The Many Ghosts of Cavalier Hotel

Posted by dev_admin in Virginia Beach Ghost Tours
The Many Ghosts of Cavalier Hotel - Photo

It took thirteen months to construct Cavalier Hotel, an unlucky number to some. Construction started in 1926 and ended with a beautiful hotel with 195 guest rooms. Since its grand beginning, famous people were attracted to the fancy hotel and beach club. Some of them would stay and become the ghosts of Cavalier Hotel.

Not all of the ghosts have famous names, of course. Some of them don’t show their faces, and others remain unidentified. As well as human spirits, the Cavalier Hotel also has at least two animal spirits that both guests and employees have spotted.

The Cavalier Hotel’s Early Days

The Cavalier Hotel was no stranger to the rich and famous in the early days. Dubbed the “Grand Dame of the Shore,” the hotel attracted many well-known names of the 20s and 30s. While the hotel hosted weddings and family gatherings of all kinds for local residents, it also has had no fewer than ten US presidents spend time in the hotel.

Some of the other famous names known for spending time at the Cavalier Hotel include F. Scott Fitzgerald, Bob Hope, Doris Day, Frank Sinatra, and even Al Capone. One somewhat famous regular at the hotel remains, even after leaving his mortal coil.

The Ghosts of Cavalier Hotel

There are many stories of ghosts roaming the halls of the Cavalier Hotel. Some of them are only visible for a moment; others seem to replay their time of death for those watching. Keep reading for brief accounts of all of the paranormal experiences reported at Cavalier.

The Ballroom Piano

Many great performers of the 20s and 30s used the piano that sits in the ballroom at Cavalier Hotel. From time to time, some of those performers may be returning in hopes of bringing back the joy and merriment of the roaring twenties because the piano is sometimes heard playing itself.

The Haunted Elevators

During times when the hotel has been closed, whether for renovations or during off-seasons, workers have reported the elevators still running. With no one on them, the elevators would go up and down from floor to floor.

Phantom Phone Calls from the Sixth Floor

The sixth floor of the hotel has a myriad of spooky tales attached to it. One of those stories likely stems from all of the other ghosts that may be residing on that particular floor.

Prior to reopening for the spring after the winter months when the hotel used to close down, receptionists working the late shifts would receive phone calls from the sixth floor. Calls from rooms to reception would be routine if there were guests staying in the hotel, but it is a little spooky when they’re coming in from an empty room on an empty floor of an empty hotel. Of course, when the workers answer the phone, there’s no sound on the other end.

The Man on the Stairs

There’s more to the hauntings of this hotel than just silent phone calls from within the hotel and a piano that plays itself. One of the sixth-floor ghosts spotted by those staying in the hotel includes a man dressed in an old hotel uniform (though some reports have him wearing a military uniform). He stands on the staircase by the sixth floor and tells people there are ghosts on that floor. Perhaps he doesn’t realize he is one of them.

A Woman and Her Dog

In what is now the Becca Restaurant, a woman has shown up looking to dine, but she has no reservation. When she isn’t trying to get a table, it’s been reported that she walks through the room with a ghostly dog at her side.

The Little Girl and Her Cat

This story has more to it than the lady with her dog. Many workers and guests have reported seeing both a ghost girl and a phantom cat in the hotel over the years. It seems that the girl is usually looking for her cat, and her cat is looking for her.

It’s believed that the little girl was staying with her family at the hotel when the cat got out of the room and made its way downstairs. Some believe that the cat fell into the pool, and when the little girl jumped in to save the feline, they both drowned.

The cat has been heard meowing and scratching at doors, possibly looking for the little girl who loved it. Pawprints have also been spotted on the back staircase, and some people have reported seeing the ghostly cat walk through walls. In honor of the phantom cat, there is a drink offered at the hotel called the “Ghost Cat.”

The cat is not alone in its search for the little girl – she also appears often. She is usually seen walking near the pool looking for her cat.

Adolph Coors’ Ghost

Adolph Coors, the founder of the Coors beer company, died at the Cavalier Hotel. Exactly how he managed to fall out of a window on the hotel’s sixth floor continues to be up for speculation. However it is that he managed to fall, his ghost still haunts the hotel, and some have seen the repeat of his tragic plunge from that window.

Coors was staying at the hotel under doctors’ orders. He was fighting a rough case of influenza and was told a climate change would do him good, so he and his wife got a room at the Cavalier Hotel. He was feeling better while on respite, but that wouldn’t keep him from breathing his last breath.

It was on June 5, 1929, that a loud thunk would alert people to the fact that something tragic had just happened. The scream from a hotel employee alerted all to where the tragedy occurred. Adolph Coors’ body lie in a crumpled heap on the concrete patio of the hotel after taking a fall from six floors up.

But did Adolph Coors fall, or was he pushed? Was it an accident, suicide, or murder?

Prohibition was in full effect at this time, so some speculate that Coors took his own life, distraught over the fact that his company was forced to make pottery and cement rather than brewing beer. Then again, why take a healing vacation if you’re only planning to off yourself?

Others think that he was murdered. He was, after all, a prominent businessman. He was sure to have some enemies, as do most folks with money and shrewd business acumen.

Perhaps his wife did the dirty deed, wanting her husband’s wealth all to herself. This idea has been turned down due to the fact that Mrs. Coors was a doting wife and even took good care of her husband while he was ailing.

The ghostly reenactment of his death that plays out at the hotel gives no clues to what really happened to Coors – whether he went through a presumably closed window of his own accord or not. People have witnessed seeing his body falling from the window, and some have heard the sound of an invisible body smacking against the patio concrete. Near the window he went out of, cold spots are regularly reported.

Other Strange Ghostly Phenomena

While far less dramatic than the replay of Coors’ death or a little girl ghost searching for a phantom cat, there have been other strange things going on at the hotel for decades. While orbs are often disputed as dust or bugs, this sometimes paranormal phenomenon appears in many photographs taken at the Cavalier Hotel. There’s a chance those floating orbs are images of some of the spirits hanging about the hotel.

The sounds of footsteps are reportedly heard often in hallways and on the stairs, with no visible person making the sounds. Even eerier, some guests have left their rooms only to come back and find different colored towels in place of what had been there when they checked in. It’s almost as though a maid from the past prefers an old version of the towels, or perhaps their room is flickering back to a past time.

The Cavalier Hotel may have a magnificent history rich with celebrities, but it also has a very ominous past. The murder or suicide of Adolph Coors looms heavy in the air, especially knowing that his ghost is not at rest. This hotel is definitely not a vacation destination for anyone who is squeamish when it comes to the paranormal.