For the first time in 15 years, the Yukon’s oldest and most haunted hotel is opening. Yes, you read that correctly. H-A-U-N-T-E-D.
Owners Anne Morgan and Jamie Toole have spent more than a decade renovating the historic Caribou Hotel. The establishment is known for its paranormal activity but it’s also home to one of the oldest saloons, which dates back to the Klondike Gold Rush. The boutique hotel will have four cabins, 11 guest rooms, a restaurant and saloon.
Toole, who has more than four decades of building experience, took on the renovation himself. The work included refurbishing historic doors, restoring handrails, a new foundation and rewiring the electrical. Tabletops were handcrafted using lumber off the White Pass Railroad and the countertops were constructed using slate from the old bar’s pool table. Guests can also check out the original safe and cash register, which dates back to 1898, as it’s been worked into the hotel’s decor.
But let’s get back to those hauntings.
The Caribou Hotel was originally built in Bennett, B.C. in 1898 at the beginning of the Klondike Gold Rush. Back then, it was called the Yukon Hotel and was located near Friedrich Trump’s (yup, Donald Trump’s grandfather) New Arctic Restaurant and Hotel. After the gold rush, the building was re-located to Carcross in 1901 by then-owner W.A. Anderson, and it was re-named after him. The Anderson Hotel was eventually sold to Dawson Charlie, who did extensive renovations on the hotel and renamed it to the Caribou Hotel.
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After Charlie died, Edwin W. and Bessie Geraldine Gideon rented it from his estate, but shortly after, it burned down. A new building was constructed and re-opened in 1910. Bessie died in 1933 and, since then, it’s been said the hotel has been haunted by her ghost. Doors slam. Floors creak. Some people have even reported seeing Bessie herself, mostly on the third floor of the hotel.
So, why did Morgan and Toole decide to take on such a massive project and restore the hotel? Watch the video clip above to find out.