Niagara Falls flows along the border of both New York and Canada, and it's essentially consensus that Canada has the best panoramic view of the cascades. But where the Canadian side features fun houses, high-rise hotels, and sprawling commercial sites, Niagara Falls, New York taps more into the roughhewn wilderness of the area. The rapids' sense of raw power is also readily apparent in the winter, when attractions close, ice bridges form over the Niagara River, and chills crystallize the surging mist onto the surfaces of trees and railings. Situated right along the river, Four Points by Sheraton Niagara Falls sits about 5 miles east of Niagara Falls State Park. After one explores the natural wonderland, the hotel acts as a cozy home base: there's a fireplace in the lounge, and the heated pool is housed in a glass atrium overlooking the river.
Upon arrival, visitors can sit down with a bottle of wine and appetizer at the onsite Bella Vista Ristorante. The Italian eatery's menu—crafted by celebrated chef Cory Linkson—features hand-rolled pastas and homemade pizzas. All the wines hail from CK Mondavi—a third-generation family winery that uses cold fermentation and sterile filtration techniques to create bold, crisp varietals. Meals can be enjoyed on a seasonal patio overlooking Niagara River, or in a casual dining room, where diners can catch sports on large flat-screen TVs or make their own milkshakes by roasting a scoop of ice cream over the flickering fireplace.
Niagara Falls, New York: Preserved Natural Beauty and Lively Entertainment
The oldest state park in the United States, Niagara Falls State Park has had its rustic beauty preserved partially by resisting over-commercialization. Many of the nearby attractions help to heighten appreciation of the natural majesty, including an observation tower that extends over the river gorge and an aquarium hosting more than 1,500 marine animals from both local and nonnative ecosystems. Nearly 15 miles of hiking trails wend through the park, and along the way, visitors can learn about the area's history at the Discovery and visitors centers or by reading informational panels that pop up along the trails.
In addition to open-air pursuits, Niagara Falls boasts an assortment of fine-dining restaurants, shops, and casinos. Included in the package, guests receive a $30 voucher for slot play at Seneca Niagara Casino. More than 4,200 reel-spinning and video slot machines are sprawled out across the game room, with many machines linked to a progressive jackpot that increases after each round concludes or when a craps player rolls a 3 with oversize fuzzy dice. The Seneca Indian–operated casino also features more than 100 table games, including blackjack and three variations of poker, as well as an events center with live music shows.
What You Get
One-night stay for two adults and up to four kids in a city-view room
$69, valid Sunday–Wednesday
$96, valid Thursday–Saturday
Included in all options:
Bottle of wine and appetizer at Bella Vista Ristorante
$30 casino voucher for slot play at Seneca Niagara Casino