Cristina is a Florida native and Realtor by trade. She enjoys writing about travel, real estate, and several other interesting topics.
Frightfully Haunted Restaurants
If spending a night in a haunted hotel is just a bit too thrilling for you, perhaps a meal in a haunted restaurant is more your speed. These 13 eateries are the most haunted restaurants in the world. They’re known for serving up frightfully good thrills alongside frightfully good meals.
1. Marsden Grotto Restaurant, South Shields, England
Marsden Grotto is probably one of the most unique hotels in the world. Located in a seaside cave, diners can use one of the inside tables or dine on the patio overlooking the beach and sea. The Marsden Grotto legend says that a pint of ale left out overnight was always empty by morning. The ghost could be a smuggler named John the Jibber who was murdered by his band of criminals after turning them in to authorities.
2. Buma Inn, Beijing, China
The Buma Inn is both a hotel and restaurant, and it is one of the most haunted spots in China. Legend holds that a hotel guest was poisoned by the chef and died. The chef, guilt-stricken, killed himself. Yet, that didn't allay the ghost's revenge. She continues to haunt the restaurant and hotel in a ghostly rampage.
3. Nottingham Road Hotel & Restaurant, Nottingham Road, South Africa
The Nottingham Road Hotel & Restaurant is not just one of the most haunted restaurants in the world; it's also one of the most haunted hotels in the world. The ghost here, however, appears to be on the friendly side. She is often seen arranging flowers or tidying up. Some people believe she was once a chambermaid who threw herself from a hotel window after being jilted by a lover. Others think she may be Charlotte, a prostitute who frequented the area.
4. Mermaid Inn & Restaurant, Rye, England
One of the oldest buildings in the ancient city of Rye, the Mermaid Inn retains its rustic charm, meaning it can be quite spooky with its paneled walls and dark wood. The Inn has been featured in paranormal television series and has at least five haunted rooms. Of note is the Elizabethan room where a duel supposedly took place in the 16th century. Light anomalies have been recorded in this room, and the bottles on the bottle shelf have fallen, scaring guests and staff alike. Aside from the history of hauntings, the inn has a very interesting history altogether.
5. The Keg Mansion, Toronto, Canada
This posh Toronto steakhouse was built as a private residence in 1867. It became a restaurant in the 1960s and The Keg in 1976. Several reports of hauntings have been given by dining guests including a woman in old-fashioned clothing and children sitting or running on the staircase. Children are not allowed in the restaurant in the evening. The woman's ghost might be a maid who killed herself after the mansion's mistress died in 1915, so distraught was the maid over her employer's death. The children? Well, perhaps they think the restaurant should be open to everyone.
6. Poogan’s Porch, Charleston, South Carolina, USA
This South Carolina restaurant drips with as much charm as Southern hospitality. Though the Victorian building dates back to 1891 when it was a private residence, the restaurant was only established in 1976. And it's named for the dog who loved to sit on the home's porch in the restaurant's early days. The ghost at Poogan's Porch, however, is not the dog, Poogan. It appears to be an earlier resident named Zoe St. Amand who lived in the home in the early 1900s with her sister, Elizabeth.
After Elizabeth's death, Zoe seems to have slipped into a deep depression and some kind of psychosis. She was seen wandering the streets calling out for her sister and was eventually taken to a mental hospital where she passed away 10 years later. To this day, Zoe's ghost wanders the restaurant looking for her sister, often seen by diners and sometimes even seen standing in windows looking out at the world.
7. Auberge Saint-Gabriel, Montréal, Canada
This Montréal restaurant claims to have been the first inn in North America back in 1754. This establishment was also the first to receive a liquor license under British rule in 1769. Built as a private residence in 1688, it retains much of that Old World feel in it—think stone walls, wood plank floors, and wrought iron fixtures. Auberge Saint-Gabriel has had many ghost stories circulate within its walls. The enduring legend says that a child was burned in a fire, and she still roams the restaurant. She can be heard playing the piano from time to time.
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8. The Banshee Labyrinth Pub, Edinburgh, Scotland
While many of the places on my most haunted lists prefer to keep their paranormal activity away from their websites, The Banshee Labyrinth announces it front and center. Part of this haunted pub is deep in the underground vaults of Edinburgh which once housed the destitute, criminals, and other nefarious residents. This is where the evil tortured their victims, where killers worked. The other half of the pub is above ground and was once the home of Edinburgh's wealthiest resident. Lord Nicol Edwards also had a reputation for being evil and torturing people in a basement dungeon. Perhaps that's why he wanted to live so close to the underground vaults.
Several ghosts haunt The Banshee. One story is of a banshee; those who hear her scream get a phone call within hours that a loved one has passed. She doesn't scream often, but she has been heard weeping the vaults. Another ghost is The Watcher, a man in a long trench coat with large boots and a tricorn hat. Yet another ghost is that of Molly, a child of about six who haunts the main bar. She disappeared in 1841, purportedly buried in an old chimney.
9. The Hero of Waterloo, Sydney, Australia
Built in 1843, The Hero of Waterloo has a long and not-entirely-rosy history. It was built by convict labor and had features that were meant to avoid taxation and other government intrusions. For instance, the upstairs rooms have nine dummy windows. There was a tunnel leading from the pub to the harbor, likely for rum smuggling.
Rumor says that drunken young men were also sometimes whisked away via this tunnel to a waiting ship and sold into slavery. The tunnel entrance can still be seen, and the cellar still has shackles on the walls. Anne Kirkman haunts The Hero. The wife of one of the early owners, she was pushed down the stairs to her death, probably by her husband.
10. John Kavanagh “The Gravediggers”, Dublin, Ireland
Established in 1833, John Kavanagh is better known by locals as "Gravediggers". It shares a wall with Dublin's Glasnevin Cemetery, and it was a popular spot for mourners to drown their sorrows after (or before) a funeral. It was also a spot where gravediggers would stop for a pint after a long night shift. Regulars and staff, particularly those whose loved ones were buried at Glasnevin, report seeing their loved ones or other ghosts. One which many people have seen is a man wearing tweed.
Other legends, which likely aren't true but still surround the pub, are that gravediggers could get a pint directly through the wall between cemetery and pub or that they would knock on the wall to let the barkeep know to start pouring the pints. Finally, John Kavanagh is unique in that there are no phones or music allowed in the pub. They try to keep it as true to the original as possible.
11. Casey Moore’s Oyster House, Tempe, Arizona, USA
Casey Moore's Oyster House is a 100-year old building that has seen its share of history, evil, and bizarre happenings. First constructed as a residence for the wealthy and influential Moeur family, the home was abandoned in the 1940s when the last of the Moeur family passed. A couple is often seen dancing in an upstairs window; many believe them to be the ghosts of Williams and Mary Moeur. From the 1950s to 1973, the house served as a bordello and boarding house.
Numerous accounts of rape and murder came from this time; one of those women who lived in an upstairs bedroom was raped and murdered when she turned down a friend's sexual advances. She, too, haunts the Casey Moore's, appearing mostly during business hours. Staff have also reported strange occurrences such as tables and chairs being moved in the night and silverware flung to the floor.
12. Skirrid Mountain Inn, Llanvihangel Crucorney, Wales
Several fascinating legends surround Skirrid Mountain Inn. The current building was constructed in the 1600s; however, some evidence exists to suggest a building existed at the site as early as the 1100s. It's reputed to be one of the oldest inns in Wales and one of the most haunted places in the United Kingdom. This site may have been a rallying place for Owain Glyndŵr against King Henry IV. It's also claimed as a once-courtroom and hanging place. It's from these hangings that the ghost stories come. The oak hanging beam still exists in the pub. Many guests and staff have seen the ghosts of those hung swinging from the beam or walking through the pub.
13. Muriel’s Jackson Square, New Orleans, Louisiana, USA
Muriel's a casual fine dining establishment with a centuries year-old ghost named Pierre Antoine Lepardi Jourdan. After the Great Fire that destroyed much of New Orleans, Pierre Antoine rebuilt his beautiful home (now Muriel's). It was his pride and joy, but Pierre Antoine had a gambling problem. One evening in 1814, he lost his beloved home in a wager. Before he could even hand it over to the winner, he went to the second floor and committed suicide.
This area is now called the Séance Lounges; paranormal activity here includes glimmering lights and objects being moved. Another ghost haunts the downstairs Courtyard Bar where it's known to throw glasses and play other tricks on diners and staff.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2021 Cristina Vanthul