It’s one of our favorite haunts and seems to be one of the best kept secrets among locals in Detroit. It even became one of my senior field trip destinations for my students as we visited other architectural wonders through the city. The Ghost Bar, a small bar on the third floor of the historic Whitney building offers you more than strong drinks when you come in.
From the moment you walk through the doors of the Richardsonian Romanesque mansion you’re transported back in time with roaring fires, the mosaic tile floors and a large wooden stair case with Tiffany stained glass windows lighting the way. The mansion is filled with a long history itself including doing a short time as a red cross hospital. Today the Whitney is an upscale restaurant that can be booked for special occasions or weekend brunches.
When you first walk into the Whitney you can ask for dinner, a free tour of the house (if they have time) or just simply tell them you’re heading up to the Ghost bar. Follow the main stairs to the third floor to the small bar space waiting for you.
The Ghost Bar is open every evening at 4:30 pm and the upscale lounge has a history of it’s own. Named the Ghost Bar due to multiple reports of hauntings in the bathroom and the attached sitting area. The reports have been of an lady in period garb appearing in the bathroom and in the main lounge area. A talk with the staff varies to sightings to nothing depending on how long they’ve been there.
You can enjoy your drinks in the Absinthe Room with flickering lights or two other side rooms near one of the 20 fireplaces and in large lounge chairs. Order small plates, desserts or drinks that the heavy handed bartenders make on demand.
We’re not sure if the Ghost Bar is actually haunted or not since we have never seen the ghost on any of our visits. But we do love the strong spirits served there each time we stop in.
Be sure to visit the Ghost Bar Saturday nights around 10 pm for live jazz to end your evening while you enjoy their delicious drinks and small bites.