A Spirited Stay at the Stanley

We went up to Estes Park and stayed at the Stanley Hotel once again.  Last time we went, in early Oct., we were a little disappointed because we stayed in the new section of the hotel and not the old, traditional part, as well as not being visited by any spirited visitors that time either.  A Quick Trip to Estes Park  So for my birthday (coming up later this week), Larry booked us for another night’s stay at the Stanley.  This time, we were not disappointed in either way.  Not only did we stay in the old, traditional part of the hotel, but we also got booked into one of the haunted rooms.  We stayed up on the 4th floor, which was originally used as the nursery or children’s section of the hotel, so many of the spirited visitors on that floor are either nannies, or the children they cared for, or both.  We stayed in room #418, which is one of the reported haunted rooms.  The ghosts at the Stanley are all friendly ghosts, and really just want to be apart of the daily activities.  Despite what you might think, especially if you are a Stephen King fan, there have never been any violent crimes or deaths at the Stanley.  The Stanley spirits do not wish to harm or alarm anyone.  They just want to be apart of the fun.  My husband missed our spirited encounter since he was sound asleep, but I heard our friendly ghosts playing and singing in the hallway, right outside our door, around 11:00 PM or so, and as per usual, I could not sleep.  I heard the voice of a young girl singing “You Are My Sunshine”.  It sounded like it was right outside our door.  A couple of minutes later, I heard the sound of little kids playing and running down the hallway.  I looked out the door, and no one was there.  The voice was very clear and distinct, and most definitely came from a young girl.  A few minutes later, I heard the nanny and the kids again.  Someone else had apparently heard them too, because I saw some other people walking down the hall and heard them saying they had heard someone singing “You Are My Sunshine” as well.   There are not that many people staying at the hotel right now, and there were no small children staying there either, since this is their low tourist season, and the hotel was fairly empty.  Maybe the quiet time of the year is when the spirits like to come out and “play”, since they can play relatively unbothered by a lot of guests roaming around, which means they are free to roam and play at will.  Having a spirited encounter definitely made my day.  Now that I have had a ghostly encounter, and have stayed in the old traditional part of the Stanley, it is time to move on and try some other places.  This one can now go down into the books and can be crossed off the to-do list.

The Stanley Hotel in the day time.


The Stanley all lit up at night.


Our beautiful Snow capped Rocky Mountains from the Stanley’s grounds.


This was the view from our room.  We are overlooking the new building, The Aspire, where we stayed last time, and Stanley Lake.


Some of the rich, lush decor from they days of yesteryear at The Stanley.


They no longer use keys like this anymore, but they make a great display of what used to be.


No attention to detail is spared at the Stanley, even with the light fixtures.


Before checking into the Stanley, we roamed around town for a bit.  As I mentioned earlier, it is the low tourist season.  A lot of the shops were closed, but the ones that were open were happy to see us.  Estes Park, like so many other small mountain towns, has a lot of artists who call Estes Park home.   There are craftsman of all kinds, and they are all more than happy to share their artistic passions and creations with anyone and everyone who is interested in learning about them.

We stopped into a glass shop and watched one of the artists making some beautiful blown glass pieces.  This to me is very fascinating, since I love working with glass.  I have never done any blown glass pieces, but I have done both stained glass and fused glass pieces.  I need to get back into working with glass again soon.




We also stopped into a weaver’s school, where they were weaving some rugs.  They were more than happy to give me a brief weaving lesson too.  This is an original weaving loom, made in the 1800’s.


This is a modern weaving loom.


I am getting my first weaving lesson.  They were using strips from old jeans to weave into the rug.



Estes Park is a small town, yet they have a lot of candy and taffy shops.  We counted at least 4 taffy shops along the street.  Neither of us are big taffy fans, but it is kind of interesting to watch it being made.


We had a simple dinner of soup, salad and pizza at Poppy’s Pizza & Grill, a family owned restaurant right on the river.  The river is frozen at the moment, but I have been there before when it is flowing freely, and have seen beavers in action while dining at Poppy’s.  You can find Poppy’s Pizza & Grill by checking out the website estesdining.com.


Our dining view of the river.


Larry had a salad from the salad bar, and I had this delicious soup and a glass of pinot noir.  The soup was loaded with chicken and vegetables and just hit the spot.


The sausage on this loaded pizza was handmade in-house and was great.  It had just the right amount of spice to make it just right.


After returning back to the Stanley, we had some libations in the famous Cascades Bar, located in the lobby of the hotel.  The Cascades is a world renown whiskey bar, and they offer a multitude of fine whiskeys from all over the world.  Neither of us are whiskey drinkers, but the bar/restaurant are still sights to behold.

Just a small sampling of all the whiskeys offered at The Cascades Bar




I hope you all enjoyed our quick little trip to beautiful Estes Park, nestled in the heart of the Colorado Rocky Mountains.  Estes Park is located about 1-1 1/2 hours west of where we live, so it is an quick, easy escape from day-to-day reality.







Author: ajeanneinthekitchen

I have worked in the restaurant and catering industry for 35 years. I attended 2 culinary schools in Southern California, and have a degree in culinary arts from the Southern California School of Culinary Arts, as well as a few other degrees in other areas. I love to cook and I love to feed people.

35 thoughts on “A Spirited Stay at the Stanley”

  1. Looks like you guys had a great time. I lived in Estes Park at the YMCA in the summer of ’98. Beautiful up there! After living with a demon for four years in high school and suffering the terrorizing tricks it would play on our family, I can’t say I liked your experience at the hotel, but I do believe you. As a brother in Christ, I seriously recommend not messing around with evil though. From God’s Word, there are no ghosts. Only angels or demons. The only reason I would go to the Stanley is if God called me there to do battle against those evil spirits. Your story brought back a lot of memories for me. Crayon marks on our walls, lights turning on and off, our dog getting kicked, pictures knocked off the wall, a candle being lit in my sister’s room, bouncing ball sounds, and more. It was terrifying and I am so thankful Jesus saved me and my whole family! God bless!

    Liked by 4 people

  2. We went to Estes Friday Feb 1 (2019) and got to the Stanley Hotel at 3pm as folks lined up to check in. A house guest from Maine had never been there (or anywhere else in Colorado) and it is so much fun seeing a familiar world through someone else’s eyes. I too was mesmerized by the pink taffy being pulled. Thanks for all you do on this site, Jeanne. It is fun seeing the world through your culinary eyes also.

    Liked by 1 person

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