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LABJ Insider: February 27

It’s High Time 

The Biltmore Los Angeles hotel is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year, and one way it is marking that milestone is by bringing back high afternoon tea. 

“Like the hotel itself, the beloved tea tradition promises to evoke a luxury experience of a golden bygone era,” according to the announcement from the hotel, the downtown beaux-arts icon which recently dropped the word “millennium” from the start of its name.  

But high tea can be a fairly formal occasion. How will that go over in a city in which “dressing up” may be defined as donning new Crocs and chino shorts? 

The general manager, Alex DeCarvalho, is sanguine. 

“We love seeing families, friends and groups from all generations get dressed up to enjoy an afternoon out together,” he said.

At $75 a person and $45 for children, guests get an assortment of sandwiches, scones, pastries and, of course, pots of “fine-blended custom tea artfully crafted for the Biltmore.” 

High tea will be held select weekends. The next ones: March 11 and 12 and March 25 and 26.


Lew Horne, the longtime civic leader and regional president of CBRE Group Inc., will be inducted in NAIOP SoCal’s Hall of Fame on May 11, the organization announced last week.

“Lew’s impact on Southern California’s commercial real estate industry is immense,” said Timothy Jemal, the chief executive of the real estate trade group. “Well before the COVID-19 pandemic, Lew was the first to transform how to create community in the office space.”

Horne has been involved in the Central City Association, the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp. and the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce, among others, and has been an advocate for affordable housing and has helped with alleviating homelessness.

• • • 

If you assume you need to travel to distant Napa Valley for a wine-tasting excursion, the Temecula Valley Winegrowers Association has some news for you: there are 93 vineyard and winery operations in the Riverside County area that attract 885,000 tourist visits a year. And Temecula, the heart of it all, is only about a 90-minute drive from Downtown Los Angeles.

The association recently reported that wine tourism spending is $487 million, “a number that is substantially greater – in some cases four times so – than regions comparable in size and tasting room count,” according to its report.

“Wine Enthusiast named Temecula Valley one of the world’s top wine destinations for good reason,” said Krista Chaich, executive director of the wine growers association. 

The Insider is compiled by Editor-in-Chief Charles Crumpley. He can be reached at [email protected].

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Howard Fine
Howard Fine
Howard Fine is a 23-year veteran of the Los Angeles Business Journal. He covers stories pertaining to healthcare, biomedicine, energy, engineering, construction, and infrastructure. He has won several awards, including Best Body of Work for a single reporter from the Alliance of Area Business Publishers and Distinguished Journalist of the Year from the Society of Professional Journalists.

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Charles Crumpley, Editor-In-Chief Author