Dinner and "spirits" at Beardslee Castle

Beardslee Castle.jpg

Beardslee Castle in Little Falls

On a long and lonesome highway about an hour outside Albany lies an old and storied stone manor. The Gothic style Beardslee Castle is the stately and mysterious former homestead of a wealthy family with a cursed, tragic past.

Locals know the castle as "the most haunted spot in the Mohawk Valley." And it was featured on a History Channel program on haunted New York.

You can check the place out for yourself and even stay for dinner. If you dare.

(Cue macabre laugh, high pitch scream and b-horror movie music).

Beardslee Dining room.jpgUnion College graduate Augustus Beardslee built his gothic castle in 1860 on a piece of land that had already been home to its share of tragedy. A hundred years earlier, during the French and Indian War, the land housed a French fort filled with munitions. A band of Native Americans sneaked into the fort and accidentally blew it up when sparks from their torches ignited the stored gun powder.

This was only the first of a string of unfortunate events that would occur on the Beardslee Manor grounds. Legend has it that a young bride named Abigail died at Beardslee Castle the night before her wedding. A Beardslee child was hit by an oncoming train that ran along the front of the property. And a man who bought the place and turned it into a restaurant after the Beardslees had all passed on hanged himself in the foyer.

Beardslee pool table.jpgAll of these folks are rumored to haunt Beardslee Castle. Drivers passing the property have claimed they were blinded by a mysterious light. Some locals have suggested the light came from the lantern of Guy Beardslee's ghost as he searched for his dead child. A mysterious woman has been "seen" running out into the road only to vanish after being hit by an oncoming vehicle (one such event was supposedly witnessed by two unrelated motorists at the same time). Former employees have reportedly run screaming from the place, claiming they were chased by ghosts. The kitchen burned down in the late 1980's.

You'd think potential restaurateurs would get the hint. But a few folks who apparently never saw Beetlejuice realized how charming the castle is and have reopened it as a high-end fusion restaurant. The food is wonderful and the prices are remarkably reasonable. The main dining room is a bit upscale -- there's also a casual menu, a nice bar and a pool table in "The Dungeon." The second floor is a popular spot for banquets and, oddly enough, weddings.

Photos: Kim Wingfield


Thanks for that! I considered that location for my wedding but decided to stick (more) local. I still have never been, but I hear they have a badass halloween party every year.

cool, thanks for featuring this. my family has a longstanding fascination with beardslee manor. this place is most definitely haunted, something happened to my uncle while he was there, years ago, and he would never go back. it is supposed to be featured (investigated) on an upcoming episode of ghost hunters on the sci-fi network.

I've been there twice to see bands..... although I wasn't spooked by any ghosts, reflections of both visits are hazy at best - lets just say that a trippy time was had by all.

> it is supposed to be featured (investigated) on an
> upcoming episode of ghost hunters on the sci-fi network.

In that case, it has to be true..

(also, the kids say SyFy now)

Oooh Kim, do tell! I love ghost stories. And yes, I watch Ghost Hunters. I think I remember hearing a while back that they were coming, but I forgot about it. They were in Albany back in season one (it was the season finale), but I'm not sure exactly where.

A band I'm a fan of, Brothers Past, has played multiple shows there... I saw them here in '05 and '06. AMAZING place to see a show.

Plus they let you camp right there, so we could drink all we wanted then crash next to our car.

@summer: yes please keep us updated if they come back to Albany. I think I know a few guys we would love to mess with them a little. Maybe hand deliver a BDitU award or two...

This is way cool. My husband's birthday is Halloween - we are going!

I have been going to Beardslee for the past 30 years. Regardless of who the owner has been at the time, the place is amazing. The food is always fabulous, the bar is gorgeous and the halloween fetes are out of this world. The ambviance is perfect no matter what the occasion. I have never had a bad meal or drink and have always experienced excellent service. This is a must see restaurant. The weddings there are beautiful. I have shared this restaurant with many friends and they all have loved their experience and have returned. This year our family has decided to try a restaurant for Thanksgiving and we are hoping to go to Beardslee for this very special holiday.

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