It’s a quaint but charismatic corner in the Niagara Region, with three Vintage Hotels are situated in the vicinity. If you’ve never stayed at a Vintage Hotel, you’re in for a treat. This boutique hotel collection is a haven for romance and relaxation: luxurious rooms, soothing spas, and rich dining experiences. It’s also an ideal location for a quick escape given the hotels’ proximity to historical attraction, the Shaw Festival, local wineries, and Niagara Falls.
I visited Queen’s Landing for the first time in late December, expecting to be welcomed by the bleakness of Old Man Winter. Instead, there was a Georgian-style manor, looking regal facing the Niagara River. Drabness was non-existent – the lobby was flooded with natural light, and the hallways were adorned with festive décor, pink roses, and poinsettias. For guests who long for a dramatic entrance – you’ve got it. The sweeping Scarlett O’Hara staircase created an ambiance of grandeur in the hotel.
Most of the rooms are something to write home about, if you’re in an upgraded suite. Queen’s Landing has 142 guestrooms, each with plush duvets, bathrobes, and luxurious sheets. Some rooms even feature a jetted tub or a gas fireplace – at a higher price. Upgrade to a deluxe or premium guestroom if you want to rouse romance in your relationship (or one-night encounter…not being judgy).
One of the biggest draws to Queen’s Landing is Tiara Restaurant. Poised above the Niagara River, this popular restaurant boasts gourmet cuisine and panoramic views of the waterfront and the Yacht Club. The Executive Chef has crafted a menu that fuses Canadian fare with traditional French techniques. Best of all, local, fresh ingredients from local Niagara farms and wineries have been incorporated into the cuisine.
Although the ice storm had hit overnight, the dining room was warm and sun-filled, ready to welcome patrons in front of the fireplace. When you walk across the floor, make sure to look up and admire the dazzling stainglass ceiling.
The French toast (below) had a secret weapon: roasted peaches. The fried bread was supple and cinnamony, drizzled with Canadian maple syrup and sweet pecan butter. Warm slices of peach were a sumptuous way to re-invent a brunch classic. No need to order anything else after eating this dish – but you may need to switch to stretchy pants.
For a lighter option, order an omelette with peppers, onions, cheese, ham, tomatoes and mushrooms (below). The fresh veggies and rosemary mini roast potatoes were a savoury treat first thing in the morning.
If you’re dreaming of a fairy tale wedding, this just might be your venue. That same weekend, I was the Maid-of-Honour in a wedding at Queen’s Landing, and the setting was lovely. Rose petals were scattered across the marble floors, and the candles and white linens illuminated the ceremony hall. Plus, the food was exquisite – no rubbery chicken cutlets for guests here.
It’s easy to understand why Queen’s Landing was listed on Condé Nast Traveler’s Gold List, and why it was rated as one of the top 10 Canadian resorts by Travel + Leisure magazine. This gorgeous Georgian-style mansion prides itself on offering first-rate hospitality, cuisine, and luxury for its guests. If you want to put the moves on your mate, do it here.
If I could change one thing about my visit, it would be the room rates. The prices were overly steep starting at $200+/night plus tax, especially since traditional guest rooms felt a bit worn around the edges.
To really turn up the heat, reserve a table for Tiara Restaurant to sample the four-course Valentine’s Day tasting menu for $67/person. Oohh la la, baby!
155 Byron Street
PO Box 1180
Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON L0S1J0
The writer was a guest at Tiara Restaurant. Neither the hotel nor restaurant did not review or approve this article.