The Cecil Hotel (Cecil Hotel) is located in downtown Los Angeles, California, USA. It opened to the public for the first time in 1927. It used to be glorious for a time, mainly receiving high-end business people, but then it became a gathering place for gangsters and hooligans, where creepy suicides, murders and supernatural incidents occurred frequently.
From various bizarre deaths to endless haunted incidents, the Cecil Hotel has always been the inspiration for many horror stories and a “sacred place” for lovers of supernatural phenomena. Although this hotel was named “Los Angeles’ Most Important Cultural Heritage” by the American Heritage Committee in 2016, it can’t hide the filth and darkness behind it.
High-end luxury hotels become fertile ground for crime
In 1924, a businessman named William Banks Hanna planned to build a 600-room luxury hotel in downtown Los Angeles. He believes that there are a lot of people traveling and traveling here, and the flow of people is relatively large. It is definitely profitable to build a hotel here. So he invited the famous designer Roy Lestersmith to design and build the Cecil Hotel.
During the construction of the hotel, the most expensive materials such as marble and stained glass windows were used extensively, supplemented by gorgeous decorative arts. Upon completion, the brightly lit hall was filled with elaborate alabaster statues, and luxurious crystal chandeliers gleamed with dazzling light… It is said that the cost of design and construction was as high as one million dollars. William was ambitious and dreamed of being in Los Angeles A new situation in the hotel was created on this street.
After the official opening of the Cecil Hotel in 1927, it quickly attracted many celebrities to stay in and became a landmark in Los Angeles. It’s a pity that the good times didn’t last long. Two years later, the Great Depression in the United States, Los Angeles regressed from the famous “City of Angels”, one of the most developed big cities in the world, to a crime city full of starvation. The former bustling city center quickly Become deserted and depressed. Centered on the main street where the Cecil Hotel is located, the 6.4 kilometers radius has all become slums. The poor public security conditions have made the consumption capacity of the area sluggish for a long time, and it has become the only impoverished urban village in the entire California. No one can count the number of blind currents, land ruffians, and addicts here. According to media estimates, the number is between 3000 and 6000; from the 1930s to the 1950s, the number of blind currents here reached tens of thousands. (To this day, this is still the largest slum in the United States).
Due to economic pressure, the Cecil Hotel had to lower the price since 1930. For this reason, it was favored by groups such as poor travellers and prostitutes. However, this method still cannot save the hotel’s decline and the financial situation is still stretched. , Even the entire hotel’s environment has become very bad, and the sanitary conditions have plummeted. In the 1950s, after World War II, Los Angeles, as a coastal area, had many refugees smuggling here, so the Cecil Hotel was forced to start helping the government to resettle overseas refugees. Since then, the once-brightly high-end luxury hotel has been directly transformed into a refugee camp officially certified by the Los Angeles City Government. These needy households took government subsidies and lived here for a long time in private rooms. In addition, there are slums near the hotel. The public security is very poor. The Cecil Hotel has also received the name of a gathering place for gangsters and gangsters, and this is also its depravity. An important cause of hell among adults.
In the 1970s, the Los Angeles government, in order to divide “good citizens” and “gangsters”, not only drove people with bad social behaviors to live in an alley near the Cecil Hotel, but also released those who had already been sentenced. Criminals have also been thrown here, and even the vagrant subsidy station welfare station has been set up near the alley, which has caused the influx of refugees in Los Angeles, and the public security problem near the Cecil Hotel has become more and more serious. Fighting, robbery, and murder. The Los Angeles police opened one eye and closed one eye, which made Los Angeles a true “City of Sin”!
The Cecil Hotel was struggling to operate in such a harsh environment, and the several murders that occurred during the period made it notorious-but even so, it persisted staggeringly into the 21st century. In 2007, the hotel finally welcomed a new owner and was partially renovated. In 2011, Cecil adopted a new name-“Stay on Main” (“Stay on Main”, also known as “Main Hotel”) and continued to operate.
Murders happen frequently, every room has died
Hidden beneath the magnificent appearance of the Cecil Hotel is the sin bred from this decadent land. Suicide and murder have become “commonplace meals” here.
According to existing case information and news reports, the first suicide here occurred in 1931, when a 46-year-old man from Manhattan took poison in a guest room and died; about a year later, the 25-year-old Benjamin committed suicide after living in a hotel. In 1934, the 53-year-old former Army Sergeant Louis was found dead in a hotel room. He cut his throat with a razor and left a series of suicide notes detailing his poor health.
The way of jumping from a building seems to be particularly favored by suicides: Grace Margro jumped out of the 9th floor guest room with a telephone line tied her neck in 1937; a year later, a firefighter named Roy Thompson left the hotel The top floor jumped down; in 1962, 27-year-old Paul Orton lived in the Cecil Hotel because of a quarrel with her husband. He jumped out of the guest room that night and hit the 65-year-old George passing by. Both died on the spot… …In the decades that followed, people continued to jump to their deaths at the Cecil Hotel. The most recent suicide occurred in 2015. At that time, an unidentified 28-year-old man was found dead in front of a hotel. Officials did not disclose the cause of his death. However, photos circulated online showed that he appeared to have fallen to death by jumping off a building.
In fact, there are so many suicide incidents in Cecil Hotel to list them all. What’s even more frightening is that besides suicide, it is also full of murders. The hotel has even become a “training ground” for many perverted killers. One of the most famous and sensational murders was the black dahlia case in 1947. The victim was Elizabeth Short, an American actress known as “Black Dahlia” at the time. She mysteriously disappeared after drinking in the bar of the Cecil Hotel until a mother with a child was by the road a few kilometers away. Her body was found. The corners of the deceased’s mouth were cut open on both sides, the head was hit and the skull was sunken, the nails were clearly off, the wrists, ankles and neck were tied up, there were obvious wounds on the chest, and the whole body was burned by cigarette butts. The corpse was cut in half from the belly button, the blood was drained, as if it had been cleaned, and the internal organs were stuffed into the chest cavity and abdominal cavity. Forensic doctors speculate that the deceased may have been tortured for 36 to 48 hours during his lifetime, and the modus operandi was extremely cruel. The Los Angeles Police Department spent three years investigating this case. Hundreds of suspects were investigated before and after, but nothing was found. Since then, the case has become one of the most horrifying unresolved cases in California history after World War II, and once again deepened the horror suspicion of the Cecil Hotel.
In addition, Richard Ramirez, a world-renowned serial killer, often rented at the Cecil Hotel before his arrest. He likes to kill at night with clean and brutal methods. The victims range from a 6-year-old girl to a 69-year-old girl. The elderly did not wait. In just one year, Richard killed 13 people and sexually assaulted 14 people. Another “famous” “Jack the Ripper” is from Austria. During his stay in the hotel, he brutally killed several prostitutes.
According to statistics, from the first suicide incident to the announcement of the closure of the Cecil Hotel in 2017, hundreds of people died here. Amy Price, a former lobby manager of a hotel, said that in her ten years in office, she has witnessed at least 80 deaths and helped guests make thousands of calls to the police. Amy once asked the former manager: “Is there any murder in the 700 rooms in the hotel? Is there a room where no one has ever died?” Facing such a question, the silence of the other party seemed to have given the answer. .
The mysterious and haunted “Lan Keer Incident” keeps haunting
In the nearly one hundred years that Cecil Hotel has been in business, the blood of sin is everywhere, and countless ghosts of the dead are floating here. There has been a spiritual detective program that said that there are a large number of evil spirits living here, which causes many people to suffer misfortunes, especially those who have evil intentions themselves, they will wake up the devil hidden in their hearts. The recent “supernatural” case at the Cecil Hotel was the sensational “Lanker Incident”. Under the spread of modern media, this hotel once again became the focus of supernatural horror.
On January 26, 2013, Lan Keer, a 21-year-old Chinese-Canadian college student, traveled alone to Los Angeles, USA, and stayed at the Cecil Hotel. She talked with her family on the phone every day, but lost the news after January 31. On the morning of February 19, a guest from the Cecil Hotel complained that the water pressure in the hotel was too low. When the hotel sent maintenance personnel to inspect the water tank on the roof, it was accidentally found that there was a corpse in the water tank-head down, naked and abnormal. Distorted, the autopsy result shows that this is the missing Lan Keer, which means that the residents of Cecil Hotel may have used or even drank the “corpse water” soaked in the body!
To this day, the police have not yet reached a conclusion regarding the investigation results of the “Lan Keer Incident.” There is no evidence showing the specific cause of Lan Keer’s death. From suicide and homicide to religion, ghosts and gods, there are different opinions from all walks of life. How to get to the top of the building and die naked in the water tank, there is no definite answer. According to the hotel elevator monitoring system disclosed by the FBI, Lan Ke’er performed a series of strange actions in the elevator that are incomprehensible, and this is also the last image of her during her lifetime. As the bizarre details of the incident continued to be disclosed, the Cecil Hotel once again attracted widespread attention. A large number of tourists visited “haunted” hotels, and even local Chinese citizens went to the scene to search for evidence and conduct “civil investigations”, hoping to solve all kinds of spiritual mysteries that went viral on the Internet.
Richard Ramirez, one of the world’s top ten ring killers, once lived in the Cecil Hotel. In 2013, the “Lan Keer Incident” was a sensation. There were various speculations about it and it was called “one of the contemporary historical mysteries”; The confusing and unpredictable cases and the mysterious and strange hotel provide a wonderful inspiration for horror film and television works. The picture on the right page is a still from the documentary “Crime Scene: The Lost of Cecil Hotel”.
After being branded with “death, curse, doom, haunted…” various labels, the Cecil Hotel not only did not face bankruptcy, on the contrary, the number of visitors surged and the rooms were full. The hotel took the opportunity to increase the booking price. As the influence of the heat continues to ferment, the well-known American drama “American Horror Story” was inspired by it. In 2015, the fifth season was filmed with the theme of Cecil Hotel; in 2021, Netflix made it into a film. The 4-episode documentary “Crime Scene: The Disappearance of Cecil Hotel” once again returned to the public with endless mysteries.
In fact, Cecil Hotel is a compound hotel. About half of the hotel residents are local residents, belonging to long-term private rooms, and the monthly room rate is about 500 US dollars. Before the “Lanker Incident”, the hotel’s daily rent was only US$50, which was quite cheap. For travelers, the weekend price of a single room is about US$75/day, which is very cost-effective. From the geographical point of view, Cecil is close to the business district in the city center, very close to the subway station, on the west side of the hotel, along Spring Avenue and Seventh Avenue, there are many clubs, bars and restaurants, which are very convenient for travel and entertainment.
With a low price and a very convenient location for transportation and life, Cecil Hotel always has a good occupancy rate. People can easily book rooms through frequently used travel websites. Some people go there to explore the secrets, and some people don’t know the dark and horrible past of the hotel before they check in.
In 2016, the Cecil Hotel was named “Los Angeles’s Most Important Cultural Heritage” by the American Heritage Committee and became one of the important landmarks of Los Angeles. However, the hotel officially closed in 2017. It is reported that New York real estate developers Richard Byrne and Simon Barron Development Corporation respectively bought the hotel and this piece of land a few years ago, and are intensively preparing for the construction of a new building, which is expected to be completed in the second half of 2021. Perhaps, in the future, the legend of Cecil Hotel will once again usher in a new chapter…