Grand Canyon Caverns Underground Suite – Peach Springs, Arizona - Atlas Obscura

Grand Canyon Caverns Underground Suite

One of the largest, oldest, darkest, quietest motel rooms in the world. 


During the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1961, then-President John F. Kennedy decided to create a safe place for evacuees should the bombs begin to rain down on American heads, and found the perfect spot in the Grand Canyon Caverns.

The POTUS moved enough food and supplies into the caves to support over 2,000 people for at least a month. While the bombs never dropped, in true American fashion, the site became a tourist spot. Visitors to the Grand Canyon can still take refuge in the caverns by staying in the Grand Canyon Caverns Underground Suite.

Maintained and operated by the above-ground Grand Canyon Caverns Motel, this single room is located 220 feet below ground, near the area where JFK’s emergency rations are still stored, kept fresh and usable after 40 years by the cavern’s naturally dry climate. The suite features many modern amenities including a television, double beds, a small library, a record player, and even running water supplied by hundreds of gallons, hand-carried down into the caves. Despite the seeming solitude of being deep in the Earth, the suite is actually not all that private–tours pass through during most daylight hours.

Due to the extreme depth, perpetual and complete darkness, and zero humidity, nothing lives in the caves. This lack of rodent, insect, or other animal coupled with the crushing insulation of stone makes the lodging possibly the quietest room in the world. The cavern that houses the room was created by over 65 million years of natural acidic erosion, a thing to keep in mind when staring down the $900/ a night rate. 

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July 30, 2013

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