(keep reading to learn what happened)
Season: 1 | View All Season 1 Episodes
Original Episode Air Date: August 27, 2012
The Keating Hotel Address: 432 F St San Diego, CA 92101
The Keating Hotel was a San Diego, California hotel featured on Season 1 of Hotel Hell.
Though the The Keating Hotel Hotel Hell episode aired in August 2012, the actual filming and visit from Gordon Ramsay took place much earlier in late 2011.
It was Season 1 Episode 4 of Hotel Hell.
In this episode, Gordon Ramsay takes his hotel knowledge to The Keating Hotel.
The Keating Hotel is located in sunny San Diego, CA.
It’s right next door to the Laugh Factory, a stand up comedy club. That makes sense as there are plenty of laughable things going on in this episode haha.
Eddie Kaen is the owner of the hotel.
In addition to owning The Keating, Eddie is also a property contractor.
That means he has the experience to work on the property himself…though that might not always be a good thing.
The hotel features thirty-five rooms and is inspired by sports cars.
More specifically, the owner hired Italian design firm Pininfarina.
If you’re not familiar with Pininfarina, it’s the same design firm that has worked on cars like Ferrari, Maserati, and others. It’s quite famous in the space and definitely not a cheap company to hire.
This cost Eddie millions of dollars to design the hotel with this theme, which does seem like a bit of an overspend.
At first, Gordon Ramsay is impressed with the outside of the hotel.
However, after a closer look, he is turned off and thinks it looks like a nightclub.
Christos is the concierge, and he takes Gordon to his $759 dollars per night room (it ain’t cheap!) that looks like a garage.
Each floor is named after a different make of sports car.
Each room is also designed to fit the theme of the vehicle.
I guess that’s cool if you’re into cars, but that wouldn’t personally do anything for me.
When Gordon Ramsay enters his room at The Keating, he finds a big hot tub/jacuzzi located right in the middle of the room.
I gotta admit – I think it’s pretty badass! I definitely would not mind having one in my hotel (though I guess the placement could’ve been a little better).
Gordon Ramsay does not agree with me, though, which led to some mocking and jokes.
That includes Gordon actually getting in the tub and laying down, which meant I was able to get this great screenshot from the episode.
However, the rest of the décor looks cheap.
The sheets on the bed are wrinkled, and the electric socket is broken.
That type of quality is definitely not what you would expect from a hotel room that costs over $700 per night.
After settling into his room, Gordon orders room service to test the food.
He ordered a few different things, including tomato soup, BBQ chicken pizza, and sliders.
When Gordon gets his room service, he discovers that the food is served on cardboard boxes instead of being on a plate.
Again – not really what you’d expect from a $750+ per night hotel, right? I’ve stayed at hotels that are significantly cheaper and still brought the room service food on an actual plate.
After eating, Gordon Ramsay meets with the owner, Eddie, who tells him he bought the hotel in 2000 for over $6 million.
But despite investing so much money into The Keating Hotel, Eddie has no direct experience in the hotel industry.
Eddie thinks his hotel is lavish even though he has never slept in it.
When Gordon heads to the reception desk, he meets the general manager Sandra.
Many guests call the front to complain about their food and the cleanliness of the room.
The Merk, the restaurant, is a short walk away from the main building.
Aaron, the restaurant manager, will not take accountability for the long wait times and says he doesn’t know why the hotel guests wait so long for their food.
Gordon Ramsay also enjoys one of his favorite dishes – a chocolate pizza! /s
His face says it all…
(There are a lot of great screenshots from this episode).
After eating, Gordon Ramsay is shown the inefficient laundry room.
He finds out the front desk is also responsible for the laundry.
Gordon goes to the restaurant to watch a dinner service and is served by the deputy manager.
The food he orders is very dry; the dessert he orders is a bacon and chocolate pizza which is unappetizing.
Chef Brian has over 30 years of experience with the restaurant business and has been at the hotel for five years.
However, he becomes overwhelmed while talking to Gordon and faints.
As a result of that, Chef Brian has to be sent to the hospital. Pretty crazy, right?
Thankfully, Brian is able to go home from the hospital the next day.
Once Brian is back in more comfortable digs, Gordon Ramsay meets with Brian to talk about things at The Keating.
Brian tells Gordon that Eddie takes advantage of him.
They return to the hotel that day for a meeting.
Eddie is in denial about the The Keating Hotel’s problems.
To get through to him, Gordon takes Sandra and Eddie to see some of the guest feedback.
They complain about the rooms and the hot tub not having water.
Gordon’s team works all night to reveal a brand new reception area.
He also signed the hotel up to work with a linen company so they won’t have to deal with the laundry room.
There are also new items added to the dinner menu as a result of Gordon’s changes.
The guests are pleased on relaunch night.
The kitchen is receiving many compliments from guests.
Guests are finally receiving real plates when they order room service.
So was the Keating Hotel Hell episode a long-term success?
Keep reading my update to learn what happened next and if this San Diego, CA hotel is still open in 2024.
The Keating Hotel Update - What Happened Next?
Now that we’ve recapped what happened on the episode, let’s talk about what happened after Gordon Ramsay and his crew left the sunny beaches of San Diego.
At first, the hotel was doing very well.
The hotel appreciated Gordon Ramsay so much that they even named a suite after him.
Reviews were good but not great – it had a 3.5 star rating on TripAdvisor but an 8.2 star rating on Booking.com.
If you want a more modern look, popular YouTuber Brennen Taylor visited The Keating Hotel in 2019.
This video included him really digging into the hotel’s quality, much like Gordon Ramsay.
If you’re interested, you can watch it below (but keep reading for more details, because there’s a lot of “on again, off again” stuff going on at The Keating Hotel):
The local CBS news affiliate also did a segment on The Keating Hotel in 2015.
They interview some of the staff, though they take a much more positive view than Gordon Ramsay did.
You can watch that video below:
While The Keating Hotel survived for years after Gordon Ramsay’s visit, no one could have planned for the destruction that the Covid-19 pandemic would bring to the travel industry.
Let’s talk about the most important question…
Is The Keating Hotel from Hotel Hell still open?
As of late 2023, The Keating Hotel seems to have reopened after being closed for multiple years because of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Keating Hotel closed in March 2020 and stayed closed until early 2023, so I had it marked as “Closed” the whole time.
However, I have switched it back to “Open” status as of August 2023, even though it’s not operating the same as it was during the Hotel Hell episode.
I’m not sure whether or not Ed is still involved as some people report somewhat weird experiences at the hotel.
When I’m updating this in December 2023, it seems to have moved back to operating as more of a traditional hotel.
But during the interim period in early/mid 2023, it seemed to be a little odd.
For example, a lot of people mentioned that the hotel doesn’t really have any staff.
Instead, a lot of it seems to use automatic locks.
People needed to enter the code to enter the lobby, rather than having front house staff like most hotels.
It almost seemed like more of an AirBnb experience, which might make more sense when you read the rest of the story.
However, as of December 2023, The Keating now has an official website again and seems to be more of a “real” hotel.
The website isn’t great, but it does share information about the hotel and has an availability checker.
However, the availability checker doesn’t seem to be totally working, so I’m still a bit confused about the status of the hotel.
I did find availability on a third-party booking platform, though (Agoda).
However, the available rooms seem to mainly just be apartment-style rooms.
Here’s a screenshot:
While The Keating Hotel does seem to be sort of open now, it’s had an interesting history over the past few years.
In March 2020, the hotel posted on its Facebook page that it would be “temporarily closed” as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.
While the hotel did say that it planned on reopening as soon as possible, it did not reopen for a few years.
At the time that I’m updating this in August 2023, The Keating Hotel still hasn’t posted any other updates on Facebook.
Additionally, the hotel’s website has expired.
For a while, it was no longer possible to book The Keating Hotel via any booking platforms including Booking.com, Kayak, Hotels.com, and others.
The Keating Hotel did still have a listing on those platforms – but there was zero room availability if you tried to do a search.
However, as of August 2023, The Keating Hotel seems to be active on Booking.com again, which is why I’ve changed it back to “Open”.
Prior to listing rooms on Booking, Ed did seem to be listing a room from the hotel on Airbnb even when it was closed.
However, he was not marketing the room as part of The Keating Hotel.
For example, here’s a listing for “License to Chill: Stay in this Sleek and Stylish 007-Inspired Studio Retreat!”, which appears to be located in the Keating Hotel San Diego building.
You can see that Ed is listed as the host, so I assume it’s the same Ed from the Keating Hotel Hell episode.
Unfortunately, the Google Maps street view picture of the hotel’s entrance hasn’t updated since early 2020, so I can’t see what’s happening.
However, a commenter below said that the lobby of the Keating Hotel was boarded up for a time, which is why I had the hotel marked as closed for 2021, 2022, and early 2023.
Here’s an embed of the Keating Hotel San Diego location from Google Maps street view in case Google updates it:
Before closing, the room rates generally started at around ~$550 per night, so it was not cheap if you want to stay.
However, after reopening in 2023 and listing on Booking.com, the room rates are only around $115 or so, so there’s been a huge change in pricing.
If anything further changes with the hotel, I’ll be sure to update this page.
And if you know anything about what’s happening with that property, please let me know in the comments.
Note – I had the hotel marked as closed until August 2023. However, after seeing it being listed on Booking.com and hearing from some commenters who stayed at the hotel, I have changed it back to “Open” in August 2023.
And if you want to share your thoughts on the Keating Hotel episode, you can do so using the comments section below.
👉 Read other Season 1 updates:
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And don't forget to check out the full Hotel Hell open and closed list.
Last updated: 2023-12-24 08:16