CANANDAIGUA — Travel down the 2,000-foot driveway lined with ancient maple trees and cedar fences, and the difference between ordinary and legendary becomes striking.
The Morgan Samuels Inn, owned by John and Julie Sullivan, is a masterpiece of character. The ambiance is refreshing to the soul and invigorating to the spirit. Each detail is placed with the intent to relax and inspire.
The Sullivans purchased the property almost 25 years ago and have worked vigorously since then to bring the most memorable experiences to those who visit.
Visitors motoring up the drive are greeted with rolling hills and pastures, 307 magnificent trees and a stone bridge and creek that manifest the romantic vision of traditional England. Once you arrive at the inn, the awe-inspiring landscapes and gardens are as picturesque as a Monet painting, complemented by statues and classical outdoor ornaments.
The Morgan Samuels Inn was once the New York getaway for Judson Morgan, who built the residence in 1810. The house was later purchased by industrialist Howard Samuels, inventor of the plastic bag. When the Sullivans bought the mansion, they envisioned a retreat that replicated the dreamy essence of a perfect vacation.
“This is not a destination that people just come to stay the night,” John Sullivan said. “It is an experience.”
The inn consists of six guest rooms uniquely named for the characteristics they embody. There are 13 fireplaces that make the inside warm and inviting. Oriental rugs and museum-quality furniture highlight the walnut and mahogany inlays and 16-inch floorboards.
Paintings decorate the walls. Soft, classical music reverberates through each room. The winding staircase and glass-enclosed porch overlooking the original stone wall captures the English beauty that originally inspired John.
The Sullivans have a passion for pleasing their guests, and their incredible service has earned them the AAA Four Diamond Rating. The inn is also the only location in New York that is part of the Select Registry.
“It is about coming out of patterns and routines, traveling back into time when relationships were truly important,” Julie Sullivan explained.
“People want to do something special, to get away. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to do so,” John Sullivan added. “Many people who visit have no idea what they are about to experience until they walk through the doors. It is unusual, and you can’t find it just any place.”
Guests who stay at the Morgan Samuels Inn not only savor the experience of the lodging, they are also presented with incredible meals.
The breakfast includes a verbal menu which includes an assortment of more than 25 fruits. If you plan on staying for dinner, you will be taken away by the delectable gourmet meal which includes your own personal waiter and chef, your choice of six personal dining rooms, a bread course, two appetizers, soup, salad, the main course and dessert.
The inn has welcomed a diverse selection of guests, including business tycoons, politicians, entertainers and sports owners.
“Many of these people are billionaires and can go anywhere, but they come here because there is no other place like it,” John Sullivan said.
“We live in a stressful world, and this is better than a vitamin,” Julie Sullivan remarked. “It is a time away from stress, you are emotionally taken away as if you are sitting down and listening to your favorite song.”
This is not just a place for those who have thousands of dollars to spend on vacationing.
The price for a room ranges from $169 to $225 a night, and package deals are available. There is a spa and masseuse available to guests, along with double jacuzzis in four of the rooms.
The rooms sport distinct characteristics and details that make them different. Each has a personal bathroom, fireplace, robes, slippers and furniture that echoes the classic taste and tradition that was established more than two centuries ago.
Guests who have reviewed the inn on bedandbreak fast.com have stated that the experience is “heavenly inspired.” The reviews that guests have left capture the essence that the Sullivans have worked tirelessly to accomplish.
“The Christmas season is the perfect time of year to purchase a gift certificate to the inn,” Julie Sullivan stated. “You are not just purchasing an item, you are purchasing a memory that will last a lifetime.”