Great Hollywood Haunts for Halloween
Halloween is just 2 weeks away and L.A. knows how to show everyone who visits a haunting good time. Here are some of our favorite places to visit during this spooky time of year. You can check them out on a Hollywood Tour!
The Knickerbocker was built in 1925 and played a major role in Hollywood. It first opened as a luxury apartment building and became a hotel later where many celebrities hung out in the Renaissance Revival Bar. Rudolph Valentino frequented the bar and loved to dance to the live music. Marilyn Monroe and Joe Dimaggio honeymooned there in 1954 and Elvis Presley stayed there quite often. Other stars who lived and stayed at the Knickerbocker included rocker Jerry Lee Lewis, Mae West, Lana Turner, Cecil B. DeMille, Frank Sinatra, Laurel and Hardy and many others.Through the years, there have been many ghost sightings at The Knickerbocker including Rudolph Valentino, Marilyn Monroe and previous guests of the hotel. Reports of lights turning on and off and things moving on their own have swirled around this storied place. Although the most frequent hauntings have occurred in the bar, it is now sealed off from the rest of the hotel which is now a retirement building.
The house was designed by Hollywood art director Harry Oliver who worked on more than 30 films between 1919 and 1938. It was originally built in 1921 as offices and dressing rooms for Irvin Willat’s film studio in Culver City. No one could have predicted that it would have become a popular tourist attraction given its fairy tale looks. In fact, so much traffic went by there the house, that it caused accidents. Eventually the studio shut down and instead of demolishing this icon of architecture, it got MOVED (yes, moved) across town to Beverly Hills in 1930 and turned into a private home with an overgrown (this is intentional) English-style garden and a pond made to look like a moat. Because what fairytale house would be complete without a moat? The house continues to be an attraction; between 3000 and 4000 kids visit the house every Halloween, and tour busses stop by constantly. The good news is that as of 2013, the house was designated as a historical landmark by the City of Beverly Hills so it will be around for years to come.
LA Abandoned Zoo
If you are adventurous and don’t mind experiencing a spooky side to LA (and have already taken our Haunted in Hollywood tour), then taking a visit to the Old LA Zoo is a must on your to do list. Located on the Eastside of Griffith Park on what used to be Griffith J Griffith’s Ostritch farm, the Old Zoo was opened in 1913 and closed in the late 1950’s. When you visit, you can actually walk through some of the old stone cages and caves. You might recognize certain areas of the zoo from scenes from the movie “The Anchorman”. There is a picnic and hiking area there as well. Some people say it is quite eerie and other’s just say “lions and tigers and bears…no more” . Don’t worry, though, you can still visit the “new” LA Zoo just down the way.
Haunted Hollywood Tour
Of course, we could not write about our favorite things to do in LA for Halloween without including our “Haunted Hollywood” Tour in the lineup. This 5 hour ghost tour shows you the scary underbelly of Los Angeles and Hollywood. The tour will take you to see the locations surrounding the OJ case, where the Manson murders took place and the house where the Menendez brothers killed their parents for money. We will also show you the places where Michael Jackson, Marilyn Monroe, John Belushi, River Phoenix and Janis Joplin met their untimely demise along with some of the graves of the biggest Hollywood Stars. And if that is not enough, we will round out the tour by taking you to a haunted bar in Hollywood that was rumored to be where the Black Dahlia had her last drink.
Have a haunting good time with LA Insider Tours. We have had a 5-star rating on TripAdvisor since 2011 and all of our tours are completely private, custom tours with just you and your family — like your friend in LA taking you around town.
Call us at 800-549-6625 or email us today to book!