Los Angeles is the city of angels… and ghosts! If you’re headed to La-La Land, and you’re thinking about adding a few scares to your adventure, then look no further than this guide to all things haunted and spooky across LA!
7001 Franklin Ave | Hollywood Heights | magiccastle.com
Yes, it’s true that The Magic Castle has been the most famous magicians-only nightclub since 1962, and is also the private club of the Academy of Magical Arts. There are shows and dining available, and you are truly in for a remarkable evening. But did you
know is that the castle is also rumored to be haunted? Some say the ghost of Houdini himself wanders the halls of the castle, critiquing sloppy magicians from beyond the Earthly veil. Maybe you could get some tips from Houdini himself during one of their seances?
“Tip a dollar to have the ghost play your favorite tune, talk to the staff because they're charming and might lead to unexpected turns (my buddies and I got a private magic show from John in the classroom because we were talking to Joe in the library)...” - Yelp Review
7000 Hollywood Blvd | Hollywood | thehollywoodroosevelt.com
If you see anything in the mirror next time you stay at the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, don’t be scared- it’s only Marilyn Monroe! In life, she often stayed here in a luxurious poolside suite. We can’t blame her for sticking around, though: after a stay at this opulent hotel, you won’t want to leave, either! And since it’s only 14 miles from the airport, you can be poolside in no time!
6925 Hollywood Blvd | Hollywood | tclchinesetheatres.com
There are quite a few ghosts that are said to haunt the Chinese Theatre, one of the world’s most famous theaters, but the most famous spectral resident is actor Victor Kilian, who has been scaring away burglars, mysteriously appearing and disappearing, and allegedly screaming at guests since his death in 1979. Make sure you take time to check out the Hollywood walk of fame as well!
“When you walk into the main theatre the weight of Hollywood history grounds you.” - Yelp Review
8221 Sunset Blvd | Hollywood Hills West | chateaumarmont.com
Chateau Marmont is one of the grandest hotels in LA and one of the most popular Sunset Boulevard icons…and it’s also super haunted. One of the most popular hotels for Hollywood stars, it is no stranger to celebrity deaths, as it was the site of John Belushi’s death in 1982, and in 2004, it was where photographer Helmut Newton died after crashing his car when leaving the hotel.
Even though the Chateau is known for its strict secrecy, staff and guests have let slip rumors of strange paranormal goings-on, including the ghost of Belushi himself. Windows open and close, furniture moves by itself, and guests have even reported experiences with a female ghost who jumps into bed with you. Why not spend a night and see for yourself if the hauntings are real? The Chateau is only 13 miles from LAX, and would definitely be worth your while!
Originally home to mobsters and gangsters alike, The Comedy Store was a salacious and dangerous hangout until the late 50s. Rumored to be haunted by many of the hitmen who spent their days in the building, The Comedy Store is one of the city’s most haunted locations, with many stories of unexplainable sights and sounds.
It’s said that the basement levels were once home to an illegal abortion clinic, and people claim to have seen apparitions of nurses in white scrubs disappearing into thin air. This attraction is open 365 days a year, so stop in for some laughs, and maybe some spooky fun.
“How can I give it less than five stars? It's The Comedy Store… the place breathes history.” - Yelp Review
Charles E. Young Dr. | UCLA Campus |
There are plenty of “Dead Man’s Curves” across the country, but this one on Sunset Boulevard is the original. The most famous crash to happen at Dead Man’s Curve involved Mel Blanc (the voice of Bugs Bunny), who nearly broke every bone in his body. Though he didn’t die from his injuries, it hasn’t stopped many from seeing him standing at the curve in the road, as if warning drivers to slow down.
Hollywood legend Orson Welles appreciated- well, appreciates- a good meal, finished off with a drink and a cigar, so it’s fitting that he haunts his former location of his favorite restaurant, now Sweet Lady Jane. He’s been seen sitting at his favorite table, and sometimes you can smell the scent of his brandy and cigars.
The Hollywood Forever Cemetery has had a long, rocky, and interesting history. The Hollywood Memorial Park Cemetery was created in 1899 in a prime location on Santa Monica Boulevard (right next to Paramount studios), and in 1939 it was purchased by Jules Roth, who was more concerned with using the cemetery’s profits to fund his lavish lifestyle than to keep the cemetery in decent condition.
As a result, many of the graves were damaged and vandalized, and even the crematory was literally falling down while bodies were being cremated. Roth died in 1997, and new owners purchased the cemetery, which was on the verge of bankruptcy anyways. It was refurbished, had kiosks with info on those interred there put in, and renamed “Hollywood Forever”Celebs like Rudolph Valentino, Mickey Rooney, Douglas Fairbanks, Johnny and Dee Dee Ramone, Cecil DeMille, Bugsy Siegel, George Harrison, Jayne Mansfield, and Mel Blanc are buried here.
Pretty much anyone who has ever worked at Pico House has had paranormal experiences that range anywhere from footsteps to unexplainable shadows. The hotel, which opened its doors in 1870, has become one of the most notoriously haunted buildings in the city, thanks to its countless tales from beyond the grave.
One of the most famous ghosts is Mexican governor Don Pio Pico, who helped to build the hotel. Some of the other ghosts reportedly hanging around Pico House are from the many Chinese men massacred in the area in 1871.
The Cecil Hotel is one of LA’s most famous hotels, thanks in part to its dark history. Home to murderers, maniacs, and ghosts, some say the Cecil is anything but your average hotel: they say that it’s cursed. In recent years the hotel has become a hot spot for paranormal enthusiasts (both Ghost Hunters and Ghost Adventures have featured the building on their shows, and it inspired the “American Horror Story: Hotel”) who believe the building is haunted by the spirits of the countless people who have met their end here. If you’re thinking about staying here, it’s only 17.8 miles from LAX, but you might want to bring some holy water, and hope that you make it through the night!
The infamous Elizabeth Short, aka the Black Dahlia, had her very last drink at the Biltmore bar on the fateful night in 1947, before she was brutally murdered. Later the next morning, her dismembered body would be found, hacked in two, in a vacant lot near Leimert park. The ghost of the Black Dahlia has been witnessed by staff, who refuse to visit the first floor, where she allegedly spends her time. She has also been spotted many times in the mezzanine, dressed all in black, and when a staff member calls out to her, she turns and disappears into a wall.
Rumored to be the home of at least two separate ghosts, the Pantages Theatre is home to “The Singer,” a ghost who, legend has it, died in the lobby in 1932. The other spirit said to haunt the theater is the ghost of Howard Hughes, who was the official owner of the Pantages in 1949. Over the years, the second floor has been reported by employees to be a paranormal hotspot, where the apparition of both spirits appear. Despite this, the theater gets some of the biggest Broadway shows and most nights plays to a packed house.
On Halloween in 1936, Harry Houdini’s wife held a séance on the Knickerbocker Hotel’s roof. It was the 10th anniversary of her husband’s death and 300 guests were invited to help form the outer circle. The entire ritual was witnessed by scientists, occult specialists, reporters, and magicians. Unfortunately Houdini’s ghost experienced some stage fright that night, but that hasn’t stopped guests from experiencing some strange goings-on.
Many people have spotted shadows that move around the basement, passing through doors that mysteriously open on their own. Many attribute the strange phenomenon to the ghost of a woman who committed suicide by jumping off the roof. Although no longer a hotel, you can still visit this piece of Hollywood history.
Most everyone is familiar with the Manson murders which happened on August 9, 1969 on 10050 Cielo Drive. The house that stands today has been rebuilt over the original building, where a pregnant Sharon Tate and several others were brutally murdered by Manson family members, fueled by drugs and the ideas of crazed cult leader Charles Manson.
Previous owners admit that while living in the house, they experienced countless paranormal experiences, including apparitions of the deceased. Famous parapsychologist Barry Taff visited the home and reported that he had discovered a massive geomagnetic disturbance, which may be the cause of the excessive paranormal activity at the house. To date, it’s considered one of the most haunted buildings in the world.
Hollywood is notoriously hard on people, particularly to those who are striving to “make it big”. Case in point: the tragic tale of Peg Entwhistle. Peg was an up-and-coming actress just trying to make her way in Tinsel Town during the 1920’s, but after only one starring role she couldn’t get a single part. On September 16, 1932, Peg left her home and drove to the iconic Hollywood Sign in the Hollywood Hills. Once there, she climbed the sign to the top of the H, and jumped to her death to the ground below. Though Peg is long gone, many believe her spirit still remains.
On more than one occasion, eye-witnesses have spotted what they thought was a lost hiker making their way along the darkened path. The mysterious blonde (usually spotted wearing a white dress) always looks lost and frightened, but once she makes eye contact with the approaching people, she disappears into thin air.
If you’re headed to Los Angeles, don’t forget that it’s populated by more ghosts than you can shake a K2 Meter at! Add a few of these hot spots to your itinerary and turn your trip to the city into a ghost adventure.
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