Opened on July 4, 1909, the Stanley hotel is one of the most well-known haunted locations in America, maybe on the earth, and even served as inspiration for Stephen King’s The Shining.
The hotel was built in Estes Park, Colorado, which sits just outside the entrance to the Rocky Mountains National Park, as a resort for the upper class and was apparently also used as a health retreat for those who suffered of pulmonary tuberculosis.
The owner recovered from the disease, but claims the hotel was never a tuberculosis retreat. The disease caused thousands of deaths over the years condemning the facilities which held the sick and dying to be haunted by the spirits.
Waverly Hills Sanatorium is an honorable mention when it comes to tuberculosis as it was considered the most haunted place in the world at one point, but the first place is probably awarded to Poveglia Island now.
The haunted Stanley hotel and some of its acclaimed ghosts served as inspiration for the Overlook Hotel in Stephen King’s The Shining.
King was once a resident at the hotel before writing the novel and reportedly saw the ghosts of children playing in the hallway, said to be the ghost that inspired the movie.
With the Stanley hotel being known for unexplained and paranormal phenomena, running ghost tours seemed like a logical decision to increase revenue. Many people wanted to experience the so-called hauntings and in 2017, the Mausling family from Aurora, Colorado visited the property to do just that.
They enjoyed the ghost tour, but it wasn’t until they got home that they noticed one of their photos they had taken actually contained the real-life ghost that inspired The Shining.
Though there has been some debate over the authenticity of the photo, and despite none of the people present noticing the ghost during the tour, the photo that was taken by John “Jay” Mausling clearly shows a young girl walking up the stairs in clear sight of everyone. He claims the photo has now been altered in any way.
If the paranormal world does exist then the Stanley hotel is undoubtedly haunted and if this photo is authentic then it may be the clearest picture ever taken of the ghost.
One of the most common ghosts comes from multiple reports of people hearing children playing in the hallway. One couple complained that the children playing in the hallway kept them up all night, but there were not children booked into the hotel. This resembles another key scene from The Shining with the two young girls in the hallway.
The most haunted rooms are said to be rooms 217, 401, 407, and 418. We tried to find out which room Stephen King stayed in, but there is no public record of which room hosted the inspired writer.
Another ghost of the Stanley hotel is that of Flora Stanley. She entertains guests by playing the piano, but when staff and visitors look inside the room, they see nothing but piano keys moving on their own with no one in sight.
Guests are able to stay at the haunted Stanley hotel as it is still open for business and they still run their own ghost tours on the property for thrill-seekers looking to get their dose of history, mystery, and maybe even a paranormal experience.