Nestled right on the shores of the mighty Niagara’s Upper Rapids, the Red Coach Inn opened its doors in 1923 in Niagara Falls, New York just as the city was dubbed the “Honeymoon Capital of the World.” But not everyone who checked into the inn lived happily ever after as many guests will quickly realize.The History: Back in the day, the Red Coach Inn was one of the finest inns in all of Niagara Falls and is still one of the better places to stay in the area (that isn’t just a chain). The original owners, William Schoellkopf and Charles Peabody, spared no expense in building the inn in the architectural Tudor style, fashioning it after the Bell Inn in Finedon, England. The structure is over three stories high, and the current owners have managed to keep the historical integrity of the building intact. Today, the Red Coach Inn is both a bed and breakfast with over 30 suites as well as a restaurant complete with outdoor patio.
The Haunting: As you might expect from a hotel almost 100 years old–with guests from all over the world passing through every day–there are a few ghosts haunting the Red Coach Inn. The most famous of these ghosts is the bride. There are conflicting stories about what exactly happened to her. One story claims that she and her new husband both committed suicide on the night of their wedding. But most stories choose to go a bit more grisly. According to the reports, a young bride and groom checked into the Victoria suite for their honeymoon in 1925. That night, the husband took a candlestick and beat his bride to death. Reports claim that guests have seen the ghostly image of a woman in a Victorian lace dress [according to our waitress, just a few weeks ago, a couple staying in the Victoria suite checked out in the middle of the night because they heard things in their room]. Other claims tell of antique jewelry moving across dressers in the rooms, music playing softly, ghostly images appearing in photos, and the sound of phantom footsteps. Many staff members avoid the Victoria suite, the Victoria suite’s patio, and the third floor.
While the Red Coach Inn may not be openly advertising that their building is haunted, if you ask any of the staff members, they’ll tell you about the history of the building, the ghost stories, and even some of their own experiences. We had a small crowd around our table as members of the wait staff told us their experiences (or how they specifically avoid the third floor because they don’t want any experiences). The ambiance and decor make you feel as if you’re walking back in time and just adds to the overall experience if you’re looking for a bit of a spooky time.
The dinner menu was a bit on the pricey side, and I’m not a huge breakfast eater, so I ventured to the Inn for lunch. The prices weren’t exorbitant, but the selection was a lot less compared to the dinner menu. For lunch, they focus on sandwiches, wraps, and omelets while dinner has a much wider range including New York strip steak, chicken parmesan, and scallops (which is to be expected). Unfortunately, both the meals that we ordered were nothing special–the black and bleu steak wrap and the cajun chicken sandwich special–however, their specialty cocktail, Red Coach Punch, was a delicious rum-based drink (and it was nice and strong).
Experience: Restaurant and Bed and Breakfast
Dining Style: Dress Casual
Price Range: $3-39
Phone Number: (716) 282-1459
Hours of Operation:
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