This hotel is the old Bexar County Jail. Which was also the location of the State's last hanging death. The building was first built in 1879. This jail eventually became too small and the county had no room to expand the jail out so it had to go up. This alone was not strange for that time but the architect brought the gallows from the outside, inside.
The architect Henry T Phelps put the gallows up on the third floor with a trap door in the floor allowing the prisoner to fall through the floor and hang above the second floor. The prisoners were marched up to the third floor, had the black hood put over their head, they were placed over the trap door, had a noose put around their neck, where the prison guard would yank the trap door lever. The prisoner would then fall into the second floor where the spectators would gather to witness the death. But along with the spectators was the news media, politicians, and of course the other inmates trapped in their cells.
You could also say this was the scene of one of Texas's most horrific hangings. In 1921 there was a man name Clemente, who had some mental issues. He brutally murdered a 14 year old boy. They were perplexed as to how to handle this since he had been in and out of metal institutions and always seemed to be able to escape.
They decided he would die by hanging. Little did they know that this hanging would go horribly wrong. When the handle was pulled releasing the trap door Clemente went barreling down to the second floor. When the rope caught his neck it snapped his larynx which in turn allowed the rope to cut into his throat and basically almost decapitated him. When this happened his heart was still pumping and forced his blood to spurt from his neck into the crowd of on-lookers. They say his blood spurted almost eight feet into the crowd.
In 1926 the city halted public executions. The jail remained open until 1962.
A new jail facility was built elsewhere in town and the old jail was vacated. The old jail was converted into a Comfort Inn. It stayed a Comfort Inn till it was converted into a Holiday Inn in 2009.
The hotel lobby was the book-in area of the old jail. Because this building is on the historic register the owner was not able to change too much about the building. The layout has not changed much from the layout of the old jail.
It is even reported that in some places where prisoners had written on the walls, the writings can still be found.
If you look down the halls you can see concrete headers. When I worked at a county jail those headers is where the bars would be.
The Reported Hauntings of the is hotel are the common hauntings of other places such as the feeling of being watched, to unusually cold spots in places where they should not be.
One guest reported that a he was working on his laptop and it was ripped from him and thrown across the room.
One person reported being awoken from sleep with the feeling that someone had grabbed and squeezed his bicep. It was so strong that it woke him from a sound sleep. The next day when he was dressing he passed the mirror and found marks on his arm where he had in fact been grabbed by some unseen force.
Employees report that the security sensors are constantly going off and then no one is found there.
Employees report that the lights go off and on in the laundry room while they are trying to work.
They report hearing people talking when no one is in the laundry room and it can be at any time of the day.
Employees report seeing people walk to the front counter to get checked in and as they approach the counter the person dissipates before their eyes.
The hotel still has bars on the windows from the jail days, and the staff cannot open these but, some guests report that their windows and bars will be open.
Guest's have reported that their bed was shaken during the night while they were trying to sleep.