The El Segundo Planning Commission unanimously paved the way for El Segundo’s first public rooftop bar at its regular Thursday night meeting on Jan. 24. City Council will weigh in on Feb. 19 when the item appears on its agenda under the Consent Calendar, according to Gregg McClain, planning manager for the City of El Segundo.

The rooftop bar will grace a new six-story AC Hotel, an upscale Marriott property under construction at 2130 East Maple Avenue at Campus Square Drive. The hotel is expected to open in April, according to its website.

Arjun Shokeen, vice president, strategy and corporate services, for the El Segundo-based Welcome Group, Inc. (WGI) told the Commission, “It’s an honor to be here today. I was raised in the South Bay and our office is in the South Bay, as well. While designing the hotel, any decision was made answering this one question, and that was, ‘What does this area deserve?’

“And that’s why we fought hard for a superior brand with Marriott, that’s why we fought to have a rooftop bar, and we didn’t spare expenses. Wherever we could, we made sure we put in the best materials and the best service that this community deserves. And so, it’s going to be an honor to be a part of your community.”

The rooftop bar will offer views of planes coming and going at Los Angeles International Airport. AC Hotel will feature 176 rooms, four suites, and four meeting rooms.

“A lot of hotels didn’t do it (build a rooftop bar) because it was really difficult to get to this point based on the construction standards and based on even Marriott’s comments,” said Shokeen, noting that they met with city staff numerous times and did the same with Marriott representatives, even flying to the company’s corporate headquarters in Bethesda, MD, to rally for the rooftop bar. “We really had to fight to get this rooftop bar and it’s something we take a lot of pride in.”

Shokeen said AC Hotels are a step above Courtyard by Marriott and SpringHill Suites by Marriott but not quite full-service, with food and beverages available at outlets on the property and not via room service. The El Segundo property will include a shop and restaurant with alcohol sales on the ground floor as well as the rooftop bar. The expected hours of operation are 10 a.m.-2 a.m. On Thursday night, the Commission approved a Type 47 license.