There's just something about hotels that makes them a perfect backdrop for eerie or frightening events. Perhaps because they fill up with strangers nightly, sleeping just a thin wall away from each other with unknown intentions and stories. Maybe the unease comes from making one's self at home in an unfamiliar place that may have seen unknown atrocities cleaned up by the staff. Whatever it is, the fascination with scary hotels isn't just a movie trope, but a popular tourist attraction for many. That's where the serial killer-themed hotel in Colorado comes in.
The place in question is The Black Monarch Hotel in Victor, CO, an old mining town's former brothel turned creepy destination for seekers of the morbid. The location languished for years until contractor Adam Zimmerli purchased the property and embraced its sinister roots in June 2019. From themed rooms to reports of an actual ghost roaming its halls, The Black Monarch Hotel has a long, interesting history that continues to fascinate the curious to this day.
- Photo: Ammar Saadiq/IndieGogo
The Hungarian Countess Elizabeth Báthory secured her macabre place in history by tormenting and slaying more than 600 women in the late 1500s and early 1600s. Báthory allegedly bathed in their blood to retain a youthful appearance. A trial found Báthory's co-conspirators and servants guilty, sentencing them to capital punishment while imprisoning the Countess in her living quarters at her Castle C̆achtice for the rest of her life. Many believe the accusations against Báthory to be slander propagated by those unhappy with a powerful woman, but the lore of her life continues to proliferate pop culture.
Indeed, the Countess has her own room at The Black Monarch, complete with a blood-red wall and a portrait of Báthory in the room. A taxidermy bat in front of a red backdrop also adorns the wall, as does an antelope skull. The bed has black sheer curtains surrounding it and dark bedding.
- Photo: The Black Monarch Hotel
HH Holmes - born Herman Mudgett - is often credited as the first serial killer discovered in the United States. In 1886, with his new name and a job as a pharmacist, Holmes moved to Chicago, where he built a custom home that included soundproofing to keep the screams of targets from reaching the outside world, as well as trap doors and rooms rigged with gas to asphyxiate his prisoners. Holmes lured women into his home and dispatched them. He also carried out fraud and enacted final vengeance on several of his partners and the loved ones of some of his targets. Holmes eventually confessed to 27 - and then to more than 130 - slayings, although scholars believe the real total closer to the 200 mark, if not higher.
The Holmes room at The Black Monarch Hotel includes drawings of his home and photographs of the perpetrator himself. Newspaper stories also decorate the room along with medical drawings and various odd antiques picked out by hotel owner Adam Zimmerli.
One Of The Rooms Is Based On Folklore Creature Black AnnisPhoto: Ammar Saadiq / IndieGogo
According to a May 2019 interview on Refinery29, Zimmerli decorated one of the four rooms at The Black Monarch Hotel based on a creature called Black Annis. According to folklore, Black Annis is "the bogeywoman of Leicester." Known by many names, Black Annis supposedly lived in a cave in Dane Hills that allowed her access to the woods as well as Leicester Castle and the Church of St. Mary de Castro. Annis would snatch up children, drain them of their blood, eat the meat from their bones, and then tan their hides for use as clothing and home decor.
An Old Miner Is Said To Haunt The Hotel
According to Zimmerli, ghosts have been a part of the building since he purchased it in 2018. The Black Monarch Hotel website speaks of bar fights gone wrong and the town of Victor hosting countless miners during the gold rush in the late 1800s; there was even a fire that swept away the entire city in 1899. It stands to reason that some hardships befell guests of the Monarch brothel, saloon, and casino during its heyday, leaving their spirits to roam the halls.
Townspeople claim that a miner lost his life in the building, leaving his ghostly form to walk the Monarch's halls for all eternity.