Lonely Planet Writer

Stay in a serial killer-themed room at Colorado’s ‘horror hotel'

If you have steady nerves and the idea of staying somewhere with a bit of dark history and a ghost or two appeals, you may enjoy a self-proclaimed “horror hotel” that has just re-opened in Victor, Colorado. The Black Monarch Hotel is a historic property-turned-boutique hotel, that served as a casino, saloon and brothel called the Monarch in the bustling gold-mining town during the Gold Rush.

The Black Monarch Hotel in Victor, Colorado.
The Black Monarch Hotel is a historic property-turned boutique hotel, in Colorado. Image: The Black Monarch Hotel

Located 46 miles southwest of Colorado Springs, the hotel features themed rooms and has a decadent, Victorian Gothic design aesthetic. The rooms are themed after serial killers, Elizabeth Bathory and H.H. Holmes, and are filled with curiosities, taxidermy, oddities and trinkets. During the Gold Rush, the Monarch played host to debauched parties and international travellers, accumulating a Wild West lore.

A bedroom at The Black Monarch Hotel in Colorado.
The rooms are themed after serial killers Elizabeth Bathory and H.H. Holmes. Image: The Black Monarch Hotel

The Monarch was rebuilt after a major fire in 1899, but ghostly occurrences have been reported since then. The former saloon is said to be haunted by a miner who died there in a gunfight. Those working in the hotel bar after hours have reported strange sights that they could not explain. In recent years, various parties have woken in the night to hear a woman laughing and the sounds of men shouting at each other.

Mugs and glasses at The Black Monarch Hotel.
The rooms are filled with curiosities, taxidermy, oddities and trinkets. Image: The Black Monarch Hotel

“Perhaps it was the ghost of the miner whose life was cut short. Perhaps it was the spirits of weary madams or ladies of the night who witnessed the vivid spectrum of humanity within its walls,” the hotel says by way of explanation. “Perhaps it was just the settling of a beautiful old Victorian building.”

A bedroom at The Black Monarch Hotel in Colorado.
The bedrooms are themed after serial killers Elizabeth Bathory and H.H. Holmes. Image: The Black Monarch Hotel

Adam Zimmerli, owner of the Black Monarch since 2018, is a creative entrepreneur who plans to hold events there featuring burlesque, circus performers, and even unconventional weddings in the near future. Thanks to its Gothic vibe, many photography, video and art projects have already taken place at the hotel.

For further information, check out the hotel’s website here.