By Evie Carrick
May 12, 2019
Courtesy of The Black Monarch

Stephen King’s "The Shining" may have been inspired by his stay at The Stanley Hotel, but we’d argue the setting’s true parallel is The Black Monarch Hotel. Initially a Gold Rush-era casino, saloon, and brothel, the building is said to be haunted by the ghost of a man who died in a gunfight. Ever since, people have reported seeing unexplained things and in recent years, guests claim to have woken up to hear women laughing and men shouting only to learn that they were in the hotel alone.

Courtesy of The Black Monarch

These rumors of horrors and hauntings are embraced by the hotel’s new owner, Adam Zimmerli, who’s worked in Denver’s music scene and operated unique properties there. The Black Monarch features rooms themed after serial killers Elizabeth Bathory and H.H. Holmes, and according to the property’s press release, “The self-proclaimed ‘horror hotel’ is packed with curiosities, taxidermy, oddities and trinkets, giving alternative travelers myriad strange sights to explore.”

On Colorado’s National Register of Historic Places, the hotel has been fully renovated and features a Victorian Gothic design aesthetic that accentuates the property’s storied past. The Black Monarch reopened to the public on May 1 and is located 46 miles southwest of Colorado Springs in Victor, Colorado, a tiny mountain town of less than 1,000 people. Hotel guests can explore the surrounding mountains, learn about the town’s mining history, and enjoy live music, as Zimmerli plans to host live shows — with a dark twist — and special events featuring burlesque and circus performers.

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