This week the Santa Monica planning commission went and smacked down unimaginative plans for a Courtyard by Marriott and a Hampton Inn and Suites, both planned for Fifth and Colorado and proposed by OTO Development. Right now, both hotels are set to be five stories with 136 rooms and two levels of underground parking; the Courtyard would also have a sixth-floor roof deck and pool (the Hamptons pool would be indoors, according to the staff report). One commissioner called the designs "incredibly disappointing," reports Santa Monica Patch, and OTO says it will go back to the drawing board. Planning staff said they hoped the two hotels could serve as a "gateway" for people getting off the 10 at the Fifth St. exit.
The hotels are set to replace a Midas and an autobody shop, but there's a crazy preservation twist: "Nina Fresco, a member of the city's Landmark Commission, said it has received influx of emails and letters that show the site might have been the location where the first flying car was built and the site of the first mass production facility for airplanes." The Landmark Commission will rule on the matter in early 2012.
· Planners Blast Look of Proposed Hotels [Santa Monica Patch]
· Downtown Santa Monica Getting Expo-Ready With Hotel Explosion [Curbed LA]