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- Proper Hospitality, a group renowned for design-forward properties, recently opened Hotel June, a more affordable offering near LAX in Los Angeles.
- Rooms start at $130 per night, but during the pandemic, there are day rates to use guest rooms as workspaces from $99.
- The inviting pool and restaurant, as well as the sophisticated decor, make it a COVID-safe destination for a local getaway.
- I booked a standard Spacious King Room to see what it was like to stay here, and also previewed the work from hotel deal.
- Read more: Is it safe to stay in a hotel right now? An infectious disease doctor, a cleaning expert, and hotel reps all share what you should know before you check-in.
Although I have yet to board a plane in the time of COVID, I have loosened my rather rigid self-quarantine in recent weeks to ease back into travel.
First, I booked a socially distant staycation in a private Airbnb in Palm Springs where I didn't leave the vacation rental for the duration of my stay. Next, I took a calculated risk to celebrate a milestone wedding anniversary with my first hotel visit at the Four Seasons Westlake Village, where I gained confidence thanks to reassuring COVID policies. Because of our positive experience, me and my husband then took our family to La Quinta Resort & Club, where we reacquainted ourselves with a larger resort setting.
With these trips under my belt, I felt more than comfortable booking a one-night staycation at the new Hotel June near LAX. I'd long known this hotel by its former name, the Custom, and was curious to check out this new incarnation, which reopened in June in the midst of the pandemic. Not only is the hotel brand new, but the booking system automatically books a buffer night between all guest room stays, which I also appreciated.
It's the first Hotel June property for Proper Hospitality, which designs and operates high-end hospitality experiences under the Proper Hotels & Residences and Avalon Hotels nameplates. June is meant to be a breezy, coastal-feeling venue with the same highly-curated design as other hotels under the Proper umbrella, but priced much more affordably.
I was also interested in staying here to observe their work-from-hotel deal, a popular new promotion that many hotels in the US are offering as a result of COVID-19's impact on hospitality and travel.
Hotel June and other Proper Hospitality properties now have a partnership with the workspace location provider Industrious to offer guest rooms that may be used as remote workspaces during the day, starting at $99. It's certainly convenient considering many offices are closed and working from home can be distracting, lack resources, or just feel like a downright drag after so many months.
At Hotel June, professionals receive a room with a private bath that is outfitted with office chairs and stocked with snacks and coffee.
Because I planned to stay overnight to review the property, I booked the basic room, a Spacious King Room, which cost $197.65, before taxes, and included overnight parking. There is no additional resort fee.
However, I booked last-minute on a weekend. Midweek prices start as low at $130, which is an incredible value for such a style-minded room, plus pool access. In fact, it makes for a compelling argument to just extend that office space day rate to an overnight stay — just make sure to log off at 5 p.m. and take advantage of the standout on-site amenities.
- The first impression
- The room
- On-site amenities
- What's nearby
- What others say
- What you need to know
- COVID-19 policies
- The bottom line
- Book Hotel June starting at $130 per night
Keep reading to see why I was so impressed by Hotel June.
Upon arrival, we pulled up to a quiet valet station and handed over our keys. It was the first time I've been able to valet park during COVID, as most places have suspended this service. However, at Hotel June, I was told self-parking was not an option.
This might feel frustrating considering the valet rate was a steep $36. I prepaid it at a discounted rate as part of my room reservation, so you should look to see if you'll save money this way when booking your stay.
The valet instructed us to temporarily park our car at the curb where he would get it, versus the more common practice of swapping the key and car simultaneously in closer contact.
From there, a staffer took forehead temperatures from me and my husband before we went inside. We entered the lobby and found it to be cheerfully designed with a casual, coastal vibe from Venice-based design agency, Studio Collective.
There was ample light natural woods throughout, native fabrics, handmade tiles, and local art, plus tons of natural light streaming in dramatically through slatted blinds.
We waited the CDC-recommended minimum distance behind the one person in line in front of us, and then a masked staffer checked us in efficiently and quickly.
In the lobby, we noticed a smattering of diverse types of travelers that were all following social distancing.
There was one family with a young masked child, one with large rolly bags that were likely coming from the airport, and a bunch of stylish young creative types.
Keys in hand, we headed for the elevator bank where signage encouraged distancing, requesting a maximum of two guests per lift. Despite being in an enclosed area, we felt safe since there was no one else waiting for the elevator, and no one in the hall when we got upstairs either. Plus, of course, we were wearing masks.
With the hotel at low occupancy, mainly due to COVID-19, but also because of a built-in booking buffer between guest stays, we'd been upgraded from the entry-level Spacious King to a Spacious King View room on the ninth floor.
The main difference between these two room types is that the View room typically runs about $25 more than one on a lower floor. The higher floor comes with a nonspecific urban view over the area. These are the only notable difference between categories and both types are under 300 square feet.
But the small change ended up being a boon for us as aviation enthusiasts because we had a dead-on view of planes taking off and landing on the runway at LAX.
I expected the room to be modern and spare based on the pictures I'd seen online. But it was even sparer than I had imagined. Dramatic beams of sunlight cast stripes on the King-sized bed, which unintentionally added to the minimal feel. The plush mattress was perched atop a white oak platform and dressed in Fili D'oro luxury white linens. Despite being so close to the airport, I enjoyed excellent sleep quality on a comfortable bed, with no discernible noise bleed.
While some might view the space as sparse, I appreciated the uncluttered vibe. It felt head-clearing, especially now that chaos is so routine in our small house, where two parents work and two kids homeschool via Zoom.
In the closet hung two robes (essential to a luxurious-feeling stay for me), in an attractive grey and white print for a glam look. The bathroom was small but sparkling and obviously brand new. There was a grey-tiled shower and a single vanity sink, so, it was best suited for use by one person at a time. On the countertop sat amenities from Jonathan Adler.
Additionally, there was colorful graphic artwork on the wall above a small desk outfitted with two chairs. As a freelance writer, I was deeply grateful for this set-up since I came with my laptop and needed to work, even on this brief weekend stay. With fast Wi-Fi and a quiet environment, my husband and I both found it easy to work here.
Had I booked the space just for the day, I would have paid a starting rate of $99 for workday hours, and been allocated a similar room.
I know this because I asked to see the daytime workspace setup and can confirm the only differences were instead of the two chairs I had, workspace day rooms come with ergonomic executive chairs, plus a supply of snacks, water, and coffee to fuel productivity.
And because the workspace is in a guest room, professionals have access to a private bath. If daytime guests decide to stay over, the hotel will offer them the option of extending the stay in the same room overnight, at a discounted rate.
Guests booking by the day may also have their guest room customized for the number of workspaces needed. It's ideal for someone seeking quiet from a noisy home environment, or just wanting a break from the monotony of working from home. It also works well for two collaborators who could work together on projects, but masked and distanced and at separate tables, in the same space.
The room also appeared extremely clean and following COVID-19 practices as promised. In fact, before using the key to enter, we had to peel off a sticker indicating that it had been cleaned and sanitized prior to our visit.
If you love aviation like us, or you're just passing through L.A. and want to see as much of the city or even the sea from the room as possible, you might consider the upgrade to a view for a single or double traveler. Families with kids could opt for double queen rooms of similar size and price point, which sleep four.
For families planning to work and get kids through Zoom school, our room would have been small. Instead, I'd recommend booking the larger Apartment Suite (sleeps four in one bedroom with two bathrooms and a residential-style open floor plan and zones for sleeping, lounging, and working); or the Two-Bedroom Studio (two bedrooms with two baths), each about 600 square feet. A spot check of December midweek dates found each of these available for $279, which I'd call an excellent value.
Compare room types and prices for Hotel June
Hotel June has a small but pretty pool, surrounded by chaises and palms, with a lively scene. I checked it out during the late afternoon and observed several groups of people. It was not a wall-to-wall crowd, but that number would have been easily manageable in a larger space. Because the pool and surrounding area are intimate in scale, substantial social distancing would be a challenge unless there were very few people around.
And as I'm not looking for any "lively scenes" during a pandemic, I opted against taking a dip despite the hot weather on our arrival.
Above the pool is the Caravan Swim Club restaurant, serving dishes influenced by the region from Southern California down to Baja, Mexico. Dotted with swaying light fixtures and overlooking the water, the alfresco restaurant is a standout. It's also currently the only place to eat at the June, given that the indoor lobby dining venue is closed for COVID.
Weekend brunch just launched, and the restaurant is getting tons of glowing press. For safety, tables are spaced for social distancing, servers wore both masks and face shields (albeit the face shield wearing was spotty), and guests wore masks until seated.
There's also a fitness center, which is substantial and well-equipped, including Pelotons and rowers. During COVID-19, any guest can call down and make a reservation to have the space reserved only for the guests in their room. While this sounds highly exclusive, staff told me it's also easy to do, as most guests who visit the hotel don't focus on fitness.
In addition to the in-room and common space workspace offerings (such as the lobby and poolside), Hotel June also has a small boardroom for convening groups of four to six for small, spaced-out meetings. This is available for booking at the rate of $299.
All daytime bookings also include spa and fitness access — a dangling carrot to encourage efficient productivity before going off duty, perhaps.
Hotel June is a rare lifestyle hotel to open between Santa Monica and LAX in over a decade, so it's somewhat alone in its class for what is actually an airport hotel.
In addition to allowing easy access to LAX (expect an Uber ride under $10), it's generally in a central Westside Los Angeles location, minutes away from Marina Del Rey and Venice. It's also close to the new NFL SoFi Stadium and L.A. Forum … should arena events be able to return any time in the future (and they inevitably will).
Check flight prices to Los Angeles on Expedia
Hotel June gets a perfect five-star "Excellent" rating on Trip Advisor as of the time of publishing. Though being so new, it had just 72 reviewers at the time of this writing.
Nearly all reviewers selected the five-star option, with one recent reviewer noting: "If you are looking for a cozy boutique hotel or a great alternative to an airport hotel, this is the one. I had one of the best night sleeps ever. The mattress and bedding is of the highest quality (in fact I am trying to find out how I can purchase one)… No brainer here."
Among the sprinkle of negative reviews were those noting spotty service and an experience that didn't measure up to expectations: "Classic case of Instagram vs. reality — if you're looking for a design hotels experience, I might suggest the additional 20 min up the coast to visit the Santa Monica Proper instead."
Read reviews and compare prices for Hotel June on Trip Advisor
Who stays here: As an airport hotel, Hotel June attracts travelers of all stripes. I saw mainly adults, but at least one family with kids, too. And because of its design-forward elements, pool scene, and destination restaurant, it draws the young, hip, Instagram-minded set for local or regional staycations (or just a meal or pool day), too.
We like: The cool design elements such as graphic art in guest rooms, chicly furnished lobby, and perforated sail shade coverings near the pool. These take this hotel from an ordinary airport property to a photo-worthy destination.
We love (don't miss this feature!): The Caravan Swim Club restaurant is an absolute standout, with flavor-packed fare for carnivores and vegans alike. Try the cauliflower nachos with cashew cheese, if available.
We think you should know: While attractive and lively, the pool is small and therefore won't be comfortable for all guests during COVID. We planned to use it but decided to skip in the name of social distancing.
We'd do this differently next time: Next time I hope to visit after COVID … as a launch point to an international trip from LAX. I'd also like to use the pool when social distancing is not a concern.
For all Hotel June guest rooms, the booking system automatically books a buffer night between stays. Daily housekeeping is available upon request only.
In the pandemic, the hotel cleans and disinfects using eco-friendly products, with extra focus on high-touch surfaces and public spaces (including the front desk, elevators, door handles, public bathrooms, and room keys).
The staff checks guests' temperatures before entering and hand sanitizer is available throughout the property, in public spaces like the restaurant, front desks, and back of the house too. While within the hotel, everyone is required to wear a mask.
At this time, all guest requests are delivered to the door to minimize contact; staffers knock to notify guests that what they need is ready.
What I saw on-site matched up with these policy promises. I only wish there had been a policy to enforce mask wearing for guests around (if not in) the pool. Otherwise, all guests and staff seemed to be wearing masks faithfully (although servers in the restaurant seemed to wear their face shields over them only sporadically).
Hotel June is eye-catching and inviting, with comfortable rooms, a festive pool area, and a restaurant that is delicious and memorable.
And given its proximity to LAX and an accessible price point well under $200, it's highly functional and far more accessible than what you might pay for at its sister hotel, the Proper Santa Monica, which will easily cost twice as much for a similar experience.
For these reasons, the hotel attracts a range of travelers from those passing through the airport to families and friends on a COVID mini-break, and more recently, professionals looking for a comfortable place to work, either by the day or overnight.
The $99 day rate is a good option as a work-from-home break for locals, but for my money — and if I had childcare — it's only marginally more to stay the night and feel a bit less rushed.
If I was traveling with my family though, I'd definitely choose the Two-Bedroom Suite, which seems like an excellent value for families starting under $300, and comes with much more space for those mixing work with family-time, which, we all seem to be doing a lot more of these days.
Book a room at Hotel June starting at $130 per night
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