It’s a place of American dreamers. Of dreams. Of outsize dreams. There are these places tucked in, and you don’t know what’s back there. You’ll go back into the Hollywood Hills, and it’s like you’re back in 1970, and you expect Joni Mitchell to come out in a fucking poncho. People complain about the driving out here, but driving is great! Turn on the radio, put down the top, put together the right playlist, and it’s perfect. If our greatest American export is our culture, then LA is Athens. For better or worse, it’s all here, all of those dreams.
What is it about the Chateau? Because there’s magic here.
It’s the warm embrace of a living thing. It’s a surprisingly family-friendly place, in the sense that the walls are thick and they’re used to treating adults like children, so it’s perfect for children. I like it because when you wake up at the Chateau (@chateaumarmont), you know where you are. There’s continuity here, the little kitchen with the old stove, with a picture of Robert Mitchum washing dishes at the sink. There’s no untz untz untz factor—it’s not a slaughterhouse of young Hollywood on the make. If you see somebody famous, it’s not Bradley Cooper, it’s Werner Herzog or Christopher Walken—it’s people you think are cool and, of course, you don’t bother them. There’s no need.
From “I Love L.A.” in Lucky Peach. Interview with Anthony Bourdain (@anthonybourdain) by Peter Meehan; Illustration by Taylor Johnson