of the then-little-known seaside community of Santa Monica. In 1933, The Georgian opened its doors during prohibition and was one of L.A.’s first speakeasies, catering to the rich famous and infamous.

It became a rendezvous spot for the era’s Hollywood elite, including lovers Clark Gable and Carol Lombard. Infamous gangster Bugsy Siegel and comedian Fatty Arbuckle sipped martinis and enjoyed jazz music on the veranda.

And according to legend, The Georgian continues to play host to a number of unearthly guests (aka ghosts.) Both staff and guests have reported loud sighs, gasps, or a voice who greets them with “Good Morning,” when no one is in the room. At other times, the sounds of running footsteps have been heard when no one was there and a number of transparent apparitions have been seen. Cool.

The hotel was refurbished in the 1950s, the 1960s, and then in the early 2000s a $2-million renovation was completed. Now, according to the property’s gracious GM, Juan Viramontes, the hotel is about to undergo a stunning renovation of the lobby and restaurant, creating additional space for dining and cocktails for hotel guests, visitors and Santa Monica locals.

Viramontes assures me that the hotel will remain open during the entire process, with no interruption in service. Construction will be complete in early 2017. And that’s not all. Viramontes recently retained long-time restaurateur Rapheal Lunetta (Jiraffe) to consult with him on the property’s food and beverage program. Rumor has it that Lunetta plans to bring back the speakeasy that was so popular in the 1930s. Guess what he’s going to name it? We’ll hear more about this in next year

Oh – and Fatty Arbuckle, if you’re one of those “guest ghosts,” good for you. If I was a ghost, I would make The Georgian Hotel my home too!

The Georgian Hotel is located at 1415 Ocean Ave., Santa Monica. Head to georgianhotel.com for more.

 

Related Posts

Santa Monica Loses Vegan Restaurant

September 23, 2020

September 23, 2020

Space housing Santa Monica vegan restaurant Viva Vegan up for lease By Sam Catanzaro A vegan restaurant in Santa Monica...

Risks Posed by Wildfire Smoke

September 22, 2020

September 22, 2020

UCLA pulmonologist on how people can tell if the wildfires are making them sick By Toi Creel Even if you...

Will Los Angeles County See Another Spike in COVID-19 Cases?

September 22, 2020

September 22, 2020

County health officials keeping close eye on data this week By Sam Catanzaro Los Angeles County health officials are monitoring...

Edify TV: Santa Monica Fire Department Fighting Blazes Across State

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

The Santa Monica Fire Department has been busy helping combat wildfires burning throughout the state. Learn more in this video...

Lawmakers and Residents Take Steps Towards Police Reform

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

Santa Monica residents will soon have more control of policing after local lawmakers took significant steps to reform the Santa...

2020 Census Due September 30th: Santa Monica Beat – September, 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * 2020 Census Due September 30th * Bobcat Fire Reaches Historical Size...

UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica Offers Free “Living With Diabetes” Zoom Patient Conference

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

By Staff Writer Although the novel coronavirus has dominated the health space this year, other diseases — like diabetes —...

SMa.r.t. Column: Spending and Pension Policies Are Undermining Our City’s Future

September 21, 2020

September 21, 2020

Our guest columnist this week is Marc L. Verville. He is a native of Santa Monica, now lives in Sunset...

4.6 Quake Felt in Santa Monica

September 19, 2020

September 19, 2020

4.6 magnitude quake recorded Friday night By Sam Catanzaro A 4.6 magnitude earthquake struck the San Gabriel Valley Friday sending...

Edify TV: Miramar Santa Monica Redevelopment

September 18, 2020

September 18, 2020

The Santa Monica skyline may look different in the future with a major redevelopment of the Fairmont Miramar Hotel &...

‘Fresh Prince Of Bel Air’ Mansion For Rent On AirBnb

September 18, 2020

September 18, 2020

Today on Westside Cribz, 30th anniversary of “The Fresh Prince of Bel Air” Airbnb is renting out the mansion for...

SMMUSD Kindergarten Enrollment Down 20% : Santa Monica Beat – September, 17, 2020

September 17, 2020

September 17, 2020

Local news and culture in under 5 minutes. * SMMUSD Kindergarten Enrollment Down 20% * As Covid-19 Cases Drop Will...

Edify TV: Sit-down Dining Safety?

September 17, 2020

September 17, 2020

Despite a recent CDC report stating the risks of in-person dining, many Westside restaurant patrons feel the experience is safe....

Sur La Table Closing Santa Monica Location

September 16, 2020

September 16, 2020

1930s building listed for lease By Sam Catanzaro Sur La Table, the popular kitchenware retail chain, is closing its downtown...

Death by Suicide at Santa Monica Place

September 16, 2020

September 16, 2020

Man dies by suicide Wednesday morning By Sam Catanzaro A man died by suicide at Santa Monica Place mall Wednesday....