There are so many different things to do during the halloween season around Los Angeles but for me, this Haunted Cocktail Soirée in Downtown Los Angeles takes the cake. This event goes on for the entire month of October but we decided to go last night for Halloween. We didn’t really know what to expect as this was the very first year this event took place but the advertisements on facebook made it look so fun and the people who went earlier in October left rave reviews.
The Soirée takes place at a giant mansion in a residential neighborhood of DTLA. The event is inspired by a mad man, Fransisco Vega, who at the end of his life painted 6 disturbing portraits of strange beings. These paintings are now known as The Spirit Paintings. Vega believed these paintings were the key to opening a doorway to another world. Legend has it that after he finished the 6th painting he vanished somewhere inside the house and his remains have never been found.
The mansion consists of 7 rooms on the main floor, 5 rooms upstairs, 2 basements, and what they call “the garden of anguish.” The main floor is where you get all your booze! It felt like a fancy house party with live music, a giant interactive Ouija board, and a puppet theater that told the stories of the houses caretakers and the 6 spirits that lived there. It consists of 6 bars, each one containing a different mini complimentary cocktail inspired by the different rooms in the house, all which were incredibly tasty! They had some good alcohol there too. Don Julio seemed to be sponsoring the event and was available at every bar. Some bars also featured Bulliet Bourbon and Kettle One vodka. When you enter the mansion you receive a taro card with 6 skulls each one representing a complimentary drink. Each time you get a drink they punch a hole through one of the skulls on your card. Although mini, each cocktail had a solid amount of liquor in them. I was definitely feeling it by the end of our two hours.
Upstairs was a small scavenger hunt in which you come into contact with the spirits, who are all very much alive, in Vega’s paintings. The hallway is lined with his work and filled with clues as to what object you need to find in each room. This part of the mansion was definitely creepy but not over the top scary, although they did have a screaming a couple of times. Once you get over the creepiness of the spirts, they’ll interact with you to help you find the objects you’re looking for in each room. Once you find all five objects, you give them to a ghosty looking lady in the hallway who will then gives you a red “marking.” The marking allows you to go into the garden of anguish where a lady with a white flower directs you into a cave of sorts to read real excerpts from Fransisco Vega’s diary.
The 2 basements were both very unique and very very different from each other. The ritual room, which you enter from inside the mansion, was a short incredibly artisitc performance of Fransisco Vega’s last moments of life. Some of the elements of this performance were definitely unexpected. I recommend going to the ritual room first. It will really set the mood for the rest of your visit… you’ll understand what I mean when you see it haha. The second basement you enter from outside of the mansion. Before you enter you will sectioned off in groups of about 6 and each couple will be given a mirror. The mirror is supposed to be used to ward of the spirits below. To get out, you follow the lights. Each light goes on one at a time and every time you stand under them you must chant a specific phrase as a group to get the next light to turn on. This was probably the scariest part of the entire mansion, it definitely had us jumping.
Once received all of your complimentary cocktails and made it through the whole mansion, there are two additional bars outside if you would like to purchase more alcohol. There’s also a food truck with delicious homemade pastas if you get hungry.
This was a seriously awesome experience! My boyfriend and I agreed that this was the most fun we’ve ever had on Halloween. Each ticket gives you two hours inside the mansion. There are 2 to 3 two hour sessions offered each night. Although you can show up at any point during the two hour window, I recommend getting there a little before your start time to get your wrist bands and be some of the first to enter the mansion. The two hours is necessary to really see and do everything in the mansion. The lines started to get a little long about 30 minutes into our sessions so I would recommend doing the ritual room first and then heading upstairs to the scavenger hunt to reduce some of your wait times. We did the second basement last, thats really the only line we had to stand in but the magicians roaming the line were very entertaining and the line went by pretty quickly. No promises that they’ll do the event in 2020 or that the theme will be the same but it was perceived so well I don’t see why they wouldn’t. We definitely would love to go again. If you’re dying to go there are still a few tickets left for this weekend (Nov 1 and 2) and new dates were just added from November 30th to December 15th.
Tickets are a reasonable $60 per person and include 6 complimentary mini cocktails. Tickets are available on Feverup.com or through the Fever app. You cannot buy tickets at the door. Parking is $3 per car (cash only) and conveniently less than 500 ft away from the soirée. When you purchase your tickets on the fever app, you gain cash back to redeem for other experiences they are offering. We spent 130 dollars on 2 tickets to the Cocktail Soirée and received 13 dollars in our “Fever wallet” as well as an extra 5 dollar credit for making our first purchase through Fever. We’ll probably use our credit on the Nutcracker themed soirée they’re hosting in December!
Hope you all have a grand time at the soirée! Come back and leave a comment. I would love to hear about your experience!