Saturday, February 04, 2006

A Toast, to The Ambassador

Thursday night Will and I hob nobbed at the H.M.S. Bounty and adjoining Gaylord lobby to raise a glass in honor of the glory days of the great Ambassador Hotel. I've worked across the street from the Ambassador for eight years and have watched its demolition from my 12th floor vantage point.

The red carpet was out and the press along side it. We arrived shortly after 7:00 pm, grabbed a couple of complimentary drinks, made our way to the Blogger's table and ate appetizer of stuffed mushrooms, coconut shrimp, and lobster cocktail on endive.

At the bar, not too put out by the whole to-do, sat the Bounty's old timers drinking and watching Jeopardy.

We met the dear Carlyn Frank Benjamin who was featured in the L.A. Times article about her life growing up at the Ambassador. She lived with her family on the second floor of the Rincon bungalow from when the hotel opened in 1921 through 1938. Her Father was the hotel manager and Grandfather the hotel company's V. P.

I also met another woman, Shirley Huntley, who's husband was the house photographer from the mid-60's through the 70's. There with her son, Bob Huntley, they had a display of photos from the day with the likes of
Joey Bishop.

It was very nice to meet Mike Schneider from Franklin Avenue (I've been contributing photos of the demolition to his Ambassador site) along with many other bloggers. It's always so interesting to meet the folks who's blogs you read. Like finally meeting the person behind the voice on the phone.

At the end of the night, I checked in with Ramon, perched proudly at the end of the bar he used to tend, and congratulated him on a successful evening. He takes good care of his customers and he opened his place up to us tonight.


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