Updating the only Beverly Boulevard tower in the West Hollywood Design District comes with high expectations. That’s why developer Townscape Partners tapped AD100 firm Olson Kundig to lead the transformation of the building’s office spaces into 48 luxury residential units. 8899 Beverly’s storied history as a 1960s-era Richard Dorman–designed building for the Los Angeles International Design Center only adds to the site’s significance.
“I would consider this a transformational project,” says Olson Kundig co-owner and design principal Tom Kundig. Between the neighboring design showrooms and the building’s former tenants, which include groups like the American Institute of Architects and the American Society of Interior Designers, the firm’s work on the redesign will be watched closely by industry insiders. “You’re not only appealing to a crowd of design-centric and sophisticated clientele—you are also right in the middle of it,” Kundig laughs.
The 40 condominiums within the existing building will become part of Olson Kundig’s larger scheme, which also features eight single-family, two-story homes, located on adjacent Rosewood Avenue. All residents will have access to a full suite of amenities, including a pool, a fitness center, full-time security, and front-desk staff. The delicate balance of respecting the original architecture while expanding the floor plans and systems meant devising what Kundig calls “a coherent structural strategy.”
From a more cosmetic perspective, the long-standing white exterior color will change, but “it will still be relatively light,” Kundig assures. Ground-floor storefronts will retain their retail use.
Ultimately, Kundig sees great opportunity in 8899 Beverly’s distinctive qualities and challenges. The firm’s charge is to “extend that beauty, despite some of the limitations, into the next use,” Kundig muses. “That’s the core, and the exciting part of architecture.”