Hotel Harbour House Hotel 0 star
Niagara-on-the-Lake, Canada -
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Amy Adejokun Section editor

The charming Harbour House was one of our favourite hotels in Niagara-on-the-Lake. Sitting low down a slight hill almost right on the banks of Lake Ontario, the hotel might not look like much from the images we have, but it was difficult to capture the hotel's warmth and crisp-looking rooms. We felt right at home straight away, especially due the delightful staff that is happy to go out of their way to help guests. A quaint board house with spacious rooms and a soothing atmosphere, the Harbour House is a great haven of peace and tranquillity to use as a base to explore the area from. Ideal for a clientele favouring smart, neat hotels with an authentic charm and excellent service.

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    • Hotel Harbour House

      Harbour House   -   © Julien Ferret / EASYVOYAGE

    • Hotel Harbour House

      Harbour House   -   © Julien Ferret / EASYVOYAGE

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    Location 3.0 /10

    The hotel is located on the banks of Lake Ontario and is on the edge of the village, which is ideal if you really need to get away from it all as it has a completely different feel to the centre of the village. If you are going to be attending the Bernard Shaw Festival in October, the hotel isn't far from the theatre, which is just across the road from the Shaw Club on the way into the centre. Niagara-on-the-Lake has a fresh summery and holiday atmosphere and is well worth stopping by for a night or if you like the sound of touring the wine region and you are going up to the Falls as it is extremely picturesque and relaxed. You will be spoilt for choice in Niagara-on-the-Lake as there are hundreds of vineyards to stop at for wine tastings and every single one has its own distinct feel and practices.

    Accommodation 7.70 /10

    Although there isn't much difference in the rooms, they each have a distinct feel and are decorated with handpicked bits and pieces, but always maintaining a marine theme with model boats, for example, which contribute to the fresh feel of the rooms. There are four categories: Premium, Superior, a Honeymoon Suite and Riverview suites. All the rooms have wonderfully comfortable king-size feather-topped beds, luxurious high-thread count crisp linens, the bath robes are of the upscale Frette brand, all bathroom products are from the Judith Jackson herbal spa brand, as well as fireplaces for that extra cosy atmosphere, coffee machines and large flat-screen televisions with CD and DVD players. Guests can rent (free) a DVD or CD from reception.

    The Superior rooms tend to be a little larger and have French doors opening onto a small Juliette balcony, allowing you to look out onto the marina just across the road - although it is very pleasant to have the doors open in the summer, the marina isn't much to look at, so don't be too disappointed if these rooms are all booked up. The Honeymoon Suite has a double whirlpool bath and a window seat overlooking the lake, which is a more romantic setting than the other rooms, although if your budget won't stretch to that, don't worry too much - you won't be left at a loss in another room. The suites, as the category suggests, has a separate living area as well as a double whirlpool bath.

    All bathrooms are as spacious as the rooms, and all have separate bathtubs and showers. Some tubs will have a whirlpool function, and others will have a multi-jetted rain shower head. Either way, you will be left feeling so completely relaxed in this little haven that you won't want to leave!

    Overview 6.70 /10

    The Harbour House looks like a large family home with a small welcoming paved outdoor patio around the house where guests can opt to have breakfast during the warmer months. Inside, the fresh green lobby area and lounge is homely and the friendly staff knows just how to make guests feel right at home. Check-in is done at an antique office desk in the lounge area. The area is light and bright, like the rest of the hotel. The comfortable sofas and armchairs are perfect for curling up with a good book on a blustery winter's day. To the left of the lounge is the breakfast room - simple but just as clean and tidy as the rest of the hotel. Back through the lounge, past the desk and through the corridor is the elevator leading to the three floors of rooms.

    In terms of facilities, there is no spa on site, but guests can use the Harbour House's sister hotel's spa, the Shaw Club Spa closer to the centre. There isn't much to it, but it is clean, attractive and the staff is helpful. It also has grape and maple based treatments, which we were very curious about. Otherwise, something we highly recommend is the hotel's daily cheese and wine party at 5:00pm, which is a great way of getting to know the other guests, who are usually returners to the hotel and very friendly. The best time to come to Niagara-on-the-Lake, a guest told us, is during the Shaw Festival, when the village really comes alive ? just as well it so happened we were there just in time!

    Food and drink 5.70 /10

    The Harbour House doesn't have a restaurant, which gives guests a chance to explore the village's charming restaurants. The Zee Grill restaurant comes very highly recommended and for something extra special, the exclusive restaurant at the Charles Inn is great option (book in advance). The hotel does however serve breakfast every morning. A good choice of hot and cold options are laid out as a buffet and guests can order anything else from the kitchen. Otherwise if you get peckish around tea time, there is a complimentary cheese and wine party every afternoon at 5:00pm, served by the hotel's Joseph, whose been here long enough to remember a bunch of anecdotes that will make you look at this small unsuspecting quiet village a little differently.

    To know

    The Harbour House is part of Niagara's Finest Inns, which also counts the modern Shaw Club Hotel (see our review) and the Charles Inn (see our review).

    The hotel has a private car-park (free).


    • Car park
    • Internet access
    • Air conditioning
    • Whirlpool bath


    • Its withdrawn location close to the lake's banks.
    • The friendly and efficient service.
    • The daily cheese and wine aperitif from 5:00pm.
    • The soothing atmosphere.


    • There is no restaurant on site (although there is a breakfast room).

    Traveller Reviews

    • Overall Score nc/10
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