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The Black Monarch Hotel. Photo courtesy of Cait Falc

Would You Stay at a Murder Hotel in Victor?

Find out how a Denver developer created the Black Monarch's spooky aesthetic.

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If you want to create an atmosphere that’s both creepy and comfortable, referencing the right murderers is paramount. Just ask Adam Zimmerli, owner of the Monarch, an 1899 property he’s transformed into a boutique hotel. Zimmerli drew inspiration from Elizabeth Báthory, a 16th-century Hungarian noblewoman who purportedly butchered hundreds, and H.H. Holmes, who in the 1890s ran the “Murder Castle” in Chicago—outwardly sophisticated icons with chilling secrets, like the Monarch itself. Located in Victor, a small town southwest of Colorado Springs, the two-story structure was originally home to a casino, saloon, and brothel. Rumor has it the building is haunted, too. In 2018, Zimmerli, a Denver hotel developer, saw its dark potential: Preserved Victorian Gothic elements, such as oak staircases with carved railings, provided ghoulish bones, and Zimmerli added grisly decor, including a kitten preserved in a snow globe (don’t worry, it died naturally). There’s one suite dedicated to Báthory and one to Holmes. The two other rooms aren’t named for specific killer—but black walls still drive home the spooky vibe in what’s now fittingly called the Black Monarch Hotel. Rooms start at $90 per night.

Photo credit: Saadiq Creations/Courtesy of Black Monarch Hotel
Photo credit: Saadiq Creations/Courtesy of Black Monarch Hotel

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