Review by Kim E. Burnham-Fechner
What do you get when you cross a rectory, a convent and a full made-to-order breakfast? Simple. Sunny's Roost Bed and Breakfast.
Located at 421 Plain St., in the heart of historic Lewiston, Sunny's Roost has an amazing past to share. Originally constructed in 1903-07 as a rectory for St. Peter's Roman Catholic Church, the rectory eventually became a convent for seven nuns in 1976. Original floor plans were lost in a house fire off premises, and any original pictures have become impossible to find, making the thought and task of restoring the building to its original state quite difficult.
In 2001, the convent would get a new lease on life when Lynn (Sunny) and Bob Matthews decided to purchase the building. Through countless upgrades and renovations, Sunny's Roost Bed and Breakfast opened its doors Dec. 2, 2001.
Open year-round, this pet- and child-friendly B&B makes tired and weary travelers feel right at home. Nesting four guest bedrooms, appropriately named after majestic fowl, guests can find a restful respite within the downy comforts of The Leghorn, The Bantam, The Rhode Island and The Ancona rooms. Tastefully and whimsically decorated, all rooms have pressed linens and have either shared or individual washrooms.
Tom and Deb Klatt of Caledon, Ontario, recently stayed with the Matthews.
"It's been like staying with friends! Thank you Sunny and Bob," they said.
As the only B&B in the area that offers a full breakfast at the guests' convenience, it is not hard to see why this amenity has guests coming to roost again and again. All meats and produce are bought from local farms or vendors such as Falcon Farms and Henry Family Farms (when in season), and The Natural Link in Lewiston. Even the milk is delivered fresh daily from Hoovers Dairy and goes right to the B&B's refrigerator.
Sunny enjoys a more hands-on and personal approach when serving her hot, delicious made-to-order breakfasts.
"It's a lot more fun to serve guests individually, because you get to visit with and get to know your guests better. The best part of being a B&B owner is that you get to meet all kinds of people you normally wouldn't be able to meet," she said.
Although the occupants and the floor plans may have changed over the years, the feeling of warmth and home can be felt the moment you walk through the front door.
As guests are greeted by "Spook and Madison," the B&B's canine mascots, they breathe in the smell of fresh-brewed coffee from the Orange Cat Coffee Co., and delicious scones made from scratch. Sunny's Roost beacons you to sit a moment and enjoy.
When Aman Chad described his stay at the B&B, he said, "With your hospitality, you should have guests flowing in your inn. Actually, this is the first time we have stayed in a bed and breakfast. I am very impressed! 'Home is where the heart is.' You gave us the feeling of home!"
When asked why she wanted to start a B&B, Matthews replied, "I wanted to do something that would change someone's life for the better. I want my guests to feel like they visited home, visited family and look forward to coming back to this area, because there is more to this area than just Niagara Falls."
Sunny's Roost Bed and Breakfast is located at 421 Plain St., Lewiston, and can be found at www.sunnysroost.com. Call 716-754-1161.
Edited by Maura Christie and Maureen Stanton
Design by Kim E. Burnham-Fechner