Been a while since you heard a spine-chilling ghost story? We got some members of the team to share their creepiest ones so you don’t forget that unseen terrors still run rampant in the day and age of Tinder.
“I was in Jogjakarta for a series of shoots with a couple of friends. One of the locations we were planning to shoot at was within Mount Merapi, an active volcano in the province. We’d planned to shoot there during golden hour but by the time we were done with hair and makeup, the sun had already begun to set.
Our photographer, who was Indonesian, stated that he was uncomfortable continuing since the sun was down, but the rest of the crew was feeling hyped up and didn’t want to let all the hard work go to waste. We all decided to take a chance and try to squeeze in a quick photo session.
By the time we reached the location, it was already dark, but everything went OK. After some time, one of the fashion assistants noticed people watching us, but no one paid much attention to what she was saying as we assumed they were curious villagers.
When we headed back to the car for a quick change, one of the crew members accidentally slipped and pressed onto the car horn, sending an incredibly loud sound into the night. After that, the camera stopped working—we knew it wasn’t a technical difficulty because five minutes prior, the camera was working fine and fully charged. Even switching to the spare batteries didn’t work. An eeriness fell over everyone as we realised we’d disturbed the peace in the area, so we quickly and quietly packed up.
The next day, the camera still wouldn’t work and our photographer started to contemplate if he should go back to the area to apologise. Luckily, around noon, the camera miraculously started working again, but when we looked though the photos taken from the night before, most, if not all of them, were unusable. They were either blur or overexposed.
It was only at the end of the trip that the photographer told us that something was following our car that night in the mountains, though thankfully it wasn’t for very long. And the ‘curious villagers’ that were watching us? Well, no one has been living in the area ever since the the last time the volcano erupted.”
Cheryl Chan, Fashion Editor
“I go to Kuala Lumpur with my family pretty often and we used to be regular guests of a particular hotel. A few years ago, we were staying at that hotel and got a family room at the corner. I was sharing one of the rooms with my sister and was on the side of the bed that was closer to the bathroom.
At about 1am, I was awoken by the sound of someone showering. I sat up and turned to look at my sister and the room across ours, where my mum and other sister were in. Everyone was sleeping soundly so I low-key freaked out. I laid down again and turned to face my sister. I forced myself to sleep because, in Malay culture, if you sense or see something, it’s best to not say anything lest the spirit follows you home.
When we got back to Singapore, I told my family what happened and we decided never to return to that hotel again. My sister related the incident to her Malaysian colleague and was told that Malaysians who live in KL know that the hotel is haunted because it was built on a graveyard.”
Hidayah Idris, Associate Digital Editor
“Some years ago, at 2am, when everyone at home was asleep, I decided to practise playing the piano with the muted pedal activated. The score I was practising was Richard Marx’s Right Here Waiting.
I very quickly heard a low and husky voice singing along to my playing. It came from behind me and sung along at, ‘I will be right here waiting for you’. I immediately turned around but there was no one there. A cold chill ran down my spine and I sprinted into my bedroom. I haven’t dared to to listen to that song again since!”
Soon Li Ling, Marketing Executive
“This happened while I was on a press trip to Koyasan, a popular pilgrimage place in Kyoto. We were staying overnight in one of the temples and had just returned from a night tour. There was a shared bath house and some of us decided to check it out together.
The bathroom was split into three sections—the first was for slippers, the second was an area with mirrors and hairdryers and the third was an open bath area that had a sliding door. I pushed the sliding door open to take a look at the bath area before heading back out to let others know that the bathroom was completely empty. My colleague, who was waiting for me in the slipper section, then asked me if the bath area was really crowded. I was confused and asked why did she thought that, particularly since there were only three more small groups staying at the temple
As it turns out, when I pushed the sliding doors open to take a peek, she heard women’s laughter coming out of the room. Needless to say, I took the quickest shower I could and forced my colleague to share a room with me that night.”
Cheryl Chan, Fashion Editor
“Some friends were holidaying in Bali and leased a villa. All the properties in that resort were manned by a single security guard, which was already kind of weird. Anyhow, everything was fine until the second last night of the trip, when their water supply was cut off.
They approached the guard for help and he told them to head to shower at one of the empty villas. He started pointing at the villas to tell them which was ‘occupied’ even though they were all clearly empty. My friends tried not to be alarmed and proceeded to shower in the a villa that the guard recommended.
One of the girls was in one of the bedrooms when, suddenly, she shouted that she couldn’t open the door from the inside. Her friends tried to unlock it but, according to them, it felt like someone was turning the door knob in the opposite direction. They scrambled to ask the security guard for help. The guard came, muttered some words under his breath, tapped the door knob a few times and then unlocked the door. When it was opened, they all saw the girl hugging her knees and silently watching TV.
It was only when all of them were on the plane home that the girl shared that she’d seen something when she had been showering in that bedroom. The ‘something’ was lingering in the room the entire time she was trapped in there and only disappeared when the door was finally unlocked. Also, the website that they used to book the villa apparently doesn’t even exist anymore.”
Jane Tan, Designer
“This happened five years ago when I was on a 2D1N roadtrip to Desaru with three ex-colleagues. We hadn’t done much research and had just booked a night’s stay at a random apartment.
We felt a bit uncomfortable when we arrived because the building was old and run-down. Plus, we practically had the whole building to ourselves. There were no other cars or humans around and we seemed to be the only visitors.
Us Chinese usually knock the door of the room a few times as a courtesy call to any spirits there may be residing there. But because my friends wanted to play a fool, they banged the door really hard and even kicked it before entering the room.
I wasn’t aware of any supernatural happenings during my time there but, on the way back to Singapore, one of my friends said that she saw child spirits playing with my hair—which I completely wasn’t aware of—and meddling with the water heater. She also heard a loud sound coming from the storeroom.
I’m glad nothing bad happened to us but I’d never go back there again. Maybe the spirits were disturbed by the loud bang when we first entered the room.”
“This story didn’t happen to me, but to a socialite I spoke to at an event. She and her husband were invited to a brand immersion trip in Chiang Mai and the brand had arranged a huge villa that could house an entire family just for her and her husband to stay in.
Nothing had happened in the day but when it came to nighttime, she had some difficulty sleeping. When she finally did, she had a nightmare that there was a woman pressing down on her chest and staring at her angrily. She woke up with a fright and turned to check on her husband. It turns out that he hadn’t gone to sleep at all because he had a feeling that he had to stay awake to ‘protect’ his wife. When they called the concierge to switch rooms, no questions were asked, prompting her to believe that this was a common occurrence.”
Cheryl Chan, Fashion Editor