It’s Fall. There’s a chill in the air that isn’t caused just by the dropping temperatures. It’s the season of haunts, spirits, and things that go bump in the night. If the thought of back-and-forth footsteps continuing late into the night with nobody to be seen causing the sounds intriguing, keep reading because we’re counting down the four most haunted hotels in America.
Coming in at number four is the Omni Parker House in Boston, Massachusetts. This 169-year-old establishment was owned by Harvey Parker. He was a perfectionist, who kept his hand in all the details of the hotel, and was the ultimate host. So much so, it is reported that he never left. Sightings of Mr. Parker include a mother and daughter who report that they saw him in their own room where he asked if they were enjoying their stay. When they responded that they were enjoying it very much, he smiled and gracefully turned away. They were shocked the next morning at breakfast when they saw a portrait of their night visitor hanging on the wall. Thankfully, Mr. Parker is a happy spirit, which is not the case for all of the locations on our list.
La Fonda on the Plaza, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, is number three. This hotel is celebrating 100 years of hospitality in 2022. Over the years they’ve had thousands of guests, some of which have never left. In fact, there are so many reported sightings that employees are often blasé about them. Among the spirits are the Honorable John P. Slough who got into a deadly argument in the hotel lobby. Judge Slough can be seen wearing a long, black coat. He is also distinguished by the sound of spurs on tile. Other sightings include The Bride, who can be seen in her wedding dress, and another spirit who calls the employees by name. For the most part, employees report that most encounters are not scary, although, the ghosts can sometimes be mischievous.
Number two is the Menger Hotel in San Antonio, Texas. Constructed in 1857 on the original battlegrounds of the Alamo, the Menger is said to be haunted by over 30 different ghosts. In addition to guests reporting furniture in their room moving at night, spirits can be seen. (And by guests, I mean me... the furniture moved when I was there!!) At least one of these is found at the Menger Bar, which was designed as an exact replica of London’s House of Lords Pub. It was here that Theodore Roosevelt recruited the first US volunteer cavalry, the Rough Riders. It is said you can still see Teddy here today, ordering his favorite drink. However, the most famous of the Menger ghosts is Sallie White, a maid who worked at the hotel. After being shot by her husband, she managed to get to the hotel where she was taken care of until she died. The Menger hotel represented her happy place in life, so it is no wonder she can still be seen today. Guests report seeing a maid in an old-fashioned uniform who suddenly disappears.
This brings us to the most haunted hotel in America, The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado. While you may or may not believe in ghosts, you can’t deny this hotel’s ability to inspire fear and intrigue. After all, this is the hotel that inspired Stephen King to write The Shining. In 1911, Estes Park experienced a flood which caused the power to go out at the hotel. Mr. Stanley, the owner, placed a gas lantern in each room so his guests would have light. Elizabeth Wilson, one of the maids, entered room 217 with a candle and accidentally caused an explosion from the gas buildup. She survived the explosion and now comes to visit guests in the room who report she is mostly helpful. Both Mr. Stanley and his wife have been seen walking around the hotel and there is a child who often plays with the guests’ hair.
But not all of the spirits are so friendly. In room 407, guests report the feeling of someone sitting on their bed. When they turn on the lights, an indentation can be found on the mattress. Guests in room 428 often see a cowboy looming over them or standing in a corner while they sleep. But according to guests, room 401 is the creepiest of them all because of a male spirit who prefers female to male guests. These, the most haunted rooms, are available for booking and come at a premium price.
While hearing a scary story is one thing, it’s completely different to live it out. Would you be brave enough to stay in one of America’s most haunted hotels? If so, let us know. We would love to help you plan your spirited getaway. Just promise you’ll share your stories when you get back.