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Girls getaway - where to stay??

Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
27 posts
Girls getaway - where to stay??

Planning a girls getaway weekend this May for a group of us turning 30...we are looking for a nice place to stay with a spa package. Also on the agenda - wine tours of course, good food/drink and some shopping.

I'm looking for help in deciding - where to stay?

Is White Oaks too far out/isolated?

Suggestions of things to do?

How close to Buffalo to shop?

Any other tips would be gret - I don't know where to start!

Thanks!!

Oakville, Canada
Level Contributor
3,933 posts
27 reviews
1. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

I'd look at The Harbour House. It's a B&B, quite excellent. It's in Niagara-on-the-Lake, within walking distance of their shops and restaurants. They are also associated with a spa, (information on their site).

www.harbourhousehotel.ca/niagara-on-the-lake/

Here are the reviews they've received.

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g154999-d300474…

Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
13,856 posts
47 reviews
2. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

Hi

Sounds like a great weekend.

And as long as you have a weekend (which I take it you have) NOTL is a great base. Enjoy the Restaurants, Wineries, Spas and Shopping (and make a side-trip over to NF to check out The Falls).

White Oaks is an excellent choice, but to be honest NOTL is overflowing with great spots... so, so is 10 other properties.

As for cross-border shopping it ain’t what it used to be… under current Canada Customs restrictions you pretty much have to be out of the country for 2 Nights (48 Hours) to benefit = cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/publications/…s4x1

Otherwise you’ll be accountable for Duties and Taxes… and if you take Exchange into account on top of that, it really isn’t worth it (and besides the US Bargains aren’t what they used to be… as our Dollar closes in on theirs… most things are fairly even in price).

Suggest instead that you spend your dollars in the Niagara Area and support the local economy.

And don’t think you can pull a fast-one on Border Services… these guys have seen it all… wear over old shoes, buy new shoes… layer your clothes… tear out the tags. Their sense of humour isn’t what it used to be… their jobs are a lot more stressful… they spend their time looking for Terrorists… they have no patience for Pranksters. They don’t take well to such tactics, and you will be subjected to Secondary Questioning.

Isn’t worth it IMO.

Bargains can still be found at the Canada One Factory Outlets (on Lundy's Lane) as well as unique merchandise right in the shops along Queen in NOTL (besides finding unique things, I've also found familiar object at CONSIDERABLY LESS than in our Bigger Cities).

Cheers!

Wine-4-2

Edited: 21 January 2010, 22:25
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
6,858 posts
3. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

You'd be about 30 minutes plus border crossing time from Buffalo's big mall, Walden Galleria.

As you've no doubt figured out, cross-border shopping is most lucrative when the Canadian dollar is strong. (The Toronto Star wrote about the trend the last time the Canadian dollar shot up, two years ago: www.thestar.com/News/Canada/article/243796 ). NAFTA eliminates most duties (but not GST) on goods made in the US and Mexico, but for goods made anywhere else it's pretty hard to predict duty rates in advance.

Being honest at the border is always the best idea. When you're honest, border guards have been known to bend the rules in your favour (though if you've bought a lot they can't simply wave you through).

Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
27 posts
4. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

Thanks for your help. We live fairly close to the Sarnia/Port Huron border so we know the drill.

Forgot about Lundy's Lane shopping - we will check it out.

Anyone know anything about the Hilton Garden or Best Western?

Pillar and Post?

Queens Landing?

Harbour House is definitely on my list.

Niagara Falls, ON
Destination Expert
for Niagara Falls
Level Contributor
10,134 posts
48 reviews
5. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

Hilton Garden is right across the QEW from White Oaks, several km's from Old Town and not close to anything.

Best Western Colonel Butler is in the Old Town, and close to a few restaurants (Stone Road Grille, Ginger, Little Red Rooster), but is a fair walk to the shops and restaurants on Queen St.

As for cross border shopping, Fashion Outlets in Niagara Falls, NY is a very popular destination for Canadians, and is about 10 minutes from the Queenston Lewiston Bridge.

London, Canada
Level Contributor
3,759 posts
71 reviews
6. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

We've stayed at Queen's Landing which is in a great location for accessing the theatre and shops.....How about the Shaw Hotel?

Friends stayed in the fall and loved their spa package for a girls weekend.

Another place that's simply wonderful is On the Twenty. Though it is farther out in Jordan, the village is charming, shopping terrific and Cave Springs winery recommended--- though you're close to all of the Twenty Valley wineries for tasting.

http://www.innonthetwenty.com/

May is a usually a very busy month with wineries and restaurants pairing tasting experiences every weekend.....wonderful time to go but best to book as soon as you can. There will be more details here closer to the events.

http://wineriesofniagaraonthelake.com/

http://www.20valley.ca/

If you're close to Port Huron I don't think I would worry about Buffalo and instead enjoy the wineries and spa experience in Niagara on the Lake.

Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
91 posts
38 reviews
7. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

I have another option for you to consider, why not rent a vacation rental house? Many of the rentals in town are fantastic and it will save you big bucks while providing more comfort and you can go for a day trip to the spa, visit www.niagaraonthelake.com for the chamber of commerce website and you can search available properties, also you can click on the vacation rental link here on trip advisor and there are a few great properties listed here!

Enjoy!

Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
27 posts
8. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

What a great idea!!! Thank you!!! I think we may try By the Vines!!

I hope its close enough to the "downtown" area. It says a 3 min drive?

Ottawa, Canada
Level Contributor
13,856 posts
47 reviews
9. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

Hi Hulia32,

"By The Vines Cottage" is on the Niagara Stone Road... about 4 Kms from the downtown of the Historic Niagara-on-the-Lake Village (you'll literally be right out in wine country, admist the vines... as some of the bigger wineries in the area are right along the Niagara Stone Road).

This particular cottage, has their own website with Photos and a Map = http://bythevines.com/

Have a great Girls Get-away, and do come back afterwards and give us a TripReport on how it all went... we love hearing such stories.

Cheers!

Wine-4-2

(lol 5K+1)

Edited: 26 January 2010, 13:26
Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
27 posts
10. Re: Girls getaway - where to stay??

Will do.

Is there an old and a new part of town? Where are the majority of good restaurants located?

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