Old World Charm Meets Contemporary Elegance at Boutique Hotel Facing Niagara River
Jimmy Carter once called Lewiston "the most historic square mile in America,” alluding to the town's critical role in the War of 1812. Nearly 200 years ago, American soldiers used the present-day grounds of the Barton Hill Hotel & Spa as a staging area for the war's first major battle. The newly built, Federal-style hotel pays homage to the past but embraces contemporary comforts.
Beyond the white stone entrance, guests will find themselves in a great room anchored by stately columns and appointed with Greek revival furniture. Riverview Retreat king rooms look out on the Niagara River, about 6 miles upstream from the world-famous Falls. Some accommodations feature spa-style soaking tubs, and each guest room is equipped with a gas fireplace and an iPod docking station from which to play Riverdance show tunes.
The Barton Hill spa's flowing curtains and soothing earth tones usher in tranquility. Spa services range from the classic—Swedish massage ($80 for 50 minutes) and manicure ($25)—to an exotic Black Baltic mud wrap ($90 for 50 minutes). After stress and tension are done away with at the spa, appetites are similarly quashed at the in-house Landing Wine Bar, which serves inventive cocktails alongside gourmet pub fare such as flatbread pizzas and pan-seared scallops.
Lewiston, New York: Historical Town Minutes from Niagara Falls
Lewiston was one of western New York's earliest settlements, dating back to the 1600s. Today, its quaint streets are lined with antique stores and art galleries. Just a 10-minute drive from the hotel, a handful of wineries makes up the Niagara Wine Trail, best known for its ice wine, a sweet dessert varietal made from frozen grapes.
Niagara Falls rages about 10 minutes south of the hotel. Each second, 600,000 gallons of water cascade over the brink, sending a cool mist into the air. Come winter, this mist frosts the evergreen trees in the Niagara Falls State Park, transforming the area into a real-life Fortress of Solitude. Old Fort Niagara stands atop a bluff overlooking Lake Ontario about 6 miles north of the hotel. The famous French and Indian War site is now a state park featuring a museum with engaging exhibits, military artifacts, and reenactments.