Walking Tour: The Stanley Hotel
You guys loved our article about The Winchester Mystery House offering virtual tours to housebound aficionados of the paranormal during the Coronavirus crisis. We figured we’d share other virtual tours in an effort to ease the stress of being stuck at home. You might be in self-quarantine, but you can tour one of the creepiest locations on Earth with a click of your mouse:
The Stanley Hotel, the inspiration behind Stephen King’s The Shining!
Take your video tour of The Stanley Hotel now, HERE.
The story of the Stanley Hotel itself began in 1903 when Yankee inventor Freelan Oscar Stanley arrived in the valley, weak and underweight from the symptoms of consumption. To his amazement, just one season here was enough to restore his health to better than before! Overjoyed, he vowed to return each summer for the rest of his life.
However, he and his wife Flora were used to the sophistication of East Coast society, and the little community of Estes Park offered little to stimulate and challenge this multi-talented genius. Together, they resolved to build a beautiful grand hotel – and when the Stanley Hotel opened in 1909, the first guests who pulled up in stylish Stanley-designed steam cars were astonished at what they saw. Here in this mountain wilderness, surrounded by the rustic haunts of the hunter and homesteader, was an edifice that withstood comparison to the posh hotels “back east.” Electric lights, telephones, en suite bathrooms, a staff of uniformed servants and a fleet of automobiles were at their disposal. Naturally, Stanley had also done much to develop the burgeoning town. By 1917, it was an official municipality with water-works, a power plant, and civic organizations that were all, in some way, thanks to Stanley.
By the 1970s the hotel’s splendor had faded due to lack of care and investment. It might have eventually have succumbed to the wrecking ball, if not for a fortuitous visit by author Stephen King. A stay of one night was enough to inspire his third major work and the first hardcover bestseller The Shining, which remains a landmark masterpiece in a long list of novels.
The hotel stands today as a beautifully restored testament to its glory days when it served as a holiday retreat for wealthy urbanites. A range of tours highlights the history of this magnificent historical structure while a tempting menu of amenities, culinary experiences, and lavish spa treatments provides all the comfort and glamour required by even the most discerning modern visitors. (Source)