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Riverbend Inn and Vineyard 3.5

Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario, Canada

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Historic Georgian mansion set on beautiful grounds surrounded by vineyards
  • Four-minute drive to town and its restaurants, galleries, museums, and historic sites
  • Traditionally-styled rooms have gas fireplaces, flat-screen TVs, and coffeemakers
  • Farm-to-table fare served for breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the restaurant
  • Bar serves casual fare, plus wine tastings of hotel's own wine available
  • Event space, including conferences and weddings
  • Free Wi-Fi and parking
  • Bike rentals available (for a fee)

Cons

  • No elevators (historic house)
  • No in-room mini-fridges or minibars
  • Breakfast not included in rates
  • No fitness center, pool, or spa

Bottom Line

Though the Georgian architecture is impressive and grand, this historic mansion hotel has an intimate vibe and only 21 rooms. Set on pristine grounds surrounded by 17 acres of vineyards, the upper-middle-range property is a tranquil spot for relaxing, yet it's just a five-minute drive from the charming town of Niagara-on-the-Lake. Guest rooms feature traditional decor and come with gas fireplaces, flat-screen TVs, coffeemakers, and free Wi-Fi. On-site features include an elegant restaurant serving farm-to-table fare as well as as a bar that offers tastings of the Riverbend Inn's own wine, plus the hotel offers event space for various functions. Those who'd prefer something a little more modern that's closer to the action in town might consider The Charles Hotel, though rates are a touch higher.

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Scene

Historic Georgian mansion set amid vineyards, with a peaceful and secluded vibe

Situated in a grand historic mansion on beautiful green grounds surrounded by vineyards, the Riverbend Inn and Vineyard is an ideal spot for a dose of relaxation. The Georgian architecture dates back to 1820 and is impressive, though the property manages to maintain an intimate feel thanks to just 21 guest rooms and suites. Interiors are traditionally styled, as expected, with damask patterned burgundy carpets and rugs lining the handsome hardwood floors, as well as ornately framed oil paintings on the walls and antique furniture. The dining room features more chandeliers and large paintings on pastel-hued walls, while a wall of French doors and windows illuminates the collection of tables topped in crisp white linens. The grounds are immaculately maintained, with pristine lawns, manicured gardens, and lovely old trees speckling the green. There are lots of lovely spots to sit outside and take in the vineyard views, and when we stopped by we saw plenty of couples kicking back in the charming gazebo or on Adirondack chairs at the edge of the vine-strewn fields. Overall, this is a peaceful place that has an undeniably romantic atmosphere.

Location

Tranquil location on pretty grounds surrounded by vineyards; a five-minute drive into town

Map of Riverbend Inn and Vineyard

Set on beautiful grounds and surrounded by 17 acres of vineyards, the hotel feels remote and offers a quiet, tranquil spot for unwinding -- yet it's just a five-minute drive to Niagara-on-the-Lake and two minutes to the Fort George National Historic Site (which can also be reached in under 20 minutes on foot). The charming 19th-century town offers several dining options, art galleries, shops, as well as some historic sites. The area is rich in vineyards, and winery tours and tastings are popular activities here. There are several museums nearby, including the Niagara Apothecary Museum (three-minute drive), the Niagara Historical Society & Museum, (three-minute drive), the Mackenzie Printery and Newspaper Museum (10-minute drive away), and the RiverBrink Art Museum (10-minute drive). Lake Ontario can be reached in about seven minutes by car. Niagara Falls is a 25-minute south of here, and airports in Toronto and Buffalo are 80-minute and one-hour drive away, respectively. 

Rooms

Pleasant rooms with traditional decor and gas fireplaces

The hotel offers three types of rooms: Premium, Superior, and Suites. Decor follows suit with the rest of the hotel's public spaces. The rooms are traditionally styled and feature period furniture and gilt-framed oil paintings on the walls. Color schemes differ and include dark burgundy hues, soft beiges, and olive greens. It's a look that appeals to many travelers, though some might find it stuffy. Some of the Superior Rooms have vaulted cathedral ceilings and Juliet balconies, while Suites offer living areas. 

Rooms overlook the gardens, the Niagara Parkway, or the vineyards. All have gas fireplaces -- a cozy touch -- as well as flat-screen TVs, coffeemakers, safes, and free Wi-Fi, but they lack minibars or mini-fridges. Bathrooms are clean and pleasant and come with shower/tub combos (Suites have separate tubs and showers) as well as magnifying mirrors, hairdryers, and toiletries.

Features

Restaurant and bar focus on local, seasonal fare; event spaces; freebies including Wi-Fi and parking

The hotel's restaurant is an elegant fine-dining space that focuses on farm-to-table fare -- including ingredients from the on-site herb and vegetable garden -- and serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. There's a patio for alfresco dining in the summer, and guests can also reserve a special dinner in the gazebo that overlooks vineyards. Besides serving drinks, the restaurant's bar also offers a casual food menu. Wine tastings of the hotel's own wines are available at the bar as well. The hotel offers event space for various functions, including conferences and weddings. Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel, as is on-site parking. Guests can also rent bikes for a daily fee.

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Address

16104 Niagara River Pky, Niagara-on-the-Lake L0S 1J0, Canada

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