Buffalo’s Gem: The Mansion on Delaware Avenue

The Mansion on Delaware is definitely Buffalo’s Gem.  If you are looking for a place to stay in Buffalo, NY, this is definitely it.

I’ve passed Buffalo, NY countless times while visiting the United States. Residents of Ontario will visit Buffalo solely for cheap shopping, but I wanted to see what else this state offered.  I ended up having one amazing night that I will largely credit to The Mansion on Delaware, and its fabulous staff.

mansionondeawareoutside

Samuel Curtis Trubee purchased the house in the 1880’s, built an annex and turned the estate into a 100-room hotel.  It was the most expensive hotel in town at $3 a night.  It also served for many years as Victor Hugo’s Wine Cellar, a legendary Buffalo restaurant and nightspot.  After standing vacant for 25 years, the property underwent a $3 million restoration and re-opened in 2001 as The Mansion on Delaware Avenue, a historic 28 guest room and suite luxury hotel.  In 2004, and every year since, The Mansion received the prestigious AAA Four Diamond Award, making it the first and only Four Diamond hotel in the Buffalo/Niagara region.  With a perfect blend of historic, modern, cosmopolitan and European architecture, the Mansion is definitely a must see when visiting Buffalo.

When you drive up to The Mansion, its beauty quickly blows you away.  From the Griffin-like gargoyles to the 175 beautiful windows, this place is hard to miss.   Within seconds, the friendly hotel staff that refers to themselves as “butlers,” warningly welcomes you, take your luggage and guides you to the front lobby.  As you walk towards the main entrance, two beautiful swinging wooden carved doors automatically open.  You feel like royalty entering a magnificent palace.  Upon entering, you can’t help but admire the original artwork that cover the walls and appreciate the award winning interior design. I also couldn’t help but fall in love with the large wood carved door frames.

I followed Marty, our butler for the evening, to the front desk where another staff member named Kent greeted me.  With a very warm smile, Kent offered to take me on a tour of The Mansion.

I was first led to one of the lounging areas made up of tables, bar, couches and a pool table.  Kent informed me that I had arrived at the perfect time (5pm EST), because complimentary drinks are served at the hotel from 5PM to 7PM.  I’ll take a Gimlet please!

Next I was given a tour of the ballroom where weddings and corporate events are often hosted.  On that particular night, there was a large event being held, so I was able to see the ballroom nicely decorated.  As soon as I stepped into the ballroom, I felt at home. The colours and lighting made the atmosphere warm and inviting.  The fireplace and lounging areas added a nice touch to the room.  I could see why this place was an ideal location for any event.  Celebrate in the ballroom, get wined and dined by the kitchen staff and spend the night in one of the gorgeous hotel rooms.  Sounds perfect to me.  However, what really impressed me was all of the food is made in house by the talented kitchen staff that will cater to any of your ethnic preferences.  The Mansion also has a garden of vegetables and herbs that they use in their many dishes.  Fresh, organic and local – it doesn’t get better than that!

After a tour of the ballroom, I followed Marty to the elevator which took us to the forth floor where my room was located.  When I entered the room, I was definitely impressed.  The first thing I noticed were the large bay windows that overlooked downtown Buffalo. Marty told us that a complimentary breakfast would be served between the hours of 7am – 9:30am consisting of fruits, salads, olives, cheese, bread, cereal and pizza.  How delightful!  He then told us to get settled in and then come down for a welcome drink.  Sure thing Marty!

A typical complimentary breakfast at The Mansion on Delaware.

I immediately went into the washroom to see what I was dealing with.   Before my eyes, I saw just what I had hoped for – a Jacuzzi.  The room was gorgeous.  Boy, was I a lucky girl.

My room.

I walked over to the desk that was positioned right under the bay windows.  On top of the desk was a “welcome” letter written specifically to me along with a business card with my name on it!  I had never seen anything like that before.  The Mansion really knows how to make a guest feel special.

A welcome not and business card with my name on it.

After taking an amazing shower (saving the bath for later), I went back down to the lobby, where I sat down and relaxed for a bit before heading out on the town for some dinner.  Kent and Marty both came up to me to ask what type of food I would like for dinner.  I told them that I am quite the sushi lover.  Kent smiled and said, “Well luckily, I know the best sushi restaurant in the city.”  I asked how far the walk was, and Kent insisted that Marty drive me to the restaurant in the company’s Range Rover.  Are you kidding me?  A chauffeur?

The license plate of the Company Range Rover.

I followed Marty outside and over to the Range Rover.  Marty opened the door to this beautiful shiny car and in I got.  As we drove to the restaurant, Marty gave me a short tour of downtown Buffalo.  I must say that I had no idea Buffalo had so many theatres.  Since I am quite the theatre geek, I was fairly excited about this discovery.  After a short drive, we arrived at a sushi restaurant called “Sea Bar Sushi.”  I walked into the restaurant and was greeted by the host.  “Do you have a reservation?” he asked.  “No, I don’t,” I replied.  “You wouldn’t happen to be Kristen Jacobson, would you?” he asked.  “Yes, as a matter of fact, I am!” I shockingly replied.  “Right this way,” he said.  I guess the staff at The Mansion had already made reservations for me.  Once again, I was impressed.

After settling in to my table, the restaurant owner came up to me and introduced himself.  He made some suggestions from the menu, which I obviously went with.  I ordered Crudo (sashimi over citrus gel, basil, olive oil, sea salt), salmon unagi, tuna roll and a ginger- lychee martini.  While waiting for my meal, the server came by and gave me truffle popcorn to nibble on.  This was easily the best popcorn I’ve ever had.  On top of the, the owner came by and placed a tray of eighteen mussels on my table, on the house.  Okay, where am I again?  Oh yeah, Buffalo!

Crudo (sashimi over citrus gel, basil, olive oil, sea salt), my favorite of the night…and perhaps, ever!

When my meal arrived, I took my first bite, and my goose bumps got goose bumps.  This was officially one of the best meals I’ve ever had, and hands down the best sushi I’ve ever eaten.

After dinner, I decided to walk back to The Mansion so I could explore downtown Buffalo a bit by foot.  The architecture of the city is pretty beautiful, and again, there were so many performing art stages that I was actually shocked.  How did I not know this before?

I arrived back at The Mansion where once again, I was greeted by Marty and the gorgeous automatic wooden carved swimming doors.  “Can I live here?” I asked Marty. “Sure, he said.  Anytime!”

 

 

Kristen Sarah is a full-time traveller, tiny home owner and adventure junkie. She has one of the leading YouTube travel channels and is the head honcha of award-winning travel and lifestyle website, Hopscotch the Globe.

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3 Comments

  1. May 15, 2012 / 8:57 pm

    If Victor Hugo liked it, the place must have something going for it. 

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