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Tonight, owner Charlie Mattingly unveiled plans for what he hopes will become a five-star hotel complete with convention space, a nightclub and a spa. But no one will stay on the fourth floor. That's reserved for ghosts and those seeking the paranormal.
Waverly Hills owner Charlie Mattingly hopes to fill the dark hallways with hotel guests.
"Somehow we were lucky enough to be popular and that popularity is what I am turning over into enough money to do this business plan," said Mattingly.
The facility that used to house tuberculosis patients has garnered national attention over the years by those fascinated with the paranormal. Mattingly has experienced his own ghost run-ins.
"I was seeing images, orbs float through," said Mattingly.
The gargoyles don't seem to scare anyone away. Mattingly says tourists are willing to pay to participate in "ghost hunts" and "ghost investigations." Seventy percent of Waverly tourists are from out of state.
"With that fact in mind, we hope we can encourage the tourism board to give us a tax incentive that I can take to a bank or investor and this my collateral for a loan. Now can I please have $18 million," said Mattingly.
Mattingly says he needs to $18 million to restore Waverly Hills. But no one will be allowed to stay on the fourth floor.
"It's not going to be for anything else but for ghost investigations," said Mattingly.
Restoring the fourth floor to its original 1920s status Mattingly hopes will give them a sense of history.
"It's a wonderful building really and a beautiful landmark and I think people of Louisville need that really," said Kay Modica.
Kay Modica was in her 20s working as a nursing student on the fourth floor. The former nurse is pleased to see the sanatorium will be returned to its original state. But she's not one for ghost-hunting.
Mattingly says if the financing is secured he hopes to complete the renovation by 2010.