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“Relaxed Elegance”

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Ophelia's Garden Inn
Ranked #1 of 7 Syracuse B&B and Inns
Reviewed 16 June 2011

We drive to Syracuse yearly to visit relatives. This last time we decided to make it more of a vacation so we chose Ophelia's for its location near I-690, pleasant looking rooms on the website, reasonable price and lovely grounds. We were not disappointed! Our room..the French Room...was spacious, comfy with plenty of closet and drawer space and the bathroom still had the original tub, sink and toilet from the 1920's. The house itself is chockful of interesting antique furniture, collectibles, art and beautiful rugs. We spent quite a bit of time just looking at everything both inside and outside the home. We saw deer and groundhogs every day. Breakfast was great.....juice, coffee, fruit, eggs, toast, etc. The best thing about Ophelia's is Annie Ophelia and David. They are friendly and gracious hosts. Within a short time we felt relaxed and at home which made the stay there the highlight of the trip.

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  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank mistymisty008
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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36 - 42 of 43 reviews

Reviewed 15 March 2011

I usually mean to write a review but then just can't get it together time-wise but I just HAD to let folks know about this gem. We have occasion to go to Syracuse (college kid) and prior we have stayed at a local hotels. Well - this experience was completely different. We even wound up liking Syracuse more because of it! In contrast to a cold, impersonal, stark hotel room it seemed like we landed in heaven. Our hostess/hosts were so informed about the area that we explored some great places. Their B & B is right next to 2 parks and 2 great neighborhood restaurants are tucked in within walking distance,. The place itself was just gorgeous but the warmth and hospitality will keep us coming back. This is definitely the way to go. Now we look FORWARD to going back to Syracuse.

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank eliz7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 September 2010

Chosen because of 2009's excellent reviews and comments, as well as gorgeous photos, we booked for 15 nights - what a mistake!
Our welcome was pleasant and because we were clearly tired from our long journey arriving at the pre-arranged time of 10pm, were given a quick tour to allow us to get to bed - 'here is your room, the kitchen, the dining room, the 'fridge and cereals cupboard - help yourself' and then we were introduced to the dogs (fortunately we're not allergic as we hadn't been forewarned). We were told breakfast was at 8.30am but just to make ourselves at home and help ourselves if this didn't suit. We were promised a fuller tour in daylight so we could appreciate the beauty of the garden.
The room was disappointingly tiny with only one way onto the bed - there was nowhere to place our belongings as every surface had an ornament on it - this was particularly difficult in the bathroom, where I had to put ornaments on the floor to make space for our toothbrushes!
There was one towel set between us and a rug where a bath mat should be. One towel was really a face cloth and the next sized towel smelt like a sweaty armpit - it turned my stomach and put me on my guard!
There were 2 filthy fans fitted to a part-open window which were very noisy. The bed was awful: not only unusually small by American standards, but every move was noisy so sleep was constantly disturbed and it was so uncomfortable we both ended up with very bad backache.
On hearing a dog vomit outside in the morning gave the clue that someone was up and about so I went to find them to get towels for my husband, without luck. After my shower, I left the room to get breakfast. At 8.20am, there was still no sign of anyone so did as suggested - helped myself.
The kitchen, where we'd been shown we could eat, had a table and 2 chairs which weren't usable as the table was buried under papers and the dog beds were beneath the chairs - and filthy! The sink was used as a waste bin and was full of grease and food debris. I chose to use the dining room, which was lovely, but felt uncomfortable using a lovely table without place mats. I found a total of 6 bowls: 4 were enamel-coated metal which were chipped and rusty so concluded they were dog bowls; on lifting the other two pottery bowls, my hands slipped on thick lumps of lard, so I put them in the sink for re-washing. I chose the best of the tin plates to use. I was unable to find two matching spoons but made do with what I found. On opening the 'fridge, I found a carton of milk in the door, which I assumed was for our use - I didn't want to try to move the over-full contents for fear of them falling onto the floor. The cereal cupboard had several open boxes and some unused, so being polite people, we took the open boxes to use first. I tried a little from each, not recognising the equivalents to our cereals. My husband then joined me in the dining room. I had just poured a small amount of milk in a glass, when Ophelia's husband walked through and noticed I was using the coffee milk and tactfully asked if we knew the American equivalents. He brought out the correct type for cereal. Just then, his wife walked by - without even greeting us - and asked him if he'd help her out by looking after her work as she had something important to do. I then mentioned that we'd had to share a towel to which she stated 'there are plenty of towels, there's no need to share - there was another towel on the chair in your room....' then promptly disappeared! After eating most of the contents of my bowl, I saw something moving in my spoon.....IT WAS A LARGE GRUB - 2cms long! I showed the husband who was clearly very embarrassed and he explained that if there is dust in the bottom of the packet, that's a good sign of the presence of such grubs!! I then showed him the dirty bowls which he promptly put in the dishwasher and apologised.
Everywhere you looked, there were ornaments, even on the COOKER TOP! Really, this should've been a clue as to why the place was so dirty - there's nowhere to move them to to clean around them. The dogs were allowed to roam freely and then we discovered there was a cat there too. I like animals, but not their dirt, their hair or their germs - and certainly not in food preparation areas!
I am the type of person who would tolerate bad conditions on the basis that I'd made a mistake in my choice - but also because the confrontation is so stressful. However, when we described to our son what it was like there, he warned us about a price dispute. At the time of booking, she told my son that she offered an English breakfast. Pleased for us, he asked if she provided real English bacon to which she retorted that she wouldn't allow bacon in her house! After further questioning, it was clear that she didn't understand what an English breakfast entailed and so accepted her offer that she'd get in whatever we wanted, pancakes, cereal etc and to let her know a day or two before we arrived. Unfortunately, when he did so she started denying the booking and the original agreed rate and was demanding 50% more! After further discussion he felt she'd been suitably reminded of the conversation agreeing terms but was uncertain if the dispute was still live. We concluded that it wasn't worth the long-term rate agreed, let alone any more than that, let alone an argument at the end of our stay, so we decided to collect our cases (which weren't unpacked as there was no space anyway) and go elsewhere.
The return was terrifying - I really didn't want a confrontation or to have to tell someone that they are dirty and clearly unaware of their obligations to their customers - but fortunately, there was no-one around. In the time it took for us to load the car, leave a note and payment for the night, we were undisturbed, much to my relief. However, she subsequently sent a very rude email to my son stating that IF WE HADN'T BEEN SO GREEDY, AND ONLY TAKEN THE CEREAL BOUGHT IN FOR US, WE WOULDN'T HAVE GOT A WORM in our food and that we hadn't paid enough - we should be paying the full booking cost (though following a return email she reduced that to paying the single-night rate) and she wanted to be paid for the cereal she'd bought in for us and that she'd have to return it to the shop for a refund now!!

WHILST THIS REVIEW IS LENGTHY, YOU CAN PROBABLY VISUALISE THE EXPERIENCE STEP BY STEP AND THAT IT IS CLEARLY TRUTHFUL IN ITS ENTIRETY. I don't like to leave negative comments because often they are a subjective viewpoint which can give an unfair impression. In this instance, it was the positive feedback that had caused me to choose this place and that was giving a very definite WRONG impression that had to be countered. I think you'll agree that my comments are not subjective - clean is clean, there are no grey areas! Clearly something has changed since 2009 and I hope they resolve the issues raised in order to return to the former status that we disappointingly missed.

  • Stayed: September 2010, travelled as a couple
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7  Thank KimClark59
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Management response:Responded 22 November 2010

I was not going to respond because these people never had a confirmed reservation...but I recently attended a B&B conference and was told to give my side of the story. Unfortunately for this couple, they relied on their son to make a reservation for them....which he never did. He did inquire about my availability and pricing but never followed through. We always have a deposit for an extended stay, a credit card on file, an email so we can email the confirmation
(or address so we can mail the confirmation) and we review the guest's dietary needs and
preferences. None of that was done because there was never any follow up. Just hours before this couple was to arrive from England...the son called and inquired about the "so called reservation"...of course there wasn't one but I felt bad and told him to bring them over
(even though it was going to be around 10:00 p.m.)..They arrived and I got out of bed and let them in and gave them a quick tour as I figured they were tired from their long trip. They mention the room is small.....they were lucky I had a room as all the other larger rooms were booked for the following day. They mention they didn't know about the dogs.....again, something that would have been discussed if they had a reservation....the son lives in Syracuse and when we initially spoke I invited him to come view the property and go over the
rules and other particulars....which he never did. The dog, by the way, was not vomiting...he
was a 17 yr. old Pomeranian with a heart condition and was coughing. He has since passed.
As far as me leaving the next morning....yes, I work outside the home from time to time and I am able to work my schedule around the B&B. However, since I was not anticipating any
guests that day I had already scheduled an early appt. I believe that this is an issue of money.
When I quoted the price...the son argued with me and said that was not what we discussed.
I asked him if there were ever any emails...and of course there were not because we never
confirmed anything. I even offered a discount because of the situation but when I returned
home (less than an hour after I left)..they had scratched a note on a piece of paper and left some money on the stove. The rest of the review is not worth responding to as it is an effort to discredit me and my B&B...I would just invite you to read the other reviews.....the review is in such contrast to my others that it isn't difficult to see what is quite evident. Let me also note that I never had a name, a credit card or a phone number. I managed to get an email from the son before he ran out after dropping them off.....and they stiffed me on my payment (leaving 40% of what they owed for one night). Fortunately, I 've learned an important lesson....I will never allow anyone to stay here without properly booking (name, address and phone number along with a credit card number) and a follow up email confirmation. I never even knew their
names and would not have known who they were if it weren't for this review. I would encourage
you to call me with any questions. Thank you.

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 September 2010

If you are within a 100 mile radius of Syracuse, NY and are looking for a great B&B, Ophelia's Garden Inn is the place to stay. My wife and I took a trip to Boston from Toronto and stayed here and loved it so much we booked for the night we were coming through on our way back home before we left. Annie and Dave are the nicest of hosts and her dad, Hugh, is a very charismatic conversationalist. The grounds are charming and the rooms are very well appointed. The house was built in 1925 and is beautiful and spacious. I don't usually write reviews but felt it neccesary to share my wonderful experience with tripadvisor.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank Beauthebeachbum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 July 2010

Ophelia's was perfect. The garden was beautiful, my room comfortable and peaceful. I stayed in the French Room and was glad to have a private bathroom with a tub. I enjoyed visiting the arboretum across the street. My hosts (and the other guests) were friendly but respected my privacy. Guests should know that the hosts have pets--they are very well behaved and it wasn't a problem for me, but luckily I wasn't traveling with a friend who is allergic to cats. A peaceful and lovely stay.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled solo
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2  Thank karenbaltimore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 June 2010

My best friend and I had the good fortune to select Ophelia's Garden Inn for a 3-day vacation stay as we explored the Erie Canal. The house is beautiful and furnished with exquisite taste, with decorations that are unique, appealing, and perfect in their setting. Our breakfasts were delicious, nutritious, and visually appealing, and our hosts made every effort to ensure that our stay was pleasant. For us, one of the most enjoyable aspects of our stay was the beautiful garden in back: we spent lo-o-o-ong hours reminiscing in the afternoons and into the evening, sitting on the porch and patio and enjoying the absolute peace of the setting. Even in the downpour of rain we experienced one evening, we stayed on the porch enjoying the view, including the deer who strolled along the edge of the yard and into the trees beyond.
My best friend of 60 years has mulitple sclerosis and we found that the gorgeous rooms on the first floor accommodated us perfectly; our hosts, again, were very attentive to our special needs and made this vacation absolutely HEAVEN! I highly recommend this Inn to anyone who enjoys peace, warm hospitality, and a beautiful setting in a location so close to the center of a city.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled with friends
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Thank cheevgpig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 26 June 2009

Bicycling the Erie Canal, we stopped in Syracuse for an overnight and an additional day. Rain encouraged the extra day layover plus the nicety of the accommodations. The gardens were lovely. The Pass Arboretum is across the street. The house is an antique treasure. Orphelia ("Annie") and Dave are the nicest of hosts. Breakfasts were outstanding. And, if you're lucky, you'll share time with Hugh, Annie's dad, a terrific conversationalist. Be sure to visit Connor's Irish Pub for some good food and one of the best Guinness' I've tasted.

  • Stayed: June 2009, travelled as a couple
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Thank notenoughbiking
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Ophelia's Garden Inn

Address: 400 S Avery Ave, Syracuse, NY 13219-2617
Region: United States > New York > Finger Lakes > Syracuse
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 B&Bs / Inns in Syracuse
Price Range: £83 - £99 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
This 1925 English country Estate sits on three acres surrounded by trees, gardens and a pond. Located on the edge of Tipperary Hill, the Inn is surrounded by parks....an arboretum across the street on one side, a golf course and zoo on the other side and the back side of a nine acre park. Although you feel like you are in the countryside, you are only six minutes from the heart of downtown Syracuse's Armory Square District. Bicyclists not only enjoy the safe keeping of their bikes in the spacious garage, but after a long day can find two outstanding restaurants within walking distance. This hidden gem is a great place to unwind, relax and take in the beauty that surrounds you. We cater to your special dietary needs. Come enjoy our Labor of Love. ... more   less 

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