4 ways to get into the Magic Castle

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Magic Castle

Getting a membership at the Magic Castle, a magicians’ only clubhouse in Hollywood, is not particularly difficult. The century-old Victorian mansion has been the Academy of Magical Arts’ somewhat secretive headquarters since 1963. Step inside—reservations are required, formal attire is requested, and photos are not permitted—and you’ll find performance parlors, hidden entrances, enigmatic illusions, and other surprises that we won’t spoil for you. Rather than spending years honing your trade as a want-to-be magician, you can enter the Magic Castle using the methods listed below (ranked from easiest to most difficult).

1. Know a member in Magic Castle

Magic Castle

This will be the most convenient entrance for the majority of Angelenos. It’s like playing six degrees of separation when trying to find a friend who can get you into the Magic Castle; chances are good that your friend’s cousin’s coworker can.

Members can distribute guest passes like candy; once you have one, you are admitted, but you should plan to spend at least $75 for the cover charge and meals. (The door fee is $25 per person at weekend brunch, $35 on weeknights from Monday through Thursday, and $45 on weekends during the evening—in addition to the $20 valet parking fee.)

2. Spend the night at the Magic Castle Hotel

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Magic Castle

The easiest way to get into the magic club is to spend the night at this apartment-style hotel, which is regrettably not in the actual castle itself. Based on space, the Magic Castle Hotel, which is right across the street, can make a reservation for you at the club.

Although it is not the most affordable alternative for visitors from the area, it is a wise choice if you are traveling from elsewhere: The establishment has received overwhelmingly excellent ratings, offers complimentary room service food around-the-clock, and even has an emergency popsicle phone outside the pool.

3. Befriend a magician

It used to be somewhat of disrespectful but perhaps beneficial to slip into the DMs of a magician scheduled to play at the Castle. However, the Magic Castle’s schedule for upcoming performances only extends approximately a week in advance, making it also rather impractical. Having said that, if you show real curiosity, you never know when you might run into a magician with a member who is sympathetic to your cause.

4. Become a member (or a magician)

No prior magic experience is necessary to apply for associate membership in the Academy of Magical Arts. If you’re applying, it’s advantageous to know someone who is already a member; otherwise, you risk spending a long time on the waiting list. You are welcome to come whenever you like if accepted. Keep an eye out for trial membership offers as well, as they might provide special benefits for a fraction of the regular price.

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If you’ve previously mastered sleight of hand, you might also want to apply and have an audition for membership in a local or international magician organization.

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