We are fortunate to be able to get into the Hotel Savoy in Kansas City for our next Meetup since they have never let a paranormal team investigate this location. This building has had a huge amount of paranormal activity in over 125 years and there are many murders, rapes, suicides throughout this time period. We will have investigators from our R.I.P. TV SHOW to conduct this amazing event. If you would like to book a room at the Hotel Savoy for the night you can call[masked], the rooms have been remodeled to look like the early 1900's and are awesome and includes free breakfast. Please let them know you are there for this event. Rooms are going fast so make your reservation asap. Check out the history of this place and also do your own research about the hauntings in this historical location. We will be breaking into teams and investigating the hot spots throughout the Hotel. You must be 16 or older to attend. Don't miss out on this awesome event.
A Brief History of a Kansas City Landmark
by Valerie Lee
With Kansas City's building boom, population growth, and prosperity of the late 1800's, luxury hotels became very popular. The Hotel Savoy was built on the corner of Ninth and Central streets in 1888 by the Arbuckle Brothers of the Arbuckle Coffee Company. It offered turn-of-the-century elegance to political and stage personalities as well as cattlemen, grain merchants and travelers heading west. Architects for the building were S.E. Chamberlain and Van Brunt & Howe. The original east wing was constructed in 1888. In 1903, it was remodeled and the west wing was added along with The Savoy Grill dining room. Imported marble and tile, brass fixtures and stained glass are some of the original features of the hotel decor. Art Nouveau style stained glass in the skylight was designed in Kansas City by Frank Anderson for the hotel lobby.
At the turn of the century, The Savoy was the first hotel seen by travelers as they came from the old Union Depot. It was a luxury hotel, with a rooftop garden, ballroom, Italian tile floors, marble walls, a stained glass skylight and carved oak woodwork. During those early years, The Hotel Savoy served such celebrities as Teddy Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, Marie Dressler, W.C. Fields, Will Rogers, Lillian Russell, Sara Bernhardt, and John D. Rockefeller.
In 1903, The Savoy Grill dining room opened, with an exclusive Men's Grill that did not serve women. That restriction was soon changed. In the early years, The Savoy's clientele dined on such delicacies as prairie chicken and buffalo steak. After the dinner hour, tables were pushed aside for music and dancing late into the evening.
Over the years, The Hotel Savoy's most enduring feature has been The Savoy Grill restaurant. Dating from 1903, it is the oldest restaurant in Kansas City, with stained glass windows, high beamed ceilings, lanterns that were once gaslights, and an enormous carved oak bar. Booth No. 4, known as the presidents' booth, has been host to Warren Harding, Harry S. Truman, Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan.
The original Grill Room is surrounded by The Savoy Murals, painted by Edward Holslag in 1903 when he was in his early thirties. Those murals depict the pioneers' departure from Westport Landing and their journey along the Santa Fe Trail. Holslag, who was a pupil of The National Academy of Design and John LaFarge, is represented at the Congressional Library in Washington, D.C. The Savoy Grill Murals have been included in the Smithsonian Institution's "Bicentennial Inventory of American Paintings."
The Hotel Savoy and its well-known dining room enjoyed the fruits of Kansas City's business boom through the late 1890's and into the turn of the century. With the depression era of the 1930's, and later the trend toward suburban living, came hard times for The Savoy. The hotel was in a serious decline by 1960 when Don Lee, a 27 year old member of a vetern restaurant family, purchased The Savoy Grill restaurant. In 1965, Lee became convinced that The Hotel Savoy had economic potential and purchased it from Jack Fox, an investor and member of a family active in the downtown garment industry. When Lee bought the hotel, in part to safeguard his restaurant lease, The Savoy was in bad condition. It was using only approximately 80 of its 200 rooms, mostly for transient guests.
By the 1970's, The Savoy Grill was experiencing good business and The Hotel Savoy had become a residential hotel. On December 30, 1974, The Hotel Savoy and The Savoy Grill were entered in the National Register of Historic Places, indicating that The Savoy was considered worthy of preservation. In the mid 1980's, the area along Ninth Street was revived. Investors began developing older buildings into residential and entertainment centers.In 1985, Don Lee began renovating The Hotel Savoy, turning existing rooms into luxurious Bed and Breakfast suites. Each room is finished in Victorian turn-of-the-century style, uniquely decorated and filled with antiques from within the hotel. Because of The Savoy's historical appeal, recent movies such as "Mr. and Mrs. Bridge" and "Cross of Fire" have filmed scenes here.
During renovation of the hotel, old letters and artifacts have been found. These items narrate The Savoy's legacy. For example, a paper decribed how the famed magician, Harry Houdini, was locked in a Savoy phone booth by a clever traveling salesman. A 1938 recording of "Stompin' at the Savoy," by Bennie Goodman and Count Basie, was located and now hangs in The Savoy's Bed and Breakfast dining room. Letters from the Prohibition era were found. The Savoy, being in Missouri, helped people who wanted liquor in Kansas. A letter from a Kansas real estate, loan and insurance man read: "Kindly send me the good stuff. I am laying in a little supply before the (national) bone dry law goes into effect." The Savoy shipped him four quarts of Sherwood Rye. This luxurious hotel was constructed in the year 1888 by the brothers that owned and operated the Arbuckle Coffee Company. It was designed with the socially elite in mind. This magnificent structure incorporated a garden on the roof of the building, tile floors designed by the Italians, an exquisite ballroom, and more. It is said that notable personalities such as Teddy Roosevelt, W.C Fields, and John D. Rockefeller resided at the Hotel Savoy at one point or another of the history of the building. If you are interested in haunted places in Missouri, you will enjoy the paranormal activity that is said to occur in this structure.
The first spirit that is said to haunt the Hotel Savoy is a lady that is known as "Betsy Ward". Betsy was a resident at the hotel and passed away while in the bathtub. Many believe that she passed away due to a sudden heart attack. There are many that state that she did not die in the tub, she actually died while in bed in the room. Her room number was "505". Witnesses have observed the show turning on and off all by itself in the room, and have heard music coming from inside the room when there was no person inside to have been responsible. In addition to these incidents, doors on the inside of the room have been opened seemingly on their own. In a renovation that occurred within the room, a gun was found to be sealed within the wall. All of these events contribute to the haunting tales of the room.
On the fourth floor of this haunted place in Missouri, there is an incident in which witnesses observed what appeared to be a full body apparition of a man who had passed away, identified as "Mr. Lightner". The witness account took place in the latter part of 1987. An individual who was taking the widow, Mrs. Lightner, a little bit of sugar as requested heard her speaking to someone. A neighbor of the widow was with the neighbor. When the door opened, they were both quite amazed to witness a full body apparition of a man that appeared to be dressed in attire that was common in the 1930s. The spirit saw them and simply vanished right before their eyes. It was then that the widow expressed the fact that it was her deceased husband that they had just witnessed.
When it comes to haunted places in Missouri, there are many rumors, legends, and myths floating around. However, in the case of the Hotel Savoy, witnesses who actually observed the spirits in the room are still available to relay their stories. Many strange phenomenons have taken place in the hotel. In one such incident, a man that was employed by the hotel often found his belongings spread out and disorganized - despite the fact that he had them put away and organized. He often experienced extreme cold in the night hours and an occasional cold spot during the day. He often expressed the fact that he knew that he was not alone, and it was suspected that it was the deceased Fred Lightner as the man was the same neighbor that took the widow some sugar.
In addition to this, several other types of phenomenon have occurred within this haunted hotel. It is not at all unusual for individuals to hear unexplained noises, experience unusual smells, or feel that they are not alone while walking within the structure. It is not believed that the spirits at the Hotel Savoy intend to do any harm, but it is rumored that perhaps these spirits have unfinished business or that they are unsettled and that prevents their spirit from moving on. If you are seeking haunted places in Missouri, and are interested in capturing paranormal events firsthand, you are likely to thoroughly enjoy visiting this haunted hotel. There are many more haunted stories about this Hotel.