Hotels near the Magic Castle

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Rick Schulz
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Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Rick Schulz » February 19th, 2008, 7:39 pm

I hope this is the correct place to post this question. I plan to visit Los Angeles and the Magic Castle in mid-March, and I would welcome recommendations on where to stay (or places to avoid). I would like to find someplace fairly close (a rather relative term) to the Magic Castle. So where would you recommend I find lodgings for a few days?

Your help is greatly appreciated!

Thanks!

Rick

Roger M.
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Roger M. » February 19th, 2008, 7:50 pm

http://www.hotelcelebrity.com/
http://www.saharanmotel.com/

Either of these have been mentioned here before as being clean, cheap, safe, and less than a block from the Castle.

I've stayed in both and prefer the Celebrity, but the Sahara is less expensive and I don't hesitate to stay there if I can't book the Celebrity.

There continue to be varying reports about the Castle hotel itself. It might be fine for a single guy, not so fine if you're traveling with a women who might be left alone in the room for any length of time........this based not on a personal experience, but rather a well known recent case of an incident having took place at the Castle Hotel.

The Castle Hotel isn't as nice as the Celebrity.

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David Scollnik
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby David Scollnik » February 19th, 2008, 10:01 pm

I stayed at the Magic Castle Hotel back in November for one night, and was generally pleased with it. It is a little dated but if you are just visiting the Castle and staying there for a night or two, the convenience cannot be beat. Of course, if you stay there you are granted admission to the Magic Castle itself.

The Renaissance Hollywood Hotel (a Marriott) is also very close by. Its lobby looked nice, I don't know about the rooms.

http://www.renaissancehollywood.com/

There appear to be a number of smaller hotels within a block or so of the Castle. I think they are all small, privately run places. These include Highland Gardens Hotel and Hollywood Celebrity Hotel. Read the reviews at tripadvisor.com ... the first one sounds like a bit of a dive, but the second one might be okay, especially considering Blair M.'s post above.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Amos McCormick » February 20th, 2008, 2:34 am

Do not, I repeat DO NOT book the Motel 6 in Hollywood! :whack:

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Gordon Meyer
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Gordon Meyer » February 20th, 2008, 7:02 am

I've stayed at the Renaissance Hollywood, it's first-class. Within walking distance to the Castle, but it is kitty-corner so you either have to walk through a gas station and residential area, or go down Hollywood Blvd for a block, then walk through the residential area. Either way, in Castle attire, you'll stand out. :)

Ask for an Eastern view and you can see the hills and the Castle from your room. Here are two pictures I took on my last visit:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/gordonmeyer/2220778709/
http://www.flickr.com/photos/gordonmeyer/2220801589/

There's also the Hollywood Roosevelt. It's a straight-shot, one block walk to the Castle. The Roosevelt is steeped in Hollywood history and has trendy boutique-style rooms. It's harder to get a room there, and the it's not quite as convenient for parking or getting a cab, compared to the Renaissance.

Of course, the downside of both of these places is the cost. They're very nice and well-located, and thus expensive.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby castawaydave » February 20th, 2008, 10:51 am

Just a quick note:
Ths Saharan mentioned above is actually about a mile from the Castle, rather than just a block...Still, a nice easy 15 minute walk (or 5 minute cab ride) past the Chinese Theatre and up to the Castle.

It is certainly not The Four Seasons, but for a mere $75 (or so) per night, is hard to beat...

Have a great trip.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Roger M. » February 20th, 2008, 11:22 am

Sorry, Dave is absolutely right. Thanks Dave.

Re-reading my post it seems I'm saying both hotels are a block away, when only the Celebrity is.

The Sahara IS a walk to the Castle. It's not deluxe by any means, but at around $80.00 it's where I go if I can't go the the Celebrity, and am traveling alone.

The other luxe hotels mentioned in this thread, the Roosevelt, and the Renaissance are very nice hotels.....but quite expensive.
The Renaissance especially boasts a stunning view to the south, out over the city, and to the north of the Hollywood Hills. One night while staying there, LAPD helicopters buzzed just past my south facing window as they flew up and down Hollywood Blvd looking (I presume) for somebody. They went by every 10 minutes or so all night long. Rather than bother me, I found it rather "big city" and entertaining.

Anyway, it's Hollywood, it's warm, and I'm from someplace cold, so I always enjoy any walk I have to make. But for some it might be an issue worth considering.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Pete Biro » February 20th, 2008, 11:33 am

Terry Seabrooke always stays at the Magic Castle hotel and told me it has been refurbished and he likes it.
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Timothy Hyde
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Timothy Hyde » February 20th, 2008, 2:00 pm

Originally posted by Gordon Meyer:
Within walking distance to the Castle, but it is kitty-corner
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Brandon Hall » February 20th, 2008, 3:26 pm

Someone mentioned the Highland Gardens, it's just below the Castle. If anyone is interested in a bit of old RnR trivia, that's the place where Janis Joplin died. And it IS a dive!
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Roger M.
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Roger M. » February 20th, 2008, 4:07 pm

Originally posted by Brandon Hall:
Someone mentioned the Highland Gardens, it's just below the Castle. If anyone is interested in a bit of old RnR trivia, that's the place where Janis Joplin died. And it IS a dive!
Room 105, for the "dead rock star" experience. I'm told 105 is STILL the same 105.
She was found dead, wedged between her bed and the night table with a burned out ciggy still in her hand.

I've overnighted in the Sid Vicious death suite at the Chelsea in New York, but haven't done the Highland Gardens yet (BTW, it was called the Landmark when she died there).
If it's less than $55.00 a night, I might just give it a try :)

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Bill Palmer » February 22nd, 2008, 9:10 pm

The Highland Gardens is a dive. There is no question of that. But it's a pleasant dive.

I kinda had it pegged as the "Motel 3." A lot of well-known entertainers have stayed there.
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Gordon Meyer
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Gordon Meyer » February 29th, 2008, 6:26 am

When there is a police helicopter overhead, there's no escaping the noise, so you may as well have a good view of it from what passes as a high-rise in Hollywood. :)

Plan ahead. The hotels I mentioned are often hard to book. If there's any kind of meeting or event in town they're going to be full, in my experience. Perhaps because, while they're pricey, there aren't all that many convenient options in between the Motel 3 (thanks, Bill) and Four Seasons price range.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Alan Bursky » March 2nd, 2008, 11:34 pm

Highland Gardens is clean & cheap. Best deal around. About 200 feet from the Castle.

Charles McCall
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Charles McCall » March 7th, 2008, 7:04 pm

I stayed overnight at the Highland Gardens on Wednesday. My room was clean and comfortable, with new furniture. The lobby is finally getting a needed makeover.

It offers good value.
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Andres Reynoso
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Andres Reynoso » May 17th, 2013, 12:49 pm

Resurrecting and old topic.

I'm planning to visit the Castle in August (peak season, higher prices, I can't move the date) I have read reviews on trip advisor and my options are closing on between Liberty Hotel (in front of Celebrity) and Highland Gardens. General comments indicates both are old and sometimes dirty hotels. Liberty usally has broken equipment.

In this post seems that Highland Gardens is a good option. anybody could comment about it 5 years latter the original post? More recent experiences? Somebody knows the Liberty?

I found comments on Trip Advisor about (small) hotels lock the door at night. I contacted Highland and they told me they lock the main door at 11:00 but a guard stays all night if I need to return late. Sure, I want to stay at the Castle all the night until they close!!! Is it a zone particularly dangerous at night?
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby brianarudolph » May 17th, 2013, 3:42 pm

Hello Andres & all,

Don't forget that the Magic Castle Hotel also owns the Hollywood Hills Hotel which is located on the hill directly above the Magic Castle Hotel (you check in at the MC Hotel.)

Rates are generally a little cheaper but not double-digit cheap, i.e., I usually pay $145-$155 per night. Staying there also gains you admittance to the Castle if you're not a member. While you do have to ride in their shuttle vans to get around the property (you would NOT want to walk it, especially with luggage in tow), the shuttles are typically quite prompt. It's a little on the used side, but I've stayed in far worse for far more money.

But the kickers for me are:

- the shuttles will pick you up and drop you off at the Castle, then can be called again at Castle closing to take you right back up to your room;
- as available, they will also drop you off nearby in Hollywood (at least if you ask nicely)
- you can get some very nice views of city from up there
- many of the room have balconies with some chairs and a table so you can sit outside on a good day
- most of the rooms a very large with full kitchens, living room (sofas, chairs, tables), bedroom and bathroom. Plus your internet service is included (screw that $10-$15 per day extra charge elsewhere.)
- (and my favorite) they have a decent list of snacks to choose from that are complimentary. There is a small delivery charge if you order them to be brought to your room while you're in your room, but if you stock up the first time and then every time you go back to your room (just tell the driver you want to stop in the lobby first) there is no additional charge. And I'm talking about things like standard vending-sized bags of Cheez-Its, Rice Krispie bars, Crackerjack, cookies, pretzels, popcorn, etc. For the slightly healthier take there are granola bars, fruit, etc. And you also get your pick of water, soda, diet soda, etc. And you can pick "as much as you want" (I'm sure there's probably a limit, but no one ever balked at my list. I'd check off a list like 4 bags of cheez-its, 3 bags of pretzels, 6 rice krispie treats, a couple small bags of nuts, 4 granola bars, 2 bags of crackerjack and six Diet Cokes - and that was just upon checking in. Get the drinks chilling in your room's refrigerator and then replenish on subsequent returns to your room. Even at $1 per vend, my check-in list is $27.00 worth of munchies and drinks (that I most likely would have spent $54.00 or more to get from a vending machine in any other hotel. Plus I didn't have to go to a gas station or a convenience store (let alone pay their prices) and haul them back either.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby West McDonough » May 17th, 2013, 4:25 pm

I was thoroughly confused for a moment when I read this thread, since the Magic Castle Hotel hasn't had any sort of security incident in years (and I would know if it had)! Then I noticed it was a 2008 post. Although even then it was an isolated incident, with security immediately adjusted to prevent any such thing happening again. I lived in the hotel from January 2009 through mid-20010 and, even as a woman alone, never had the least feeling of insecurity.

I'll refrain from telling you how awesome it is, because I'm biased :) But a glance at the trip advisor reviews (where we've been the #1 rated hotel in Los Angeles for ages) will show you why I'm very proud of our little hotel. It's come a long way since this thread started. But there are cheaper hotels in the area, and I know magicians are often on a budget

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Brad Henderson » May 17th, 2013, 5:50 pm

have stayed at both highland gardens and magic castle hotel. First trip to hg I found crack pipe in my room. Welcome to Hollywood! Having said that, it was a super huge room, more like a one bedroom apartment.

Magic Castle Hotel is ok as well. Have stayed in larger suite like rooms there. Plenty of space and I find the outdoor courtyard a pleasant place to hang.

Neither has the slickness of 'brand name' hotels. having said that, I've stayed at some best western type places that though a chain were scary creepy.

For convenience to the castle you can't beat either. And I've never felt unsafe walking to castle from either, even late at night.

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Mark Paulson
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Mark Paulson » May 18th, 2013, 7:22 pm

I second the Hollywood Hills Hotel. Besides all the free snacks, you also get breakfast at the Magic Castle Hotel.

I stayed there in 2009, and it was a pleasant stay. I went there again in September 2012, and it seemed that the rooms had either been renovated, or the room I stayed in was in better condition.

You also have access to the swimming pool with a nice view of Yamashiro Restaurant.

Great value for what you get.

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Don Hendrix
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Don Hendrix » May 19th, 2013, 4:46 pm

I have stayed at almost all of the hotels in the area and prefer the Hollywood Hills Hotel. My wife even liked it, and she is very fussy. They will pick you up and give you a ride to the front door of the Castle and then pick you up and take you back to your room. The view is great and the pool is very nice. The best part is probably the staff at the Magic Castle Hotel. They are the friendliest i have ever seen in a hotel, anywhere. If I can't get a room at Hollywood Hills, I will stay at Highland Gardens. It is less expensive and not at all bad. The Liberty is a real dump.
Hollywood Orchid Suites is also nice, but often booked up.The Renaissance has changed names. I haven't stayed there, but used to eat breakfast there every day I spent in Hollywood. Wonderful buffet for $25, but it may have changed with the new owners.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Tom Dobrowolski » May 20th, 2013, 11:45 am

I stayed at the Hollywood Hills this past Friday night and it was good. Allthe amenities mentioned (free snacks, access to Castle, shuttle service, access to Magic Castle Hotel facilities) were great. What I didn't see mentioned was that the staff was extremely pleasant and very helpful. The very definition of customer service. I actually called Friday morning for accomodations that night and got them. Price was fair in comparison to stuff in the area for what you get. I'd stay there again.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Richard Kaufman » May 20th, 2013, 12:34 pm

What are the prices like for rooms at these places?
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Tom Dobrowolski » May 20th, 2013, 2:47 pm

I paid $129.00 for the night at the Hollywood Hills.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Andres Reynoso » May 20th, 2013, 2:56 pm

Thank you very much to everybody giving advise.

As I mentioned I will travel on August, peak season. Answering to Richard, the rates for that dates, for single room are:

Liberty: $99 (room)
Highland Gardens: $129 (room)
Hollywood Hills: $144 (studio hillside view - cheaper option)
Celebrity Hotel $164
Orchid Suites: $159 (suite)
Loews (formerly Renaissance) $244
Magic Castle Hotel: $254 (suite)

all prices plus tax (14%)

As West said I'm on budget. And I will travel alone, no split the price with a roommate!!

Don, thank you very much for your comments about several hotels. It seems that Liberty is really bad option. Hollywood Hills has very nice pictures, no doubt is a great place to stay, the terraces seems so relaxing, even romantic, maybe traveling in couple ;) In my case alone and on budget result an expensive option.

Highland Gardens could be my choice. I have learned Hollywood is an expensive place to stay comparing with the two cities I have visited in the USA (Las Vegas and Orlando. Orlando during the Genii Bash, The Florida Mall Hotel is great and even without the special rate RK got for us is cheaper than majority of the hotels in the above list)
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Andres Reynoso » May 20th, 2013, 3:00 pm

Tom, $129 last Friday?
Great ;) this is a good season to visit the Hollywood Hills
haaaaa this is the bad about travel on peak season. :?
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Lisa Cousins
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Lisa Cousins » May 20th, 2013, 3:29 pm

Since you're a single traveler on a budget, you may want to consider the Orange Drive Hostel - this is steps away from the Magic Castle:

http://orangedrivehostel.com/info/

I THINK that Mr. Goat may have stayed here once - but he may be too busy with other pleasant concerns at the moment to chime in with a review.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby brianarudolph » May 20th, 2013, 3:55 pm

By all means allow me to formally say how amazingly friendly and efficient the staff at the Magic Castle Hotel and the Hollywood Hills Hotel are - I certainly did not mean to imply that they were not by my error of omission.

And as an example of something they did for me that went above and beyond that extra mile: back in January/February of 2012 I had the good fortune of staying in the Hollywood Hills Hotel two weekends in a row. But in my overslept haste to check out and get to LAX after my first weekend, I forgot to pack a blazer and a dress shirt I had moved to the other end of the closet and didn't see as I was dashing off. I discovered this after I got to LAX as I was going through my bag looking for another item before checking in for my flight with only minutes to spare. I called the folks at Hollywood Hills/Magic Castle Hotel and when I told them I was coming back next weekend, they said "don't worry about it - we'll take care of it and hang on to it for you. They even offered to send it out to be dry cleaned if I wanted to pay for it. I said sure. When I returned the following weekend, the blazer and shirt had been dry cleaned and were already waiting for me in the closet in my room ... and the whopping dry cleaning charge? It was a mere eight bucks! On top of that, there were some snacks and a nice "welcome back" hand-written note waiting for me in my room too.

The only thing I don't like about the Magic Castle Hotel and the Hollywood Hills Hotel is when they're already booked up and I can't get a room!

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby mrgoat » May 22nd, 2013, 10:56 am

Back from pleasantries now. Amazing time. And no, I didn't stay at the hostel, but at the highland gardens and it was perfect. Cheap clean and a few minutes walk to the castle. I also stayed at the magic castle hotel and it gets good ratings on trip advisor because the staff are GREAT and plead with you on exit to give them a review. Trip Advisor is quite easy to game this way. The rooms there are VERY dated, but clean and fine. However, when I come back in Jan I will be staying at the highland gardens.

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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Andres Reynoso » May 23rd, 2013, 4:03 pm

Wellcome back Mr. Goat and thanks for your review.

It seems the winner will be the Highland.
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Andres Reynoso » August 20th, 2013, 1:04 pm

Finally I visited the Castle last weekend and despite I said I will lodge at Highland, I stayed at the Orange Drive Hostel just across Franklin Avenue.

Is a nice place. I asked for a private "en-suite" room. (private room with its own private bathroom) so It wasn't a hostel experience at all.

The staff is very kind, the place is clean. The sink was some clogged. The house is an old one and smells wood. On tripadvisor some people says smells bad. I think is wood, maybe oldie wood but it's good for me. They provide free wireless internet that works fine. They have two desktops for use, a fully functional kitchen (just renoved while I was there) you can use the fridge, stove, pans, dishes, sink, microwave, etc. And they provide during the morning free pancakes and oatmeal.

The staff even helped me to arrange the shuttle pickup. I don't know why both shuttle companies at the airport doesn't offer round trips, so you have to call them (or arrange by internet) for the pickup at your hotel.

It cost about $84 dayly for the private en-suite paying cash. If you pay with card it cost near $10 more. This price is total, including tax. Higland was $129 + taxes. Traveling alone the hostel was a good option. Even so, for two days I payed near the same I payed for 7 days in Vegas at the Orleans spitting the bill with a friend while attending Magic Live.
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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Hotels near the Magic Castle

Postby Richard Kaufman » August 20th, 2013, 5:23 pm

Hotels don't come much cheaper than the Orleans in Las Vegas. I can't imagine any other reason to go there.
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