AAA Five Diamond Award 2004-20013
Delta Sky Magazine
May the Horse Be With You
The stables came first at Inn Walden in Aurora, Ohio; accommodations for two-legged guests were added just six years ago. Thirty-two thoroughbreds thrive in a roomy, clean and poshly appointed barn; attached is a huge indoor arena with a spectator gallery.
The staff at Walden takes excellent care of horses—notoriously fussy, demanding and high-maintenance creatures. Taking excellent care of the people who visit the inn? Well, in comparison, that’s easy.
First off, they keep guests well-fed. We’re treated to a constant supply of thoughtful treats: cookies, banana bread and hot cocoa at teatime; wine and cheese before dinner; a carb-rich breakfast of homemade coffeecake, waffles and fresh orange juice. Dinner is at The Barn, housed in a restored farm building from the 1820s. The restaurant has a clubby feel, with high-backed chairs and rich textiles warming the tall space and its weathered wood beams. The food is rich, too; the filet mignon and steamed asparagus with red peppers is the winner among the entrees sampled at our table. Next, as they do for the horses, the folks at Walden make sure guests have comfortable accommodations. The all-suite inn is decorated with contemporary paintings and pottery, and the rooms are furnished with lush wood and natural stone. But the real luxury is light. Compensating for northeast Ohio’s often gray skies, large windows and skylights let in as much sunshine as possible, and offer views of the gardens and pastures. —Britta Waller
Road and Travel Magazine
Inn Walden is Ohio’s first ever five-diamond hotel. With 27 luxurious suites, Walden is the perfect hideaway for relaxing getaways, weddings and executive retreats. The elegantly proportioned buildings surround a 175-year-old barn and silo located on 32 acres, with horses roaming in the pasture. Glass walls bring in natural light and contrast with the traditional farmhouse feel of the buildings. Guests enjoy a host of recreational activities, world-class dining, unobtrusive service and a wealth of meeting space.
Inn of the Month: Ohio’s Inn Walden
Inn Walden, Aurora, Ohio
Yes, Cleveland has its horsey set, and this is where its members come for a dose of hunt-country livin’. From your bed, you might catch a glimpse of Appaloosas frolicking in the fields. Pull on your riding boots and head down to the Blue Ribbon Café for fresh-baked muffins. You don’t have to love horses to appreciate this inn 25 miles southeast of Cleveland, in the heart of Ohio’s Western Reserve (an area settled by Connecticut veterans of the Revolutionary War). You just might mistake your surroundings for the New England countryside—with comparable antiques shops. The inn adeptly mixes traditional comfort with modern style. Natural materials such as cedar and slate contrast well with a palette of jewel tones on the walls and furniture. Oversize windows and glassed-in walkways draw in the bucolic surroundings. The 27 spacious suites have fireplaces, king-size beds made up with Italian linens, large dressing rooms, Jacuzzis, and balconies. Nothing hayseed about a stay here.
AAA: Ohio finally checks in to the luxury list
When it comes to luxury destinations, Ohio is not the first place that springs to mind. But today, AAA will bestow a Five Diamond Award on the 6-year-old Inn Walden in Aurora, Ohio, a luxury retreat in horse country south of Cleveland. It’s a first for the state, which hasn’t had a hotel or eatery rated above four diamonds since the closely watched ratings began 29 years ago.
National Geographic: Traveler, Magazine
Classical Ralph Lauren-style equestrian retreat complete with stables, 175-year-old barn, silo, tennis courts and golf course-set on 1,000 acres of undeveloped pastures and woodland in Ohio’s Western Reserve. Cedar-paneled ceilings, slate-tiled bathrooms and broad windows bedeck gracious rooms (1,000-1,500 square feet). Luminous, brand-new spa.
Conde Nast Traveler Magazine
On 32 lush acres 25 minutes from Cleveland, this neoclassical inn has “grounds that are best seen on horseback.” Rooms have “a warm contemporary decor,” with Vermont slate showers, private patios and Jacuzzis. The Barn serves a popular whole poached lobster in a curry-saffron sauce. The Inn boasts “a challenging golf course.” “Staff is charming.”