Ghost of a Chance: Exploring Haunted Casinos
By Alex J. Coyne © 2017 for Gifts for Card Players
As a horror author I’ve always loved a good, bone-chilling ghost story; that got me to thinking about the world’s haunted casinos where there might be poltergeists at the poker table, kelpies playing Keno and spirits playing slots. Here’s what we could find about the haunted casinos of the world – would you visit them and take the chance of going gambling amongst some ghosts?
Saratoga Springs, NY
Canfield Casino was built by John Morrissey and stands as one of the city’s historical monuments; currently, it’s owned and run by the City of Saratoga Springs. If our research is right, this could be one of the most haunted casinos out there and definitely one worth visiting for would-be ghoulie, ghostie or long-leggedy beastie enthusiasts.
Reports of weird goings-on at the Canfield are plenty, including reports in and on the Saratogian, Saratoga-Springs.org, Saratoga.com and HauntedPlaces.org; sources note weird happenings like a ghostly woman dressed in Victorian garb, patrons being unexpectedly slapped – maybe, we’d guess, only the slightly rude ones – and a smell of cigar smoke with no obvious origin.
TV ghost-hunting team GhostHunters visited the Canfield in 2010 for their episode “Time to get Touched” – that’s Season 6, Episode 18.
Luxor Hotel and Casino
Las Vegas, Nevada
There are many reports of the Luxor Hotel and Casino being haunted; more specifically, ghosts are said to frequent the Luxor Hotel and Casino’s Titanic Exhibit, which features several items rescued from the famed sunken vessel. Its supposed haunting has gotten mentions in publications and websites like the LA Times, Premier Exhibitions and LA Review Journal – yes, there’s also a tour (reported by LA Review Journal in 2012), though at the time of writing (2017) there was no mention of this tour on the Luxor Hotel and Casino’s official website.
To add to the creepy air, a spooky review was posted by a user on TripAdvisor.com in February 2010 who insisted that room 19207 was haunted. The review was subsequently re-posted by several blogs and websites.
Haunted or not? You decide.
Bullock Hotel and Casino
Deadwood, South Dakota
Bullock Hotel and Casino, named after Deadwood’s first sheriff and built in 1886, is reported to house many ghosts and paranormal oddities, including – according to their official website – showers that turn on and off by themselves (a haunting classic, of course!) and that items move around by themselves. It is said to be haunted by the ghost of the sheriff who died on September 23, 1919 in Deadwood (from colon cancer).
YouTube users have reported their own anomalies while filming and, yes, they offer an official ghost tour: You can find out more about that by contacting the Bullock Hotel directly. (Come on, the town is named Deadwood. Of course they’ll need a ghost tour.)
Directories of the Weird
Going on your own ghost hunt? Here are some directories of the weird.
Geocaching.com user The Moofia Mob has a handy online list called the Haunted Vegas Series listing some reportedly haunted casino and hotels of Vegas. A blog piece on Casino.org notes the supposed most haunted casino locations of the world. MagicalVegas.com and HauntedPoker.com both list more haunted casinos and hotels. You can visit HauntedPlaces.org for more information on a wide range of worldwide haunting sites not limited to casinos.
Tell us your ghost tale in the comments!