Silver Lake business woman Dana Hollister envisions turning the former Pilgrim Church on Griffith Park Boulevard into a posh, boutique hotel, with 26 guest rooms going for $265 (and up) a night; a pool, rooftop garden and places to eat and drink. “I want to do something that is conservative and appropriate,” Hollister told The Eastsider in 2011 of her plans for the Romanesque-style church. But many neighbors living near the 83-year-old church see nothing conservative or appropriate about Hollister’s plans. Instead, they are concerned that the former church will be turned into a noisy party palace whose patrons will worsen the already tight supply of street parking. Of particular concern are Hollister’s plans to include four bar areas in the hotel, including a cabana bar next to the pool, a lounge in the former main hall of the church that will be open until 4 a.m. and the conversion of the church choir room into a cocktail bar.
“It goes without saying that such changes to the church would severely impact the quality of life for the residents around the church,” says a petition being circulated by neighbors. On Wednesday night, the governing board of the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council will take up a motion opposing Hollister’s plans.
Many neighbors have expressed support for the hotel portion of the project but worry about the crowds and cars that would be attracted to the bars and lounge as well as weddings, banquets and other events. The main lobby lounge, for example, has a capacity for more than 150 people and there will be room for another 100 guests on the roof top garden lounge, which would be open until midnight.
“Beautiful project,” said one resident during a February meeting of the council’s Urban Design & Preservation Advisory Committee. “My concern is roof top noise, traffic and hours of operation for the rooftop.”
During a presentation before the committee, Hollister, who owns the nearby Cliff’s Edge restaurant and 4100 bar, and her consultants tried to address neighborhood concerns. Nearby parking lots would be leased for the use of hotel guests and bar patrons, and the project would take steps to keep noise from bothering residents as well as hotel customers. “Music will not be played too loud, as it would disturb the guests’ hotel experience,” said Hollister, according to the minutes of the meeting.
But residents, who have collected about 200 signatures on their petition, have continued to put pressure on Hollister and neighborhood leaders to protect the surrounding community.
“We hope that the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council will be supportive of our efforts to makesure that any Conditional Use Permits or Zoning Changes will have the residents’ best intersts in mind, ” says the petition.
The Silver Lake Neighborhood Council is scheduled to meet on Wednesday, April 3 at 7 p.m. at Micheltorena School Auditorium,
1511 Micheltorena St. Click here for an agenda.