; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Saturday, June 01, 2013

The Infamous Stanley Hotel

NOTE: I received these photos in September 2009 taken during a ghost tour (September 13, 2008) at the infamous Stanley Hotel. You can go to the collection of photos from that tour...Lon

Here is the information received:

I took this photo on September 13, 2008 at the Stanley Hotel. We were taking a ghost tour. I stopped at the bottom of the steps on the 2nd floor near Room 217 and looked up the stairwell. There was no one there that I could see. I snapped a few photos from my camera and continued the tour. This was about 2PM-3PM. A few days later, I came home and was going over the photos. I was very surprised and a little scared at what I saw in the photo.

I contacted a few professional photographers who validated that it wasn't photo shopped or retouched, but they couldn't give me much information on what they thought it was. One photographer did tell me that he thought it was a little boy, but I can't really see it that much.

Our clairvoyant/sensitive and photo tech 'SW' looked over the image and came to this conclusion:

"Hi Lon...This is very interesting. I had thought that only human spirits haunted the Stanley... "that" is not human. It reminds me of a gargoyle but it isn't. The Stanley Hotel is partially built into a mountain, or so I have heard. That "thing" came in from that point. I get the sense that is a "live creature".

In reference to 2 other photos taken at the Stanley Hotel, here is the response from 'SW':

"The photo of the face outside, is Chansonetta Stanley Emmons. She was the sister to F.O. and his twin brother Francis. I've included a picture that I found of her.

The parlor window photo is Flora Stanley, Mr. Stanley's wife (I know because I get the impression of a piano and flowers). She is present in most sightings, whereas Mr. Stanley tends to avoid being seen. I feel he prefers the great hall and private quarters."

Chansonetta Stanley Emmons - one of the first American female photographers. In 1883, the Stanley brothers invented the dry plate process which allowed faster photograph development, which they sold to Eastman Kodak for a fortune. Many of Chansonetta's photographs adorn the Stanley Hotel

F.O. Stanley and Flora Stanley ride a 'Stanley Steamer' - August 1899, New Hampshire

The ballroom where Flora Stanley's spirit lingers

F.O. Stanley



The Stanley Hotel is a 138-room Georgian hotel in Estes Park, Colorado. Located within sight of the Rocky Mountain National Park, the Stanley offers panoramic views of the Rockies. It was built by Freelan O. Stanley of Stanley Steamer fame and opened on July 4, 1909, catering to the rich and famous. The hotel and its surrounding lands are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Stanley has hosted many famous guests, including the Titanic survivor Margaret Brown, John Philip Sousa, Theodore Roosevelt, the Emperor and Empress of Japan, and a variety of Hollywood personalities. The Stanley Hotel also hosted Stephen King, inspiring him to write The Shining. Contrary to information sometimes published King was living in Boulder at the time and did not actually write the novel at the hotel. Parts of the mini-series version of The Shining were filmed there, although it was not used for Stanley Kubrick's cinematic version.

Stephen King's stay at the Stanley Hotel was the inspiration behind his novel 'The Shining'. Stanley Kubrick directed the award-winning film starring Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall. Contrary to popular belief, no scenes were filmed at the Stanley Hotel.

Many reports have come from the guests of the hotel that they had seen strange images and had unexplainable things happen to them. Some believe that F. O. Stanley haunts the hotel himself. He has been seen most often in the lobby and the Billiards room, which was his favorite room when he was alive. He has also been seen in the bar but quickly disappears before anyone can get a better look.

It is also believed that F.O.'s wife Flora haunts the hotel as well. When she was in the hotel, she used to entertain the guests by playing piano in the music room. Though there have been no actual sightings of her, the keys of the piano have been seen by several guests to be moving by themselves.

Guests have also reported hearing children playing in the hallway when no children were present, one couple even checking out because of the noise. Various employees have reported hearing voices when no one was around and seeing impressions in beds in rooms where no guests have stayed in for awhile. One guest claimed to have recorded a faded image of a man in a cowboy hat in his room, standing in front of the window. It lasted for a few minutes and then faded away. Another incident occurred where a guest attending her sister's wedding wrote "REDRUM" on a mirror with lipstick in her sister and her groom-to-be's room a joke. Later, as she was walking down the grand staircase to the lobby, she felt someone shove her and she fell down the stairs. After being helped up, she looked to see who shoved her, but no one was around to have done so.

Many strange events seem to take place in the Stanley Hotel for sure. Some are certainly less explainable than others. Why people believe they see the Stanleys has no reasonable explanation. Noises that guests and employees hear could be the creaking of heaters that they think might be ghosts, or the shifting of the pine wood that some of the hotel is made from. Voices that they hear could be echoing through the floors and walls from other rooms. That could account for the children that are heard as well. Or they could actually be children that hide when someone tells them to stop or keep it down. The guest who recorded the ghost wearing the cowboy hat would be more reliable if he showed this recording rather than say he did. And the girl who claimed to be shoved could very well have lied. After all, she was in the process of pulling a prank when it happened. - stanleyhotel.com / anchorweb.org


NOTE: George Cassella forwarded 2 photos with this statement:

"...I was at The Stanley Hotel 2 weeks ago and after the tour (I took 4 orb pictures) I took pictures of the outside of the hotel…on the plane home I looked over all the pictures very closely. In this series I zoomed in on all the windows and discovered this one of a second floor window…it looked more like an apparition than an actual person. I contacted The Hotel the following day and was later told:"

OK, the room number is 1211. Last Friday, there was a single man checked in that room who was part of a business conference. That doesn't mean he DIDN'T have a child with him, but it is unlikely that he did. Cool pic!


Over the years I have seen many unusual photos and images from the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado. Today I received another inquiry with images. Here is the correspondence:

My family just stayed at The Stanley Hotel in Estes Park Colorado on Saturday July 7th. We just got home and started looking at some pictures. We noticed in two of the pictures an elderly Gentleman who seemed a bit out of place. The first picture you can see him standing in the doorway. (The Macgregor Room) If you look around his neck it looks like an old fashioned thick tie not tied yet and some mist in front of him. He is tall and thin and balding. The room was also roped off at the time. My Wife then took a picture 16 seconds later up the stairs, and it seems to be the same elderly man with no bottom half going up the stairs, and if you look at his hand, it looks very odd. She swears that no one was in the picture when she took it, and never even saw an elderly man. There was a wedding reception going on, but this was before all the guests arrived. You can see the D.J. in the pictures. Could this have been F.O. Stanley?

I received the following email after I replied and asked if I could post the images on the blog:

Absolutely! My wife and daughter swear that they never noticed this gentleman in the pictures at all! Especially the one on the stairs. My Wife said when she took that, she knew nobody was in the way. If you zoom in on his neck too, on the doorway picture, it is a really odd shape. The tie also stumps me...is it a tie? it is like a blob of black or blue. You can see the mist on the front off him as well. It is like he is staring into space! The arm is really long as well. The picture to the right of him looks like the same person as well. She was standing at the bottom of the main stairwell off the lobby when she took these. I still can’t figure out where his bottom half is on the staircase either. Also the hand is very odd. Try to recreate it with your own hand. Thanks for the interest. These are great pictures!

Well folks...you make your own determination. Feel free to comment...Lon

History and Haunting of the Stanley Hotel

Haunted Hotels: Eerie Inns, Ghoulish Guests, and Creepy Caretakers

Top 25 Most Haunted Spots In The U.S.: Your Personal Guide To The Scariest Places In The United States!