November 22, 2018

Inn of the Seventh Ray's Colorful Place in Topanga Canyon's Bohemia

It's considered one of the most romantic dining experiences in LA. People get engaged and married there all the time.

So of course I chose to take myself out to Thanksgiving dinner at the Inn of the Seventh Ray all by myself—for "rustic elegance," creekside dining in the canyon, and a bit of new age inspiration.

Topanga Canyon has always been a bit in the ether, attracting bohemians, folk singers, rebels, and other sorts looking to reach a higher plane.

(Unfortunately, those historical figures who've been attracted to Topanga include Charles Manson and his family.)

The Inn of the Seventh Ray feels more like a spiritual retreat than a restaurant...

...probably because it's not so much a building but a network of rock-lined walkways and terraces... the spirit of a meditation garden.

Even the built-in booths feel like they were carved out of the canyon (though I'm guessing they're poured concrete).

It is both so LA and not LA at all...

...with colored sycamore leaves drifting down off the trees and onto your plate...

...and winged insects landing on your water glass.

Established as a restaurant in 1973 by two local psychotherapists, the site had a history of having an "other" kind of energy—whether as a Native American sacred site or, as rumored, a summer retreat of Sister Aimee Semple McPherson.

The concept of the "seventh ray" is found in the occult as well as other esoteric philosophies and even traditional religions—often manifesting as the color violet, often referred to as "the violet flame."

But that doesn't mean the Inn of the Seventh Ray is too enlightened or enchanted to serve turkey and pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving.

Related Posts:
Photo Essay: A Theater of Plants In the Cradle of the Canyon
Photo Essay: Aimee's Castle on the Lake
Photo Essay: The Home of Sister Aimee Semple McPherson, Evangelist and Kidnapee

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