Legend has it that the victims of a mysterious plague haunt this lonely motel in the middle of Nevada. But that’s not even the creepiest thing about it.
The Clown Motel in Tonopah, a tiny former mining town halfway between Las Vegas and Reno, is, as its name suggests, home to hundreds of clowns.
They decorate the reception, bedrooms, hallways and walls and have been attracting and terrifying tourists around the globe for the past two decades. Some of the clowns even dangle above the beds and visitors have been known to cover them with towels to avoid nightmares.
Oh, and the motel is also right next to the Tonopah Cemetery.
The historic burial ground was established in 1901 and is the final resting place of the victims of the deadly Tonopah Plague which swept through the town in the 1902, along with the miners who lost their lives in the deadly Tonopah-Belmont Mine Fire in 1911 — many of whom were also pioneer residents of the town. It is these souls which are believed to haunt the guests of the motel.
According to Travel Channel’s television series, Ghost Adventures, whose team was called in to investigate, the eerie motel has experienced “unusually high” amounts of paranormal activity.
A housekeeper at The Clown Motel, Andrea Selig, told the ghost hunters that she has experienced extreme anxiety in all of the motel’s rooms before and has seen doors shut by themselves.
And a front-desk worker told Las Vegas Weekly that a medium who stayed there said that when he arrived there was a woman standing behind the woman checking him in. When shown photos of an employee’s deceased mother, he confirmed it was her.
But reviewers on TripAdvisor say it is just a fun, kitschy place for a unique travel experience.
Either way, after 20 years of running the iconic residence, the motel’s owner Bob Perchetti has just put it up for sale.
But don’t worry, a condition of any historic site sale is that it must keep its heritage, so the new owners can upgrade it but The Clown Motel won’t lose what the people love — whether that be a haunting or quirky experience.