This hotel is one of the oldest still operating hotels in Alaska. It first opened; to much fanfare; in September of 1918 owned by a promoter and 2 brothers who had struck it rich on their gold claims in nearby British Columbia.
It was elegant hotel; boasting steam heating and its own wireless station. The glitz and glamour, however, hid a much more seedy side of legal prostitution and the sale of some not so legal items.
The hotel promised to always keep its doors open to guests and managed to do just that, even through the dry years of the Prohibition, eventually turning into a house of very ill repute called the Northlander where the female entertainers serviced their male guests outside of the law.
The Northlander was closed and condemned in 1977 by the Fire Marshal and the (interestingly enough) Litter Control Board. Although guests no longer walked through the doors the historic hotel was not left to the ravages of time.
The current owners, Mike and Bettye Adams, purchased the property and began a restoration to its former Victorian grandeur. The restored bar is on the list of the best bars in America. In October of 1978 the hotel was placed on the National Historic Register of Historic Places.
This hotel provides a very special experience in the heart of one of the most unique cities in America. It is also considered, possibly, the most haunted place in Alaska.
The most frequently encountered, and most famous, ghost of the hotel is that of Alice. Legend says she was the young wife of one of the original owners. The story is her husband went on a trip related to his gold claims and was gone longer than expected. The Alaskan and British Columbia wilds were no place to take lightly 100 years ago and when he didn’t return, she feared he might be dead. What’s a girl to do on the Alaskan frontier with no husband and no money coming in?
She turned to prostitution to stay clothed and fed. Tragically, her husband was still very much alive and he did eventually return. He was very unhappy about his wife’s career choices, flew into a rage, and murdered her on the spot.