Rules For Thee, But Not For Me: How the Waldorf Was Lost

C.C. de Vere

C.C. de Vere

· 5 min read
Revolting email from the Venice Chamber of Commerce, bragging about securing an alcohol license and Conditional Use Permit despite the Waldorf/Venice V being RSO housing

Regular readers already know that the Waldorf Hotel's 36 rent-stabilized apartments were converted into the Venice V Hotel, in spite of the fact that doing such a thing violates the Rent Stabilization Ordinance and the Home Sharing Ordinance.

How does such a thing even happen?

Well...the following screenshots may help explain it.

These are taken from a Venice V-sponsored email sent to the Venice Chamber of Commerce's mailing list the day after the hearing.

In case anyone can't view the images below, here is the wording:

Successful Outcome at the Alcohol License Public Hearing: Thanks to Your Support!
Dear Venice Chamber Members and Community,
I am thrilled to share the fantastic news from yesterday's public hearing regarding the alcohol license application for Venice V Restaurant and Theater. Your overwhelming support and presence truly made all the difference.
I am delighted to report that our collective efforts did not go unnoticed. The strong showing of support from Chamber and community members significantly swayed the council. In fact, our presence outnumbered the opposition by a remarkable 3 to 1 ratio. This resounding show of support played a pivotal role in the Council's decision to approve our application.
This success serves as a testament to the effectiveness of the Venice Chamber and reaffirms our ability to come together as a community to advocate for the interests of our local businesses.
I want to extend my deepest gratitude to each and every one of you who attended the public hearing, those who joined online or via phone, and also those who wrote letters of support. Your dedication and commitment were instrumental in achieving this favorable outcome.
I am incredibly proud to be a part of this community and thank you all for your unwavering support!
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or would like to discuss this further.
Carl Lambert & The Venice V Team
"Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much." - Helen Keller

Carl Lambert, owner of the Waldorf/Venice V, ran the Venice Chamber of Commerce for DECADES. He bought up other properties along Ocean Front Walk as well. He also may have been a little too friendly with former councilman Mike Bonin.

By the way, the City of Los Angeles sued Lambert for illegal Airbnb activities in 2016. Why am I not surprised? Michael Kohlhaas has quite a bit more to say on Lambert.

Oh, and the Airbnb complaints mentioned that Lambert lived in Malibu, not Venice. "Part of this community"? Until and unless I see hard proof that Lambert has become a permanent, full-time Venice resident, I wouldn't be so sure about that.

It's particularly gauche that Lambert and his team quoted Helen Keller, a staunch supporter of the working class and the downtrodden. It's VERY unlikely that Keller would approve of their actions regarding the Waldorf.

Finally, I'd like to leave you with some parting words from Venice resident Kelly C. Richardson, who told me:

What’s ironic is that the “work” they act like they are so charitable to be providing at the bars and theater, etc for low income Venice locals will NOT PAY enough to live here in Venice now that RSO housing has been decimated. All these new building projects that are supposedly going to provide affordable housing for these low income workers won’t even make a dent in the need for it and force low income workers to stay in poverty in order to qualify for it. Insane.

Kelly has raised a very important point here.

The average movie theater employee makes $59,106 per year in Los Angeles.

It's $26,505 for bartenders (while many bartenders are part-timers and most bartenders can keep their tips, virtually no one can survive on a part-time job in LA and it can be difficult to rely on tips).

LA's hotel workers often resort to long commutes or sleeping in their cars because they simply cannot afford to live in LA.

I wonder how many of the Venice V's employees can actually afford to live in Venice.

5 Westminster Ave./1217 Ocean Front Walk, Venice.

C.C. de Vere

About C.C. de Vere

C.C. de Vere is a fourth-generation Angeleno. She is horrified at what greed and hubris are doing to Los Angeles.

This website was built by her preservation pals at Esotouric.

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