By Clint Lohr
The one story, white brick building with a Spanish tile roof is not readily visible at 10922 Riverside Dr. in Toluca Lake, but inside is a safe haven for 21 cats who currently stay here during the day or board overnight.
Welcome to Cateau Marmont, a play on words to the famous Chateau Marmont hotel in Hollywood.
The cats boarded here have their own “bungalow,” or private rooms with plate glass windows in each door and a balcony they can climb up to, sit and overlook the play area. The sounds of falling water emanate from an electric fountain in the middle of the room for serene sounds, while a flat screen TV plays animal videos and music produced just for cats.
In one corner of the room is a large tree, wrapped with segments of rope as an intermittent scratching post for the felines, with a top perch they can look out from. There are shelf-like steps along the walls where they can climb, and all manner of cat toys are seen around the room.
The facility includes a separate room where the cats can be groomed, as well as receive vaccinations during certain events.
This writer enters the reception area where owner Macaully Shields is busy with a Pasadena couple who are arranging to board their two cats. There is a sofa opposite the front desk with a large leopard print throw rug over the hardwood floor. A wall of picture windows overlooks the play area where several cats are roaming. It is almost dinnertime, and the residents begin meowing for their food.
On the walls naming the bungalows are several pictures of old time Hollywood celebrities with their cats. Bird feeders hang outside every window and cats sit on perches in the bright sun room watching the many birds and squirrels that come for the birdseed. Seeking human attention, several cats gather around a visitor sitting on the playroom sofa.
Nami is a golden brownish Tortie boarder whose cat parents are moving to Arizona, and she affectionately rubs her head against a visitor’s shoe. The holiday season was especially busy. “We have 21 cats right now,” Shields says. “We had about 40 over Christmas.”
For the cats who need to be alone, there is even a VIP section in a back room with bigger bungalows.
And there have been large cats such as Maine Coons, Norwegian Forest cats and Persians who come to be groomed leaving with a lion cut or a kitten clip. Shields says cats are groomed here six days a week. “Our guests all get their nails trimmed immediately when they arrive.” All cats must be tested for disease, be current on their shots and rabies vaccinations to be allowed in.
Cateau Marmont opened in 2016 when Shields and her mother Jennifer wanted to set up a safe, clean and loving environment for cats.
For prices and further information call (818) 962-0228 or visit CateauMarmont.com.