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Jeff Klein will remain the face and part-owner of West Hollywood’s Sunset Tower, much to the relief of his industry-heavy clientele, who’ve been spooked by reports of the sale of the iconic Sunset Strip property and his presumed concurrent departure. And now a source familiar with the deal tells The Hollywood Reporter that Klein’s new partner is said to be an American businessman with significant interests in the entertainment industry.
Thai billionaire Thosapong Jaruthavee — known as “Mr. T” — unexpectedly offered up his 80 percent stake last month, two years after purchasing it for $75 million from original investor Peter Krulewitch, who bought the 81-room building along with Klein for $18.5 million in 2004. Jaruthavee, seen hobnobbing at CAA’s Golden Globes parties at Sunset Tower, was reported by The New York Post to be looking to get out for $100 million.
The name of the buyer and ultimate sale price are unknown. Klein, who exercised his right of first offer on the deal, declined to comment to THR.
The hotelier is credited for revamping an address that had at the time become declasse among tastemakers. “It was like a bad Miami Vice set,” he told THR last year in an oral history. “They couldn’t give the building away.” Now Sunset Tower — an Art Deco marvel dating to 1931 where John Wayne and Bugsy Siegel once lived — is best known for its Tower Bar, an elegant canteen where George and Amal Clooney celebrate their wedding anniversary and Sherry Lansing and William Friedkin prefer to spend Valentine’s Day.
Klein, married to producer John Goldwyn, has been busy overseeing construction on San Vicente Bungalows, his long-in-the-works chic private club in West Hollywood at the site of the former San Vicente Inn, a gay bathhouse notorious for its drug culture. It’s slated to open next year.
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