Stayed one night (Saturday) in december during pre-Christmas family visits. I grew up in Buffalo and have enviously wondered how cool it would be to stay at this place. Now that I live far away and travel as a couple, our visit before Christmas was a great opportunity to check the place out.
We stayed in a standard queen bed for one night on Saturday, the 20th of December. Here is my overall rundown.
The Plus Column:
- The hotel is an absolute gem of a property. it really did feel luxurious walking up those old curving stone steps to have the giant doors open for you.
- Common areas are tastefully decorated, very bright, and exude a higher class feeling.
- They run a staff of "butlers" who are meant to answer to your every need. If you're someone who is more "high touch" and likes to have more interaction with the hotel staff for assistance, recommendations, etc, this feature is probably something you'd love. The butlers seem to be mostly fresh-faced college types so I assume the pay is good. I personally had to ask someone to fill up my ice bucket, so that was a little out-of-the-ordinary for myself who hates asking for help or anything of that sort.
- The food at the breakfast (read on for more breakfast feedback) was top notch for "continental" breakfast. the pastries tasted like they were ordered from a real bakery. hard boiled eggs and sliced dried salami added some protein.
- there was a new land rover for downtown free schleps, and there was an evening free booze happy hour. we did not partake of either so i would leave these features in the Plus column for lack of knowing if they were good or not.
- The location is great! Unfortunately, i was buzzing around all weekend with family visits, so did not hang around in the neighborhood. it is between downtown and Allentown/Elmwood Village, so it is indeed a close hop to anything, yet very convenient. Being between Edward and Tupper Streets means that you can be at the hotel within a few blocks of the 33 expressway. i think this would make for a great base for bar-hopping or hitting downtown events without staying right in the middle of things.
- The television - a Time Warner Cable package seems to be what the hotel has, so the TV watching allowed me to catch up on old episodes of the Walking Dead via free ondemand. it felt more like visiting a friend's house who loves cable tv. a rare find in hotels these days.
The Minus Column:
- As i mentioned, we stayed in a queen standard room. Also known as "let's pick the cheapest room in the place to try it out." I must say that the actual room was a disappointment compared to the rest of the property and experience. I had multiple flashbacks to the Canisius College Frisch Dorm days. These rooms were built in as part of the conversion to the hotel, so maintain no architectural interest beyond one interesting vintage print on the wall. The room itself was much smaller than your average hilton or hyatt lower-tiered property's room - enough space for a queen been and a small desk against the window which offered no view of any kind. The TV was on a corner wall to save space. The bathroom had an interesting jacuzzi tub/shower hybrid with lots of spray nozzles, but the bathroom was completely unadorned of any decoration besides two flowers in a vase.
- The Noise - you may suspect that there will be noise when free ear plugs are included on the desk. Unfortunately the noise was not "city noise" from being in a bustling area, but exclusively "hotel noise" the infiltrated the room. The door was relatively thin, so it was possible to hear any/all hallway conversations, doors slamming, and the "ding" of the elevator. There was a wedding that evening in the basement, which i felt we participated in as all songs were easily identifiable through the base vibrations coming up through the floor. We were on floor #2 and I believe the party was in the basement. (I hope everyone really did indeed do the Hustle.) The music did stop at 11pm or so, but be warned if you want a quiet night in or need to sleep early, and you are at the hotel over a weekend.
- Gym - oh yes, there is a gym. Go in the basement, go past the laundry room, and look for the room with three 1980's pieces of cardio equipment. A shame Allentown Atheltix is closed as that was practically next door. If you're really into hitting the gym, perhaps the hotel has some arrangement with a local gym to allow use? If such exists, we were not volunteered that when we went to check out the fitness room.
- Breakfast room - as mentioned before, the breakfast FOOD was great. placed around the central food table are exactly four tables, each of which was a four top. So, expect the possibility of making friends with other guests as you sit together for breakfast, or be prepared to wait a bit as we did for a table. Also, a rant directed towards "those people" who leisurely enjoy their Sunday paper at one of the four tables while others wait for a space. (you know who you are!). The breakfast room did not seem outrageously busy and we waited in chairs by the fireplace for maybe 10 minutes, but it's something that i could see being an annoyance if more than four couples decided to have breakfast at the same time.
overall, i am glad i tried the hotel, and everyone was very nice. upon my departure, i did peek into some of the bigger rooms that were open for cleaning. these are the ones that seem to have the high ceilings and access to the original tall windows facing the street. so, my final recommendation is to consider staying at one of the higher end rooms and paying the price. if you're not willing to do that, you may consider any of the other numerous properties (especially hilton ones) popping up a bit further downtown along Delaware Ave.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Buffalo's first and only AAA Four Diamond hotel provides a cosmopolitan, European hotel experience with value added complimentary amenities such as valet parking, breakfast, afternoon cocktails, downtown Land Rover transportation, free wireless and/or hi-speed internet and more. Guestrooms receive equivalent deluxe services and amenities, with size and architectural detail distinguishing each room type. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- The Mansion On Delaware Avenue Hotel Buffalo
- Mansion On Delaware Avenue Buffalo