Ghosts, Vice, Serial Killers & Unsolved Murders: A Tour of Haunted Downtown LA

Los Angeles, CA

  • Front page of the Los Angeles Examiner after the Black Dahlia murder.
  • The stately Millennium Biltmore.
  • The lobby of the Millennium Biltmore.
  • Looking up at the Oviatt Building facade.
  • The art deco signage of The Cicada Restaurant.
  • The opulent lobby of the Los Angeles Theater.
  • The marquee is usually empty.
  • The signage of the Palace Theater
  • Note the performing arts figurines on the second level of the Palace Theater.
  • The Tower Theater has seen better days.
  • The crimson signage for the Hotel Cecil remains to this day.
  • Front facade of the Stay on Main Hotel.  The building cannot hide its past.
  • The sign and griffin on the corner of 5th and Spring.
  • Flags outside of the Alexandria Hotel welcome tenants and others.

1 hour and 30 minutes
1.1 mi
Guided by Damien
Damien Cassavetes


Walk the oldest neighborhood of Los Angeles in search of the macabre, the supernatural and the unresolved. Prepare yourself for stories of betrayal, gruesome murder, mischief and seduction. The spirits of downtown Los Angeles haunt movie palaces, offices, apartment buildings and bars. Come explore how the boom and bust of the neighborhood created an ensemble of beings that still torment from beyond the grave. Warning: not appropriate for kids.

About Your Guide

Stories of the gruesome, unsolved and occult seem to chase me. In college, I majored in history, with a focus on 19th-century American medicine and disease. Now I write crime and suspense novels. In my research over the years, I uncovered stories about murder, paranormal sightings, witchcraft, cults and spirits. Much of it can be explained away with science but other things remain a mystery. I will admit that exploring the dark side of life has become a bit of a side passion for me. Hopefully you find it just as interesting. Check out my series of haunted walks in three cities so far: New York City, Los Angeles and Seattle.

Go on this Sidewalk

Guide Points

  1. Millennium Biltmore Hotel | 506 S Grand Ave

    We begin our walk at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel. From bottom to top, the Biltmore is home to more paranormal activity than any other ho…

  2. Oviatt Building | 617 S Olive St

    When this Art Deco masterpiece was completed in 1928, it housed the prestigious Alexander & Oviatt haberdashery which sold fashionable hats…

  3. Los Angeles Theater

    The next three stops are movie theaters, most of which are shuttered to the public.

  4. Palace Theater

    The second dormant theater of the evening, the Palace Theater is the oldest movie theater in Los Angeles, opening in 1911 as a vaudeville t…

  5. Tower Theater

    Whenever the Tower Theater is rented out for events, a custodial staff is mobilized to "refresh" the theater, clear the cobwebs and sweep u…

  6. Stay on Main Hotel

    One of the creepiest places in the city, the Stay on Main Hotel is the necessary rebrand of what was originally called the Hotel Cecil. W…

  7. Buzz Wine and Beer Shop

    Come on inside this part-store/part-bar and grab a perch by the windows in the rear so you have a view of The Alexandria Hotel on the south…

Sidewalk Reviews

  1. 4 Reviews

    1. Stephanie Costy

    Really a fun tour with super interesting history! I had goosebumps visiting some of the locations.

    Sep 30, 2019

    1. Anonymous

    Jul 23, 2019

    1. Jason

    Wow. This was absolutely fascinating. Really enjoyed this walk - the stories about the ghosts in the theaters are great but the serial killers freaked us out. Just what we wanted! Thanks Damien!

    Mar 27, 2018

About Sidewalk

Sidewalk is an app that provides free, guided walk experiences that can be created by anyone with stories to share about places they know and love.

The app navigates people through a neighborhood walk using GPS turn-by-turn directions, rich imagery and storytelling.