During a recent visit to Buffalo I wanted to stay at the Mansion on Delaware Avenue (MoDA) throughout but that property was booked for certain nights. I stayed at MoDA for most nights but then stayed at the Hotal @ Lafayette for my last night in town as recommended to me by the "butlers" at ModDA. The dual stay provided an interesting contrast between the properties. See my separate review of Mansion on Delaware for more detail about that property.
The Hotel @ Lafayette is completely and totally recently renovated and it shows. Almost everything has that crisp "newness" about it. And it's a real pleasure to enjoy everything before they start to show the wear and tear that will come over the years. (For example the hairdryer cord was still folded and bound like it just came out of the box!)
This is a beautiful, beautiful property. The decor is a completely charming blend of the "original" look (circa 1904 to the 1930's) and some updated modern elements. We stayed in a Junior King Suite that was one of the nicest rooms we have ever stayed in during our many years of worldwide travel. I highly recommend that type of room (unless you are a honeymooner in which case the (I am told) Honeymoon Suite is incomparable.)
On the other hand, there are a few "kinks" to the new establishment. Some incomplete elements in the lobby are still "sitting around" looking like they are waiting for construction crews to finish and all of the windows (interior and exterior) looked like someone had just recently wiped them down with a not quite clean rag.) On our arrival, my wife and I had just driven in from Toronto (a longish drive via Niagara on the Lake) and were looking for a "nice" place to have dinner and drinks. The pleasant young woman at the front desk recommended the on-premise martini bar or the on-premise grill. We ate at the rather noisy sports-bar-like grill and only later discovered that there was a fabulous fine dining restaurant named Mike's @ Lafayette not 50 feet from the reception desk! The grill was OK but, MAN, we wish we'd been offered the fine dining. Also, because the restaurants on the property are actually run by independent operators, you can't just put the tab on your hotel bill. No big deal, but a little surprise.
The breakfast spread is rather meager (and certainly does not compare to that at MoDA).
For ambiance and decor, Hotel @ Lafayette is a winner and is a good value to boot. But they do need to finish their renovation and work out the kinks.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Hotel @ The Lafayette is a historical landmark built by America’s first professional female architect, Louise Blanchard Bethune in 1904, and has been painstakingly restored to its original beauty in 2012. It boasts thirty-four boutique guest rooms, three mouthwatering restaurants, and five breathtaking ballrooms. ... more less
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