Another standout location from the tour was the Arctic Club Hotel. This was a beautiful building that used to be a gentlemens club back at the turn of the century. The tour led us into the hotel and up into the Northern Lights Room for some choice tidbits. If you ever saw the Stephen King movie Rose Red, then you’ll recognize the stunning glass domed ceiling because the movie shot several scenes here. Once we all got comfy Ross told us about Marion Zioncheck, a man who was a congressional rep in the mid-1930s. Apparently he was a wild man of Charlie Sheen proportions, once drunkenly driving a car onto the White House lawn when he was in a hurry. Zioncheck had his offices on the fifth floor of the building and during a scandalous re-election campaign plummeted to his death from the window of what is now room 517. Though a suicide note was left, some members of Zioncheck’s family believe to this day that he was murdered. We may never know the truth, but it is believed that Zioncheck’s ghost haunts his former offices and has been known to ride the hotel elevator.
Another element that really made this tour fun was the proper use of multimedia. A lot of ghost tours have binders of old pictures and maybe an old newspaper clipping or two. This tour had the obligator binder of old photos, but the guide also had an iPad that he put to good use. He was able to show us dozens of archive photos, play EVPs (electronic voice phenomena) recorded by his investigative group, and even show us video pertaining to relevant events. It was quite eerie watching video of a performance artist’s rope snapping knowing that he then fell six stories to his death right across from where you’re standing – eerie, but really cool.
I would highly recommend this tour for anyone interested in hauntings and some of the darker bits of Seattle history.