Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Falling For the Courtyard by Marriott Niagara Falls

Recently my husband and I spent a night away together. I can't remember the last time we were without our two children. What a treat to stay overnight at the Courtyard by Marriott Niagara Falls. I love this hotel so much I want to marriott. Get it? Oh you DO get it, but it's just not that funny...

We had stayed here over a decade ago and were interested in seeing the newly renovated digs. The entire hotel has been remodeled from top to bottom.


Speaking of sprucing up, I was so happy about spending a night out with my spouse that I actually fussed with my hair and put on make-up— an occasion as rare hen's teeth. 

We dropped the kids off with the grandparents and hit the road, albeit the wrong road. We turned around and got on the correct road and were off, for real this time.

In just over an hour, we were checked in to our room where we sat, savouring the quiet. We sipped a glass of Niagara wine and chatted about adult things, uninterrupted. This alone was worth the trip.

But there was more.


Our package included a voucher towards dinner at the hotel restaurant — The Keg. After I checked out the bathtub and other amenities (including the shoe buffing machine) we headed to the restaurant.

We sat in the bar and listened to the one-man-band while we waited for our dinner reservation. My husband is chatty for a dude. It's one of the main reasons I married him. We always have something to discuss; often with accompanying sketches on cocktail napkins, flailing hands and enthusiastic head nodding. He's like the best girlfriend and sexiest boyfriend all rolled into one.

We enjoyed a delicious meal while we planned our casino strategy.

I don't know when to hold 'em, nor when to fold 'em so I stick to the slots. Adrian is the card counter in this pair. Plus, he's good at math. Arithmetic beyond a grade two level causes me to perspire.

While my partner heated up the tables, I cooled them. Yep, I'm a "cooler." So I made myself scarce and wandered around chatting with people, watching the action from a distance. I'd share photos but it seems you're not allowed to take photographs in a casino. Who knew? Oh yes, the bouncer. He knew and he was happy to tell me. Several times.


Hours later and wallets lighter, we returned to the hotel. The city was still bustling with activity; it's like Vegas, but mistier.

I'll skip over what happened next because this is a family friendly post. (This is where your imagination runs wild and I laugh to myself because little do you know that I bought a bag of chips from the lobby market place and we watched TV in bed and fell fast asleep because gambling is exhausting and staying up past midnight is for childless people.)

After a buffet breakfast we went to explore. We took in the falls and checked out the strip. The hotel is a short walk from everything! I tried to act like a free-and-easy woman out with her man, but all I could think about was how much the kids would LOVE this. The wax museum, the dinosaur mini-golf, the 4-D movie experience, the indoor skydiving.

How lucky are we to have "Little Vegas" right in our own back yard? We need to visit again, with the kids.

There are plenty of great hotels in Niagara Falls ranging anywhere from seedy to sensational. You can spend more and opt for a hotel with a view of the falls. This is something you really should do at some point. We stayed in a room over looking the falls years ago and it was spectacular. It's pricey though and best reserved for a special occasion.


If you just want to get away to enjoy everything Niagara Falls has to offer, the Courtyard by Marriott is a great hotel choice — comfortable, stylish, reasonably priced and located in the centre of it all. If it's a deal you're after, the hotel offers several different getaway packages which include your room, dinner voucher, breakfast buffet, and casino/attraction shuttle passes (Tip: Skip the shuttle. You can end up waiting quite a long time. A cab isn't expensive and it's faster).

With Halloween coming up, Niagara Falls is a creepy (in a good way) place to visit. You can certainly scare up some fun with visits to the Nightmares Fear Factory or The Haunted House or The House of Frankenstein or horror of horrors...the Butterfly Conservatory! Just me? I can't stand flying insects of any kind no matter how "pretty" they are. Moths are bats, only smaller and furrier.

So take a trip to the falls and visit the Courtyard by Marriott. You'll love it so much, you'll want to marriott. Still not funny. I see that now. No more dumb jokes. Well, maybe one more...



Disclaimer: The Courtyard by Marriott hotel hosted us for the night as their guests. This is an honest and unbiased review based on our experience and was not influenced by great service, a comfy pillow or the best steak I've had in years.


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