Stanley Hotel, Estes Park, Coloardo

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The History of the Haunting

When Stephen King and his wife stayed here in 1974, they were the only guests, as the hotel was just about to close for the season. Sound familiar? Their experience in room 217, of course, inspired the novel (and later the Stanley Kubrick film) The Shining. Though the Stanley’s 107-year history is relatively uneventful, it had gained a reputation for paranormal activity by the 1970s that continues today.

The Stanley Hotel was originally opened in 1909, by Massachusetts couple F.O. and Flora Stanley, as a secluded, grand mountain resort. Though the Stanley's have passed, many believe they never actually left. Mr. Stanley has been reported as hovering behind employees at the reception desk, and Mrs. Stanley can still be heard playing piano in the hotel's music room.

Haunted events have been recorded at the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado, since as far back as 1911, when Ms. Elizabeth Wilson, a housekeeper, was electrocuted during a lightening storm. Though she wasn’t killed, the room where it happened, Room 217, has become a hotbed of paranormal activity.

Over the years, every single room in the hotel has experienced something strange, from clothes being mysteriously unpacked, to items moving on their own, and lights turning themselves on and off. The fourth floor is often filled with the spectral laughter of children giggling and running down the halls. However, the staff at the Stanley are quick to point out that "there are never any reports of sinister or evil events happening here, because there are only happy ghosts at the Stanley Hotel!" Suuuuure.