Putting on the Ritz

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The Ritz Carlton Marina del Rey has had a fabulous face lift. Being LA that’s quite the normal thing to do there. But the folks at the Ritz manage to keep the beauty of the place while making it a bit younger and hipper.

As you walk into the fresh new living room, it has the feel of the BA 1st class lounge at LHR thanks to the long marble bar with iPad to order drinks and snacks and of course plug ins for power everywhere.

The best part about this renovation is the restaurant Cast and Plow. Its Gastro-English pub meets relaxed LA vibe makes it unique. The menu options had great innovative choices and good portions which side on the protein for those of us that try to avoid the carbs. The presentation was modern with a hint of Asia without being Fusion. The head Chef is from South Africa which means it’s all about brilliant produce and good ingredients.

What was exciting about this place is the fact it’s at a top hotel. I have worked a lot in Asia where hotels are a destination for food. The best hotels in Hong Kong and Bangkok are places where the most in the know locals go to eat at. That’s not true in Europe or the USA. We love to stay at places like the Dorchester or Savoy but we don’t always dine there. The fact is, especially in the USA, we treat hotel food as a last resort; arriving late and having an okay club sandwich in the room, or a quick grab and go at the coffee shop. Now LA and NY have started to bring in celebrity chefs to open outlets which are run separately from the hotel.

But the new Ritz Carlton Marian del Rey’s strategy could be a new trend of creating 5-star restaurant food experiences at hotels. I hope other Ritz Carlton’s follow suit as I love the chain.

The fact is the Ritz Carlton Marina Del Rey is a great get away from the craziness of LA is always an attraction to me. I was at the Peninsula Beverly Hills a few weeks back and the bar scene there was entirely different. It was all people in the business. It was all about networking. It was not how the Ritz is positioning itself as relaxed. So if you are or are not “in the business” go to the Ritz to get away from it.

Now with the Ritz as a group I think it is always worth getting a club access room. They are open long hours and serve drinks all day long. Opening at 6am for breakfast, they then run hors d’oeuvres late afternoon and finally desserts bites until 10pm and MOST IMPORTANTLY you can have a glass of wine anytime. I love that as sometimes on busy work trips I miss the happy hour that’s usually 5:30pm-7:30pm. I feel like I lost out by not using it when I paid for it. So the Ritz changed the rules and always has a friendly club feel in the lounge. Ask upon check in as you may get a reduced rate

So the food was great and breakfast was even better, sitting outside on the marina and having the LA healthy choice of egg white omelets and fat free milk without even asking for it. It’s a great place to be all year round. The pool is quiet and spacious too.

All in all a great hotel to stay at but it gets better. Why do we choose a certain hotel? Well its service, location, quality of the brand, luxury but above all (and we don’t think of this enough) comfort. This was the most comfortable and quiet room I have slept in. The bed was layered and layered with bed toppers, luxury high thread count linens and a mattress that I want to buy for home.

Well done Ritz Carlton Marina Del Rey.

Daniel - Living GreenDaniel Green, the Model Cook is a Celebrity Chef known for his healthy approach to food and living well. With TV, books, magazines and live appearances, Daniel spends his time helping fans to cook better, feel better and live better. He’s also an avid traveler and a self-confessed Foodie.

To contact Daniel or learn more visit www.themodelcook.com or follow on Twitter @themodelcook.

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