Are you the kind of person who enjoys a good scare? A lot of people seek out the chance to see a ghost or experience some kind of paranormal phenomena, and there’s no better place to do that than a century-old hotel so spooky it inspired a critically-acclaimed horror movie.

Colorado’s Stanley Hotel has quite a bit of unnerving history to it, which may be why so many of the guests experience unexplainable eerie occurrences. Now, with a storied past littered with odd — and spooky — moments, only the bravest thrill-seekers dare to stay there…

In the remote mountains of Colorado lies the Stanley Hotel. At first glance, it’s an impressively large and well-maintained inn that can house a variety of guests and events. Once you learn the history, however, you realize just how creepy it actually is…

Stanley Hotel / Facebook

The story of the Stanley Hotel began in 1903 when American inventor Freelan Oscar Stanley, founder of the carpet cleaning service company Stanley Steamers, landed on his deathbed with a severe case of tuberculosis. Following medical advice, he and his wife ventured out to Colorado for the therapeutic mountain air.

After a few calm weeks, Freelan became bored of the rural living. So, he and his wife, who had a lot of money, designed a massive 48-room Georgian mansion on 160 acres of land, complete with lavish luxuries to attract guests.

Stanley Hotel / Facebook

When their vision was completed and finally opened to the public in 1909, people took interest in it. Snagging a room at the Stanley was a sign of wealth, and everyone who wanted to flaunt their finances showed up.

Stanley Hotel / Facebook

Indeed, business at the Stanley Hotel was booming right from the start. Though not too long after its grand opening, guests began reporting unusual things happening.

Patrons of the hotel frequently heard strange noises echoing through the winding halls and empty corridors. Many left with an eerie feeling, but it wasn’t until a popular author stayed overnight in the ’70s that the hotel truly developed its frightening reputation.

Stanley Hotel / Facebook

Stephen King, his wife Tabitha, and their son sought refuge in the hotel one wintry evening. They were the only guests in the entire place, which was creepy on its own, but what happened to King while he slept truly chilled him to the bone.

In the dead of night, a nightmare haunted King: a demonic presence was chasing his son all throughout the halls of the hotel. Even after waking, King couldn’t shake the horrible feeling, and he turned his experience into perhaps his most popular novel, The Shining.

The room King and his family stayed in was number 217, which was changed to 237 in the film adaptation of his book. But, there was actually a sinister history to room 217, which may have explained King’s terrifying ordeal.

Duncan PJ / Flickr

In 1911, two years after the hotel opened, there was a severe gas leak in the room unbeknownst to any of the hotel staff. The head housekeeper went in, lit a candle, and was killed instantly when the gas exploded. Her spirit allegedly never left the room.

But Room 217 is not the only area of the hotel said to be haunted. Many visitors claim to have heard the music of a piano coming from the concert hall, even though the room was empty. Some even swore they saw the piano’s keys moving on their own.

Amy’s Crypt

There’s also an entity known as “Paul” who apparently haunts the hallways of the hotel. He was once an employee whose job it was to ensure guests followed the 11 p.m. curfew. People claim to hear the words “get out” murmured after dark.

Amy’s Crypt

One of the spookiest presences said to roam the hotel corridors is a 13-year-old girl named Lucy. As the story goes, she ran away from home and hid in the basement of the hotel. When employees found her, they tossed her out into the cold, and she froze to death.

Amy’s Crypt

Need proof of Lucy? Well, this was a picture taken by a hotel guest named Stephanie Reidl. The photo captures what looks like a small girl dressed in pink standing in front of the wall, but Stephanie adamantly denied there was ever a young girl on her hotel tour that day. 


Here’s another unsettling photo taken by a family from Aurora, Colorado, during one of the hotel’s “spirit tours.” You can clearly see the shape of a young girl dressed in white walking down the grand staircase; the family swears the girl wasn’t there when they snapped the picture.

Jessica Martinez-Mausling / Facebook

Of course, all the sightings of apparent ghosts and otherworldly energies do little to deter guests from booking rooms. People from all over flock to the Stanley to hopefully get a dose of the excitement — and the scares — it offers.

The hotel completely embraces the fact it was the basis for The Shining. Decorating the walls of every room are stills from the movie and artwork dedicated to Stanley Kubrick’s terrifying vision.

In fact, every Halloween, the hotel hosts a massive costume party that anyone can attend. Everyone dresses up to the nines and parties all night long. It’s a fantastically fun way to honor America’s most haunted hotel!

Both Stephen King and Stanley Kubrick helped the Stanley Hotel become a massive tourist attraction. If the spirit of Freelan Oscar Stanley does, in fact, watch over the premise, it makes you wonder what he thinks of everything…


Are you the kind of person who likes to get spooked? There are plenty of haunted locations throughout the country, like the Shanley Hotel in Napanoch, New York. It’s more than just the subject of some silly ghost stories. What people have seen there is just terrifying.

The Shanley Hotel is widely considered the East Coast’s most haunted hotel, to the point that you actually must sign a waiver if you want to stay there, and they don’t allow any guests under the age of 16.

Shanley Hotel

It’s located in the quiet town of Napanoch, New York, at the heart of the Shawangunk Mountains, and features 35 rooms, as well as a hidden chamber in the basement. Most notably, of course, is the countless paranormal activity reported on the property.

Shanley Hotel

This may have something to do with its tragic history. It was built in 1895, and since then the owner’s three children died as infants and an on-site barber’s daughter died after falling into a well. Several other people have gone missing, suffered accidental deaths, or were murdered.

Shanley Hotel

Though there has been supernatural activity reported in every part of the hotel throughout the day, there is a part of the building that was once a speakeasy and brothel in the Prohibition era which remains the most haunted area.

Investigators have confirmed that there is indeed paranormal activity in the “Bordello,” with guests experiencing problems such as shortness of breath and alternating feelings of joy and sadness when they enter the room.

Shanley Hotel

Other strange events reported in the Shanley Hotel include whistles and footsteps (supposedly from the spirit of former owner James Shanley), laughing children when no children are present, and even the sight of apparitions and mysteriously moving objects!

We can’t imagine how terrifying it would be to spend a night here, but America isn’t the only place to shack up with some ghosts. Near a waterfall in the jungles of Colombia sits a strange sight: A massive stone European-style mansion built right into the side of a hill.

The stunning building overlooking the Bogota River and the Tequendama Falls. Was once one of the premier destinations in the entire country, until it sat abandoned for decades. As nature reclaimed the structure, sinister rumors swirled the countryside.

The building was designed and constructed as a mansion in 1923 by architect Carlos Arturo Tapias, for some of Colombia’s wealthiest citizens. It was known for its great beauty and the magnificent view of the falls. 

According to local lore, during the Spanish colonization in the 16th century, native Colombian people in the area would jump off the waterfall and become eagles to fly to their freedom, escaping slavery.

The mansion itself, however, served as a venue for indulgence and excess for over 60 years. Carlos was famous for throwing over-the-top parties for the colombian elites. If you went to a party at this place, you were basically a celebrity.

In 1928, just five years after the mansion was built, an addition was complete and Carlos’s mansion became a hotel. And not just any hotel, but the most luxurious hotel the country had ever seen!

When Hotel del Salto first opened it attracted people from all over the world. The architecture was classic and the views were stunning. Carlos Tapias had truly created a destination in his beloved Colombia.

But in the 1950s there became a demand to expand the hotel. The actual construction, however, was slow to begin due to the precarious integrity of the original structure. In the end, no work was ever done the expand Hotel del Salto.

Increasingly heavy pollution in the Bogota river made the whole area stink mightily. People began to leave the area in droves and soon the hotel was abandoned and completely overtaken by nature. 

According to local legends, the spirits of the many people who died on the falls during the Spanish conquest in South America and those that later came and followed in their footsteps, still haunt the mansion.

It wasn’t until just a few years ago that the Institute of Natural Sciences of the National University of Colombia decided to convert the structure into a museum as part of their efforts to rehabilitate the area. Even so, the building is still believed to be cursed.

Who knows if they’re right, but It would still be safer to take your vacations somewhere else. but if you’re looking for the place that inspired a classic horror movie and gave meaning to the term “redrum,” there’s only one Stanley Hotel — check out the video.