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Your Spring Break guide to eating, drinking and partying, Montréal-style

Spring Break amazingness? You can have it all in Montréal. With its 3 a.m. closing hours, drinking age of 18 and hugely depreciated dollar (the whole city is basically a 30% off sale), Montréal is a win-win-win Spring Break party proposition. Let the following be your guide to doing it up right. Eats and pre-drinks There are those of us who would argue that the eating and pre-drinks portion of the evening is the most critical phase: not only are you laying a base for the remainder of the evening, you’re setting the tone. If you’re starting out on the Plateau Mont-Royal, imaginative hipster magnet and oyster/cocktail bar Le Majestique is all eye candy and killer cuisine. Fab fun food and drinks are also the raison d’être of L’Gros Luxe (Caesars topped with hamburgers, ’nuff said), and Big in Japan’s delectable small plate menu and vibrant vibe have also made it big in Montréal. If downtown, head to Sainte-Catherine Street West for Imadake, another Japanese small plate pub with a fun bordering on raucous atmosphere (which may have something to do with their signature “sake bombs”). Dominion Square Tavern is a must if only for the beautiful 1920s setting, though the… / Read More →

10 New Year’s resolutions you’ll keep… in Montréal

Whether we make them every year or we’ve sworn off them for life, New Year’s Resolutions can haunt us – the trick is to make your yearly promises as fun-loving as possible. And since Montréal is decidedly fun-loving, it’s easy to follow through on those quintessential New Year’s resolutions any time of the year. Eat a multi-course meal Eating is necessary to life, whether you’ve made a “lose-weight” resolution or not, and five-course meals aren’t something most of us enjoy every day – so why not dig in to Montréal’s best prix-fixe menus at award-winning hotel and independent gourmet restaurants serving delicious local creations, authentic French food, special late-night menus, and so much more. If you visit in late fall, take advantage of the slashed prices at dozens of restaurants during the MTL à TABLE Montréal restaurant week. If you’re here in February, look for gourmet specials at MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE. And from late February to early April, experience the Québec cabane à sucre sugar shack tradition. Drink the good stuff There’s no time like the present in Montréal to splurge on that cask-aged whiskey or gorgeous bottle of wine you’ve been dreaming about. Taste rare single malts and more… / Read More →

Have a Mad Men guy’s weekend in Montréal

The show may be over, but Mad Men’s suits and sexiness – and some of the smoking and scandal too – live on not only in our memories (and on Netflix), but in retro style in Montréal. Tourisme Montréal’s tips for a classy weekend with the guys tap into that Mad Men aesthetic in clothes, restaurants, hotels, barbers, cigars and bars. Dress the part Update or refine your own style in Montréal at luxury retailers of designer suits and brand-name menswear Holt Renfrew, Ogilvy Monsieur and Harry Rosen downtown, or smaller boutiques like Tozzi on Crescent Street, L’Uomo Montréal and Giorgio on Peel Street, Philippe Dubuc on Saint-Denis Street, StockMarkt on Notre Dame Street West, WANT Apothecary in Westmount, and three hot Mile End retailers: Clark Street Mercantile, Les Etoffes and the storefront location of online success story Frank & Oak. If you’re in the market for a new suit, consult our guide to buying a suit in Montréal. Find soft and supple leather wallets, briefcases, bags and jackets at Rudsak on Mont-Royal Avenue and in Eaton Centre and at three central locations of M0851. For slimmer wallets, walk down to Winners in Place Montréal Trust off Sainte-Catherine Street for reduced prices on brand-name shirts, jackets,… / Read More →

Meet a Montrealer: Simon Bajouk of the Ritz-Carlton Montréal

In an age of automation and travel apps, working as a hotel concierge is a somewhat of a noble and nostalgic endeavour. The job melds devotion to personalized service with encyclopaedic knowledge of a city. The best concierges are able to advise guests on restaurants, nightlife, sightseeing tours, shopping and more. They answer a plethora of questions — and if they don’t know the answer, you can be certain that they’re going to get it. Meet Simon Bajouk, a Clef d’Or concierge at Ritz-Carlton Montréal hotel — and check out some of his favourite local places. First off, what does it mean to be a Clef d’Or concierge? A Clef d’Or concierge has been working in a hotel for at least five years. To become part of the elite network, you apply and go through a process of qualifications: you write a test, you respond to a variety of mystery shoppers and then you also give a speech. Finally, the local chapter of your Clef d’Or association will vote. This process can take many years! What’s the biggest challenge for a 21st century concierge? The challenge is to be more prepared and more informed. The guest is already on TripAdvisor —… / Read More →

Late Night Dining in Montréal

Summer in Montréal is an exciting time of year. From festival after festival, sidewalk sales, movies in the park and a plethora of other activities and events to keep you busy, there’s no rest of the weary. Keeping yourself fueled for late night walks along the cobbled stone streets of Old Montréal or taking in the sights and sounds of Place des Festivals is essential. In a city that barely sleeps during the summer, here are some of my favourite places for late night dining. L’Express: 3927 Saint-Denis Street The quintessential Parisian-style French bistro will transport you back to the days when you were a struggling poet pouring your heart and soul into your unappreciated work over a coq au vin in some bistro along Boulevard Saint-Germain. That wasn’t you? Well, you’ll feel like it was. Open until 3 am daily and 2 am on Sundays, L’Express is a popular dining destination for locals at any hour. With dishes like their famous bone marrow starter to calf liver with tarragon, their take on classic French dishes will leave you wanting more. Leméac: 1045 Laurier Avenue West Leméac is another great bistro that will satiate your stomach with French classics and… / Read More →

Meet a Montrealer: Philippe Demers

Montréal’s MASSIVart and Chromatic co-founder Phillippe Demers is living proof that avant-garde art, international business, punk rock parties, cross-country skiing and next-level doughnut-loving are not mutually exclusive pursuits. The 28-year-old Demers is one of the original minds behind Montreal’s highly regarded and hugely active MASSIVart collective. MASSIVart was created to showcase art (and by extension the artists) by making it more accessible through special events and by taking it out of traditional art spaces to places where one might not otherwise expect it. This mission evolved into the model for Chromatic, an annual arts party/festival showcasing some 150 artists which takes place at the summit of Mount Royal. The social mandate of Chromatic – which also has a commercial services arm that provides events planning and art integration – is to promote artists and make sure their work is accessible to everyone. This year Montréal will be represented at the very first edition of Chromatic in Paris (April 2 to 4). Now let’s meet Demers. When at work, who are you? “I’m the general manager and the co-founder of both Chromatic and MASSIVart.” What’s the coolest thing about your job? “The coolest thing is that it’s never the same. I do… / Read More →

Late Night Eats in Montreal

Montreal’s nightlife is bustling no matter what time of year; from cold weather activities to summer festivals, it seems like there is always something going on in the city.