Posts Tagged ‘Niagara-on-the-Lake’

Fall in Ontario is a feast for all your senses…breathtaking vistas emblazoned with fiery colours of crimsons, reds, golds and more… Indulge yourself at an Ontario resort or inn this Fall, where an amazing array of packages such as Fall Colour Packages, Reconnect Now…Just the two of you, Spontaneous Getaways and Thanksgiving Packages and celebrations can be enjoyed with those closest to you for just that special reason. Just a short drive away, often only three or four turns from where you are. For a taste of Fall, browse through our web site at


Read Full Post »

Beauview Cottage Resort

The first weekend of November is behind us and what a great start to November it was. It was nothing but sunshine and mild fall temperatures in Resort Country. Over the last few years, I have noticed a trend where we see most of October being wet and cool (with the exception of Thanksgiving weekend,) but come November, the temperature starts to climb back up. That trend looks to be continuing again for 2011 which means there is still time for you to getaway and enjoy some fall activities in Ontario’s beautiful natural landscapes.

By now most of the leaves have fallen meaning there is an increased opportunity to see and photograph wildlife in their natural habitat. Moose and deer are on the move as they start their fall rut. Bears are busily searching for food as they bulk up for winter. Birds are starting their migration. Fall fishing is raved about as well.

There is a lot to be said for hiking in the fall. While you have likely missed the fall colour change, there is still reason to get out. The smells and sounds of fall are ever-present come November. The soft crunching feel and sound of the drying leaves are unmistakable and if you are patient enough, you might actually hear and see animals approaching. As the cool weather sets in, there is also a calming stillness in the fall air.

Fall mornings are especially tranquil when you wake up to see the morning fog rolling around the lakes. Combine that with a cup of coffee or tea and the sound of a loon calling and you are starting your day off the right way. Then once your day unwinds, take in the spectacular pastels of colour across the sky and reflected on the water as the sun begins to set.

This coming weekend, November 11-13, Deerhurst Resort in Huntsville is featuring Jann Arden as part of a girlfriends getaway package. Click here for all the details and to book your getaway package.

On November 19th, Pinestone Resort in Haliburton is hosting a Superstars Tribute live show beginning at 7:30 pm. Overnight packages start at $259 per couple which includes 2 tickets for the show and dinner buffet. Phone 705-457-1800 for more information.

For something even more laid back and relaxing, check out the “Spa Your Way” package from Pillar and Post in Niagara on the Lake from $195 pp. which gives you a $100 spa credit that you can use to alleviate all your pre holiday stress.

View our monthly newsletter for even more great fall packages and sign up to receive specials emailed to you directly.

Read Full Post »

This past weekend I had the great opportunity to stay at White Oaks Resort and Spa in Niagara on the Lake and was treated with outstanding customer service. As a gift for my in-laws, we had given them a free nights stay package so they could also stay at White Oaks. Unfortunately I forgot about this package and when I made their reservation, neglected to realize that I was supposed to mention the certificate before arriving for our stay. The women at the front desk pleasantly informed me of this but before I could even ask about making an exception, she went to see what could be done about excepting the certificate. Within a minute she was back to let us know that this would not be a problem. This may seem like a small request but you would be amazed at how many hotels would not be happy to help in similar situations. This is what makes the resort industry unique from other standard hotels. Owners and operators of resorts realize that they provide so much more than just a standard hotel room… they provide a vacation experience.

The excellent service continued from there when our bags were taken to our room. The bell hop actually gave us a tour of our room showing us where the light switches were, how to operate some of the electronics, etc. (White Oaks has small tv’s in their bathrooms.) Later this same young man, held open the car doors for my wife and mother in-law to get in. Again a small detail but not something most of us get to experience when staying at standard hotels.

At breakfast the next morning, the service again showed through, this time with our server (and in fact all the restaurant staff.) He was enthusiastic and courteous and always made sure our coffee was topped up. After giving us time to review the menu, he suggested that we go with the buffet since it had everything from the menu anyways. It was a great suggestion as the food was hot, very delicious and with the option of the buffet we were all completely satisfied.

Good customer service is not something that we as consumers always get so it was great to be treated in such a fantastic way. In fact White Oaks does so much to ensure a positive guest experience that even the garbage cans and ashtrays were cleaned – not just emptied but actually wiped down, throughout the day. The gardens were also kept well maintained and looked ready for spring flowers despite the fact that we are still in March and could easily get more snow.

My only regret about this stay was not having more time to enjoy the use of their facilities which include the pool, spa services and a state of the art fitness club. And of course would have liked to have visited some of the local wineries.

Read Full Post »

Resorts are in the business of having fun, making and event out of any occasion and this year Halloween is no exception.

For some live entertainment starting at 9pm on Oct. 30th check out Jamie “Spooky” Williams playing at Bayview Wildwood Resort for an all ages show. You can find a tombstone to rest your head on and a plot to lay on for only $59 + taxes based on dbl occ. Donations are being collected at the door for the local food bank. Reservations are required so call ahead to 1-800-461-0243.

For a more adult party consider Horseshoe Resort which is also getting set for their “Costume-rific Party.” This 19+ event being held in the Crazy Horse restaurant, will feature live entertainment, apple bobbing contest, dancing and best costume prizes. There will also be Molson girls handing out prizes and samples.

Pillar and Post      Looking for a truly haunting experience, then you have to visit Pillar and Post in Niagara on the Lake. This old town with a rich history from the war of 1812 has haunted tours at Fort George located down the road. Pillar and Post also has a rich history of eye-witness accounts claiming to see a disappearing person. People have even seemed to walk through this “person” from time to time when rounding the wooden Pillars in the dining room.

An excerpt from “Ghosts of Niagara-on-the-Lake” reads:

“The Pillar and Post’s Vintages Wine Bar and Lounge is a paranormal hotspot. This cozy, fire-lit room is intimate and charming, the ideal place for a quiet glass of wine and a hushed conversation. Yet, despite the warmth of the hearth, some suggest there’s something cold about the room, an intangible chill that seems to be centered upon a painting of Lieutenant Colonel John Butler that hangs upon the wall.

Folklore suggests this oddly unsettling painting was the Colonel’s favourite portrait of himself, and that his spirit followed it to the Pillar and Post and often sits in the chairs that sit beneath it. According to Restaurant Manager Bill Putman, several members of the serving staff are afraid of Butler’s painting. “They say they feel as if his eyes actually follow them as they walk through the room, and some servers have felt the hair on the back of their necks rise as if they could sense someone unpleasant watching them,” he explains. “It’s also said that temperatures sometimes change suddenly and drastically in the lounge, for absolutely no reason.”

The door just to the side of this painting is said to open and close on its own accord, and people have inexplicably tripped in front of these chairs—as if stumbling over the invisible Colonel’s outstretched legs. In addition, cutlery and plates are said to mysteriously move from table to table, much to the frustration of staff.

These stories are just some examples of how the Pillar and Post’s rich past is a spirited part of its charm.” 

Andrew Hind and Maria Da Silva, authors of Ghosts of Niagara-on-the-Lake (Dundurn, 2008)

 With options of fun for the whole family, why not come up to our place and start a new Halloween tradition for you and your ghoulish family.

Read Full Post »

The Niagara River runs northerly for about 58 km (36 mi) between Lake Erie and Lake Ontario. The steelhead fishing is great, as long as you don’t get too close to the waterfall, where four to six million cubic feet of water per minute plunges straight down for 57 m (188 ft).

The Riverbend Inn on the Niagara Parkway
The Riverbend Inn on the Niagara Parkway

Niagara-on-the-Lake is a popular tourist town about one hour west of Toronto, where the Niagara River meets Lake Ontario. The place has an interesting history. American forces burnt the town to the ground in 1813. In retaliation, British and “Upper Canada” (as Ontario was called back then) forces caused a little of their own destruction on the US side. In 2012, this town will be the place to be for history buffs as the bicentennial of the War of 1812 is celebrated.

Château des Charmes winery
The Château des Charmes winery is a jewel of the Niagara countryside.

Niagara-on-the-Lake is in the heart of wine country. There are dozens of wineries within ten minutes of town. You can easily get to them by car but many travelers tour them on bicycles. Several of the wineries are found on back roads with little traffic, or along the Niagara Trail, a 56 km paved cycling route that hugs the Niagara Parkway. I think it was Winston Churchill who once called it “the prettiest Sunday drive in the world”. The Shaw Festival Theatre, which is devoted to George Bernard Shaw and his contemporaries is also in Niagara-on-the-Lake, and so are some wonderful inns where you can dine or overnight.

The lobby at The Pillar and Post Inn, Spa & Conference Centre
The lobby at The Pillar and Post Inn, Spa & Conference Centre

This is a great area in which to experience both the pastoral country life of rolling vineyards and the high culture of award-winning restaurants and celebrated chefs. There are also plenty of historic inns. We stopped at one, the Riverbend Inn on the Niagara Parkway. Lots of people were out on its patio enjoying a glass of vino while gazing out over the vineyard. This establishment takes advantage of the Niagara microclimate and harvests its own signature wine from its own vineyards. The chef has a “Secret Garden” here too, an impressive affair that front desk staff told me is their main source of produce during the summer months.

For inns and resorts around Niagara-on-the-Lake, check out the Niagara Falls region on the Resorts of Ontario website.

Read Full Post »