Stay on Main Hotel

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Formerly the Cecil Hotel, this location has been a site of murder, suicide, and once even housed serial killers Richard Ramirez and Jack Unterweger; the last infamous case involved that of Elisa Lam who was last seen on security cameras hiding from an unseen force in the elevator before her corpse was discovered in a water tank on the roof. Psychics report a dark energy lurks here and that the hotel was possibly cursed.

(Submitted by Chris Berglund)

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Geographic Information

640 S Main St
Los Angeles, CA 90014
United States

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34.0442769, -118.25063039999998
Los Angeles County, California
Nearest Towns:
Los Angeles, CA (0.7 mi.)
Boyle Heights, CA (2.7 mi.)
Vernon, CA (3.0 mi.)
Huntington Park, CA (4.6 mi.)
Belvedere, CA (4.7 mi.)
East Los Angeles, CA (4.7 mi.)
Florence-Graham, CA (5.3 mi.)
Maywood, CA (5.5 mi.)
Walnut Park, CA (5.5 mi.)
Hollywood, CA (5.7 mi.)


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  1. A mother threw her newborn out the window, a man was killed by a falling woman, and a decomposing body was found in a water tank — all at the Cecil Hotel. Since opening its doors in 1927, the Cecil Hotel has been plagued with unfortunate and mysterious circumstances that have given it a perhaps unparalleled reputation for the macabre. At least 16 different murders, suicides, and unexplained paranormal events have taken place at the hotel and it’s even served as the temporary home of some of America’s most notorious serial killers. The Cecil was built in 1924 by hotelier William Banks Hanner. It was supposed to be a destination hotel for international businessmen and social elites. Hanner spent $1 million on the 700-room Beaux Arts-style hotel, complete with a marble lobby, stained-glass windows, palm trees, and an opulent staircase. But Hanner would come to regret his investment. Just two years after the Cecil Hotel opened, the world was thrown into the Great Depression — and Los Angeles was not immune to the economic collapse. Soon enough, the area surrounding the Cecil Hotel would be dubbed “Skid Row” and become home to thousands of homeless people.The once beautiful hotel soon gained a reputation as a meeting place for junkies, runaways, and criminals. Worse yet, the Cecil Hotel ultimately earned a reputation for violence and death.In the 1930s alone, the Cecil Hotel was home to at least six reported suicides. A few residents ingested poison, while others shot themselves, slit their own throats, or jumped out their bedroom windows. In 1934, for example, Army Sergeant Louis D. Borden slashed his throat with a razor. Less than four years later, Roy Thompson of the Marine Corps jumped from atop the Cecil Hotel and was found on the skylight of a neighboring building. The next few decades only saw more violent deaths. In September 1944, 19-year-old Dorothy Jean Purcell awoke in the middle of the night with stomach pains while she was staying at the Cecil with Ben Levine, 38. She went to the bathroom so as not to disturb a sleeping Levine, and — to her complete shock — gave birth to a baby boy. She had no idea she had been pregnant. Mistakenly thinking her newborn was dead, Purcell threw her live baby out the window and onto the roof of the building next door. At her trial, she was found not guilty of murder by reason of insanity and she was admitted to a hospital for psychiatric treatment. In 1962, 65-year-old George Giannini was walking by the Cecil with his hands in his pockets when he was struck to death by a falling woman. Pauline Otton, 27, jumped from her ninth-floor window after an argument with her estranged husband, Dewey. Her fall killed both her and Giannini instantly. Police initially thought the two had committed suicide together but reconsidered when they found Giannini was still wearing shoes. If he had jumped, his shoes would have fallen off mid-flight. In the mid-1980s, Richard Ramirez — murderer of 13 people and better known as the “Night Stalker” — lived in a room on the top floor of the hotel during much of his horrific killing spree. After killing someone, he would throw his bloody clothes into the Cecil’s dumpster and saunter into the hotel lobby either completely naked or only in underwear — “none of which would have raised an eyebrow,” writes journalist Josh Dean, “since the Cecil in the 1980s…’was total, unmitigated chaos.’” At the time, Ramirez was able to stay there for a mere $14 per night. And with corpses of junkies reportedly often found in the alleys near the hotel and sometimes even in the hallways, Ramirez’s blood-soaked lifestyle surely raised nary an eyebrow at the Cecil. In 1991, Austrian serial killer Jack Unterweger — who strangled prostitutes with their own bras — also called the hotel home. Rumor has it that he chose the hotel because of its connection to Ramirez. Because the area around the Cecil Hotel was popular with prostitutes, Unterweger stalked these environs time and again in search of victims. One prostitute he is believed to have killed vanished right down the street from the hotel while Unterweger even claimed to have “dated” the hotel’s receptionist. And while some episodes of violence in and around the Cecil Hotel are attributable to known serial killers, some murders have remained unsolved. To pick one of many, a local woman known around the area named Goldie Osgood was found dead in her ransacked room at the Cecil. She had been raped before suffering a fatal stabbing and beating. Though one suspect was found walking with bloodstained clothing nearby, he was later cleared and her killer was never convicted — another instance of disturbing violence at the Cecil that has gone unresolved. To pick one of many, a local woman known around the area named Goldie Osgood was found dead in her ransacked room at the Cecil. She had been raped before suffering a fatal stabbing and beating. Though one suspect was found walking with bloodstained clothing nearby, he was later cleared and her killer was never convicted — another instance of disturbing violence at the Cecil that has gone unresolved.the “Black Dahlia” after her 1947 murder in Los Angeles. She reportedly stayed at the hotel just before her mutilation, which remains unsolved. What connection her death may have had to the Cecil is not known, but what is known is that she was found on a street not far away on the morning of January 15 with her mouth carved ear to ear and her body cut in two. In 2013, Canadian college student Elisa Lam was found dead inside the water tank on the roof of the hotel three weeks after she had gone missing. Her naked corpse was found after hotel guests had complained of bad water pressure and a “funny taste” to the water. Though authorities ruled her death as an accidental drowning, critics believed otherwise.Before her death, surveillance cameras caught Lam acting strangely in an elevator, at times appearing to yell at someone out of view, as well as apparently attempting to hide from someone while pressing multiple elevator buttons and waving her arms erratically. many people began to believe that the rumors of the hotel being haunted might be true. Horror aficionados began drawing parallels between the Black Dahlia murder and Lam’s murder, pointing out that both women were in their twenties, traveling alone from L.A. to San Diego, last seen at the Cecil Hotel, and were missing for several days before their bodies were found.

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Disclaimer: The stories posted here are user-submitted and are, in the nature of "ghost stories," largely unverifiable. makes no claims that any of the statements posted here are factually accurate. The vast majority of information provided on this web site is anecdotal, and as such, should be viewed in the same light as local folklore and urban legends.