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FREE STUFF IN MONTREAL FOR LADIES ONLY

This one’s for the ladies. When you’re planning your next girl’s getaway, here are four freebies (personal assistance, make-up application, dinner and drinks) to give you that special VIP feel – and save you a few bucks for shopping spring essentials like a new pair of Marc Jacobs sunglasses or Lanvin flats. Eyes on the prize…

BRUNCH IN THE PLATEAU

A quintessential Montreal weekend starts with brunch. And if you’re a lucky (lazy?), it starts around midday and chugs merrily along until late afternoon…

GET DOLLED UP AT BLEU BLOW DRY AND ROUGE NAIL BAR

I’ve raved more than once about my favourite little beauty bars where I love to treat myself and get my nails done. Vanity is a curse; I know. So, when mini-Montreal chain Rouge Nail Bar opened up a “sister concept” – Bleu Blow Dry Bar – right next door to their Fairmount location, my first thought was, This is a match made in heaven. Or was it, Thank heaven!

MONTREAL’S HOT SPOTS FOR JEWELLERY SHOPPING

All that glitters is not gold, a smart gentleman named Shakespeare once said. And by that I’m sure he was referring to all the shimmering sterling silver, sparkly diamonds, and twinkling gemstones that the world has to offer—and, oh, let’s not forget beautiful pearls. Whenever I travel to new (or old) places, I like to buy local jewels or handmade trinkets to remind me of my trip. Then when people comment on the mini-ornaments hanging from my earlobes (likewise, around my neck, wrists, or fingers), I can say matter-of-factly, “These little things? Why, I found them in an adorable little shop in the South of France.” (I don’t really talk like that, but it’s never too late to start.) As such, when my out-of-town girlfriends come to Montreal, I like to steer them toward local boutiques, so they can peruse the baubles of our belle province for their own “souvenirs”—and so I can get my fill of retail therapy too.

DELTA MONTREAL HOTEL AND THE GIRLS GETAWAY PACKAGE

Shopping trip with the girls? The Delta Montreal is the hotel for you! Last week, still glowing from a hot tub-sauna-and-manicure splurge followed by an afternoon spent in a heavenly bed, I ran into my neighbour Claudia, and told her: “I’m just back from trying out the girls’ getaway package at the Delta Montreal”. With a quizzical look on her face, she immediately asked: “Sounds  fun, but… what IS this getaway package, anyways?”