Washington DC has a rich historical and political background behind it making it the ideal breeding ground for paranormal activity. It certainly does not disappoint and there are several haunted hotels to choose from if you don’t mind sharing with a ghostly roommate! Book one of the below hotels on your visit to one of America’s most haunted cities.
Let’s explore the most haunted hotels in Washington DC.
4 - Hay Adams HotelBook Now
The Hay Adams Hotel is said to be haunted by the spirit of Clover Adams, the wife of the hotel’s original owner Henry Adams.
According to the stories, Clover actually took her own life in the hotel sometime in 1885. That is why she is now tied to the hotel and wanders on the fourth floor. However, it might not be as simple as that because there are many who believe that Clover was murdered. She had some episodes of depression and had suffered a bereavement, but many people were surprised by her ‘suicide’ and whispered about murder!
Those who have encountered clover say that she is a sad ghost and is in no way threatening. She is often heard sobbing softly in guest rooms and stairwells.
There are also reports of a female voice asking ‘what do you want?’ when people are alone in their room. It is not just guests who have encountered Clover, some of the housekeeping staff say that she has hugged them and said their name when they are cleaning the rooms on the fourth floor!
Other strange activity that has been reported includes locked doors opening by themselves and clock radios turning on and off. The paranormal activity in the hotel increases in frequency at the beginning of December coinciding with Clover’s death.
3 - The Allen Lee Hotel
There is some debate over whether or not The Allen Lee Hotel is actually haunted! It is a relatively run-down hotel and it certainly looks as though it is a likely candidate for a ghost story. However, nobody can pinpoint why it is supposedly haunted! There are no confirmed ghost stories, but locals are frightened enough of the hotel that it has become custom for students from George Washington University to dare their friends to spend 10 minutes alone in the adjacent parking lot.
(The hotel is closed until further notice)
2 - The Mayflower HotelStay Here
The Renaissance Mayflower Hotel first opened in 1925. It is known affectionately as ‘The Grande Dame of Washington DC’ and it incorporates more gold inlay than any other building in America apart from the Library of Congress! It has an important place in political history in Washington DC.
The hotel was the venue of President Calvin Coolidge’s Inaugural Ball on January 20, 1925. However, the president did not attend because he was in mourning for his 16-year-old son who had died of an infection a few days earlier. He has been quoted as saying that when his son passed away ‘the power and the glory of the presidency went with him’.
So, what does this have to do with the haunting of the Renaissance Mayflower Hotel? Well, ever since that night on the anniversary of the inaugural ball, All of the lights in the hotel dim and flicker at 10 pm on the dot – the time when the first guests would have been announced. At the same time, the elevator sits unmoving on the eighth floor and only returns to the ground floor at 10.15 pm which is the time that Coolidge should have arrived at the party.
It is not clear if the spirit is said to be Coolidge himself, making good on the commitment he failed to fulfill in life, or if it is his son. Either way, it is very strange and difficult to explain!
1 - Omni Shoreham HotelBook a Stay
The Omni Shoreham Hotel was built in 1930 and has overseen some key events throughout Washington DCs political history. It is also one of the most haunted hotels in Washington DC. In the early part of its history, the hotel was a residential hotel where people couple essentially move into a room as though it was an apartment.
Room 864 was occupied by one of the financial backers, Henry Doherty, and his family. However, soon after they moved in his daughter’s nanny Juliette Brown collapsed and died from an unknown illness. A short time later, his daughter Helen also died and it was rumored that she took her own life. The couple immediately left, but the room was certainly not unoccupied.
Since the couple left, there were reports of strange activity in the room. Lights and appliances turn on and off by themselves, people feel cold rushes of air and there are unexplained noises in the room. The three-bedroom suite was renovated in 2000 and has been officially renamed ‘The Ghost Suite’!