Tubac Golf Resort and Spa in Southern Arizona

Historic Otero Ranch House

Strange things are happening at the Otero Ranch House in Tubac, Arizona. Actually, so much paranormal activity occurs at the House and surrounding vicinity at the Tubac Golf Resort and Spa that we have to tell you about the phenomena over several blog entries. THIS is the first in the series.   

Recently in September 2010, two women visited the Otero Ranch House. The older female has always been skeptical at the bare mention of paranormal activity. A true pragmatist. Her daughter, the younger female, is open to experiencing any unusual phenomena. Yet, she has managed to maintain a healthy dose of skepticism.   

They planned to spend a relaxing night at the Otero Ranch House. Its adobe walls and tiled roof evokes a peculiar charm. There was something “unique” about the House. And, the women were about to learn what it was. 

Within 15 minutes of entering the house, the women smelled a strange odor wedge between them as they sat within inches of each other on the large brown leather couch. The air had a musty smoky smell. There was a towering fireplace a few feet to the left in front of the couch they sat upon. But, it looked as if it hadn’t been used for months.  The smell lingered for a few more moments, leaving a trace of a tobacco-like scent before it suddenly evaporated without a trace.   

The women stared at each other speechless. Having noticed the strange scent and since neither woman smoked, the daughter asked, “did you smell anything.” Mom acknowledged she had indeed smelled a tobacco scent for just a few fleeting seconds. But, then nothing. They both looked at each other, shrugged their shoulders and shook their heads-as if to say that they had imagined the whole experience.   

Shortly after the women settled in for the night, a couple of nearby friends stopped by to visit. One, a male, walked in and immediately noticed a flowery smell. He asked the daughter, “do you smell something like lavender?” She looked at him puzzled. No one was standing near the man except the daughter, and she wore no perfume. “No,” she replied. The man took a few more steps then exclaimed, “it’s gone!”   

Later during his visit, the man informed the women that he had smelled a smoky tobacco-like smell throughout different parts of the livingroom during the course of the day. That was odd since not one match, not one cigarette had been lit.   

Hours passed. Eventually, the night wrapped itself around the Otero Ranch House like a warm blanket on a cold winter’s eve.   

Mom was getting pretty tired. She readied herself for bed. Her daughter joined her in the bedroom shortly after midnight.   

It started out to be a rocky night. Exhausted and uncomfortable, the women layed half awake drifting in and out of light sleep.   

Around 3:00 o’clock in the morning the daughter heard her mom exclaim, “That’s enough! Stop smoking! Leave me alone!” A cough, then another, and another. The mom covered herself with the blanket-yanking it with purpose.   

“Don’t you smell it,” the mom asked the daughter. “No,” she replied sheepishly, not wanting to disappoint her mom. Nevertheless, she had to admit that she hadn’t smelled whatever it was that bothered her mother.   

The dark night eventually gave way to the early dawn. Mom was already packed and ready to leave by the time the daughter woke up. Mom mumbled something about having had a rough night’s sleep. After breakfast, the daughter asked her mom, “did you sleep ok?” “No,” mom replied. “There is something in that house!” The mom explained that something or someone was blowing a tobacco-like smoke in her face as she tried to sleep. She said it was so close to her face that it seemed intentional.   

The daughter was surprised and shocked. You see, her mom had never suggested that there was such a thing as ghosts. At least, not during mom’s previous 74 years of existence. Until now. When her daughter told her mom that she was surprised to hear about her paranormal claim, her mom said, “if its there, you can’t deny its there.”   

What caused the tobacco smell? Who blew the smoke in mom’s face? Maybe some of the other Otero House phenomena can help answer those questions.   

In the next installment of “The Otero Ranch House” series, you’ll hear about some of the physical phenomena that has been experienced.  

If you have never heard about the Otero Ranch House, it is time you have. It is located in southern Arizona at the Tubac Golf Resort and Spa, a historic hotel preferred provider.    

Travel to southern Arizona, and drive south down Interstate 19 towards Nogales. Eventually you will arrive at Exit 40 called Chavez Siding Road. The Exit is roughly 23 miles north of Nogales and the International Border. Turn left driving under the freeway overpass then right at the frontage road. In a few minutes you will see a large white arched entrance to the Tubac Golf Course and Spa on the east side of the road. Follow the road until you reach 1 Camino Otero. The Otero Ranch House is on the east side of the road.   

The Otero Ranch House sits on what was the first deeded property to any European in Arizona. Title was first received through a Spanish land grant to Don Toribio de Otero, a 28 year-old teacher from Arizpe, New Spain, in 1789.