House of Intuition proprietress Marlene Vargas took one look at me and placed a shard of serpentine in my hand. “It'll recharge your batteries,” she tells me. You'd be hard-pressed to find a metaphysical center more genuine than this Eastside oasis, which Vargas rightly describes as a “spiritual detox center” for the seeker and the cynic alike. You can simply enjoy one of 25 varieties of tea in the sunlit tea room, or work toward your Reiki certification, have your aura cleansed and get your chakras balanced. Offering tarot, past life, I Ching and astrological readings, crystal healing, psychometry and a host of other services and classes, the staff and the stock are handpicked, the medicinal remedies and incense hand-blended. A series of divine synchronicities coalesced to bring this magic place into being, and you can feel it. Vargas, who offers crystal readings, says we all have our own intuition. “We want to teach how to connect to them.” 2237 W. Sunset Blvd., Echo Park. (213) 413-8300,

—Skylaire Alfvegren

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