Halloween is just around the corner and, with a lot of the normal revelry on hold this year, it might be a good time to grab the popcorn and settle down to binge on scary movies and horror films.
You might even find some inspiration for your next holiday while you do so. Last year, online travel agency Booking.com found that 38 per cent of Americans were inspired to visit a destination after watching a film or TV show. Travel restrictions remain in place for many countries so a Halloween holiday is probably unlikely, but when travel does resume, you could take inspiration from your favourite scary films and go check them out for yourself.
From a sprawling Gothic country house in England where The Rocky Horror Picture Show was filmed to a mountain-surrounded hotel that set the scene for the mystery-filled Twin Peaks, here are five locations that were previously used as spooky filming sets. Today, they're welcoming overnight guests with everyone welcome to check-in, but can the same be said for checking out?
1. Oregon outpost from 'The Shining'
While most people know The Stanley Hotel in Colorado as the place where Stanley Kubrick's The Shining was filmed, the exterior of the hotel was actually shot at the Timberline Lodge in Oregon. That explains why one glance at the luxury ski resort's pitch-roofed facade stirs a sense of familiarity.
The hotel is also the reason that the screen adaptation of Stephen King's novel sets its spooky events in Room 237 while the book documents them in Room 217. Management at the hotel were worried that the film may put future guests off booking any room featured in it and requested it was changed to a number that doesn't exist at the lodge. Interestingly, Room 217 is now the most requested room in the hotel. Located deep within Mount Hood National Forest, the area has the longest skiing season in the United States and is popular with skiers and snowboarders year round. It's also a designated National Historic Landmark, offering travellers rustic rooms, period details and a heated outdoor pool.
2. The mansion from 'The Rocky Horror Picture Show'
A peaceful stay is not guaranteed for guests checking in at Oakley Court in leafy Windsor. That's because the Victorian Gothic mansion will likely bring back memories of The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
Fans of the cult 1975 musical will certainly recognise the Berkshire country house, but it has starred in several other famous films, including The Curse of Frankenstein, The Witches, Theatre of Blood and Vampyres. Set on 13 hectares of land on the banks of the River Thames, the four-star hotel dates back to 1859 and has retained several of its original features, as well as its spooky atmosphere.
Those daring to visit can enjoy an indoor pool, two restaurants, a nine-hole golf course and on-site tennis courts, as well as bike trails and walkways that take in the surrounding countryside.
3. The lodge from 'Twin Peaks', Washington
Anyone who was a fan of the 1990s mystery drama television series Twin Peaks can check in at the Salish Lodge and Spa in Washington's Snoqualmie, which served as The Great Northern fictional hotel in the show. Overlooking the 80-metre-high Snoqualmie Falls, one of Washington state's most popular attractions, the mountain-surrounded lodge was the setting for several of the cult television series' most dark and twisted moments. There's also a shop selling merchandise and memorabilia from the show, and guests can tuck into the famous cherry pie served at the Twin Peak's diner.
Supernatural aside, there's also an award-winning spa, locally sourced, seasonal cuisine and an on-site apiary. Outside, there's no shortage of seasonal skiing, hiking, mountain biking, river rafting and fishing fun to be had.
4. The Hill House from 'The Haunting', Stratford-upon-Avon
Set within 40 acres of parkland, the four-star Ettington Park Hotel offers luxuriously furnished rooms and an impressive oak room restaurant with an 18th-century ceiling and other historic features.
The River Stour runs through the grounds which, along with the exterior of the neo-Gothic mansion, were the filming location of The Haunting – a 1963 British psychological horror film about a small group of people invited by a scientist to investigate a haunted home. Today, guests can expect friendly service – even dogs are allowed to check-in – but should expect the unexpected as the building is consistently ranked as one of Britain's most haunted houses.
5. The Dolphin Hotel from '1408', New York
Another Stephen King adaptation, 1408 is the tale of a man who checks into The Dolphin Hotel in New York hoping to debunk rumours of paranormal activity. Unsurprisingly, that's not quite what unfolds.
Exterior scenes for the hotel were filmed at The Roosevelt Hotel in midtown Manhattan, and the grandiose street entrance is instantly familiar – it's also been the setting for several other films including The Irishman, Maid in Manhattan and Men in Black. The building dates back to 1924 and was named and designed in honour of the President Theodore 'Teddy' Roosevelt. It's also where the New Year's tradition of singing Auld Lang Syne was first broadcast on American television. If you're planning to recreate the movie and book a stay in room 1408, make sure you don't suffer from triskaidekaphobia – as there is no level 13 in the building so technically that room is located on the 13th floor.