With fall upon us, the weather is cooling off, the leaves are changing, the days are shortening, and creatures begin restlessly stirring for the Halloween season. Luxe Lodgings contributor Angela Fairhurst found these resorts that get into the spirit—some are family-friendly and others are just for adults.
For Adults Only
The Hotel del Coronado is famous for its resident ghost Kate Morgan, a 24-year-old woman who checked into the hotel in 1892. Unhappily married, Kate had gone to the Del to have a rendezvous with a lover that never happened. Instead, the sickly and sorrowful Kate died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Since that time, guests and employees have attested to ghostly goings-on, such as flickering lights, unexplained sounds, and items moving, mostly in Kate’s original third-floor guest room, the hotel’s hallways, and the resort’s gift shop.
The Hotel del Coronado will celebrate American Horror Hotel style on Saturday, October 28, where visitors and locals alike don their best costumes during the eighth annual, adults-only, Hallo-wine & Spirits® Party. The night begins with “adult trick-or-treating” on the Garden Patio, then heads into the Crown Room for spooky surroundings, food and drinks, dancing, and possibly a visit from Kate Morgan herself.
For the third year in a row, The Godfrey Hotel Chicago’s rooftop lounge I|O Godfrey celebrates the frightful night with Haunted Hotel, at which costumed guests join a party on the fourth floor to indulge in enchanting music and specialty cocktail potions such as the black-as-night Dia de los Muertos margarita.
The hotel’s fifth level is open for guests to investigate 20 haunted rooms with different terrors lurking behind every door, including ghostly spectacles and some virtual reality nightmares. Each of the haunted guest rooms on The Godfrey’s fifth floor is available to book overnight for those who dare to stay on the haunted floor.
Hotels that have triskaidekaphobia (fear of the number 13) don’t include a floor 13, but the Aloft Boston Seaport, located in the thriving Seaport district in Boston, celebrates it. From October 26 through 31, the hotel is offering a one-of-a-kind immersive Halloween experience for guests who wait all year long for the ghoulish holiday.
The package includes one night in the haunted designed room 1313 along with two complimentary “Bobbin’ for Apples” cocktails from the W XYZ bar. Professional makeup and costume artist Chatel Cunha from “Factory of Terror” will transform two guests into zombie creatures. There will be private transportation to and from Salem, Massachusetts, a city synonymous with Halloween, and an evening of haunts and celebrations in the historic “Witch City.” The price is— you guessed it—$1,313.
In the haunted hollows of Missouri’s Ozark Mountains, the Big Cedar Lodge is transforming its majestic Top of the Rock cliff op outpost into a ghoulish graveyard and haunted cave experience called Haunted Lost Caverns. The attraction features scary surprises, historical haunts, and a bone-chilling ride through a four-story cave with a waterfall.
The Halloween adventure will transport guests aged 13 and over through a graveyard setting where an archaeological dig site has uncovered the remains of Civil War soldiers and native Osage tribe members, before shuttles enter a haunted Halloween cave where more than 100 animatronic displays depict menacing figures, fearless frontier moonshiners operating hidden stills, and other spooky sights and frights. All survivors can celebrate with a drink or snack at the Bat’s Blood Bar at the entrance of the haunted cave.
You’ll find more than fall foliage in October at The Pocono Mountains’ Camelback Resort with the launch of Camelback’s Monster Mountain. Guests staying at the lodge receive up to four tickets to explore the region’s haunted events. Kartrite’s Kurse Haunted House is a tram ride with 17 rooms of animatronic pirates, skeletons, and creatures that slither, crawl, and fly, recreating the harrowing adventures of Kartrite’s own journal entries.
The Monster Coaster is an after-dark roller coaster that races past phantoms of the forest, ghouls, and specters. The Lights Out zip lines are two 1,000-foot dual zip lines that operate after dark over shadowy creatures where the only light is from passing fireflies and distant torches. Passes to the Aquatopia Indoor Waterpark are also included in the stay.
For more than 130 years, The Nonantum in Kennebunkport has been known as the family resort in southern Maine. The waterfront property goes all out annually when it comes to Halloween decorations. Recognized as a winner of the 2017 Best Places to Work in Maine for the third consecutive year, it only makes sense that this year they have included a staff competition where each department is responsible for creating a scarecrow.
Guests are the judges and vote on which entry they think is the scariest, most original, and best overall. With 11 scarecrows scattered around the grounds of the hotel, it won’t be a crow that spooks you.
Celebrating Halloween outside of the US borders is the Barceló Maya Grand Resort located on Riviera Maya. The 24-hour all-inclusive Barceló Maya Grand Resort is comprised of five resorts that serve as one. The resort has 22 restaurants, ten pools, three theaters, three water parks, the U-Spa, and more. There are a variety of Halloween festivities, making it a fantastic spot to celebrate the holiday.
Options include decorating the resort’s kids club with ghosts and gravestones; enjoying pumpkin-carving poolside; participating in a resort-wide costume contest; trick or treating; and for the brave of heart, experiencing the resort’s on-site Haunted House. Nighttime brings a scare-free party for the kids, and adults can attend a Halloween-themed party at Jaguars Club.
For more information about Halloween events and activities, check out:
- Catacombs & Ghosts: The Dark Side of Paris
- How You Can Experience History by Visiting Cemeteries Around the World
- Beyond the Maze: Halloween Events at Historical & Haunted Places
By Angela Fairhurst for PeterGreenberg.com