By Logan Hawkes
Candles blowing out on their own, dishes breaking with no one around, eerie ghostly appearances, and things that go bump in the night, these are things that make for great ghost stories. And who doesn't love a good ghost story?
With the summer season quickly winding down many of us are already thinking about the coming fall. With any luck that means cooler nights, Friday night football, and, oh yes, October...the spookiest month of the year.
If it hasn't happened already, soon stores will stock their shelves with candy, costumes and assorted decorations to remind us Halloween is just around the corner. We can expect an uptick in horror and Halloween movies and programs on TV and at the theater. Some of us will buy a pumpkin or two for carving and more than a few might even schedule a visit to a local horrorfest or commercial haunted house attraction.
Yes, many look forward to zombie walks and costume parties, candy corn and face paint. And among us are those that will enjoy seeing or hearing about spooky places. Some of us may actually plan a special trip or visit to one of these scary places or events.
How many times have you promised yourself that one October night sooner or later you might actually spend the night in a real haunted house or hotel? After all, Texas is full of such places, and while most haunted houses are not open to the public, finding a hotel known for ghostly events and haunted rooms is not really that hard. From the haunted Menger Hotel and Gunter Hotel in San Antonio, the Driskill Hotel in Austin and the Jefferson Hotel in Jefferson, an overnight stay in a haunted hotel is fairly easy to arrange for those daring enough to take part in a ghostly adventure.
Standing in front of the modern day version of the historic Hotel Galvez on the seawall in Galveston, perhaps few people would be thinking about the haunts inside. For one the beautiful Wyndham property glistens in the coastal Texas sunlight and is full of modern amenities including a spa, a first class pool with a swim-up bar, elegant dining, a marvelous room and outdoor facilities for weddings and other events, and a great bar that tastefully captures modern and historic flavors in design and furnishings.
But for many who work at the hotel or who have spent time there in the past, the hotel plays host to more than just modern tourists in this getaway city. For over a century now the hotel has entertained the famous and near-famous, the average traveler and those looking for a classy gulfside resort. And it while checking in has always been easy, for some,checking out is not an potion. For inside this historic old landmark, spirits have been know to wander the halls, rattle the dishes in the kitchen, visit the rooms of many guests and otherwise make themselves known to modern-day travelers.
Or at least that is what many claim.
But this year, you get the chance to find out for yourself beginning September 1-October 31 every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday night when the Hotel Galvez offers a special event, the Hotel Galvez Ghost Tour, a guided one-hour tour of the historic building, culminating in a special dinner prepared for participants. (Story continues after photos below)
Modern-Day Hotel Galvez
Hotel Galvez in 1911
During the 104-year-old historic Texas hotel’s tour, the Hotel Galvez concierge will guide guests through the hotel’s ghostly past using popular ghost hunting tools to conduct a paranormal investigation. Guests will learn about the hotel’s “Ghost Bride” and other reported strange occurrences. The tour begins at 6 p.m. and will be followed by a three-course dinner at Galvez Bar & Grill at 7 p.m. The cost for the tour and dinner package is $45 per person.
“Guests will learn a bit of history of the hotel, hear and share ghost stories and enjoy a delicious dinner in the Galvez Bar & Grill, making for an evening of ghostly fun in Galveston,” said the hotel’s general manager, Steve Cunningham.
In addition to the tour and dinner event, the hotel will also offer a “Dinner with the Ghosts” overnight package, available Tuesday through Thursday starting at $259, which includes one night in a deluxe guest room following the event, plus a copy of “Haunted Galveston” by Amy Matsumoto. On Fridays, the hotel’s “Dinner with the Ghosts” event is exclusively available as an overnight package, starting at $289 and including a deluxe guest room, the ghost tour, dinner for two, valet parking and a copy of “Haunted Galveston” by Amy Matsumoto. Overnight packages are available to book online now.
To make a reservation for the ghost tour and dinner package, please contact the Galvez Bar & Grill at (409) 515-2154. To book the Dinner with the Ghosts overnight package, please visit www.HotelGalvez.com and see special offers.
About Hotel Galvez & Spa®
Hotel Galvez & Spa®, A Wyndham Grand® Hotel and National Trust Historic Hotel of America, is the only historic beachfront hotel on the Texas Gulf Coast. This 224-room, century-old hotel offers 13,000 square feet of meeting space, a 9,763-square-foot spa, fitness center, full-service restaurant, lobby bar, pool with a swim-up bar and Hall of History.
The hotel is rated four diamonds by AAA and is owned by the Cynthia and George Mitchell family as part of Mitchell Historic Properties. For reservations, call (800) WYNDHAM, or visit www.WyndhamHotelGalvez.com.