A grand opening ceremony will be held today for the Boyle Hotel, a four-story landmark built in 1889 and located across the street from Mariachi Plaza, where for years many of the hotel’s former musician tenants gathered in search of work.
Though once a grand hotel, the property had deteriorated into a dilapidated, roach infested tenement before being closed down in 2010 for renovation. The property was for the most part gutted, according to East LA Community Corporation (ELACC) President Maria Cabildo. She said the building has been reinforced for earthquakes, plumbing replaced, and other amenities usually taken for granted, like private bathrooms and kitchens, were installed in each of the refurbished apartments.
Work on the hotel was completed in late August, according to Cabildo, who added some new tenants are already calling the building home.
While the property was in dire condition and in need of many improvements, some of the former tenants were reluctant to move out so the work could take place. They feared losing out on the promise of affordable rent.
So far, three former tenants have moved back in, but four others who applied no longer meet the income requirements, according to Cabildo.
The Boyle Hotel – Cummings Block was originally built as a luxury hotel with large apartment type suites, but over time it was cut up into tiny rooms without private kitchens or restrooms, she said.
The refurbished Boyle Hotel still has 31 units, the same number it had before it was shut down. As part of the development, an additional apartment complex was built next door, offering 20 more housing units, according to ELACC Associate Director Isela Gracian.
The building’s façade was been restored to resemble its original beauty. Several of the building’s original elements have been preserved including the original entry staircase and banister, Cabildo said.
The renovated property also now includes two first floor storefronts, which are currently vacant, and a community room.
But few of the new tenants are mariachis, even though the facility now includes a mariachi cultural center.
Special guests expected at today’s celebration include the great granddaughter of George Cummings and Sacramenta López de Cummings, early Angelenos who built the original four-story Cummings Block and Cummings Hotel. City officials are also expected to be in attendance.
Boyle Hotel Grand Reopening
Date: Sept. 6 (Today)
Time: 11:30 a.m.
Location: Boyle Hotel – Cummings Block, 1781 East 1st Street, adjacent to the
Metro Gold Line Mariachi Plaza Station.
Note: Tours of the complex will follow the reopening ceremony.