The Fenton Hotel
H aunted? Definitely. First, I want to recommend any desert on the menu from the Fenton Hotel restaurant. Second, while you’re eating your desert, you might feel like you are being envied by a presence you can’t see. That’s because the Fenton Hotel is most definitely haunted and Michigan’s Otherside has experienced it first hand.
The Fenton Hotel, in Fenton, Michigan was built in 1856. At over a century and a half old, this beautiful restaurant has a lot of secrets buried in its past. It seems not all of the guests have checked out and even the old caretaker and some of the former regulars are still enjoying the hotel to this day.
Sit and have a drink at the bar and ask any of the servers or bartenders about the ghostly happenings and each will have a story to share. There’s a man in a hat who sits at the bar and drinks whiskey, only he isn’t really there…or alive for that matter. There are also ghostly voices, phantom touches and objects moved by invisible hands reported.
While the first floor has been tastefully restored and decorated, the upper two floors have an entirely different look. They are run down and in neat of restoration, especially the third floor. We’ve investigated the Fenton a few times with the Grimstone Inc. crew and never left the place with doubts of a haunting in our minds.
The first time we visited, Grimstone was hosting Halloween ghost tours. The tours were sold out and people were everywhere. We waited for the tours to end before going upstairs to hopefully run into the spirits of the Fenton. Around midnight, we gathered up our equipment and headed upstairs.
Walking down the second floor hallway, peering into rooms with flashlights, we shined our beams on storage rooms filled with old plates and random junk they didn’t need anymore. One room in particular had a very disturbing look. For whatever reason, the bottom portion of the walls had been spray painted black. Nothing was stored in the room. I stuck my head into the room and jerked back instantly. If felt like I had hit a wall. It was the first time I had ever felt anything like that in my life in a haunted location –as if I had run into a wall that really wasn’t there…if that makes any sense.
I don’t believe everything psychics tell me, but the resident psychic that night stuck her head into the room and said it was a “sick room,” and that it had very negative energy stagnating inside of it.
Later on that night, we did some EVP work in the “sick room”. We sat in there for a while, flashlights off, recorders going and asked some questions out loud to the air around us. We got spooked when a shadow went past the door in the hallway. Even paranormal investigators get startled sometimes, so we packed up and headed out of the room. My boyfriend Scott tries to deny it to this day, but he was walking so fast to get out of that hallway, I’m pretty sure he would have left me to the devices of the shadowy figure.
The Third Floor
The third floor is the scariest part of the whole building. It’s in very poor condition but gives the best glimpse into the past when the place was operating as a hotel. Rooms have antique wallpaper peeling away, exposing the rotting wood beneath it. Old bathroom fixtures hang from walls and even parts of the floor are caving in. It’s one of those areas that even if you were told unicorns and fairies lived up there, you’d still be creeped out to be up there.
I’ve never in my seven years working with my good friend and fellow paranormal investigator Tom Maat, heard him say he was scared to walk around a haunted place by himself, but he said that about the third floor of the Fenton. Tom has always been able to “sense” things and whatever resides on the third floor, Tom felt it was extremely negative. It’s been said by a few psychics that there’s a downright evil “something” lurking on that floor. It keeps the other spirits of the hotel trapped and brings in new ones through a vortex. Sound far fetched? Well, remember you are visiting a website devoted to paranormal occurrences, so don’t roll your eyes just yet. Regardless of what the psychics feel, every one of us who have been there has had something strange happen. When the whole wait staff and an army of paranormal investigators have all felt something, you just might have yourself an officially haunted place.
Learn more about the history of the Fenton Hotel at their website.
From news I heard, it sounds like the Fenton doesn’t want anything to do with their ghosts anymore so no open investigations will probably be happening there again. It is now called the Fenton Hotel Tavern and Grille.