Thursday, May 30, 2024

The Fairmont Breakers in Long Beach to open in fall; multiple food and bar spaces (like The Sky Room) included

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The Fairmont Breakers—taking over the historic building that lines the southern end of Ocean between Collins Way and Locust Avenue—has what many are hoping to be an official opening date after many opening announcements that failed to follow through: Fall of 2024.

While one representative stated they are “hoping for September but like to stay on the precautions side,” this date feels far more confident given the many false opening dates: In September of 2023, Mayor Rex Richardson announced the hotel would be opening in March, with Pacific6 founding partner Todd Lemmis and Pacific6 Vice President of Real Estate Renato Alesiani—the company which purchased the building and property in 2017—confirming that opening. Then it was pushed to August.

And now, it is sometime in the fall—and the reason that is hopeful is because, for the first time, the building was lit up for the crowds across Grand Prix’s 49th weekend in the city for its famed race.

Fairmont Breakers: By the basic numbers and what it means for Long Beach

The opening of the city’s first hotel and spa space—the latter of which will be a two-story space that both couples and singles can use to relax as hotel guests—is important for a multitude of reasons: There is, of course, the obvious cultural clout of hosting a Fairmont property. But also, the financial boost: Conventions, conferences, and events often turn a blind eye to Long Beach as a destination because it doesn’t fit with the quality or needs of its attendees and brand—something that has potentially lost the city a multitude of investments.

Upon opening, the Fairmont Breakers will offer some 185 boutique rooms and suites; a rooftop pool and terrace; an open-air rooftop lounge with 360-degree views of the Pacific; that two-story spa, wellness and fitness center; a live jazz club (more on that below); and 12,000-plus square feet of indoor and outdoor function space.

Two restaurants—including an entirely new Italian concept Nettuno—and three bar spaces will move into the Fairmont Breakers

Locals are perhaps most interested in the food and social spaces being offered by the Fairmont Breakers—and rightfully so: Though it had severely declined in its latter years, The Sky Room was a defining space when it came to food and luxury for the city.

Before formally closing in 2018 while just under one year of oversight by Pacific6, The Sky Room was owned and operated by father and son team Bernard and Jonathan Rosenson from 1998 to it closure, shortly after Bernard acquired the Breakers building. And well before Pacific6 and the Rosensons, The Sky Room has been a Breakers staple—in and out occasionally due to ownership changes—since it originally opened in 1946.

A representative said they hope to deliver table-side flambéed desserts like cherries jubilee and bananas foster, with the menu carrying that classic culinary tradition with contemporary flair and presentation. Leather lined booths, individually lighted tables, and golds mixed with blues will highlight the interior.

The Fairmont Breakers’s newest restaurant, Nettuno, will be headed by Fairmont Sonoma Chef Jared Reeves, famous for his dry-aged duck and handmade pastas. Inspired by Italian meals made in the home by one’s mother or grandmother, Nettuno will be “redefining casual dining,” according to a representative, and be acting as Fairmont’s breakfast, lunch, and brunch space.

Adding to the list of will be Alter Ego, the Fairmont Breakers’s ode to jazz music and live performance—something associated with the hotel since its original opening in 1926 and continuing through to when Conrad Hilton made it his eighth Hilton Hotel.

There’s also La Sala, the all-day-all-night space that will serve coffee, espresso, and pastries in the morning, afternoon tea, and cocktails in the evening. It is an ode to the green solarium that was once a part of the Fairmont Breakers in the 1930s—hence the greens and palm tree chandeliers.

Lastly but certainly not least will be Halo, the rooftop nightclub and social space that has altered the entire accessibility of Fairmont The Breakers’s rooftop.

In order to comply with regulations, Pacific6 had to extend existing elevators while creating two new ones that flank the building’s eastern wall. Those who visited the building’s rooftop bar before Fairmont was involved—previously known as the Cielo bar, now known as Halo—was only accessible to fully ambulatory visitors who were dropped off at the 13th floor inside the former Sky Room’s lobby. They then had to climb a tight stairwell to access the space. Those existing elevators will join a new passenger elevator going up to the rooftop, permitting everyone easy access the renovated top-floor space.

That rooftop includes the existing bar space, now revamped, but also the entire rooftop westward of that bar, which now has steps onto a newly constructed 2,600-square-foot rooftop terrace. Before renovation, there was a 7.5-foot drop from the floor of the existing bar space to the rest of the roof. Given this, Pacific6 created an elevated platform that will allow patrons of the bar to access the terrace by stepping down two elongated steps. A stucco wall topped with a glass railing lines the roof’s edge while a new, additional bar was constructed at the westernmost edge of the roof.

The Fairmont Breakers is located at 200 E. Ocean Blvd. and is expected to open in the fall of 2024.

Brian Addison
Brian Addison
Brian Addison has been a writer, editor, and photographer for more than a decade, covering everything from food and culture to transportation and housing. In 2015, he was named Journalist of the Year by the Los Angeles Press Club and has since garnered 25 nominations and three additional wins. In 2019, he was awarded the Food/Culture Critic of the Year across any platform at the National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards.

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