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Byline: Charlene Prost
Dec. 25--There's not much left of the old Bel Air East, a 38-year-old downtown hotel known for years for its Trader Vic's and Miss Hulling's Open Hearth restaurants.
Behind the fenced site at Fourth Street and Washington Avenue, construction crews are demolishing interior walls and are removing pre-cuts concrete and metal panels from the exterior. Even balconies on the 16-story tower overlooking the Gateway Arch and the riverfront are being eliminated. But not the views.
"We are extending all the walls out to enclose the balconies, so the hotel rooms will be bigger," said architect Louis Chiodini, president of Chiodini …