Haunted Stays II: Omni Parker House in Boston, Massachusetts

Omni Parker House, Boston

If the United States could call any city it’s birthplace, Boston, Massachusetts would be it. Frequently called, “The cradle of liberty,” Boston was home to two historic events that sparked the Revolution, the Boston Tea Party and the Boston Massacre. It would be fair to say without this city, there would be no United States of America. Also, without that same passion for freedom and desire for liberty there would be no ghosts. When it comes to hauntings in Boston, the elegant Omni Parker House could very well be this city’s most haunted hotel.

Although the building you see today was constructed in 1927, the original Omni Parker House was founded by Harvey Parker in 1855. Since it’s very beginning, The Omni has been at the center of Boston’s high society and can claim to have had several notable guests. Among it’s many famous visitors the Omni was headquarters for a collective of writers and poets known as the Saturday Club. Great literary figures such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Oliver Wendell Holmes would meet in the lobby and discuss literature and the events of the day. But perhaps the Omni’s greatest claim to fame, Massachusetts’ official dessert, the delectable Boston Cream Pie, was created here. The Omni Parker House has quite the history and great hauntings are born from great history.

Since its earliest days as a hotel for the famous and wealthy, there have been a number of reports from people having a brush with the other side. Shadowy apparitions and whispy phantoms are regularly witnessed roaming the halls of the hotel. Nevertheless, it wasn’t until the 1950s when the hotel’s most prominent ghost presented itself. The man who founded the hotel, Harvey Parker himself.

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The first known encounter with the founder’s ghost occurred in 1950. An elderly woman was returning to her room on the tenth floor when she received the fright of her life. When she rounded a corner, she came face to face with the transparent form of a man standing silently by room 1078. When the ghostly man turned to look at her, his features became more defined. She described him as heavy set with a black mustache and dressed in a suit common to men of wealth and privilege in the previous century. As the apparition faded away, she knew that she had just seen the ghost of Harvey Parker.

Many years later a second dramatic sighting would convince everyone who worked at the Omni that Harvey Parker was among them. A young girl who was staying in room 1012 was awakened in the middle of the night by a peculiar feeling. When her eyes focused, she could see a transparent man standing at the foot of her bed smiling down at her. Whoever this man was made her feel welcome and safe. Later, as her and her mother were eating breakfast, she identified her mysterious visitor as Harvey Parker from his portrait that hangs in the lobby.

Although the tenth floor appears to be the favorite haunt of the hotel’s founder, he is believed to be joined by other ghostly inhabitants. According to numerous people, the elevator is called to the 10th floor. When the door opens a bone chilling draft exits the elevator almost as if an unseen person just exited. Some have even claimed the draft moves through them leaving them with a sense of foreboding.

If you should stay at the Omni Parker House and want to hear the many ghost stories surrounding the building, try asking the security personnel. Many security guards have found themselves chasing the hotel’s many ghosts and strange lights through the halls only to have them vanish when they turn a corner. According to the security team, dealing with ghosts is just a part of the job.

Lastly, the most haunted area of the hotel is it’s older sections. According to bellmen and housekeeping staff, ghostly apparitions of men and women dressed in fine dining attire are seen walking through the area. Some staff have noted that these figures appear to be unaware of their surroundings leading psychical researchers to believe they are just an echo forever captured in time.

Local ghost hunters believe the Omni Parker House is a magnet for psychic activity. For whatever enigmatic reason, the hotel just seems to attract and retain paranormal entities. If this is true, Boston’s Omni Parker House is the place to go to experience the inexplicable and the unexplained in this great historic city.

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About Rick Hale 54 Articles
Rick Hale became interested in anomalous phenomenon at an early age after encountering an apparition in his grandparent's home. Rick is the author of "The Geek's Guide To The Strange and Unusual: Poltergeists, Ghost and Demons," and "Behold! Shocking True Tales Off Terror...And Some Other Spooky Stuff." Rick has been published in Haunted Times Magazine, Paranormal Underground Magazine, The Supernatural Magazine, Spookyisles.com and Legends Magazine. Rick appeared in Ghost Tapes 2 and Ghost Tapes: The Series found at YouTube.com.

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