The definitive—and salacious—history of the iconic hotel that Hollywood stars have called a home away from home for almost a century.
“Fascinating, dishy, and glimmering with insight.... This is the definitive book about Hollywood’s most storied hotel.” —Cheryl Strayed, bestselling author of Wild
Since 1929, Hollywood’s brightest stars have flocked to the Chateau Marmont as if it were a second home. An apartment building-turned-hotel, the Chateau has been the backdrop for generations of gossip and folklore: where director Nicholas Ray slept with his sixteen-year-old Rebel Without a Cause star Natalie Wood; Jim Morrison swung from the balconies; John Belushi suffered a fatal overdose; and Lindsay Lohan got the boot after racking up nearly $50,000 in charges in less than two months.
But despite its mythic reputation, much of what has happened inside the Chateau’s walls has eluded the public eye—until now. With wit and insight, Shawn Levy recounts the wild revelries and scandalous liaisons, the creative breakthroughs and marital breakdowns, the births and deaths to which the hotel has been a party. Vivid, salacious, and richly informed, The Castle on Sunset is a glittering tribute to Hollywood as seen from inside the walls of its most hallowed hotel.
Levy (Rat Pack Confidential) recounts the evolution of Chateau Marmont from bohemian haven to glitterati hot spot in this engrossing account of the L.A. hotel's 90-year history of decadence. Weaving together historical research and firsthand accounts, the author examines the transformation of the high-end apartment building into a world-famous hotel often inhabited by itinerant Hollywood directors and actors: "The Chateau has spent nearly a century perched on the eastern edge of the Sunset Strip like the Rock of Gibraltar, a landmark defining a transition, a way station giving harbor to vagabonds, a milestone, a sentinel, a keep." It's served as the repository of gossip and innuendo for decades: director Nicholas Ray stayed there while creating Rebel Without a Cause and sleeping with 16-year-old Natalie Wood; rising stars Tab Hunter and Anthony Perkins met poolside and began a secret love affair; and rocker Jim Morrison swung from balconies while drunk. More recently, the hotel has attracted the likes of troubled actress Lindsay Lohan and filmmaker Sofia Coppola, who filmed Somewhere there. This eye-popping and entertainingly lurid tale of Hollywood scandal and intrigue will delight readers.