The Stanley Hotel vs. The Overlook: The Real-Life Similarities and Differences
The Stanley Hotel is one of Colorado's most infamous locations, known for alleged paranormal activity and inspiring Stephen King's famous 1977 novel The Shining.
King developed the idea for his famous horror tale after spending a night at the Estes Park lodge in 1974. But does the Stanley Hotel actually live up to its terrifying fictional counterpart, the Overlook Hotel?
Let's find out.
Similarities Between the Stanley Hotel and the Overlook Hotel
King clearly took creative liberties when writing The Shining, but parts of his story are rooted in truth. According to Independent Travel Cats, the Stanley Hotel did close for the winter due to a lack of central heating until 1983, leaving it deserted for months at a time — just like the Overlook (hotel caretakers are a real thing too).
Screenrant.com reports that King did receive service from a bartender named Grady, although the real-life Grady (likely) wasn't a murderous madman.
However, the publication notes that the Stanley Hotel is home to the iconic Room 217, and — at the time of the author's stay — the room did contain a clawfoot bathtub surrounded by a curtain.
Still, while the room gave King the creeps, his ghostly creations came from his imagination. Let's look at where the Stanley strays from the Overlook.
Differences Between the Stanley Hotel and the Overlook Hotel
For starters, nobody committed any murders in the Stanley Hotel. Aside from a fatal gas explosion in 1911, the lodge saw a fairly peaceful existence. According to the hotel's website, owners Freelan and Flora Stanley enjoyed their mountain getaway and lived well into old age.
A second difference is that the Stanley Hotel did not have the famous hedge maze featured in The Shining film (although one is there now). In fact, popsugar.com reports that the movie wasn't filmed at the real Stanley at all.
Another controversial contrast is that there is no proof the hotel is even haunted...or is there? Check out some of the creepiest stories about the Stanley Hotel in the gallery below.