Sunday, October 31, 2010

Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week ~~ November 1 through 6, 2010

Monday November 1 ~~ Albania and North Dakota

Tuesday November 2 ~~  Algeria and Ohio
Wednesday November 3 ~~  Andorra and Oklahoma

Thursday November 4 ~~  Angola and Oregon

Friday November 5 ~~  Antigua/Barbuda and Pennsylvania

Saturday November 6 ~~  Argentina and Puerto Rico

Sunday November 7 ~~ Armenia and Rhode Island

No special requests, at least that we know of right now.


Hawthorne Hotel's Halloween Ball Costume Contest Winners 2010 - Individual

This year our theme was "Bedlam Behind Bars" and many of our guests really got into the theme. First place in the individual category certainly did, with his "Electric Chair" outfit, complete with light-up headpiece.

The headless bride, who won second place in the individual category, took a more classic horror approach.  Really creepy, right down to the makeup.
Third place in the individual category went to "Little Red Riding Hood" who managed to mostly tame this very scary wolf puppet that was an integral part of her outfit.  Congratulations to all of our winners!

The did an outstanding job, making the judging very difficult this year!


Our Favorite Halloween Guests

Okay, we know!  We shouldn't have favorites, but how could you not when you have guests like these!!?!

Karen and John Marsicano come to our Halloween Weekend events every year, and every year they decorate their room to the nines and beyond with every manner of Halloween/horror genre decorative items that they can think of.

Here are some photos of new items this year, as well as two video snippets so you can see how the entire room is decorated.

I hope you enjoy this "behind the scenes" glimpse of the activities of these extra-nice guests of the Hawthorne Hotel.

The Halloween Tree is bigger this year, to accommodate the new ornaments that you see below.

 This is the newest piece of art in their collection -- a painting commissioned by Karen & John, that came out exactly as they had hoped, and more.

New ornaments


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Hawthorne Hotel's "Bedlam Behind Bars" a Huge Success

The party is over, and seemed to have been a big success.  Here is a link to all the photos, and tomorrow I will do a full blog post on the winners.

If you were here, you would probably like to know that the Tavern, decorated as "Celebrity Cells" won for best decorated room, and photos will be included tomorrow.

Night all!


Friday, October 29, 2010

Halloween Equals Fun at the Hawthorne Hotel

Today Claire Kallelis came in to work to find her office, which she shares with the Dining Services Managers, was decked out in honor of both her birthday and Halloween.  This video tells the tale, but does not fully capture the effect which was a room lit with strobe lights.

We put up "snow fencing" to protect our planter boxes from being sat on by the people who must wait in line outside the hotel for the various events to begin, including the Witches Ball, and our Costume Ball.  Our theme this year, "Bedlam Behind Bars" seemed perfect in conjunction with the fence, and we decided to utilize the fence to promote ticket sales to our Ball.  We are nearly sold out, but want people to know we do have just a few more tickets to sell.

I hope to see you here, Saturday night, at the biggest, best costume ball in all of Salem.

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Witches Ball Decor Is Terrific, Once Again

 This year the theme of the Festival of the Dead's Witches Ball is "A Grimm Fairytale" and you can see that the balloon decor, done by Royal Sorell of Balloon-Gineers fits that theme perfectly.  I hope you enjoy getting this sneak preview of tonight's event.

[For more information on the balloon design company, you can go to]

This year's theme includes classics like Snow White, Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel, and Little Red Riding Hood so the costume possibilities are endless! Visit Wikipedia's list of Grimm's Fairy Tales for inspiration for your costume!

Tickets to tonight's event are $150 per person, and if you follow the link above there may still be a couple of tickets available.

 If you look closely, you will see the owner of the balloon company, Royal Sorell, hiding behind some of his creations.

Karen Cotton, our Director of Catering, loves to pose for my camera.

 Even the centerpieces are made from balloons, and carry out the enchanted forest aspect of the theme.  Royal is SO creative!

I hope to see you here at the historic Hawthorne Hotel, where every day brings something new and exciting.


Thursday, October 28, 2010

What is the Hawthorne Hotel Halloween Ball, you ask?

Wow, sometimes we can't see the forest for the trees!  We have been posting about buying tickets to the ball, but have not really posted a detailed outline of what the ball is all about.

Our Halloween Ball is a themed costume event, held annually here at the Hawthorne Hotel for at least 20 years.  It is the biggest, best party in Salem, which is the Halloween Capital of the World.  Even Reuter's News Service said our Ball is THE NUMBER ONE thing to do in Salem for Haunted Happenings.

Everyone comes in costume.  We decorate the entire public space of the hotel for the party in the theme of the ball.  We have a contest to determine which department of the hotel wins the decorating contest.  This contest is judged by our celebrity judges who get to come early.

The judges also determine who gets to participate in the costume contest.  We are giving cash prizes totalling $1,700 to the following:  Best Individual Costume, Best Group Costume, and Best "Theme of the Ball", which this year is "Bedlam Behind Bars".

We have a Band in the Ballroom, and DJs in the Library (the Dungeon) and Sophia's (the Infirmary) for dancing the night away. 

There will be tables of food, and servers passing all manner of hors d'oeuvres all night long.  There will be cash bars and beer buckets everywhere.

We will have three set-ups for photography, and photographers taking your photos with our compliments.  They will be available digitally with no additional cost.

And at the end of the night each guest will receive a souvenir tee-shirt with the ball logo on it -- certainly to become a collector's item, or a great nightshirt!

Tickets are still available, but are flying right now.  They are $90 each, and you can buy them by calling the hotel directly at 978-744-4080, or going on and typing in Hawthorne Hotel, or by downloading the Haunted Happenings "App" on your iPhone and buying them right on your phone.

I hope to see you (and your spectacular costume) right here at the Hawthorne Hotel on Saturday, October 30.  Doors open at 7:30 pm, and everyone will turn into a pumpkin at midnight!


Last Minute Cancellation Makes Opportunity For One Lucky Guest

We just had a cancellation for our Halloween Ball Package for this Weekend.  This is a HUGE opportunity for one lucky couple (or up to 4 people because this is a suite.)  This is a four-night package, for arrival on October 29, departure on November 2, and includes two tickets to our Halloween Ball.  In order to book this package we need full prepayment right away.  This will not last long, but I thought our friends on Social Media such a our Blog, Facebook and Twitter should know about it first!

In addition to the room, tax, and tickets, this package also includes a VIP gift package for each person in the room, which includes many unique items.

One additional benefit to buying this package is that you automatically get the opportunity to book for next year before the lottery takes place in early November.  This is like getting box seats to the Red Sox!

The price of the package is $2,248 for the 4 night package (for 2 people with 2 tickets to the ball included).

Additional persons will be charged at $90 each for the ball tickets.

If you are interested, please call 978-825-4322, Lucie Ogeron to snap this up.

I hope to see you here!


Our Offices Get Scary Too, This Time of the Year

This is the time of the year that the "heart of the hotel" spaces become VERY different from any other workplaces in hotels in the world. This is the time when decorating mayhem overtakes a lot of what we do. Where else would you casually walk by the scenes you see below and not think anything of them?

Left to right:  Christine Turner, Claire Kallelis and Liz Dube making the all-important assignments for all of the stations that we must man in order to make the Halloween Ball a success each year.
Below:  The Sales Office has already nabbed some of the items they will be using to decorate their "room" -- each department competes to carry out the theme of the ball by decorating one of the many rooms where the party will take place.

KrisTina Wheeler making ribbons for the contestants in the Costume Contest.  Didn't she dress appropriately for the assignment?

Above, Karen Cotton has "company" in her office.  Who knows where that character will end?
Karl Fried made "bars" for the Ballroom windows.  He is assisting his wife, Christine Madigan, who many of you know by her friendly voice on the phone of our Catering Department.

I hope to see you here at our Ball.

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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Theme of the Costume Ball, Bedlam Behind Bars

While pets are not invited to Bedlam Behind Bars, our Halloween Costume Ball here at the Hawthorne Hotel this year, this dog would definitely be a winner of THAT costume contest.

If you are coming to the Ball this year, do note that we have expanded our costume contest to include another category of winners to include "Best Theme of the Ball".  This is in addition to the awards for Best Individual and Best Group Costumes.  We will be giving out $1,700 in cash prizes, so get your thinking caps on. 

We are always on the hunt for the UNUSUAL costumes.  Rented and store-bought costumes are very unlikely to win an award at this Ball, unless you really find a way to make them unique, and make them stand out from the crowd.

We look forward to seeing you here, on Saturday, October 30 for the biggest costume ball in all of Salem, Bedlam Behind Bars!

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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Debunking Internet Misinformation About the Hawthorne Hotel

In 2007 TAPS came to the Hawthorne Hotel to do an investigation.  On the same trip, they also investigated the Lyceum.  They did their show.  I will let you make up your own mind after seeing it if they did, or did not, find any paranormal activity.  It's available on YouTube if you missed it.

However, what did occur as people watched this episode is that they scrambled together the two places, and now, that misinformation flies around the Internet as though it were the Gospel Truth.

The following is an EXAMPLE of that misinformation, taken off of a blog post by a supposed paranormal blogger:

A few footsteps from the site of the infamous Witch Trials of 1692, lies the historic Hawthorne Hotel in Salem, Massachusetts. Built in 1925, the hotel was named for one of Salem’s famous residents, author Nathaniel Hawthorne. If you’re interested in a Halloween Haunt with plenty of Paranormal Activity, consider a visit to this notable establishment.

Paranormal Claims

Dark Destinations has an excellent summary of the haunted happenings at the Hawthorne Hotel. Local lore suggests the site upon which the hotel was built used to be an apple orchard owned by Bridget Bishop, the very first person executed during the Witch Trials. Unsuspecting guests are often said to catch a whiff of apples in the air.

Several locations are reported to be paranormal hotspots within the Hotel. Room 325 is reported to be a very “active” room, in which former guests have witnessed the bathroom light and faucet turning on by themselves. Further, guests in this room report being touched by invisible hands and hearing the sounds of a child crying. On the sixth floor, a spectral woman is seen wandering the hallway and pausing in front of room 612. Finally, the Nautical-themed restaurant called the Main Brace that used to be on the property, reportedly housed a large ship’s wheel that often turned on its own accord.

The hotel was featured on an episode of Ghost Hunters in 2007, and its Haunted reputation continues to grow. If you’re interested in making a Halloween trip to this Haunted Hotspot, be sure to get some rest beforehand – because you may be kept up all night by rogue plumbing and other “guests” who never left!

What is the misinformation? The apple orchard was NOT on this spot, it is supposedly the Lyceum that was built on the site of her apple orchard. Watch the show and you will see. So no apple scents here, unless our chef is baking his famous apple crisp or apple blossom desserts.

Additionally I have recently learned that some of the walking tours and ghost tours here in Salem have been giving out a LOT of misinformation. As I hear about the specifics, I try to contact the perpetrating entities, but they don't always like to listen very well.

Sorry, paranormal people, but PLEASE, at least get your facts, such as they may be, straight!



Monday, October 25, 2010

Pets on Parade at the Hawthorne Hotel

This weekend we had a very large number of pets staying with us in the hotel. Here are some of the cuties.

 Left to right, are our regular guests from New York:  People -- Nicole, Haze, Chris and Mike.  Dogs -- Mindy, Jay and Max.

 And these gentlemen from New Jersey are (l) Jason, holding Brody, and Greg holding Harley.

They all received one of our Hawthorne Hotel Berber Bones (squeaky toy) and all seemed very happy to be staying in the (very) pet-friendly Hawthorne Hotel.

We hope to see you (and your pet) here soon.


Sunday, October 24, 2010

Costume Brunch a Hit with Children of All Ages

Today is our annual Halloween Costume Brunch. This year we had a nifty new addition to the brunch -- the team from Frankenstein's Art came to the brunch and set up their equipment to do "green screen" photos for anyone who wanted to buy that for their child (or adult) in costume.

Peter Carter, Owner and Lead Designer of Frankenstein's Art takes a photo.  For more information about hiring Pete and his company for your special event, you can contact Frankenstein's Art right here in Salem at 978-828-6699.  Tell him Juli from the Hawthorne Hotel sent you!

Children's food table, set at just 'their' height, and featuring all their favorite foods.

We had seasonal favorites and mini-cupcakes, along with hot apple crumble, on the dessert table.

We only do the Costume Brunch once a year, so be sure to mark your calendars for next year.  You won't want to miss this very special event.

I hope to see you here.