Henderson Castle One of Michigan’s Most Haunted Locations

Every Halloween Henderson Castle in Kalamazoo tops the list of Michigan’s most haunted locations. It has been a featured location in three horror movies and has been the destination of many ghost hunters and paranormal investigators. In October they often feature Haunted Henderson Tours.

The Queen Anne Victorian was designed by C. A. Gombert.  “The castle’s exterior was constructed of Lake Superior sandstone and brick, and the interior wood included mahogany, bird's eye maple, quartered oak, birch, and American sycamore. The castle was built with 25 rooms in all and exemplified the most expensive tastes of the time.” The home was completed in 1895 but Mr. Henderson didn’t get to enjoy the beauty for long. He died in 1899. Mrs. Henderson remained at the castle until 1908.

The Castle is currently a quaint Bed and Breakfast, Vineyard, Day Spa, and restaurant owned by Master Chef Francois Moyet.

After a little research I decided I wanted to stay there and see what all the fuss was about. So I booked a two night stay back in 2014. We stayed in the Italian Room in the main tower.

Upon arrival I was awed by the castle’s beauty but filled with unease. Suddenly I didn’t feel very good. I was uncomfortable.

Everything was gorgeous on the surface but if you looked close you could see the underlying shabbiness. Which honestly is to be expected in a building over 100 years old with a new owner in the process of upgrading- but the entire place just seemed off to me.

My husband and I explored the castle and the grounds, checking out all the locations open to the public. It is a very pretty place but I just couldn’t shake an eerie feeling.

To add to the creep factor there was a very odd piece of art hanging in our room that unnerved us a bit. We showed it to the lady at the front desk, she has never noticed the weirdness about it. 

Do you see it?

The room was beautiful but much too bright. No curtains to close just big open windows. And then the roof lights stayed on shining directly into our room and on our bed after 10pm when they were “supposed to shut off”. All that light wasn’t very restful.

I can’t say for sure that I encountered any ghosts however my phone did turn on, open the camera and take a photo all by itself while sitting on a table across the room from my husband and I. That was pretty weird. And I kept hearing noises in the bathroom throughout the night. That can easily be chalked up to old pipes. But it didn’t help my uneasiness.

After not sleeping well the first night and just feeling weird all day we decided to leave early and head home. Surprisingly they refunded our money for the second night since we decided to leave.

If there are spirits lurking in the castle I didn’t find them to be very welcoming.

However the beauty of the location did inspire me to use it as the setting for book 2 in the Desire Series, Haunting Desire. I did change up a few things. See the author note below that is included in the front of the book.

Haunting Desire
Desire Series
Book Two
Roxanne Rhoads

Genre: Paranormal Erotica

Welcome to the Inn of Amorous Apparitions where your every libidinous longing can be fulfilled by sensual spirits.

LizBeth has been hired to use her ghost whispering skills on the specters at the Castle Inn, but instead of banishing the seductive spooks Barbara, the Inn Keeper, wants them to "come out and play" with her special guests. 

The Castle Inn is set to become the destination for the ghost sex fetish crowd. But first LizBeth has to convince the voluptuous visions that it is alright to participate in spectrophilia fun with the guests. 

LizBeth has a special talent for seeing and communicating with ghosts but these enchanting ethereals are not cooperating with her, or her vampire boyfriend. Something odd is fueling the raunchy wraiths and they have to discover the power source or risk leaving a customer unsatisfied.

There’s more to this haunting than the average ghost. Will LizBeth be able uncover the mystery of this sexy haunted mansion?

Author’s Note:

The Castle Inn featured on the cover and the inspiration for the setting of the story is a real place in Kalamazoo, Michigan called Henderson Castle; it is currently a quaint Bed and Breakfast.

Other than using some basic facts about the location, the building itself and the date it was built everything else is completely fictional and any resemblance to real persons living or dead is entirely coincidental. I even moved around a few of the rooms to make it flow better for the story.

As far as I know the place has never been a brothel, there is no lake for swimming and all ghostly activities mentioned within these pages are purely figments of my imagination.

I hope you enjoy the story.

~Roxanne Rhoads

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