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“Nice room, but ...”
Review of Simcoe Manor

Simcoe Manor
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Simcoe Manor
Reviewed 27 August 2012

We have never written a bad review before -- but seeing others' comments, we realize our experience was not unusual - so here goes: The room was nice (Green Room) and spacious and clean. The town is lovely, the theater was fabulous, beautiful countryside. The pool at the B&B was quite dirty as was the pool furniture and apparently, judging from others' comments, it has been this way for years.
Alison, one of the proprietors, was extremely kind and sweet. However, John, the other proprietor, was anything but sweet. It started with his insistence that I listen as he yelled driving instructions over the phone when we called to simply let him know we would be a few minutes later than our original arrival time. During our stay, he had a condescending tone and attitude about where we ate, what we ate, that we didn't know what a good restaurant was, that our theater choice was ill-considered and "would be depressing" even though he had not seen the play as of yet, and that my husband was being ridiculous to heed his doctor's advice to stay away from grapefruit while on certain medications. For some reason, John made several negative comparisons between American and Canadian foods. We are not defensive about America or American foods, but why did he need to make such points repeatedly?
One night, I had a extremely painful migraine headache and was not able to make it to breakfast. My husband went downstairs to make our excuses and John made it quite clear in his tone that he was not pleased but would "figure out something." Alison sweetly brought up a breakfast tray and showed concern for my well being and offered to bring my husband a tray also so he could stay with me. While my husband waited for the other tray, he unintentionally overheard John emphatically tell Alison that he would not allow a tray upstairs the next morning.
When we did make it to breakfast the next morning, the negative comparisons continued. We do believe he means well, and likely fancies himself quite the friendly gregarious expert host. Trouble is, what he thinks is gregarious, actually many times comes across as unwelcoming, condescending, and offensive.
We have been to many bed and breakfasts, stayed in many places in Canada and Europe - we live in NYC, we know what good food is, we are aware of good theater and know how to recognize hospitable behavior. We've never experienced this from a proprietor before. We will not return.

Room Tip: In hot weather, the Green Room does not get very cool despite central air conditioning.
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  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank NYCcouple50s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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35 - 41 of 129 reviews

Reviewed 19 August 2012

Went for the weekend with 3 other couples, occupying all but one room -- but the couple in the Henley Bedroom (with whom we shared breakfast) didn't seem to mind us! Rooms are extremely clean and very comfortable; a small refrigerator on each floor gave us a place to chill our beverages for our group's post-theatre gatherings (for which we all imposed upon the couple with the Burgundy suite, which has a spacious sitting room). Having wine glasses available was a nice feature.

OUTSTANDING breakfasts served at 9 AM in the elegant dining room: fresh fruit (mixed fruit and yogurt one day, grapefruit the other), varied baked goods, and what "main courses!:" Eggs Benedict one day; the next, waffles with fresh peach compote and a side of Canadian bacon -- all presented beautifully.

John is an extremely pleasant and accommodating host. Perhaps a bit loquacious, but we certainly were made to feel welcome and he was extremely helpful.

Our group plans to return -- no need for us to look into any other B&Bs now that we've found this one!

(One "minus" -- the pool, which we didn't have time to use anyway, did not look as inviting as it appears in the photos. Certainly swimmable, but perhaps the hot summer made it difficult to keep the water as clear as some might like.)

Can't see how anyone would be disappointed by a stay at Simcoe Manor...

Room Tip: Green, Mauve, and Burgundy Suites are on the second floor; Simcoe Suite and Henley Bedroom are &quo...
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  • Stayed: August 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Steve J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 3 July 2012

We had a great stay in the Mauve room recently, it is spacious with many windows. John is a perfect host with a wealth of local knowledge and recommendations. The breakfast is a great event noting one has to be prepared for a fixed time sitdown with other guests at a large table. We likened it to the meals in "Room with a view", it was great fun.

Many thanks.

Room Tip: We liked the Mauve Room, corner with 7 windows.
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Claudio B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 July 2012

It's been about 15 years since my sisters and I were in Niagara-on-the-Lake. We stayed at the Simcoe Manor mid-week for two nights. What a wonderful experience! The property is beautiful and well maintained. It's in a great location, within walking distance of everything. Our host was gracious and witty, a world traveler with lots of interesting stories and a wealth of knowledge about restaurants, wineries and everything in between. A most enjoyable stay!

Room Tip: My sisters and I shared the basement accommodations, which are really large with three separate beds...
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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Thank Virginia W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 June 2012

We had a wonderful stay at Simcoe Manor! Spectacular breakfasts that accommodated dietary needs; charming rooms, and that great deck on which to relax in between shows at the Shaw Festival! John is a gracious host who knows all the plays, restaurants and wineries intimately, and happily dispenses assistance and information. We couldn't recommend it more highly.

Room Tip: Pick any room - all great!
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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Thank ShawFanatic
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 June 2012

Another visit at Simcoe Manor was a wonderful start to a week's road trip ... this B&B ... really an Inn ... is about as good as it gets. Charm, comfort, excellent food and luxurious accommodations all with a gracious host. Highly recommend!

Room Tip: Mauve Room is very good! Washer & Dryer in your suite ... rare. Breakfast was delicious and ac...
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  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled with family
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Thank RoostTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 May 2012

We returned to the Mauve Suite at Simcoe Manor in Niagara-on-the-Lake for Victoria Day weekend. By now, it feels like our home away from home. The room is spacious and has a living room area and windows on three sides. The weather was beautiful and we sat outside on the porch overlooking the extensive and well-kept garden.

We also took a carriage ride around the town which took us by our bed and breakfast. We were able to walk to all three Shaw Festival theatres from Simcoe Manor. The plays, in our opinion, were well worth seeing and the stage scenery was spectacular. We also walked to all of the unique shops on Queen Street.

John and Alison were gracious hosts who went above and beyond to ensure that our stay was comfortable. John is very knowledgeable about the plays at the theatres and the history and architecture of the town. He is always willing to suggest suitable restaurants to eat at and wineries to visit. For history buffs, John is a virtual War of 1812 encyclopedia.

We sincerely recommend this B&B for both first time and returning visitors to Niagara-on-the-Lake.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Camera56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Simcoe Manor

Address: 242 Simcoe St, Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario L0S 1J0, Canada
Region: Canada > Ontario > Niagara-on-the-Lake
Amenities:
Free Parking Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #133 of 163 B&Bs / Inns in Niagara-on-the-Lake
Price Range: £250 - £255 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Gracious, friendly accommodation just 50 yds. off the main street in the "Old Town" of Niagara on the Lake with all its attractions. Spacious, elegantly decorated suites with the charm and grace typical of Old Niagara yet with all the modern conveniences (A/C, Jacuzzis, fireplaces etc.).Gourmet breakfasts amidst rich mahogany and crystal. Relax on the verandah or poolside or enjoy the view of our gardens, stately pines and creek. A short walk to theatres, shopping, restaurants, golf and the rivermouth. ... more   less 
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