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Hotel La Jolla Gets $8M Makeover

HOSPITALITY: Update of Historic Hotspot Follows $43M Purchase in 2021

The 51-year-old Hotel La Jolla is undergoing an $8 million renovation, its first since 2012.

Adam Lund
General Manager
Hotel La Jolla

“Everybody has a story for the Hotel La Jolla,” said General Manager Adam Lund said, from wedding anniversaries to graduation celebrations.

Prominently located at the entrance to La Jolla Shores, “It is a landmark,” he added.

The hotel, which is part of the Curio Collection by Hilton, made a name for itself when it was known as the Summerhouse Inn with Elario’s restaurant and jazz club on the top floor of the 11-story building at 7955 La Jolla Shores Drive.

Jazzy Roots

Elario’s, said to have been named after the father of the hotel’s first general manager, drew big-name musicians from around the country.

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Rooms on the 10th floor of the hotel were reserved for the musicians to stay in so they wouldn’t disturb the other guests with their partying on the 11th floor.

The venue was the hotel restaurant, with the music introduced four years after the hotel opened.

Elario’s is gone, shuttered in 1992, but the remodeled hotel will have “a big focus on programming,” according to General Manager Adam Lund.

“That might be a good avenue to keep the jazz alive,” Lund said. “Currently, we have what we call sunset sessions. We’ve been running this for over a year now. We have several local musicians that we kind of rotate in.”

Kawa Capital Management based in Hallandale Beach, Florida, and CL Hotels, based in Miami acquired the hotel in September 2021 from Khana Enterprises for $43 million.

Lund said that the hotel has recovered from the COVID pandemic and its immediate aftermath.

“Occupancy is fluctuating around 75% as rooms are being updated floor by floor,” Lund said.

New Chapter

Designed by Hirsch Bedner Associates, based in Santa Monica, the renovation is expected to be finished in November.

Among the more dramatic changes will be replacing floor-to-ceiling windows on the top floor with sliding doors to give the hotel’s new restaurant and bar “a light, airy feel,” Lund said.

The color palette is blue with light wood accents “the really point back to our famed La Jolla beaches,” Lund said.

The 110 guestrooms and suites are getting a full makeover, as is the 1,600-square-feet of meeting and event space.

Replacing the Cusp Dining & Drinks restaurant on the top floor will be a new restaurant – Sea & Sky – by Taste & Theory Restaurant Group, based in Plano, Texas.

“Cusp has the advantage of an enviable location 11 stories above La Jolla Shores, offering what are arguably the best views of any restaurant in the area. It has gained a loyal following among both the leisure and business set, and travelers and locals thanks to the location, upscale fare, and programming,” Lund said. “But it’s time to open a new chapter, and with the newly elevated design of the hotel, we thought it was time to embrace a new perspective and develop a refreshed concept on par with the rest of the renovated property.”

Sea & Sky “will celebrate the bounty of fresh produce, fish, dairy, and meat regionally available from the American coast and Baja peninsula,” Lund said.

Hotel La Jolla

Opened: 1972
Headquarters: La Jolla
General Manager: Adam Lund
Business: hospitality
Employees: 55
Website: www.hotellajolla.com
Contact: 858-551-3600
Notable: Hotel La Jolla is owned by Kawa Capital Management, based in Hallandale Beach, FL, and CL Hotels based in Miami


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