A visit to a haunted house at Disneyland can cost $100. If you wanted to spend the night on Airbnb for a fake Anaheim ride, it might cost you $750.
From the outside, this white clapboard house looks like any other post-war home in Southern California.
But cues inside The Retreat include mint green trim, wrought iron around the front door and a pet cemetery in planters.
Inside, the four-bedroom, two-bathroom home is decked out as replicas of theme park rides, complete with authentic decor and realistic special effects.
“We found this spooky retreat to be uninhabitable at all,” said the ghostly owner’s familiar voice.
Ghostly Retreat was created by host Jeff Schiefelbein, who has worked in the Halloween and haunted attractions industry for over 20 years. His Sinister Pointe Productions builds haunted mazes, props and special effects for Knott’s Berry Farm, Universal Studios, SeaWorld and the Queen Mary.
It took two months and $200,000 to turn this suburban home into a “ghost hideaway” to rival Disneyland’s Dark House of Horror, which opened in 1969.
In the middle of the night, speakers in the attic play the sound of children giggling or nails scraping the walls.
The spooky blue image in the hallway mirror changes every time the front door turns, from hatbox ghosts to hitchhiking ghosts to haunted Black Widow bride Constance Hathaway.
Faux candles flickered incessantly in wall-mounted sconces. Digital portraits come to life as if in a haunted house portrait hallway. Watchful busts watch guests like the endless corridors of a haunted house.
Wallpaper, rugs, bedding and drapes evoke the mystery of a haunted house. The two-car garage contains a haunted house-themed game room. The kitchen is all black.
Schiefelbein expects rentals for “The Haunted House” to increase with the release of Disney’s new “Haunted House” on July 28, and he plans to include some tributes to the film on Airbnb to drive interest.
— Dana Bartholomew