Friday, September 22, 2006

Isn't it Grand?

Tonight was quite a night. A Dodger game that they actually won. Sitting with friends in great seats. Drinking beer, eating nachos and hearing the crack of the bat and the slap of a 97 mpg fastball hitting the catcher's mitt. Ahhhhhhh baseball. Hope springs eternal as every game brings highs and lows as the Dodger's do their usual waffle and shuffle toward first place. Who knows, maybe we'll be going to the National League playoffs. As I said, hope springs eternal.

But the events for tonight didn't end under the big Think Blue sign in the parking lot. We scoot out of my perfect parking place and roar out of Dodger stadium. We drive into downtown LA and a calm comes over me. Civilization beckons. Moments later I sit holding a glass of champagne in one of the most beautiful hotels I've ever seen. We are toasting the 10 year anniversary of great friends of ours - Arlindo and Michael. What a fitting venue for the toast. The Biltmore in downtown Los Angeles on Grand. It truly is Grand. The hotel is truly breathtaking. Designed in the style of the Spanish Italian Renaissance, the hotel opened in 1923 to national acclaim, and was designated a Historical Cultural Landmark in 1969. The cathedral-like public room ceilings were hand-painted by Italian artist Giovanni Smeraldi of White House and Vatican fame.

Touted as the “host of the coast” from the beginning, the Biltmore became the place to be for Los Angeles high society, film industry czars and stars, conventioneers, and cross-country travelers. Among the momentous events held at the Biltmore was the founding banquet
for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. It was at the dinner on May 11, 1927 that the concept and design for the “Oscar” were conceived. A statue was sketched on a napkin during a Crystal Ballroom banquet marking the occassion. The statue was named Oscar.

They hold high tea here and I plan on taking my aunts and my mother in April of 2007. I'm sure they will enjoy the architecture and beauty as much as I did this night. People ask me all the time why I live in LA. Here is one of the ten thousand reasons.........

No comments: