It doesn’t have to be Halloween to brush shoulders with ghosts. The Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs, Arkansas offers Ghost Tours all year.
It ‘s Victorian glory at its finest. Superbly furnished with period antiques the main lobby sets the mood for your stay at America’s Most Haunted Hotel. Even with limited imagination it is easy to visualize the well-dressed Victorian gentleman, with his fancy walking stick, making his way across the lobby. Another in the Crystal Dining Room, sitting at the table near the window where he informs the wait staff that he is looking for a beautiful woman who never returned. Or you might catch a glimpse of old Doctor Baker, himself, standing at the foot of the stairs in his white linen suit ,looking perplexed.
Crescent Hotel Built in 1886
The Eureka Springs, Arkansas Improvement Company, in conjunction with the Frisco Railroad, built the Crescent Hotel in 1886 for the staggering sum of $294,000. It was billed as the most luxurious accommodation in Midwest America. People from all over the world visited the Crescent Hotel and took advantage of the water, by bathing and drinking, from several flowing springs in Eureka Springs. The water was said to cure most human ailments.
The Rise and Fall of the Famous Crescent
The Crescent Hotel hasn’t always been a romantic, opulent destination. When magic waters were no longer appealing, the public wasn’t drawn to Eureka Springs and the Crescent went into decline. In 1908 it was sold and became The Crescent College and Conservatory for Young Women. That lasted until 1924 when the hotel was abandoned. In 1930 it became a junior college which closed in 1934.
Dr. Norman Baker’s Castle in the Sky Sanatorium
Norman Baker, a man who claimed to be a doctor, bought the hotel in 1937 and opened his ‘Castle in the Sky’ cancer treatment hospital. He was proven to be a fraud but not before he had caused, by his medical experiments, the painful death of many people. Some of these poor suffering souls still walk the halls of the Crescent. A nurse, in traditional white, pushes a gurney along the hall toward the morgue. Theodora walks the hallway near Room 419, sometimes telling the guests that she has cancer. Dr. Baker was eventually convicted of the fraud and sent to Leavenworth prison.
Room 218 is the place where young Michael, an Irish stonemason, fell to his death during the building of the Crescent. Ghostly Michael likes playing practical jokes, knocking on walls, turning on or off the television, and otherwise making himself known. One guest claims she awoke to see blood splattered on the wall in 218. There are many reports of haunting from other rooms at the Crescent. We stayed in 214 and experienced several unusual occurrences’, but no apparitions.
Ghost Tours Nightly
The Crescent Hotel offers Ghost Tours seven days a week. For the price of $18 per person, $7 for children under 12, you will be guided through the haunted hallways and told stories about the things seen and heard from the beyond. For more information go to Ghost Tours at the 1886 Crescent Hotel.
Visit From The Ghost Hunters
The October 19, 2005, episode of the Ghost Hunters television show featured the Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs. The crew discovered supernatural activity and even filmed an apparition in the basement of the hotel where Dr. Baker carried out his gruesome explorations on human bodies. Fans of the show voted that episode to one of the most scary.