The Haunted Banff Springs Hotel: Alberta, Canada

The Banff Springs Hotel is a stunning luxury Hotel located within the Rocky Mountains in Alberta, Canada, just above the Bow Falls, close to thermal springs. It has an amazing view and is just beautiful to look at. It was built between spring 1887 and spring 188 by the Canadian Pacific Railway at the instigation of its president, William Cornelius Van Horne between the spring of 1887 and the spring of 1888.

Banff Springs Hotel is also believed by many to be haunted. It has been told that a woman dressed in her wedding gown died on the hotel’s staircase. There were candles on the staircase as she walked up them, and this caused her dress to suddenly cause fire. She panicked, tripped, fell down the stairs, and broke her neck. Many people have reported seeing her ghost in full wedding attire, often dancing around in the hotel’s ballroom. The hotel’s staff have also reported that they heard noises and voices coming from the bridal suite while there were no guests staying in that room. People have also seen the ghost of the woman on the stairs with her dress caught on fire, right before she vanishes before their eyes. Many guests have also reported feeling a chilly breeze as they walk up the stairs where the bride had fallen.

The hauntings in this hotel, however, goes even further. There was one room in the hotel, room 873, which was so haunted that it had to be closed off. It is now missing from the hotel and can’t be used by guests. The space between room 872 and room 874 is closed wall, but if you knock on the wall you can hear it’s hollow as the room still lies beyond the wall. As the story goes, decades ago a family was killed in this room – a man, a woman and a little girl. After this tragedy the room was cleaned up and guests were allowed to use it again. Guests would fall asleep in the room only to be awoken by hollow screams. When they turned on the lights they would find handprints on the mirrors inside the room. By the time the staff got to the room to see what is going on, the prints would have vanished. In efforts to cover up the whole thing it was decided that the room should be sealed off. The door was removed and the opening covered with drywall to match the rest of the hallway. The hotel employees are forbidden to speak of the room when questioned, which is disturbing and makes it hard not to believe the story.

As if that wasn’t enough, another ghost is also believed to roam the hotel, though this one is by far the most popular. It is the ghost of Sam McAuley. Sam was a bellman in the hotel who loved the place. It is remembered that Sam retired several times but always came back to work at the hotel. He always promised that he would come back to haunt the hotel if he should die. He died in 1976, and shortly after a bellman matching Sam’s description mysteriously appeared to help two women locked out of their room. Sam was also seen walking through a wall by another hotel guest. Elevator doors opening and closing at random times is reportedly Sam’s favourite way of saying hello. It is believed that his favourite place to haunt and help guests is the 9th floor, but anytime guests attempt to tip him or to talk to him, the ghost of Sam will vanish.

Many people don’t believe in ghosts or hauntings of any kind and would not concern themselves with ghost stories. Further, the Banff Springs Hotel officially denies that they are haunted in any way. The hotel remains a popular tourist destination to this day.

Is the hotel is really haunted? I wouldn’t know, but if I ever visit Canada I would love to stay there, just for interest’s sake.

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