|Photo by: Flickr/mssmith 1965|
The spectacular Rocky Mountain peaks surrounding this famous Colorado hotel steal the spotlight by day, but after dark the place crawls with the spirits and ghouls that inspired Stephen King to write The Shining. The haunted hotel hosts mostly happy spirits, as the mountain retreat was once a vacation destination for many of these lingering souls, but that doesn’t detract from the estate’s creepiness. A room on the paranormally buzzing fourth floor practically guarantees a frightful getaway. A little boy in room 418 playfully switches water faucets on and off. Bitter Lord Dunraven, the estate’s original owner (who was forced out of proprietorship, making way for new owner F.O. Stanley who opened the hotel in 1909), holds court in room 401, the estate’s most haunted (and second-most requested) room, but by far the most chill-inducing suite is room 217, the very place where King penned The Shining. Ghost-busting visitors can enlist the help of the on-site paranormal expert, who will outfit them with spirit-hunting equipment and provide access to hotel grounds only open to guests. If spending a night thwarting ghoulish shenanigans sounds too frightful, opt for one of the hotel’s daily ghost tours ($15 per person; available from 10am–5pm, reservations are required), which explore the property’s most notoriously spooky spots. Room rates from $119/night.
Visit stanleyhotel.com and shermanstravel.com for more information. Click on the images above for the novel or DVD.