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Interview with The Stanley Hotel Guest Services Agent Lindsay Harding
A) The Stanley Hotel offers a variety of unique historical and paranormal experiences for guests. Built in 1909, The Stanley retains the original architectural and decorative charm popular in the early 1900’s. Guests will feel like they are stepping back in time when they pass through our doors, except with the convenience of modern amenities. Also, the Stanley is considered one of the most haunted hotels in America, so guests visiting the hotel are welcome to investigate the paranormal and even have the option of booking one of our very highly sought after "haunted rooms."
Q) Can you explain what makes your location appealing to travelers as a vacation destination?
A) The Stanley Hotel is located in the gorgeous mountain village of Estes Park. With panoramic views, rivaling the best in Colorado, and close proximity to Rocky Mountain National Park, The Stanley’s location is ideal for anyone looking for a short getaway or week-long vacation. Also, the hotel is nestled directly above Estes Park’s main street, a mere 10 minute walk or 2 minute drive. The Stanley even offers a variety of concierge services to assist you plan any activities you may enjoy during your stay in Estes Park.
Q) Are there any “must-try” dishes or drinks at the resort that guests should order?
A) Here at The Stanley, we feature our Cascades Restaurant and Whiskey Bar, famous for the largest selection of whiskeys in the state of Colorado. With a menu headed by James Beard Award-winning chef, Rich Beichner, Cascades is consistently ranked as a top restaurant on the Front Range. Guests dining at our restaurant would be savvy to sample the phenomenal Smoked Pheasant Chowder. A favorite among guests, this delectable dish features a genius collaboration of smoked pheasant, wild rice, oloroso sherry and fresh cream. Another “must-try” for carnivores would be our mouth-watering Angus steaks. Harvested fresh from the MacGregor Ranch, located right behind the hotel, our steaks are guaranteed to satisfy all who yearn for red meat. For vegetarians, we offer a menagerie of delectable options, such as the unrivaled Pecan Crusted Winter Squash. From our famous Whiskey Bar, guests will be delighted with the elaborate selection of whiskeys and signature drinks alike. The ‘Bacon Bloody Mary’ and our signature ‘Red Rum Punch’ are guest favorites, and definitely a “must-try” for all those 21 & over who visit the hotel.
Q) What are the three things about your property that guests may not know?
A) There are many bits of information guests may not know about The Stanley before they arrive. For instance, The Stanley Hotel was built in 1909 by F.O. Stanley, co-inventor of the Stanley Steamer. Secondly, the hotel was originally painted a mustard yellow, but was repainted during WWII to its current whitewash color. Thirdly, it is a common misconception that the movie, The Shining, was filmed here at The Stanley. While Steven King stayed here and the hotel served as a muse for his best-selling novel, the movie featuring Jack Nicholson was not filmed here. However, Steven King did buy the rights back to the screenplay and produced The Shining mini-series in 1995, which was filmed almost in its entirety here at The Stanley and around Estes Park.
Q) Can you take me through what a guests stay would be like and what an average day might entail in terms of activities, etc?
A) Whether you choose to sleep in and order room-service, or wake up to a sunrise hike, from the time you start your day here at The Stanley, the hotel and town are bustling with activity. Guests are encouraged to sample from the extensive breakfast menu at our Cascades restaurant, or if you are a guest of our Lodge, enjoy the complimentary continental breakfast hand-prepared by our very own inn keeper, Midge. After breakfast, guests can catch up on their Stanley history by taking one of our famous Stanley tours. Not only will you get to tour the grounds and the hotel itself, but your tour guide will transport you through time as you learn about the grand history of the hotel as well as the paranormal stories associated with our history. After the tour, guests would be wise to stop by our Steamer’s Café for a light lunch. And whether you wish to spend the afternoon lounging by our sun-drenched pool, or having a relaxing massage at the spa, The Stanley Hotel offers many ways to entertain adults and children alike. Another wonderful activity for the afternoon is making the short jaunt into town and walking along the main strip, enjoying the quaint shops and riverwalk. After a satisfying dinner at our Cascades or at one of the many downtown restaurants, the next ‘must-do’ activity is participating in one of our night tours, such as the Night Ghost Tour, which takes you all over the grounds under the cloak of darkness while your tour guide immerses you in the mystical and paranormal dimensions of the hotel. After your choice of nightly fun, return to your room and relax in our luxurious beds and drift back off to sleep.
Q) Have you had any notable guests or celebrities visit that you can share?
A) From Jim Carrey to John McCainn, The Stanley is never at a shortage of celebrity guests. Most recently, there was a certain celebrity couple who had their wedding here on the property, guests included the likes of Amy Poehler, Jon Stewart, Amber Tamblyn and Stephen Colbert.
Q) What elements about your property are truly luxurious?
A) From the time you enter the door, guests will be charmed by the historic opulence of The Stanley Hotel. With grand Georgian style architecture, the very nature of the hotel boasts luxury. Our updated guest rooms, like our lavish Superior Kings, are located on the front corners of the hotel and come outfitted with grand 4-poster king-sized beds and sumptuous Concerto bedding, and boast gorgeous mountain views. Need to relax? Come spend a day in our on-site spa, have an extravagant meal at our restaurant Cascades, or order from an extensive selection of wines and just enjoy a night in your plush suite.
Q) What advice do you have for guests who are staying at your resort?
A) Advice for guests staying at The Stanley would be to always pack at least one outfit for either warm or cold weather (whichever is the opposite of that expected in the current season). Here in the Rockies, weather can change at the drop of a hat. Come prepared to have a fun, relaxing stay, and never be afraid to consult with the front desk or concierge if there is anything about your stay we could possibly make more enjoyable!
Q) What is the best time to travel to property?
A) The summer months are ideal for a visit to The Stanley. Not only is the weather gorgeous, but Estes Park is buzzing with activities and life. From a simple hike or picnic in the park, to taking a famous Stanley Tour, June through October is idyllic for indoor/outdoor activities.