In charming Cudahy, the Sheridan House Boutique Hotel and Café delivers a luxurious vintage experience, minutes from downtown Milwaukee.
As Milwaukee gave way to the lakeside town of Cudahy, I felt a twinge of déjà vu. The tidy architecture was reminiscent of a place on another of the Great Lakes where my mother had grown up. Homes and buildings of brick and clapboard dated from the early decades of the 20th century. On the corner of Pulaski and Lake Drive in Cudahy, we found the Sheridan House Boutique Hotel and Café. The hotel, in a handsome brick edifice, is on the site of the original Lakeview Inn, where Polish immigrant Frank Sztukowski began welcoming guests in 1911.
In 1920, Sztukowski replaced the original wooden building with the sturdy brick one which stands today. Renaming his place the Sheridan Hotel, Frank added the Palm Gardens tavern on the main floor. In 1968, the family remodeled and renamed it “The Fountain Blue,” and continued to serve popular traditional recipes such as Zupa Ogorkowa (Pickle Soup) and Kluski z Kapuska (a noodle sauerkraut dish).
Since 2007, owners Lee Barczak and Jane Schilz (whose other ventures include the Neighborhood Theater Group of atmospheric cinema theaters) have operated a completely renovated Sheridan House Boutique Hotel and Café at this location. The hotel has 12 guest rooms, each named for a European wine region. Art nouveau and other vintage-inspired elements blend with each other to enhance an “Old World” atmosphere with modern luxury.
The restaurant space has been completely revamped into Sheridan’s Café, a brightly elegant art nouveau bistro which features a farm to table menu. Executive Chef Joe Schreiter’s approach is to “let the seasons guide,” with fresh daily selections made from scratch using herbs and vegetables grown in Sheridan’s own gardens. Sheridan’s offers a range of wines, cocktails, coffees and espressos. Guests can dine outdoors on the patio, and gather around the fire pit for cocktails.
Special event planning and rental of the entire facility is available for weddings, rehearsal dinners, and corporate functions.
Our Experience: The lovely Tuscany “Luxury-Level” king suite, with electric fireplace and oversized whirlpool tub, was our home for two nights.
Thoughtful appointments in the ensuite bath included L’Occitane toiletries, plush terry robes, and thirsty towels. The walk-in shower boasted handheld, body and rainshower sprays. A heat lamp kept things toasty in this room, which was decorated in subway tile with bullnose trim, and retro hexagonal floor tiles with black accents.
Favorite Details: The Tuscany’s king size bed took comfort to new levels, lushly appointed with imported Italian linens and seven pillows!
After a full day of walking, it was a treat to relax in the “Champagne Bubble” massage tub and then wrap up in the yummy monogrammed terry robe!
We found it fairly easy to work in our room, with speedy internet and a variety of surfaces from which to charge devices and spread materials out. While we had no real desk area (and we didn’t really expect one), there was comfortable seating to use the laptop. Who wouldn’t rather work from bed, anyway?
Hotel Particulars: Sheridan’s and Sheridan House Boutique Hotel, 5133 S. Lake Drive, Cudahy, WI 53100. Tel. 414.747.9800
Pricing: Nine “exquisite” level guest rooms begin at $120. “Luxury” guest rooms have Champagne Bubble massage tubs for two and begin at $145. Each reservation includes a BOGO ½ off Café coupon.
Our Rating: 4.9 out of 5 stars. Sheridan’s Boutique Hotel is a special treat for those desiring a romantic getaway, or a one-of-a-kind ultra-comfortable alternative to a branded hotel. Its location in Cudahy is a mere 10-15 minutes from downtown Milwaukee, but a totally different small-community experience on the Lake Michigan bluffs. We highly recommend this, even for business travelers. Please note Sheridan’s hotel rooms are suitable for adults only, and the building’s stairway, although beautifully designed with a more easily navigated tread and riser ratio, may not accommodate travelers who are differently abled.
The only detail we might suggest is a way to make coffee in the otherwise well-appointed service area in the floor corridor. While it’s true you can get coffee to go in the café downstairs, we’re very early risers by comparison with its 7am opening time.