Magic Castle in Hollywood Is…Truly Magical!

The Magic Castle in Hollywood is a private club for professional magicians and members of the Academy of Magical Arts and is one of Hollywood’s most iconic sites.

I love magic! Even the simplest card trick dazzles, leaving me wondering in disbelief what my eyes just saw. We all know these tricks aren’t ‘real,’ yet it’s still thrilling to watch closely and wait for the big reveal.

But, the Magic Castle is not open to the general public – it’s a private club. Admission into the Magic Castle is exclusive and only members and their invited guests can enter.

The Magic Castle, Hollywood

I was fortunate enough to be invited by Jonathan Levit who performs in the close-up gallery. Close-up is usually performed with common (at least common-looking) items such as a deck of cards or coins. I’m one of those people who tries to analyze and figure out how each trick is done, and am constantly left spiraling when a trick is performed in front of my (very alert) eyes.  Jonathan is one of those guys who never ceases to amaze and is a magical consultant for TV and movies such as ‘Now You See Me’, (a really FUN movie) and ‘The Incredible Burt.’

Magic Castle Dress Code

If you’re lucky enough to be able to score an invitation, it’s important to note the strict dress code that everyone is required to follow. As an exclusive club, attire is important, and really makes this an incredible night out.

You can’t really overdress here: think old Hollywood glamour and traditional date night. Ladies are expected in formal wear and men are required to wear a dinner jacket, tie and dress shoes at all times (no, “dress sneakers” are definitely not allowed, Rob). If you weren’t paying attention and didn’t know there was a dress code, you might convince the staff to let you borrow something for the evening, like a tie or dinner jacket. But don’t be ‘that guy’ — bring out your own magical style.

The Magic Castle has a formal dress code

Seeing this level of dress in this old historic mansion (think throwback to the Victorian era) simply adds to the air of mystique. Absolutely no pictures are allowed past the lobby, adding to the exclusivity. It forces you to feast on the senses awaiting you inside.

Inside the Magic Castle

Just entering the Magic Castle made us feel special. Our adventure began with us whispering open sesame to the owl perched on the lobby’s library shelves, to unlock a hidden door to enter. Guests are required to have dinner reservations and the restaurant offers fine dining with great service.

Inside the Magic Castle - it's throw back to the Victorian era

After dinner we were able to wander around the many rooms and hallways, taking in any and all of the shows being performed. Mystical and magical, the Magic Castle is an eclectic room-by-room fun experience for all. We saw close-up magic acts (I actually participated in the show, too), as well as theater-style stage acts. The venue is quite large with five fully stocked bars, an entry parlor, multiple grand dining rooms, a library (which is off-limits to non-members), a music room, a museum, and a gift shop. We spent the evening sipping fabulous cocktails while being mesmerized by performance parlors, secret doors, mysterious illusions and little magical surprises we found as we moved from room to room.

Along with the formal shows listed each evening, there are magicians staging tricks pretty much everywhere you turn. At empty tables in the bars, on couches in the lounges, and even the bartenders get in on the act!

nick dopuch magic castle hollywood magician
Nick DoPuch was our bartender and left us all scratching our heads to try and figure out how our card from the deck ended up under his glass!

Irma the Ghost

Invisible Irma is the mansion’s resident piano-playing ghost who entertains guests nightly playing tunes on her piano in the music room. I requested ‘Here Comes the Sun’ (one of my favorite songs in the world by The Beatles), and Irma’s invisible hands immediately begin to play it as we sang along.

Magic Castle Shows

Sadly we didn’t have time to see every show since there are many performances happening simultaneously across multiple showrooms. Since the rooms are intimate, the shows fill up quickly, and you are left trying to plot out your next move. We saw a private show in the close-up gallery (this was my favorite), the show in the Parlour of Prestidigitation and the Palace of Mystery show. The close-up magic was baffling and the entire evening we were left with a “How did he do that?!” feeling.

A good looking crowd at the Magic Castle in Hollywood, bringing their A-game

What truly sets The Magic Castle apart is its dedication to preserving the legacy of magic. Beyond the nightly performances that showcase the talents of top magicians, the castle boasts an extensive library of magical literature and artifacts, ensuring that the secrets of the craft are passed down through generations, from one magician to the next.

We left the Magic Castle in Hollywood full of amazement: cocktails, respect, disbelief, wonder, and longing for more.

Jonathan Levit, thank you for allowing us to be your guests to enjoy a special evening at the Magic Castle!

Have you been to the Magic Castle in Hollywood?

How was your experience?

Here are some other fun things to do in Los Angeles.

About The Author

Samantha

I’m a travel and health writer, digital brand consultant, breast cancer survivor, and supermom to two boys! I keep it real and share stories of raising an active family, life after a cancer diagnosis, and family travels around the world! Each story is shared with my dry, and sometimes naughty sense of humor.

2 COMMENTS

  1. Chris Bell | 21st Mar 24

    The Magic Castle in Hollywood truly lives up to its name as a beacon of enchantment and wonder! This blog beautifully captures the essence of this iconic venue, where every corner exudes an air of mystery and excitement. From the elegant décor to the world-class performances, the Magic Castle offers an unparalleled experience that leaves visitors spellbound. It’s a testament to the enduring allure of magic and the dedication of its talented performers. A must-visit destination for anyone seeking a truly magical experience in Hollywood!

    • Samantha | 21st Mar 24

      ahh thank you so much. I could not agree more!

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