Oh how I wish I could show you all the wonders that I saw inside the building you see above: the lavish champagne brunch buffet, Irma the Ghost playing the piano, and of course, all the dazzling magicians performing illusions that boggle the mind.
At one time, The Magic Castle was one of those experiences that was, to me, as elusive as Disneyland's Club 33: you had to know somebody. But luckily, unlike Club 33, I had an in. I knew a guy who knew a guy. Well, sort of. I knew a guy who knew another guy who had this website where you can buy a whole bunch of magic crap, and when a certain threshold is reached, the site sends you an invite good for 8 guests as a sort of thank you gift.
I wish I could tell you that that website still does it, or that it even exists anymore. Like an elephant in a David Copperfield special, that business went poof a few months ago. This means that the last invite I was able to secure would be my last.
So when we went last Saturday (my third time, but my first brunch there), I relished every minute of the experience. Until I find a new way to get another invite, this would be the last time I'd be able to roam the halls of this old house, or marvel at the miniature prototype of the Haunted Mansion's ghost ballroom (yes, Walt Disney bought the idea from a Magic Castle member). And it would be the last time I eat in that Victorian dining room.
Brunch at The Magic Castle was a fabulous spread. There was endless Hawaiian poke served with wonton chips, perfectly cooked prime rib carved hot with all the trimmings, shrimp cocktail, omelets, fresh lox and bagel, and flutes of endless mimosas.
You should've seen our table.
At the end of our meal, we built up a tall pile of spent crab legs shells. We demolished an Alaskan crab troller's worth of those spindly crustacean limbs, which were especially easy to eat as they were already split in half lengthwise as all crab legs should. I wish I could show you a picture of how much of it we ate, or the other culinary delights they took the care to prepare, or even a hint of the magic we saw. There was the floating table, the stuff in the close-up parlor, Irma the ghost pianist playing Snoop Dogg's "Gin and Juice" and then Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" by request. I can't show any of it on this blog because no photos, not even selfies, are allowed inside.
It's just as well though. The Magic Castle is like magic itself; the more mysterious, the better.
And if anyone knows a guy who knows a guy who can get me another invite there or to Club 33 in the future, let me know!
The Magic Castle
7001 Franklin Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90028
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