GRAND HOTEL - ABC's "Grand Hotel" stars Wendy Raquel Robinson as Mrs. P, Denyse Tontz as Alicia Mendoza, Chris Warren as Jason, Bryan Craig as Javi Mendoza, Anne Winters as Ingrid, Demián Bichir as Santiago Mendoza, Shalim Ortiz as Mateo, Roselyn Sánchez as Gigi Mendoza, Feliz Ramirez as Carolina, Lincoln Younes as Danny, and Justina Adorno as Yoli. (ABC/Ed Herrera)

Diversity And Storytelling Are Part of “Trailblazer” Eva Longoria’s “Grand Hotel”

Grand Hotel, executive produced by Eva Longoria, is an adaptation of the hit Spanish series Gran Hotel. Instead of Spain, the freshman series plants its roots in Miami, as patriarch Santiago (Demián Bichir) tries his best to save his heavily in debt hotel.

GRAND HOTEL – ABC’s “Grand Hotel” stars Denyse Tontz as Alicia Mendoza. (ABC/Ed Herrera)

Denyse Tontz co-stars in Grand Hotel as Santiago’s daughter Alicia, a business grad whose knowledge is definitely needed. A new waiter named Danny (Lincoln Younes) catches Alicia’s eye, and one would hope that doesn’t distract Alicia from the task at hand (aka saving the family business). Roselyn Sanchez, who previously worked with Grand Hotel showrunner Brian Tannen on Devious Maids, chimes in as Alicia’s stepmother.



Though diversity is a big part of Grand Hotel, the series’ strengths, according to Younes and Tontz, lies in its storytelling.

GRAND HOTEL – “Pilot” – Eva Longoria executive produces this bold, provocative drama set at the last family-owned hotel in multicultural Miami Beach. Charismatic Santiago Mendoza owns the hotel, while his glamorous second wife, Gigi, and their adult children enjoy the spoils of success. The hotel’s loyal staff round out a contemporary fresh take on an upstairs/downstairs story. Wealthy and beautiful guests bask in luxury, but scandals, escalating debt and explosive secrets hide beneath the picture-perfect exterior on the premiere episode of “Grand Hotel,” airing MONDAY, JUNE 17 (10:01-11:00 p.m. EDT), on The ABC Television Network. (ABC/Eric McCandless)
LINCOLN YOUNES

“I think there are representations of all walks of life in this show. No matter who tunes in, they will see some version of themself on screen whether it’s their culture, their ethnicity, their personality traits,” said Younes. “It is a step in the right direction. Eva is kind of a trailblazer in that way. This is a story about a family and a hotel and the guests and the employees and all the things that these people go through. It’s not so much the color of their skin or their background. I think as soon as you take away the magnifying glass of how a person appears and (focus on) really what’s going on inside, I think that’s a step in the right direction.”

GRAND HOTEL – “Pilot” – Eva Longoria executive produces this bold, provocative drama set at the last family-owned hotel in multicultural Miami Beach. Charismatic Santiago Mendoza owns the hotel, while his glamorous second wife, Gigi, and their adult children enjoy the spoils of success. The hotel’s loyal staff round out a contemporary fresh take on an upstairs/downstairs story. Wealthy and beautiful guests bask in luxury, but scandals, escalating debt and explosive secrets hide beneath the picture-perfect exterior on the premiere episode of “Grand Hotel,” airing MONDAY, JUNE 17 (10:01-11:00 p.m. EDT), on The ABC Television Network. (ABC/Eric McCandless)
DEMIÁN BICHIR, DENYSE TONTZ

“Even though we are a diverse cast and crew, it really has nothing to do with the premise of the show and that’s really cool to see that,” added Tontz. “Just to be able to play a character who happens to be Hispanic and that’s not the central theme of this character. I feel like there are no stereotypes that are perpetuated in any way.”

To hear the audio version of Younes and Tontz’s response, click on the Soundcloud bar:

Grand Hotel, co-starring Anne Winters, premieres tonight on ABC (10 pm et/pt).

Greg Srisavasdi

I've been a movie reviewer/interview since 1991 (as a UCLA Daily Bruin scribe), worked at Westwood One, Deepest Dream owner, co-editor of Hollywood Outbreak, podcast co-host of "CinemAddicts" and "Matt and Greg Used To Interview Movie Stars." I can be reached at editor@deepestdream.com for inquiries or whatever the case may be!

Greg Srisavasdi has 1207 posts and counting. See all posts by Greg Srisavasdi

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