Haunted hotels are uniquely terrifying. There’s just something about their scale (hundreds, sometimes thousands of rooms) and the fact that you never know who’s stayed in the room before you, or what they got up to. It’s this combination of factors that gives some hotels a special, blood-curdling energy.
It’s why The Shining is so damn scary, and why a new book called Ghost Stories of Tripadvisor is so intriguing. The authors, Bompas & Parr, trawled the travel website looking for the most unnerving one-star reviews they could find, and compiled the results.
Now, given that it’s Halloween in a few days, we thought we’d bring you an excerpt. And to be clear, these reviews have been reproduced exactly how they appeared on the site and in the book—meaning there’s a total lack of punctuation.
Boudl Al Olaya
Olaya Road in front of Al-Faisalya tower, Riyadh 11732 Saudi Arabia
DATE: January 2012
Stay out of it its haunted i saw the ghost in my room over my 4 yr boy i screamed and ran out my room we collected our things and checked out in the middle of the night the rude man in the front desk wanted to charge us for a day while we only stayed 6 hrs after checking out my sister told me she heared water flushing in the toilet and my nanny saw the tv channels switching by it self while my kids watching tom and jerry but they didnt think that it really haunted our room # was 303
The Congress Plaza Hotel & Convention Center
520 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL 60605-1602
DATE: September 2014
disappointing hotel + an unexpected haunted night The Congress Plaza hotel itself I would rate “poor”, but with the experience I had there, I simply have to rate it as as “terrible”. While the lobby is large and quite nice, the rooms are extremely out dated and smell terrible. My room (3306) was small, across the hall from a very noisy vending machine, and had chipping wallpaper and a random blue shower curtain! The first thing I did when I walked in was text my boyfriend: “this room smells like death!” Little did I know just how right I was.
I would have requested a different room, but I was only there for one night so decided to suck it up and deal with the situation. After a business dinner and working in the lobby with a colleague, I returned to my room around midnight. I got ready for bed, locked the door with the chain lock, filled up a water bottle and placed it next to the lamp and telephone on the night stand next to me, sent my last text 1:08 am and then went to sleep. I immediately had nightmares of ghosts trying to enter reality by trying to posses my mind and using my room’s phone and electricity as a portal. I woke up at 2:40am screaming only to find that the lamp next to me had been switched on, the lamp shade turned almost upside down, and the water bottle completely empty (& cap still on). I have never been so scared in my life! I picked up my iphone and searched for near by hotels to transfer to, but not more than 30seconds passed before my phone (plugged in) switched itself off! So i Would have left my room and hotel all together, but at this point I was simply to terrified to move. I’m not religious, but they only way I survived the night was by staying awake and praying. I did fall asleep a last time from 5-7am, only to have another nightmare. This time it was about just one ghost, a male, luring me over to the window.
I have never been so eager to leave a hotel before but this place is so haunted I strongly discourage anyone from staying there! The next day I told my boss about my experience since she was staying in the hotel as well (but in a different wing). She told me that she had almost the exact same nightmare about the window. We looked up the hotel to then read about all the deaths that have happened there. So freaky! I would have written this review sooner, but honestly I dont want to think about it too much since it still gives me the chills! Room tip: you should google which rooms are more haunted then others. I don’t recommend 3306 given the ghost experiences I had, but it looks like 441 or 666 are even worse.
Radisson Blu Edwardian Hampshire Hotel
31-36 Leicester Square, London WC2H 7LH England
DATE: February 2011
HAUNTED HOTEL!!!!! Stayed a few years ago, my partner and i both saw a ghost, it was a man in a black cloak(mid length) and hat,very short in height, he ran in front of us and into the lift, as the doors closed, i pressed them to open and to our shock there was nobody in the lift!!! This was thrilling and shocking to us as we both saw the same thing (we were sober) lol - just wondered if you could let us know if you or anyone else has ever reported seeing anything at this hotel…. did some research and it used to be The Royal dental hospital and the building dates back to 1858…. plenty of history as you’d agree!!! let us know, we would love to return to the hotel and maybe do a ghost hunt in the lift area… fascinating!!!! Great hotel
Leafy Lane Near Bath, Corsham SN13 0PA England
DATE: May 2014
Haunted… I stayed with my mother in this hotel whilst searching for property for a planned move to Corsham. The exterior of the building was lovely as wete the grounds, although the inside had seen better days. It felt endearing and homely rather than falling apart. We stayed in an annex building with under floor heating and a huge bathroom with separate bath and shower. The bath had a ledge for resting your legs. What disconcerted me were the 3 ghists I saw in the week we spent there. I sawa very large dog bound towards me then disappear at one point. I was informed when I moved to Corsham thst the house had once belonged to a family who bred St Bernards.The gentleman on reception told us that some guests leave in the middle of the night, scared witless. That coukd be due to either the ghosts or the seemingly dodgy wiring. The most eccentric place I have ever been. You’ll either love it or hate it.
The Wellington Hotel
The Harbour, Boscastle PL35 0AG England
DATE: July 2009
My experience at this hotel was something I wouldn't wish upon anyone. Upon arrivial and noticing it was a very old building I jokingly asked the receptionist who showed us to our rooms if the hotel was haunted. She laughed and said she hadn't seen any ghosts but had seen a couple of odd shadows.She did not elaborate on this and said nothing else. She then took me to my room which was no.9.
My friend and I then went out for the day and later returned and decided to sit in the lounge area of the hotel prior to going out for an evening meal. We noticed a book saying Hotel History and decided to have a look in it. Inside was a history of the building etc. and then a section devoted to the hauntings of the building especially those of room no.9!! including a staff member seeing the figure of a woman walk through the door when the room was vacant. It also has a photo of the area outside the door of room 9 with a ghostly figure standing there. It also states how most haunted have done an episode there and how there have been strange goings on in the bar as well as room 9.
Being concerned about this I asked the evening receptionist about the hauntings in my room and she said that a few people had complained of someone coming into the room at night and strange sounds. I felt very apprehensive of spending the night there but as I was already checked in and all my stuff unpacked I didn't want to make a scene and ask for a different room but did feel annoyed that I had not been made aware of the fact that the room i had been given was clearly known to be haunted. I went to my room and went to bed but left the tv on low so it wasn't too dark etc. I awoke the next morning at around 6.30 am and felt quite pleased that I had not been woken in the night and all was well. I decided to lie in bed and watch tv for a bit as it was still quite early.
What happened next I have to say frightened the life out of me. I was lying on the bed when suddenly I felt a really strange sensation and said to myself "oh my god it's here" as those words ran through my mind I suddenly felt what can only be described as someone walking up the bed behind me and then a rush of cold air and then total paralysis of my body….I couldn't move I was frozen. I kept thinking if I can just reach the phone I can call my friend but i couldn't. This feeling lasted about 30 secs and then as quickly as it came …it left me and I felt normal again. I hastily got up and went to my friends room and relayed the whole event. I am a 43 year old woman.. I don't drink and am not on any medication and am very clear about what happened to me and certainly did not imagine this incident.