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Home /Travel / The 10 Most Haunted Hotels in America

The 10 Most Haunted Hotels in America

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By Dillon Wallace

Most hotel guests look for the comfier things in life – a hot shower, cable-loaded TV, free Wi-Fi and a clean set of bedsheets. But if you’re looking for a stay that’s a little more spooktacular, you’re in the right place. Just don’t let all work and no play make you a dull boy. It doesn’t end pretty.

The Stanley Hotel – Estes Park, CO

There’s really nothing you can do but tip your witch’s hat to the Stanley. You’ve got to emit a certain pedigree of haunted-ness to spook the king of horror into writing one of the greatest horror stories of all time. And although Stanley Kubrik’s big screen adaptation didn’t actually film at the real Stanley Hotel, this Colorado scare staple has entertained people, celebrities and the paranormal, alike, for more than a century. Just don’t ask to stay in room 237. Don’t say you weren’t warned. 

Hotel Chelsea – New York City, New York

What happens when you mix celebrity deaths with old hotels? You get an infamously haunted dwelling, like the Chelsea. Made notorious by the murder of Nancy Spungen, better known as punker Sid Vicious’ girlfriend, as well as death of acclaimed Welsh poet, Dylan Thomas (Do not go gentle into that good night), the Chelsea is a prime destination for the paranormal enthusiast. 

La Fonda on the Plaza– Santa Fe, New Mexico

They didn’t call it the wild west for nothing, and La Fonda is a prime example. This old west abode is said to house spirits from the era in large part to three distinct yet unrelated deaths in the mid to late 1800s – the shooting of Chief Justice of the Territorial Supreme Court, John P. Slough, in the hotel’s lobby; the backyard lynching of a gambler accused of cheating; and the suicide of salesmen who leapt to his demise in a well outside the gambling hall after losing his company’s money in a card game. One thing is for certain, don’t plan on rolling any lucky 7s here.

The Mount Washington Hotel – Bretton Woods, NH

Known as “the Princess” because of her marriage to French royal, Prince Jean Baptise Marie de Faucigny Lucinge (that mouth-full of a name is what’s really scary), Carolyn Stickney was the widowed bride of Mount Washington Hotel’s owner. She would visit the hotel every season and host extravagant parties. But when she died in 1936, her spirit just wasn’t quite ready to give up the fancy shindigs. Caretakers of the hotel have since claimed to have seen her ghost descending the stairs in her finest bash attire.

Hawthorne Hotel – Salem, Massachusetts

Is it safe to say that anything in Salem has a higher potential to be haunted? After all, laying your head down in a place that’s home to the infamous Salem Witch Trials opens the door for a little bewitching or two. As a result, the near century old Hawthorne Hotel has seen its fair share of paranormal reports like flickering lights, sporadic faucets and human-ish apparitions. It’s garnered quite the reputation that the TV show Bewitched even filmed several episodes there. Talk about double, double toil and trouble.

Bourbon Orleans Hotel – New Orleans

Anything with as much tradition and transition as the Bourbon Orleans Hotel is ripe with haunting possibilities. Before its conversion into a hotel in 1960, this two-century old property was originally a ballroom and theater, followed by a convent and orphanage. The story goes that its laundry list of ghostly guests include a Confederate soldier who has an affinity for haunting the third and sixth floors; children and women from its convent days – no thanks, that sounds straight out of a Hollywood haunt plot; and a dancer who used to perform at the theater. If anything else, at least the Bourbon Orleans isn’t prejudice to the diversity of its spooky staff.

Crescent Hotel & Spa – Eureka Springs, Arkansas

Dubbed as “America’s most haunted hotel,” the Crescent served as the mad scientist headquarters for Dr. Norman Baker’s “Cancer Curing Hospital.” His atrocious methods proved ineffective as “cured patients” were actually failed experiments. Brain tumors were treated by smearing a concocted paste onto an opened brain. If a patient died at the hands of Dr. Baker (and many did), they would be discretely rushed offsite in the cover of night. If questions were asked, crazy doc Baker would answer that they had been cured and sent home. Current hotel guests and visitors can tour the morgue at midnight. Something tells me you’re not going to find Casper down there.

Queen Mary – Long Beach, California

Remember the not-so-good but kind-of-original horror flick ghost ship? Well, it may not be documented but chances are Hollywood stole that plotline from the ship, Queen Mary, which now serves as a hotel and ghost-hunting tour destination for apparition aficionados. Similar to how all parties died in the movie Ghost Ship, most of Queen Mary’s inhabitants died in a split hull accident, among other numerous disasters.

The Myrtles Plantation – Louisiana

This 200-plus year plantation offers guests who are brave enough a quaint, little “dread and breakfast” stay. With 12 rooms available and 12 rumored ghosts, this former slave ranch, which lies deep in the heart of voodoo country nonetheless, is believed to be one of America’s most haunted houses. So if you’re set on a paranormal encounter, this perfect 1:1 room to ghost ratio makes your odds pretty high.

 

Hotel Provincial – New Orleans

Maybe it’s the historical hardship of the south, but it’s a region ripe with haunted dwellings, particularly Louisiana. The state is a haunted headquarters, and hotel Provincial is no exception. As a former Confederate hospital, guests and staff have repeatedly reported sightings of Civil War soldiers and surgeons, including reports of blood stained bedding that will appear and disappear in various rooms.

 

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