The hotel that inspired ‘The Shining’ lives in one of America’s most scenic cities

the stanley hotel

Are you a fan of “The Shining?” This 1980 film inspired by Stephen King’s novel of the same name has certainly gone down as one of the all-time horror classics. What you may not know is that the film’s Overlook Hotel has roots in the real world. In fact, it’s based on the Stanley Hotel, located right here in Estes Park. 

You Can Pay a Visit to the Scene of Inspiration

If you are staying in Estes Park or nearby Boulder, you can pay a visit to the real-life scene of one of Stephen King’s most famous inspirations. The Stanley Hotel is open for business and ready to accommodate you. You can even stay in Room 217, one of the most infamous “haunted” hotel rooms in all of horror literature. 

It was while staying at the Stanley in that very same Room 217 that King claimed to have had a nightmare that inspired the writing of “The Shining.” In his bad dream, he saw his child being chased by a demonic fire hose presumably animated by evil spirits. After reflecting on the nightmare, he then began to write his famous novel. 

The Stanley is a Historic and Haunted Property

The Stanley was founded in 1909 by F.O. Stanley, a millionaire who made his fortune in the steam engine trade. It was soon a famous Colorado ski resort that played host to many of the world’s most famous celebrities. These included Theodore Roosevelt, the Emperor and Empress of Japan, and a legion of Hollywood movie stars.

Of course, the hotel also soon became well known for its apparently haunted nature. It is true that the design of the place has definitely given rise to more than its share of spooky associations. The property is full of long, seemingly endless, and somewhat badly lit hallways that really do seem to recede into boundless infinity. 

One of the most interesting — and most legendarily haunted — areas of the hotel is its great grand staircase. This is an area that has long been considered a focal point for various ghostly appearances. It’s lined with a series of old framed paintings that give off unsettling reflections that always seem to add to the haunted effect. 

Another area to note is the series of hallways near the old maid’s quarters on the fourth floor. This is an area that is reputed to be haunted by a series of spirits that seem to take the appearance of frolicking children. Whatever the truth is, one thing is for sure: The Stanley definitely has more than its share of ghostly appeal. 

While the Stanley was not actually used for filming in Kubrick’s version of “The Shining”, it did play a major part in Stephen King’s own 1990s-era adaptation of his novel. Since the property is still very much open for business, you can come to the site and judge for yourself just how accurate the portrayal really was. 

Find the Stanley Hotel and Other Prime Estes Park Properties

If you want to find this famous hotel as well as plenty of other prime properties, let us know. Estes Park Team Realty is here to help you find the home of your dreams in the place you most want to live in. We can assist you to find the property that best suits your budget, expectations, and personal style. 

Here at Estes Park Team Realty, customer service and being a resource about all-things Estes Park is our priority. We have the knowledge, skills, and experience to make sure that you find the perfect home in our beautiful mountain town. Take a look at some amazing homes that Estes Park has to offer.