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Hotel Del Coronado: Some Like it Haunted

Go To The Hotel's Web 
  Site Where: 1500 Orange Avenue [map], Coronado, CA, United States, 92118
March 1, 2005 at 5:58 PM | by | ()

[Publisher's Note: As with all good stories, the story of Hotel Del Coronado changes depending on the storyteller. Our new Beverly Hills based HotelChatter correspondent juliana adds her take below--check out the related links on the next page, for additional Hotel Del stories]

The Hotel Del Coronado, nicknamed "The Del," sits on the water's edge of Coronado Island in San Diego. The hotel is old. Like really old. Like built in 1888 old, which for Southern California is practically pre-historic. However, the huge Victorian hotel has undergone several renovations, including one in 2001 that cost an estimated $55 million. Today, The Del which is owned by KSL Resorts, has practically everything that an "all-ages" beach resort can offer including a spa and fitness center, four different accommodations buildings (the original part of the Victorian hotel, the oceanfront Towers and Cabanas, the beachfront Cottages and the private villa, the Beach House), activities and lots of shops and restaurants. In addition, all rooms have been fully wired to current 21st century standards.

For even those only slightly interested in history, The Del has still kept much of its original structure and one can almost imagine perfectly what the hotel looked like at the turn of the 19th century especially when wandering through the front lobby with its dark wood paneling, carpeted hallways and probably one of the oldest-working elevators.

The Del also boasts an impressive roster of famous visitors The movie, "Some Like it Hot" with Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon, was filmed there.

The Wizard of Oz author, Frank L. Baum, loved The Del and was a frequent guest. Every president since Lyndon B. Johnson has stayed at the hotel and even European royalty, England's Prince of Wales visited in 1920.

Now, The Del is a national landmark and like anything that old, the hotel comes with a few ghosts. One in particular is Kate Morgan. In 1892, this young woman checked into the hotel under a fake name, stayed for a few days, then killed herself outside the back entrance to the hotel. Throughout the years, guests who stay in the room she occupied during her short visit have complained about some unsettling disturbances. The lights will go on and off. The television will turn itself on. The phone will inexplicably ring off the hook. The doors slam. An especially freaky occurrence is the constant indentation on a pillow as if someone's head is resting there. Even after the pillow is shaken and fluffed, the indentation remains.

A few guests have even reported seeing her walking along the beach and in the hotel hallways.

The Del has made Kate Morgan's ghost a sort of hotel mascot. In the bookstore, on the website, and even on the hotel's own in-house television channel, they play up Kate Morgan's ghost. Case in point: The hotel has published an entire book about Kate Morgan, "Beautiful Stranger: The Ghost of Kate Morgan and the Hotel Del Coronado."

If you want to check out whether the ghost is real or not, the hotel is offering a special from now until March 15 where if you stay two nights, you get the third night free. But that doesn't guarantee you a peaceful night's sleep.

Related Stories:
·   Hotel Haunted [HotelChatter]
·   Hotel Del Coranado: The Facts Of Life [HotelChatter]
·   Hotel Del Reviews [TripAdvisor]

Archived Comments:

Re: Hotel Del Coronado: Some Like it Haunted

i find this story very interesting, i haven't been to the Del for years but i really want to go back now and peek around.

just thought i'd also point out that the del was built around the turn of the 20th century, not the 19th century.

Re: Hotel Del Coronado: Some Like it Haunted

The Hotel del Coronado was built in 1887, and opened its doors in February 1888.