Unassuming Doors That Hide Exciting Mysteries

Club 33

Club 33 is a private club located in the heart of the New Orleans Square section of Disneyland. Officially maintained as a secret feature of the theme park, the entrance of the club is located next to the Blue Bayou Restaurant at “33 Royal Street” with the entrance recognizable by an ornate address plate with the number 33 engraved on it.

st_hiddenplaces1_f

Club 33 members and their guests have exclusive access to the club, which is not open to the public. In addition to beer and wine, Club 33 has a full bar, although patrons must order directly from their server rather than the service bar. Club 33 is the only location within Disneyland to offer alcoholic beverages. Members are entitled to complimentary valet parking at the Grand Californian Hotel and access to the Lilly Belle, the presidential car on the Disneyland Railroad. Club 33 members receive up to six Immediate Fastpasses when they insert their Club 33 membership card into any of the Fastpass kiosks and bypass the stand-by queue. Members are permitted to join the skipper in the wheelhouse of the Mark Twain and the engineers in the engine compartment of the steam trains.

33

An individual membership costs $25,000 for an initiation fee and $10,000 a year in dues. For corporations, it’s $40,000 at the start and then $10,000 dues.

Safe House

In the intelligence trade, a safe house is a secret refuge for spies engaging in covert operations.

safe house

Safe House in Milwaukee is a popular spy-themed restaurant that since 1966 has provided crafty concoctions and incredible edibles to hungry agents on R & R.

safe house 1

Located at 779 N. Front Street in Milwaukee, Wisconsin behind International Exports Ltd.

To get in Go to the website, http://www.safe-house.com and click on the Top Secret Clearance Agreement to promise you won’t disclose the location, then contact Control to make a reservation).

National Typewriter Company

Located at 1221 Olympic Boulevard, Santa Monica, CA 90404 this building houses JJ Abrams’s production company, Bad Robot, is a literal, physical reflection of his sensibility. The big sign on the outside doesn’t say Bad Robot but instead National Typewriter Co., and that’s not because the building used to house such a business. It’s because Abrams likes typewriters and misdirection. Near the doorbell, which is a glowing green light, a smaller sign asks, “Are you ready?”

st_hiddenplaces4_f

lm01

Abrams’s personal suite of offices is on the second floor and to get to his bathroom, you have to walk up to a wall of bookshelves beside his desk and tug on a copy of “Louis Tannen’s Catalog of Magic” (named for the same Manhattan magic shop, still around today, where he got his childhood mystery box). Abracadabra: the wall opens. The toilet is revealed.

lm02 lm03

lm07

lm08

lm11

lm10

The entire building belongs to Bad Robot, which spreads out over three stories of glass walls, floating staircases, common areas and movie-related mementos: posters, masks, dolls, board games. There are editing bays, a state-of-the-art recording studio, a workshop where props are made and a screening room that doubles as a makeshift set on which certain limited effects and scenes can be shot.

Prohibition Bar in Atlanta

Prohibition was designed to look like an old fashioned underground speakeasy. The Atlanta bar is located in Andrews Square Buckhead at 56 East Andrews Drive (inside the basement of Stout.)

prohib-entrance

Prohibition was designed to look like an old fashioned underground speakeasy. The Atlanta bar is located in Andrews Square Buckhead at 56 East Andrews Drive (inside the basement of Stout.)

Prohibition Bar in Atlanta

Now how do you get in? In the back of the lower courtyard is a door to what appears to be a defunct antique shop. Beside the door is a large red phone booth. You simply enter the booth, dial the number on the old fashioned rotary dial phone and a secret door in the back wall of the phone booth opens up allowing you entrance.

How do you get the number? To get the secret access code of the day your best bet is to wine and/or dine at Cellar 56 upstairs (a great tapas restaurant and wine bar that’s operated by Prohibition’s owners), be very kind to your bartender and/or server, and if you’re well-dressed, well-behaved and lucky, someone will give it to you.

The International Museum and Library of the Conjuring Arts 

The secrets contained within the International Museum and Library of the Conjuring Arts merit that the 40,000-square-foot warehouse just off the Las Vegas Strip is closed to the general public.

 IMG_5117

On the museum’s first floor is the Hall of Masters, a space lined with costumes, props, posters, and photographs arranged by magician. Beginning downstairs with Cardini (linking rings, card tricks, monocle), the hall continues on the second floor with Jean Eugène Robert-Houdin (mystery clocks and automatons), Harry Houdini (metamorphosis trunk, iron maiden, water-torture cell, straitjacket), and others.

copp copp1

David Copperfield, who owns the museum, uses the warehouse to practice new magic tricks and archive his own history as an illusionist. Charred crash-test dummies from early “Tornado of Fire” rehearsals and racks of costumes are on hand, as are props from his favorite movies, including a 10-foot-tall statue of Zeus from Citizen Kane.

The intention of the 80,000-item museum is to educate future generations of magicians and illusionists. Magic scholars and people researching for books and motion pictures can visit Copperfield’s museum by request. (Hugh Jackman did his research for The Prestige at the facility.) He invites all other interested parties to send a note backstage during one of his regularly scheduled performances at MGM Grand’s Hollywood Theatre.

Advertisements
Tagged , , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s

Advertisements
Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: