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Things That Go Bump in The Night

The Carolina Inn Offers Room with a Boo! Package

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (September 2011) – The Carolina Inn, voted one of America’s Top 10 Haunted Hotels by, invites guests to spend an evening with its longtime resident ghost, Dr. William Jacocks. A friendly spirit, he enjoys playing practical jokes on those who stay in what was once Dr. Jacock’s permanent home, Room 256.

The Room with a Boo! Package starts at $409 per night and features overnight accommodations for two in Room 256, dinner for two (set for three) at award-winning Carolina Crossroads Restaurant, a biography of Dr. Jacocks and complimentary copy of A History of The Carolina Inn signed by author Dr. Ken Zogry. 

The Carolina Inn is an extravagantly detailed historic hotel with a few more guests than the register displays. It is said to be haunted by as many as 20 ghosts, most notably that of 17-year past resident Dr. William Jacocks, a physician with the International Health Division of the Rockefeller Foundation

Built in 1924 by university trustee John Sprunt Hill, along with alumnus and local businessmen, Tthe Carolina Inn was constructed to be a first-rate establishment accommodating visitors and graduates of the UNC Chapel Hillinstitution. The design was most interesting, combining classic elegance with Georgian style that was meant to mirror the facade of the George Washington’s home at Mt. Vernon.

In 1948, Tthe Carolina Inn’s most memorable guest arrived – Dr. William Jacocks – memorable because after more than 60 years, the good doctor still takes up residence at Tthe Carolina Inn, even though his soul pastpassed on almost a half century ago in 1965. Other past guests of the Iinn are said to continue their stay at the establishment as well, supported by a multitude of evidence theorizing extensive paranormal activity within the property.

After retirement, Dr. Jacocks made the historic hotel his permanent home. He stayed in what is now room 256 for a total of 17 years before his passing. Jacocks is said to have been a kind, gentle man with a great sense of humor. It seems he brought his wits to the other side as he enjoyed locking guests out of room 256, his former home.

Guests that have stayed in his old room have claimed such oddities as the bath mat being rumpled, as if someone had gotten out of the shower recently, and the curtains being pulled wide open after having been closed the night before. The distinct aroma of flowers has been said to arise in the room, especially in the morning. A strange, loud ‘whizzing’ sound was heard, not coming from anywhere near a ventilation shaft. Another guest reported his feet suddenly becoming enigmatically icy.

Guests, as well as the staff, have witnessed a finely attired, portly man walking the halls. He is said to be wearing a knit hat with a long blue coat over a black suit. He wanders the halls apparently seeking an unlocked door. He tries the knobs, rattles them to see if they are locked, then moves onto the next door. When guests from within the rooms open the door, he often gets scared and runs away.

In 1990, Tthe Carolina Inn was renovated and Dr. Jacocks room 256 (formerly 252) became what is now portions of 4 separate rooms. Electronic doors were put in place to eliminate the mysterious locking of the room, a ghostly prank that went so far as to require a maintenance workerman to use a ladder to break into the room. The electronic door locks didn’t help. Jacocks still manages to jam the locks now and again.

While most are thoroughly convinced that Carolina Inn is indeed haunted, none seem to feel any type of threat among the presence. A benevolent man in life, the good doctor is just as harmless now as he was then and rather seems to enjoy playing with the guests in his Carolina Inn room 256.

Built on the campus of UNC Chapel Hill in 1924 by John Sprunt Hill – distinguished alumnus, successful businessman and University trustee – The Carolina Inn’s original concept was “to provide for the special wants and comforts of the University alumni...and University visitors.” The historical Carolina Inn features 185 charming and well-appointed guestrooms including 7 luxury suites.

Destination Hotels & Resorts is the fourth largest independent hospitality management company in the United States with more than 35 luxury and upscale hotels, resorts and conference centers. The company has developed a variety of initiatives to better serve its communities, stakeholders and customers including Destination Earth, an environmental sustainability program, and the Destination Delivers guest loyalty program, which provides the best available offers to members. Destination operates properties in key metropolitan areas and resort markets including Washington, D.C., Denver, San Diego, Los Angeles, Santa Fe, Aspen, Palm Springs and Lake Tahoe. Destination is a subsidiary of Los Angeles-based investment, development and management firm Lowe Enterprises.  For more information on the properties in the Destination Hotels & Resorts collection, please visit or to join Destination Delivers, visit