By Joey Lopez
VANCOUVER – Walking through the large door and stepping into the Dark Manor Inn is like travelling back in time. The wallpaper is reminiscent of Crimson Peak or The House on Haunted Hill with old portraits of people long dead that look as if their souls occupy the frames themselves, their eyes following your every movement between bookshelves of ancient tomes, a stair case that leads nowhere and a gilded throne that once sat the late founders of the Dark Manor.
“There was a husband and wife in the late 1800s who ran the Dark Manor Inn. The story is that she might have poisoned him with his favourite whiskey cocktail. Their pictures are over there on the wall,” says Rod Moore, owner of the Dark Manor Inn, pointing to the wall across from him. “That’s the backstory and the whiskey cocktail will be served on our menu, if you’re brave enough to drink it. I want this to be a completely immersive experience for people who come in here. It’s an escape and we want them constantly looking around and seeing new, scary things. There’s going to be something new in here all the time.”
When you want to escape the mundane and the mainstream, where do you want to go? Moore wants the Dark Manor Inn to be the place you run to when you want to experience something you can’t find anywhere else. Each book on the shelf was hand picked by Moore himself, each one older than the last, trying to find the perfect piece to add to the creepy atmosphere. The paintings on the walls are of real people, some nearly 200 years old. The real aspects of the Dark Manor Inn could make one believe the hands that touched the spines of those books so long-ago may be the very same hovering over your shoulders, creating that chill running down your spine as you sit inside this haunted bar.
“We want this to be super cool and immersive. I even have hundreds of different pieces of music for this place. We have the theme from the haunted mansion ride. Now, you couldn’t listen to Disney music all night or else people will be offing themselves for real, but I found a whole genre of haunted, spooky instrumentals. The theme from Halloween will play alongside everything John Carpenter ever wrote. Vincent Price doing his blurb from ‘Thriller’ will be playing over tapa music. It’s going to be awesome.”
Everything in the Dark Manor Inn lends itself to a haunted history and the potential for a run-in with a ghost or two. Be careful of what you touch, you don’t know what kind of things you might bring home with you.
As for those stairs that lead nowhere? “That’s grandma’s attic. She might still be up there,” he says.” Her picture is on the wall, staring up at the wife probably wondering what the hell she’s doing
The Dark Manor Inn will be open in time for Halloween. Grab yourself a dubious whiskey cocktail and experience all the dark and terrific horrors it has to offer.
The Dark Manor Inn is located at 4298 Fraser Street.