Don’t take that left turn in Albuquerque, instead spend a night in a luxurious haunted hotel in the land of enchantment. You might even run into a couple of restless spirits. The Hotel Parq Central is a beautiful hotel, but it also harbors a much more sinister past. A former sanitarium, ghosts wander the halls just as they would have in life. Join us today on Ghost to Coast where we explore the history and hauntings of this legendary hotel in Albuquerque, NM.
The building now known as the Hotel Parq Central was originally built in 1924 to be used as a medical hospital, known as the Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad Hospital. It primarily served the health needs of employees of the railroad, centrally located enough for employees to be treated when necessary. It went through several name changes, such as the Memorial Hospital in the 1980s when it was converted into a psychiatric hospital. The bloody and terrifying past certainly lends itself to ghostly activity.
Hauntings in this building began even before it was a hotel. Patients reported having their sheets violently pulled off their hospital beds with an unseen force. A woman’s ghost is said to stand in one of the hallways, silently watching those going by. Patients mistook her for an employee on a few occasions and when they turned away, she’d disappear suddenly, with no explanation for her departure or where she went. Some patients, after leaving the hospital, reported nightmares and panic attacks from their ghostly experiences in the hospital. Even employees reported the haunting occurrences such as having someone whisper in your ear and seeing nothing to explain it, heavy objects in the hospital moving seemingly at will, and of course- flickering lights like every good haunted hotel.
Ghost hunters especially love the Hotel Parq Central for the abundance of paranormal evidence captured during investigations. One group experienced cold spots and the sense of someone watching them, and even collected some EVPs (Electronic Voice Phenomenon) of the voices of potential ghosts, still stuck in the hospital where they presumably took their final breath.
Eventually in 2010, millions of dollars were poured into the closed psychiatric hospital to turn it into a luxurious hotel with the best accommodations money could buy. With 74 rooms, the hotel is opulent with high ceilings, modern furnishing and amenities. It features a garden park, a dining plaza, and a popular rooftop bar with picturesque views of the city of Albuquerque. It includes a day spa and complimentary luxury SUV transportation within a 3 mile radius of the hotel. You wouldn’t even be able to tell that the building was formerly a place of sickness, death, and tragedy, and the mentally unwell who were treated and helped.
You can still experience hauntings today, the ghosts didn’t seem to mind the renovation of their slice of the afterlife. Sheets are still reported being tugged or pulled off by unseen hands. The woman on the 3rd floor still watches as guests bustle around the hotel and to their rooms in the late hours. It would take a brave person to stay the night in the former hospital, but at least the amenities might be enough to offset the paranormal activity around the hotel.
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Born in Death Valley and raised on the prairie, Deborah is a Wyoming-based paranormal researcher and a senior at the University of Wyoming, studying Communication. Her interests lie in folklore, history, rhetorical analysis and research. With an obvious love for ghost stories, frequently those interests combine with her work on Ghostlandia.