NIAGARA FALLS, ONTARIO - FEBRUARY 2004
Every February we spend a weekend at Niagara Falls, Ontario for our anniversary. It is only a 2 hour drive for us, and we get great rates this time of year.
Our drive is now shortened because of the new 407 toll road. It only takes us a little over an hour and 30 minutes now. They film your license plate and send you a bill in the mail. It is a bit expensive but saves alot of time and aggrivation sitting in traffic jams along the 401 in Toronto and the QEW. We are on the other side of Pearson Airport, as you can see the plane landing in the distance. The 401 parallels the airport on the southern side.
The view of the USA falls from Canada. It's amazing in the winter to see all the ice build up.
Niagara Falls Aviary*****
One of the newest attractions is the Niagara Falls Aviary.
The Birds of the Lost Kingdom exhibit. About 2 years ago while staying at Michaels Inn, we watched the renovations to the old Daredevil Museum.
As you can see from the above picture, there are several levels and you can walk behind the waterfall.
Look closely at the above picture and you can see the mist that is released every few minutes.
Courtyard by Mariott Niagara Falls*****
My favorite thing about going on a trip, is planning the hotel reservation. An indoor pool is a must and a jacuzzi room is an added bonus if we find a good rate. The only other stipulation is that it is CLEAN. We found all of the above at the Courtyard by Marriott on Victoria Avenue.
The view from our room.
I made the reservation through Casino Niagara, which offers excellent rates at area hotels for Players Advantage Card holders.Plus you get a $10. casino voucher for each adult each day. If you don't have a PAC card you can sign up for one on their website.
The room was spotless thanks to our housekeeper "Fran"!
The fireplace was an added bonus, as we didn't book the jacuzzi/fireplace suite. We were thrilled!
What made this even better was for a city view room, if you looked out our sliding doors, you had a partial view of the American Falls.
We usually enjoy dining in Niagara. When we stayed at Michaels Inn, we would eat every breakfast and dinner there and find someplace different for lunch as their food was very good.
The package deal from booking through the Casino included a free continental breakfast for 2 each day. The Courtyard Marriott gave us coupons for their free breakfast buffet, valued at $43. each CAD. It was a nice buffet, but if we had to pay $19. each, we would of found someplace else.
We had our first dinner at the Keg Steakhouse, located in the hotel. It was an OK meal, but we were a little dissatisfied with the service. First they put us in a booth right behind an opening adjoing the bar, which was extremely noisy every time they used the blender to make a frozen drink. The other thing was that I asked our server for a drink menu, which the keg usually has, and she just told me what they had. I decided on the Keg marguerita, which she said was about $7, but showed up at over $9. on our bill.
We both ordered our steaks medium, but my husbands was a little more on the rare side. The ceasar salad was very good, but we didn't care for the cheese being sliced on it, and not grated. The mini round loaf of bread was nice and warm and very fresh and tasty, except we had to ask TWICE for butter.
The next night we decided to eat in the room. We walked next door to T.G.I.Fridays and were going to order take-out, untill we saw the prices. The same steaks that the Keg offered were $10. more and the appetizers were very high priced. Last year we looked at their menu and thought they had decent prices, and we would like to try it this year. So we went back to the hotel, and asked the Keg if they had take out, which they did, since we did enjoy their food the night before.
I called in the order from our room, and went down to pick it up. We ordered 2 full course dinners. The girl brought out the salad and 2 dinners, and when I asked if there was bread (as I was assured their would be when I placed the order) she said "you mean you want the bread that is served with the meal??? and I say..well YES I was told it came with the meal. I had to ask for silverware, because they didn't give me any, and we could of used some kind of plates, as it was very hard eating a filet mignon, baked potato out of a square black cardboard box.
I think they would do a good room service business, if they put some menus in the room, and scrapped the take-out deal and brought it to your room on plates.
Sunday we decided to forget about the breakfast buffet and go across the street to Dennys which we love, but their prices were outrageous too. Over $13. for their usual slam breakfasts.
We found a nice little place on Clifton Hill, called the Pilgrim and had a burger and fries for both of us for what it would of cost for one breakfast at Dennys.