March 1, 2011 – Place des Arts, Montréal’s major cultural venue in the Quartier des spectacles, has been given a facelift in preparation for its 50th anniversary celebrations in 2013.
The concert hall is home to the Jean-Duceppe theatre company, the Opéra de Montréal, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens de Montréal and the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, which moves into its brand-new “la Maison symphonique de Montréal” home on Place des Arts’ eastern esplanade in the fall of 2011.
Renovations at Place des Arts, which started in 2008, were undertaken to give the cultural hub a more modern, accessible and dynamic look and feel to it. And now that the finishing touches have been put on the Espace culturel Georges-Émile-Lapalme, which offers a free, year-round cultural calendar of music, theatre, dance and more, this Montréal landmark is ready to re-introduce itself to culture lovers the world over.
Improved access to a broader cultural offer
So what can visitors expect from all this primping? An easier and more accessible central ticket hall, improved access for patrons with reduced mobility, better showcased works of art and better identified concert halls (important when you’re running late!). Place des Arts also promises to present an even more diversified cultural calendar to promote Montréal’s wealth of artistic communities and new artistic trends.
Wining and dining
New too is the Place Deschamps wine bar, named in honour of stand-up comedian Yvon Deschamps, a popular Place des Arts veteran. Located inside, under the glass roof next to the Musée d’art contemporain boutique, it features private imports, local beers, martinis and a creative menu; all in all, a great spot for meeting up with friends pre- or post-performance.
Inside, guests also have their choice of three restaurants (Le Seingalt, Van Houtte and Bistro Le Contemporain), while outside they can enjoy a cocktail or the gourmet nibblings of either F Bar of Brasserie T!, the latter an offshoot of Montréal’s five-star Toqué! restaurant.
Revamped on the outside too
Streetside, people will also notice some new aesthetic touches. Dynamic panels with multimedia projections will be added to the Sainte-Catherine Street façade, adjacent to La Vitrine culturelle, and an exciting new Quartier des spectacles lighting plan will be unveiled.