Life at the Marmont: The Inside Story of Hollywood's Legendary Hotel of the Stars--Chateau Marmont

Life at the Marmont: The Inside Story of Hollywood's Legendary Hotel of the Stars--Chateau Marmont

by Raymond Sarlot, Fred E. Basten
     
 

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Raymond Sarlot bought the Chateau Marmont in 1975, but what was originally a business purchase became a love affair as he delved into the hotel's incredible history. From its perch overlooking the Sunset Strip, the glamorous Marmont reigned for decades as the spot for artists, writers, musicians, and actors of every stripe and remains a home-away-from-home for

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Overview

Raymond Sarlot bought the Chateau Marmont in 1975, but what was originally a business purchase became a love affair as he delved into the hotel's incredible history. From its perch overlooking the Sunset Strip, the glamorous Marmont reigned for decades as the spot for artists, writers, musicians, and actors of every stripe and remains a home-away-from-home for A-listers like Scarlett Johansson and Johnny Depp. Here, Sarlot and co-author Fred E. Basten share a wealth of scandalous and intriguing tales about them all, from the stars of Hollywood's Golden Era like Jean Harlow and Grace Kelly to idols of the sixties and seventies like Jim Morrison and John Belushi (who tragically died there in 1982). Whether your obsession is Hollywood history or celebrity gossip, Life at the Marmont has plenty of gripping, juicy stories to fascinate.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The story of Chateau Marmont “is practically a capsule history of Hollywood itself,” an assertion more than proved in this delightful history by co-authors Sarlot (who owned the hotel from 1975 to 1991) and journalist Basten (Max factor: The Man Who Changed the Faces of the World). Out of print for more than two decades, but now featuring a short afterword, Life at the Marmont still shows in copious detail how the Marmont has been “Hollywood’s authentic grand hotel” for actors, actresses, directors, producers, and even rock stars since it opened in 1929. Every page includes at least three or four prominent Hollywood legends—from early owner Albert E. Smith, the cofounder of pioneer film production company Vitagraph, who saved the Marmont from bankruptcy in the 1930s, to Lady Gaga, who made gossip column headlines in 2011 when she dined at the Marmont wearing “an all-white Yves Saint Laurent tuxedo.” There are fascinating stories of memorable visits by Greta Garbo, Clark Gable, Jean Harlow, Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, Robert De Niro, Duke Ellington, Jim Morrison, and literally hundreds of others whose exploits gave the Marmont its “magical” reputation. In the words of legendary producer Harry Cohn in 1939 to then “hot-blooded” Hollywood newcomers and future legends Glenn Ford and William Holden, “If you must get into trouble, go the Marmont.” (May)
Kirkus Reviews
A loving but lighter-than-air biography of the hotel that has loomed over Hollywood since the 1920s. Co-authors Sarlot (who owned the Marmont, 1975-91) and Basten (author of numerous books about Hollywood, including Max Factor's Hollywood: Glamour, Movies, Make-up, 1995) begin with a glimpse of the place in 1975, then whisk us back to 1926 to watch Fred Horowitz finding the spot where he wanted to build his new hotel. Thus commences a dance through the decades. We learn what was going on in Hollywood in general, who was running the hotel (from management to the garage), and, of course, who was staying there--and what they were doing. It seems that just about everyone notable stopped there (sometimes for years), and the authors often organize subsections of chapters by names (always prefixed with a polite "Mr.," "Miss," or "Mrs." (No "Ms." at the Marmont!) In the 1920s and '30s, folks like Jean Harlow and Clark Gable were there. And Billy Wilder, Joan Blondell and other performers. Writers liked to hang there, too--including Thornton Wilder, Ben Hecht and Dorothy Parker. Howard Hughes stayed awhile, as did Grace Kelley (hotly pursued by High Noon co-star Gary Cooper). We learn a bit about the swimming pool, too (installed in 1947), and who liked to splash in scant suits. Some of the most shimmering stars were there at times, Garbo and Monroe among them. And some footage for Myra Breckenridge came from the Marmont. The rock era brought wild times, with some rowdy groups trashing their rooms. And, of course, John Belushi died there in 1982. Most chapters feature paragraphs that are little more than lists of names, and there is precious little analysis or reflection--probably superfluous in such a volume. Frivolous and superficial--but as entertaining as an old B movie on a dreary Saturday afternoon.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780143123118
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
04/30/2013
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
450,569
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

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