King George Hotel
240 Main Street
Melville, Saskatchewan S0A 2P0
Tel: 1 (306) 728-2208
The King George Hotel is a three-story brick hotel in the heart of Melville. Built in 1911, today the hotel features a bar and restaurant and offers 10 guest rooms on the second floor. The guest rooms on the third floor are sometimes used during warmer months, allowing the King George to accommodate more guests. At one time, the third floor was a more active part of the hotel—the guest rooms bustled with activity, from both the living as well as a phantom maid.
Vaughn Smith was a touring bar musician back in the 1980s and 90s. He and his bandmates checked into the King George Hotel one Sunday afternoon in the fall of 1985. Smith was staying in a room on the third floor at the end of the hallway. This particular room had two entrances— one for the bedroom, and one for a small sitting room that was part of the suite. “While washing up, I heard some strange noises emanating from the bedroom,” Smith said, “but I attributed them to the old steam heaters. I locked up both doors and went for dinner with the rest of the band at a local restaurant.”
Melville was one of the few towns Smith’s band performed in that actually had a movie theater. Smith tried to no avail to convince some of the other members of his band to go with him to take in a movie. After dinner, he went back to his room at the King George before the movie.
“I distinctly saw a woman, who I assumed was the housekeeper, walk into the hallway toward the entrance to my bedroom,” Smith said. “When I turned down that hallway, I noticed my bedroom door was open, although I had locked it before I left. So she must have gone into my room, but there was no one in there. I wanted to find her as I needed more towels. Thinking the woman must be in my sitting room, I unlocked the door to discover she wasn’t there either. This was an old hotel, and when someone walked along the floor near you, you could hear it. Still thinking I had somehow missed her, I washed my hands and prepared to go to the movie. Then I heard the strange noises coming from the bedroom again. I walked into the bedroom, and as I listened to the steam heaters, the noises, which were a low mumbling sound, changed direction and emanated from the sitting room. That’s when it hit me that it was really strange that I didn’t see the woman anywhere. So being a natural hero, I got the hell out of there as fast as I could and went to the movie.”
After the movie, Smith returned to find his room unlocked, though he had locked it again before leaving for the movie. Smith’s brother, who was also in the band, noted that his door was also left unlocked. That night, the band was going to have a mini rehearsal in Smith’s sitting room, but it was canceled when the lead singer and his wife refused to stay in the room. “I can’t stay in your room,” Smith recounted the lead singer saying. “It’s got a bad vibe in there. I don’t like it. There’s something really wrong in your room.”
The next day, after Smith returned from lunch, he found his bed made and fresh towels left on top. “I didn’t think anything of that,” Smith said. “Although usually the maids didn’t touch the band rooms until the end of the week because we’re notorious slobs. I thanked the lady
at the front desk, who was also the co-owner of the hotel, for sending someone to clean my room but mentioned that it wasn’t necessary. She just looked at me and asked me what I was talking about. She literally had no idea. I told her about my clean room and the towels. She said that her daughter cleans the rooms on Sunday mornings and doesn’t return until the following Sunday. I told her about seeing the woman go into my hallway, and she had no explanation for that or my clean room. She just shrugged and didn’t offer anything else. My room was made up two more times that week and no one else’s was.”
Smith figured this ghost wasn’t out to harm him; in fact, she seemed to be intent on making him comfortable.
The current owners claim that several of their bar regulars have also reported a dark, male figure that opens a door, walks to one area of the bar, and then disappears late at night near closing time.