The Cecil Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles (640 S. Main Street) is a budget hotel with 600 guest rooms (originally 700). Constructed in 1927, the hotel was intended for business travelers but in the 1950s it gained a reputation as a residence for transients. A portion of the hotel was refurbished in 2007 after new owners took over.
The Hotel is known for its criminal activity which include three murders and several suicides. Most notably, the hotel was the reported residence for serial killers Richard Ramirez in 1985 and Jack Unterweger in 1991. In February 2013, the body of Elisa Lam, a 21-year-old Canadian student, was found inside one of the water supply tanks on the hotel roof. Lam went missing January 31, and her body was discovered on February 19. The body was discovered after patrons complained of low water pressure, as well as foul tasting black water, with authorities later ruling Lam's death as an accidental drowning.