The Glencairn Hotel was built in 1904 by Scottish architect John Parker (1866-1921) using a Victorian architectural style typical of the time. The building materials included Canadian Oregon Pine floorboards, and Mahogany imported from Sweden for the stairs and banister. The annex was also designed by John Parker and constructed in 1918.
A ballroom was added in the 1950’s with little regard to the architectural aesthetics. Nonetheless, the Hotel enjoyed success throughout the years but eventually became more dilapidated and run down and was thus rescued and completely refurbished in the late 50’s. It was renamed ‘Adinda’ after the dog that was married to ‘Just Nuisance’ – the famous Simon’s Town Royal Navy dog. The Glen Adinda Hotel was re-decorated by Hazel Simpson who lived in Fish Hoek. The elegant restaurant was renamed ‘Wilhelmina’s’ after the daughter of the canines. They served authentic dishes from other countries for the well- travelled sophisticates who frequented the hotel.
In those years there were 18 hotels in the surrounding area of Fish Hoek and Simon’s Town, but unfortunately only the Lord Nelson and the Glencairn Hotel survived. After WW2 the residents’ lounge was turned into a ladies’ bar with a huge success, and its horseshoe-shaped bar survived and can be seen on the veranda of Barstaurant today.
Two ghosts have been seen in the Glencairn Hotel, a middle-aged lady carrying a candle in an old-fashioned candle holder and a blond-haired boy of about 5 -7 years of age.
Over the years they have been seen many times, even recently, but they do not trouble those who are unaware of their presence. A lady who formerly worked and lived at the hotel reported that the female ghost is most likely to be seen when the observer stays in room 3, although she has also been seen walking up and down the stairs or sitting at the bottom of the staircase. She is in her late thirties and can be seen either at night or during the day. She is also particularly feminine, wears her hair in a bun on top of her head and is dressed in a long white Victorian-style nightgown.
The boy, a noisy character who often stamps his feet and throws things around, wears black knickerbockers with a white frilly shirt, socks and shoes. He is occasionally found in room 5 and can from time to time be seen playing with the snooker balls on the snooker table or moving paintings and a heater around. The boy responds to being told to ‘shut-up,’ when he gets noisy, by moving the furniture or rattling the doorknob, and it is understood that the boy is waiting for his parents.
If anyone has any further information about these wondering ghosts, please do let us know!