Built in 1900, the Maribel Caves Hotel is known as Hotel Hell because of the haunted legends and disturbing rumors that surround it, such as:
- The building burned three times, each time on the exact same date. It was rebuilt twice. The first fire was in the 1920s. The last was in 1930, and everybody died in their sleep.
- Skeletal remains of some of the victims could still be found on the third floor and in the basement before the structure was gutted.
- Years ago, one of the hotel guests went psycho and killed everybody in the hotel during a mass-murder frenzy, committing suicide afterwards.
- The spirits of those killed in the hotel have lingered in the building. This spiritual activity attracted a group of local Black witches who conducted secret rituals to curse the hotel, and in the process they opened up a portal to Hell through the old fountain (or well?) in the front of the hotel. This unleashed a horde of evil spirits that terrorized the town of Maribel. Fortunately, a White witch came to the rescue, sealing off the portal and confining the demons to the boundaries of the hotel and the surrounding property.
- It used to be a spa in the late 1800s for movie stars.
- The hotel was owned by Al Capone during the Prohibition era.
- It served as a hideout for Al Capone, and he ran a moonshine business out of the hotel and the water bottling company next door. Underground passageways built beneath the hotel during the bootlegging days contain the lost treasures of Al Capone and John Dillinger.
- A little boy was playing on the roof of the bottling factory and was killed when it caught on fire.
- His ghost could be seen in a second floor window
- Visitors to Hotel Hell would see blood on the walls, hear yelling from the basement, and the ringing of a bell.
- If you looked in the old well, a portal to hell would open up and try to swallow you.
- Ghosts of people who died in the hotel are sometimes encountered underground in the nearby Maribel Caves.
Some of the paranormal activity reported include cold hands applying pressure on your back on the third floor, feelings of being threatened in the basement, and apparently if you shine a flashlight at a second floor window, something will shine a light back at you.
The true history of the Maribel Caves Hotel seems to be much less interesting. Apparently it opened in 1900 as a hotel and therapeutic spa for travelers, which eventually became a tavern. It remained open in one form or another until a blaze destroyed the interior in 1985. The building was eventually gutted in 2006, removing all remaining debris inside and leaving only the old stone walls standing.
Much of that empty shell was reduced to ruined piles when the structure was knocked down by a severe storm in 2013.