The Garrett Hotel
The historic GARRETT HOTEL was built in 1925 by local entrepreneur
and businessman, Jesse Richard (J.R.) Garrett. A luxury hotel that
rivaled any in bigger cities, it was the pinnacle of refinement and
good taste. Originally built to accommodate travelers of the commuter
railway, it was the perfect complement to The Richard Theatre, a wildly
successful vaudevillian theatre also built by Garrett. The hotel was
host to many guests, civilian and celebrity alike. Many famous
performers made it their home away from home including Abbott and
Costello, the Hope Brothers and Doris Day. The Garrett Hotel remained
hugely successful until J.R. Garrett’s untimely death in 1938.
After his demise, the hotel operated for another three years before
it ultimately closed.
The hotel remained closed for many years until the Town of Ahoskie
purchased it and began to operate it as a small business incubator.
The ground floor was renovated and modernized while the second and third
floors remain untouched. In the early 2000s, it was purchased by Tommy
Hurdle and Bobby Hoggard. The ground floor is now home to Tommy & Company
Hair Designs and The Hotel, a haunted attraction. There have been numerous
documented accounts of paranormal activity throughout the entire building,
with most of the activity occurring on the upper floors. Paranormal
ghost tours are regularly conducted in this area, with practically every
guest experiencing some unexplained occurences.
The Hotel Haunt
THE HOTEL began in 2017 as The Basement, a haunted house which was
located underground, in the basement of Ahoskie Town Hall. It debuted
as The Basement: Paranormal Activity, a lights-out themed haunt
based on ghostly occurrences within the Town Hall basement.
The haunt operated for three years as The Basement until 2020, when
it was unable to open due to the Covid Pandemic (which immediately
followed the Basement: Contagion theme!). In 2021, due to
repair work that needed to be done on the building, the haunt moved
out of the basement and into the Garrett Hotel, a national
historic landmark located just one block down the road from
The Basement location. Since the move
happened rather suddenly, the haunt wasn't able to be ready before
October 2021 so instead, the Halloween season welcomed the first
guests to the Garrett Hotel Ghost Tours. Work proceeded on the haunt
and it opened for the first time in the new location, as
Santa's Frightmare Factory, which was also our first Christmas
haunt, as well as the first one for the area.
In 2022, the haunt opens for the first Halloween season in the
Garrett Hotel where guests check out, but they never leave.