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My Coronado Is Haunted

Author: Stacey V. Levinson (More Trip Reviews by Stacey V. Levinson)
Date of Trip: December 2012



“You see that too, right?”

hotel del coronado nightLacey held her wine glass at half-mast, staring at the steps leading from the Hotel Del Coronado to the Pacific Ocean.

We were outdoors at Babcock & Story, the Del’s sports bar, ordering every appetizer on the menu. Babcock’s food is reasonable and savory, even if the restaurant is routinely under-staffed – it adds to the charm. They’re also open late, which is important. Because when two young(ish) moms have a ghost-hunt adventure sans-child, the Limoncello and girl talk flows into the night.

Twenty minutes in, Arizona tourists overheard our ghost talk and began ‘supporting’ it by barraging us with free drinks.

“Look! That guy on tv just hit a free-throw – buy those girls another round!”

Hey, your room’s probably haunted! – buy those girls another round!”

Which is probably why “Lacey” (who likes the idea of an alias), was unsure of what she saw coming up the stairs.

And I don’t blame her. It’s not every day the Victorian Era ghost you came to ‘hunt’ strolls to you, your friend and your ‘Some Like It Hot’ liquored coffee.

“Do you think she’ll pose for a picture?”

“I don’t know. Ask.”
So I asked.

“Excuse me, are you Kate Morgan?”

The woman, her black-lace Victorian dress flowing with the ocean air, nodded.

“Can I take a picture with you?”

“Umm, I don’t know, have to ask the camera crew.”

And there it is. She was an actress. Of course she was. Playing the ghost of a woman who died on November 29, 1893. I looked past her, my view widening to see a bunch of 20-somethings trailing her with heavy film gear.

It was November 17 and time for the Del to plug its ghost story.

Kate Morgan is the most famous Del ghost. She was a lovely con-woman, and she committed suicide on the very stairs that her actress was now following in from the Pacific.

Kate shot herself after being abandoned by a lover and left at the Del after he discovered her pregnancy. She waited for him for 5 days before firing the gun on November 29, 1893.



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