For travelers looking to conjure spookiness while away from home this Halloween, there are a few unique hotels, which cater to those who refuse to surrender high thread counts while on the hunt for a good scare. Here are some of the best:
Now through October 31, swap your regular digs for a stay at Fifteen Beacon, a swanky hotel in historic Beacon Hill, where you can enjoy a spooky package called the Ghoulish Getaway. Included are two tickets on the Ghost & Gravestones "Frightseeing Tour" by trolley, where guides who have become gravediggers for the night recall the sinister stories of Boston's past on the same streets once menaced by the Boston Strangler. Refresh yourself afterwards with two Creepy Cocktails at the award-winning on-premises restaurant.
Yes, Santa Fe is prized as one of America's top art towns. It also happens to have a rich history that lends itself to ghost tales. None is so pronounced as La Posada de Santa Fe, which is located right downtown near the Plaza Built in 1882 by a wealthy merchant, this Victorian mansion is known to be overseen by his wife, a benevolent ghost, who died in 1896. Although she has been seen throughout the rambling mansion, it's Suite 100 that she prefers. She has become such a regular part of the hotel that staff always greets her when they enter the suite and never fail to extend an invite to parties taking place on the premises.
There's still time to head to the annual Haunted Forest, which takes place the last two weekends of October in Williston, Vermont. This is an annual event that is a blend of theater, community, and art that features ghostly costumes, characters in ghoulish makeup, not to mention old-fashioned carved pumpkins. For the fainter of heart (and younger children) there are matinee shows in the daylight, but the nighttime spectaculars are much scarier. Book a rustic-mod room nearby at the new Hotel Vermont, one of Trip Advisor's top ten best new hotels for 2013. The Fall Harvest package includes a visit to Sam Mazza's Farm Stand, where guests can buy a homegrown pumpkin, take a wagon ride around the farm, and sample Oktoberfest Vermont beer, cider and doughnuts.
For sheer ghost cred, you can't do better than booking an overnight than at the historic Omni Homestead in Hot Springs, Virginia. Built in 1766, it's one of the oldest resorts in America and ghosts are known to haunt the halls throughout the property, but it's on the 14th floor, which is located in the oldest wing of the hotel, that the resort's most famous -- and dependable ghosts -- appears. A woman who killed herself at the hotel when she was jilted by her fiancé at the resort early 1990s is said to be the gentle woman who staff is all too familiar with and that often startles guests.
Across the pond, The Lodge at Doonbeg in County Clare, Ireland is all about ensuring that kids don't miss Halloween while they're abroad. This five-star hotel, which is housed within a gracious Irish country lodge, sits on acres of rolling hills. Historic and atmospheric, this property lends itself to the moody season. The Halloween festival on property features face painting, glow-sticks, and pumpkin carving at sundown. The evening is given over to full on trick-or-treating around the hotel, where black cauldrons, jack-o-lanterns, and treats are scattered all around the rambling, property making for a spooky, fun atmosphere. Later, guests of all ages, costumed or not, can take a stroll down a spooky, torch-lit, character-laced path to the 1840's haunted cottage. Here, scary ghost tales told by local docents for an authentic Irish Halloween accompanies treats and hot chocolate. Stay in a comfortable full cottage for three nights with the Self- Catering with Halloween Activities package or opt for the An overnight Halloween Midterm Break with Dinner & Activities.