Although Boise’s history is much newer than many eastern states, there are still hundreds of years of buildings, people, and culture in the city. Because of this, there are plenty of haunted places in Boise, many of them you can visit today.
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If you ask most Boiseans about the most haunted place in town, they will likely respond with the Old Idaho Penitentiary. The penitentiary was open for more than100 years and had dozens of deaths in that time — including some inmates who were executed.
You can visit the Idaho Penitentiary year-round, even though much of it is outside, and walk through the cells of former inmates. Since it was turned into a museum, numerous people have felt or seen presences at the penitentiary. But judge for yourself — the last time I visited I felt weird in certain areas, specifically the cell blocks.
There are numerous ghost tours throughout the year as well, and some of them include overnight stays!
The Egyptian Theatre was opened in downtown Boise in 1927, and was restored in 1999. It has since been named as a historical landmark, which means it likely won’t be torn down any time soon. Whether or not you are ghost hunting, the Egyptian Theatre is an amazing building to visit because of the art and architectural detail both inside and outside.
Over the years, numerous employees have reported feeling or seeing something out of the ordinary, including a male who hangs out around the projection room. It has also been the subject of numerous paranormal investigations.
The Egyptian Theatre is still open today, both as a movie theatre and event venue.
The Idanha Hotel was built in 1890 as a boarding house, and was used as many different things over the years. The Idanha is currently used as apartments, and there have been numerous tenants and workers who have reported a number of weird things happening.
According to Idaho Haunted Houses, there was a bellman who was killed at the hotel, which is why the elevator moves on its own. Residents have reported seeing this bellman. There is also the spirit of a murdered woman who hangs around the building, and a number of other spirits there as well.
As a Boise native, I have had a number of friends who have lived there, and every single one of them has reported multiple instances of weird events happening in and around their apartments.
The Hoff Building was built in 1930 in downtown Boise, and used as a hotel for decades. The Hoff Building was previously Hotel Boise, and was considered the first skyscraper in Boise. The building has 11 floors and a penthouse, as well as the Crystal Ballroom, an event space used for proms, meetings, and weddings.
Paranormal activity has been reported for years at The Hoff Building, especially in the Crystal Ballroom, the 11th floor, and the 5th floor. Walking through the opulent doors and wandering around its hallways, it’s hard not to feel something around you. There is something about the building that takes you back to when it was built.
The elevator has also been reported as an epicenter for hauntings — but whether you believe that or not, it is pretty creepy if you have to ride up all the way to the top.
Boise State University moved to its current location since 1940, and has been home to plenty of sightings of paranormal figures. Very specifically, the Communication building is always highlighted as the home to these stories.
I actually went to school for two years in the Boise State Communication building, followed by three years of teaching there, and I saw numerous things in this time. I felt or saw things, at the end of hallways, in the bathroom, and in the stairwells. It was never enough to not blame on something else, but combined, there definitely felt like something was there. There were numerous coworkers of mine that felt the same, and it just became a normal part of life.
The rumor is that a student killed herself in the building in the mid-1900s, but there is no proof that is true.
The Owyhee was built in 1910 and has been used as a boarding house, hotel, and apartments in that time. Over the years, there have been a number of sightings, sounds, and voices heard by guests and employees.
There have been reports of elevators moving up and down on their own, TVs turning off and on, and even sightings of a man walking around the building.
The Basque House is located in the Basque Block of downtown Boise, and is a historic boarding house that was home to many Basque migrants moving to Boise in the early 1900s. The Basque House, known as the Cyrus Jacobs/Uberuaga House, was built in 1910 and used as a boarding house well into the 1960s.
According to Greenbelt Magazine, a former employee of the Basque House said she would see a person walking around the house and talking on a regular basis. Other employees and volunteers have seen or heard similar things.
You can visit the Boarding House today, and see if you feel, hear, or see anything.