Resident's nightmare: Having a helipad in your neighborhood

Living near rich people can be a real pain - as folks north of Beverly and west of La Cienega are discovering. Last fall, media mogul Ryan Kavanaugh made a ruckus for several months when he used the Sofitel hotel's helipad (the Sofitel is just a few blocks from his Relativity Media offices). The comings and goings got so bad that Caltrans put an end to the flights (the Sofitel didn't have the proper permits for non-emergency landings). So now it's applying for said permits - and Councilman Paul Koretz, who represents the Sofitel area, thinks it's a swell idea. From West Hollywood Patch:

"The Sofitel wants to be able to offer something unique," said Mike Leary, a consultant working with the hotel on the proposal. "It's a lifestyle choice that few hotels can offer." Lauren Meister, who lives 500 feet north of the Sofitel, hopes it will not be able to offer the service. She and other residents are putting up a fight. "The noise is bad. It can wake you up at night," said Meister, who has lived in her home on Westbourne Drive since 1997. "It's an irritant. It affects our quality of life."


Meister also worries about possible accidents in landings and takeoffs, pointing out a gas station across the street from the Sofitel. Leary responds that helicopter pilots are "incredibly disciplined people who go through extensive training to get their license." "What happens if celebrities start flying in and the paparazzi start chasing them in helicopters?" Meister asks. "Are we going to have one helicopter landing and three others circling around trying to get a shot of them?" "Who lands is at the discretion of the hotel," Leary said. "It's a private facility."

h/t Curbed L.A.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
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