Tie the Knot in One of These Haunted Wedding Venues
Five spooky spots.
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Photo By: Jeff Greenberg
Photo By: The Stanley Hotel
Photo By: Paul Marotta
Photo By: Image by Erik Pronske Photography
Photo By: Aaron Monore
Say “I Do” to Your Boo
Some people love fall for the colors; others go mad for the ghosts and ghouls of Halloween. If the latter sounds more like you, consider adding a touch of fright to your big day. From Stephen King-styled supernatural spooks to ghostly inhabitants, check out these haunted wedding venues.
Crescent Hotel and Spa
Eureka Springs, Arkansas
Known as “America’s Most Haunted Hotel,” the circa-1886 Crescent Hotel and Spa is home to several famous ghosts including Michael, the Irish stonemason who died while building the hotel in the 1800s; Morris the cat, who has been known to sit at the foot of guests’ beds in the night; and Theodora, who was a nurse when the building was occupied by the Baker Cancer Hospital. From 1937 to 1940, founder Norman Baker made over $4,000,000 by promising to cure the dying. The charismatic swindler was not a doctor: he cured no one and killed many of his patients—some of whom never left the premises. The gorgeous Victorian-era venue offers couples full weekend wedding packages that can incorporate one of the hotel’s famous—and hair-raising—ghost tours.
The Stanley Hotel
Estes Park, Colorado
If it inspired a Stephen King novel, it’s got to be spooky. As the real-life inspiration for The Shining, The Stanley is one of, if not the most iconic haunted hotel on the planet. Since 1911, inexplicable things have been happening in the hotel, like a housekeeper getting electrocuted in room 217 during an electrical storm. Also, in that room, where King stayed during his visit, guests report suitcases unpacking themselves—how considerate— and ghostly children like the creepy twins from the movie. In spite of all the freaky occurrences (or maybe because of it), the Rocky Mountain resort is still an incredibly popular place to tie the knot. Many couples who host smaller weddings like to party the night away in the pinon wood-adorned Billiards Rooms overlooking the valley and Lake Estes. Sometimes the ghost of F.O. Stanley even makes an appearance in reception photos.
Omni Parker House
Boston’s Omni Parker House is famous for a lot of things: its grand decor, its namesake buttery rolls and, most importantly, its supernatural activity. Founder Harvey Parker opened his grand namesake hotel in 1855 and oversaw its operation until his death in 1884—and maybe still does to this day. He’s visited many guests in their hotel rooms to ask about their stay and, after a businessman died in room 303, guests in that room have claimed to hear laughter and notice the smell of whiskey. Another Stephen King piece, a short story called 1408, and a subsequent film were based around the spooky happenings in room 303. See for yourself on your wedding night. The glam hotel offers three stunning wedding venues and an array of impressive culinary packages.
Emily Morgan Hotel
San Antonio, Texas
Set across from the Alamo on San Antonio Riverwalk, this imposing neo-Gothic building originally served as a medical facility with a psychiatric ward and an on-site morgue. But it’s the former hospital and surgery spaces on the top four floors that get the most paranormal activity. Visitors have reported unexplained noises, shadowy visions and the sensation of being touched by someone or something. Couples can pick and choose from several event spaces on the first two floors that accommodate just over 70 guests.
The Queen Mary
Long Beach, California
In 1967, the city of Long Beach purchased this former British luxury ocean and WWII warship, nicknamed the “Grey Ghost,” and transformed it into a hotel and tourist attraction. Guests from around the globe come aboard to spend the night in its beautiful Art Deco staterooms. Many—wedding guests included—report sightings of specters and shadows, including a sailor who died in the ship’s engine room, children who drowned in the ship’s pool and a “lady in white.” Those who want to get up close and personal with the spirits can participate in a 90-minute theatrical seance with master illusionist Aiden Sinclair. Say “I do” on the outdoor Sun Gazebo or in the private Wedding Chapel. You might just get a visit from some uninvited netherworld guests.