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“Great Experience, Lousy Guest Relations”
Review of The Magic Castle

The Magic Castle
Book In Advance
More Info
$35.00*
and up
Hollywood Ghost Walk
Certificate of Excellence
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Stairs / elevator
Attraction details
Useful Information: Bathroom facilities, Stairs / elevator
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Great Experience, Lousy Guest Relations”
Reviewed October 14, 2012

I've been going to the Castle since I was knee high and my dad could spin a card trick. But he retired and moved out of town and I have my own family so I had to hunt down a guest pass. I couldn't wait to take my daughter so she could experience the magic like I had. We did the brunch of course because that's the only time children are allowed. I have to say this up front, if you're not going to be welcoming and warm to non-members, don't invite us in the first place. We were swiftly ushered into an outside line in the sun the way a warden might direct his prisoners. Upon entering, the very distasteful, freckle-faced girl taking money was either having a bad day or was just a nasty person in general. She never smiled, never looked at us and was snippy with every response to our questions. She and the coatcheck person immediately confiscated my camera (don't they know our phones take pictures now?) shot us over to the door to say Open Sesame but opened it before the words came out of her mouth so she didn't understand what was happening. :(. BTW, Be prepared to spend a small fortune. Non-members pay $8 for parking, $15 to get in and $37 for brunch- per person. Then if you're lucky enough to find a bartender, drinks are about $10. We were told that tickets for the Palace of Mystery would be distributed to our table and that because we weren't members we would be lucky if we got into more shows than that. Again, this dialog took place without eye contact. The noise level escalated as more families arrived. We were treated to a nice array of cold and hot entrees, salads and petite fours. Your meal includes, soft drinks, coffee, ice tea and mimosas. Kids can eat chicken fingers, french fries and waffles ($19). There's also an omelet station and carving station. The scrambled eggs had no flavor and the bacon was bland and chewy but everything else was tasty. The shrimp and lox were fine. The Sunday magic shows are geared toward the little ones and they delighted my daughter. It was her first live magic encounter (she's 6) and they had all the kids in the front two rows, calling them up on stage to assist. The magicians took care to entertain the masses offering loads of jokes that would go right over little heads. We were most impressed watching a 16 year old in the close-up room. The room is specifically for young magicians and they make great role models. We walked through the museum and took in all the surreal magic memorabilia and of course chilled with Irma the piano-playing ghost for a bit. She scared my daughter while charming her with the piano renditions of her favorite Disney princess songs. Some obnoxious tweens stood up and asked for Justin Bieber and Maroon 5 and One Republic and what do you know? She accommodated! Overall, a visit to the Castle is a must, especially if you can ignore being treated like cattle. As we left past the check in, the same woman was being snarky to a guest whose member was already inside. He left briefly to come back with someone else's name because she wouldn't let him in and it seemed to work. I needed to collect my camera and she snipped at me to wait my turn. No tip for you, Lady!

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
4 Thank poohbear98
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Level 5 Contributor
37 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Very fun place to go”
Reviewed October 14, 2012

The Magic Castle is very fun. It has many rooms to go see different shows. I would recommend making dinner reservations for 6:00 PM so you can go see the many shows that are offered after. You have to valet your car for $8.00 dollars and you must have an invite from a member to get in. It was $25.00 dollars per ticket on Saturday night.The Castle itself has many corridors and it's easy to get lost but there are many people who work there who are happy to point you in the right direction. I would recommend going at least once. The dress code is strict and many people were very dressed up. Men had suits and ties on. Some women were dressed in ball gowns and some (like me) just wore a dress. Make sure you get in line early to see any of the shows that you are interested in. We went on a Saturday and it was very crowded so try to go on a weeknight if possible to avoid the crowds.

Visited October 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank Sungal43
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lake Tahoe
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Too much fun”
Reviewed October 9, 2012

Recently visited with cousins from the UK. It was the highlight of their trip and exceeded their expectations. In addition, it is really a good value for the quality of the entertainment and food.

Visited April 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank TahoeScout
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rancho mirage
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“If you like crowds and lining up for average shows......”
Reviewed September 29, 2012

After hearing about this place for ages six of us went one Tuesday night recently. When I called for info I was told dinner reservations were necessary and "elegant attire" was required. This, I was told meant tie and coat for men and cocktail dress or pant suit with matching jacket was the requirement for women. I asked if dressy black pants and a sequined black sweater would suffice and was told "no, it must be a matching jacket". We arrived at 6:00 PM and were given a list of the shows and times. No other instructions. Dinner and service was good. At 7:25 we were told to hurry to catch the 7:30 show. No directions as to where to go so we wandered thru crowds trying to find the show only to find the doors closed when we finally found it. Two employees gave us wrong info..We then were told to line up for the 8:30 show along with a crowd that had not had dinner, but had drinks. That show was the usual card tricks..nothing exceptionall, then run the crowd for the second show, which was very average. The final show at 10:00 was better, but on the whole the evening wasn't worth the effort. If you buy a membership you are allowed to bring 5 friends and another membership allows that many friends plus the dinner requirements are waived so you have a packed house and packed parking. Many men had no coats on and few women had jackets. So much for "elegant attire". Too bad, we wanted to like this place!

Visited September 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank julie s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kauai
Level 5 Contributor
38 reviews
17 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Keep an eye on your wallet . . . just kidding.”
Reviewed September 20, 2012

Spent the evening with 5 friends. Food was average but the magic was unbelievable. We liked the up close slight of hand magicians that is why I joked about keeping an eye on your wallet. Truly a fun evening.

Visited March 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Kukui_Aloha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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