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Things to do in Montréal: September 23 to 29

As the fall season begins in Montréal, the warm weather holds as art and entertainment abounds: walk through lantern-lit gardens and markets, see the work of Robert Mapplethorpe, watch world-class dance, rock out at POP Montréal, and even run a marathon. Warm days, bright nights Nature meets the soft glow of lantern light at the Botanical Garden’s Gardens of Light exhibition – start your walk at sunset for the full effect. Excellent food, drink and entertainment (especially on Friday nights) await at open-air markets Jardins Gamelin and Village au Pied-du-Courant downtown, Marché des Éclusiers in the Old Port and Les Jardineries at Olympic Park. Croisières AML cruises offer laid-back brunch and gourmet dinners on the Saint-Lawrence River. See the city in a different way during the Montréal Rock’n’Roll Oasis Marathon on Sept. 25 as over 20,000 runners wind their way from Île Notre Dame through Old Montréal and into the Plateau, finishing at Parc La Fontaine. And the Canadiens start the NHL pre-season with games at the Bell Centre, Sept. 26, 27 and 29. For more, see our guide to Free things to do this fall in Montréal. POP sounds and city beats Music and arts festival POP Montréal celebrates 15 years of fun with shows, talks, art exhibitions, Puces POP craft fair, films, kids events… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: September 16 to 22

Mid-September eases between summer and fall in Montréal – the sun keeps shining on open-air markets and outdoor performances while a major Robert Mapplethorpe exhibition and Opéra de Montréal’s AIDA wow and POP Montréal keeps Montréal nightlife wild. Outdoor time Beautiful day and night, the Botanical Garden hosts its annual Gardens of Light lantern exhibition – walk through the Chinese and Japanese gardens after sunset in a soft glow. Montréal’s favourite terrasses stay open for meals, drinks and revelry – don’t miss the FoodLab terrasse at the SAT, where the Omnivore World Tour offers one-of-a-kind feasts, workshops and more, Sept. 16-19. You’ll also find excellent food, drink and entertainment at markets Jardins Gamelin and Village au Pied-du-Courant downtown, Marché des Éclusiers in the Old Port and Les Jardineries at Olympic Park. Take a cruise along the Saint-Lawrence River with Croisières AML for a laid-back brunch or gourmet dinner. For more activities, see our guide to Free things to do this fall in Montréal.  City-wide POP entertainment The 15th edition of POP Montréal starts its engines on Wednesday night with dozens of music shows along with talks, art exhibitions, the professional-level Puces POP craft fair, film screenings, kids events and more until Sept. 25 – get the low-down in our Survival Guide to POP Montréal and… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal September 2 to 8

Summer doesn’t stop for September in Montréal. Rhroughout Labour Day weekend and well afterwards, outdoor events – from food festivals to lantern-lit garden walka – and all kinds of stage-and-screen entertainment keep going strong. Labour Day long weekend The last long weekend of summer is fittingly packed: we’ve got the inside scoop on what to do this Labour Day Weekend in Montréal – an array of activities for all ages, incuding live music, art gallery tours, a glittering evening walk through the Gardens of Light at the Botanical Garden, and excellent food at Festival YUL EAT all weekend and at First Fridays on Sept. 2. Hey, you can even make a final decision on dresses and place settings at Le Grand Salon Marions-nous wedding fair. Extended days of summer Swing to the sound of music installation 21 Swings outside Place des Arts, or take a laid-back brunch, afternoon or gourmet dinner cruise with Croisières AML on the Saint-Lawrence River. Have a wonderful meal on Montréal’s favourite terrasses, and check out the entertainment, food and drink at markets Jardins Gamelin and Village au Pied-du-Courant downtown, Marché des Éclusiers in the Old Port and Les Jardineries at Olympic Park. And, Sept. 7-10, eat, drink, play games and dance to the beat of live music at outdoor festival OUMF on St-Denis Street downtown. On stage Kid… / Read More →

French music mania: Shows to see at Les FrancoFolies

The universal language of music gets a French twist at the 28th edition of Les FrancoFolies de Montréal, June 9-18 – and you don’t have to speak French to rock out, dance and even sing along with fans at these shows by artists from Montréal to Paris to North Africa. Orchestral heights Hot on the heels of cutting-edge art and music festivals MUTEK, ELEKTRA and TransAmériques, Les FrancoFolies give us something different too: The Montréal Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Simon Leclerc, welcomes musician Arthur H and  Serge Gainsbourg’s muse and companion Jane Birkin in Gainsbourg Symphonique, a performance of the iconic French artist’s best known and loved songs, marking the 25th anniversary of Gainsbourg’s death. Charming Québécois artist Alexandre Désilets also brings an orchestra on stage for his mysterious new electro-pop show marking the release of album Windigo. And Juno award-winner Karim Ouellet adds musicians on acoustic guitars, brass and strings, boosting his soulful, quirky electro-pop further into joyous territory. Soulful singer-songwriters World music, trip hop and rock meet poetry and politics in the music of Emel Mathlouthi, a Tunisian singer-songwriter who sings her songs of peace and revolution in French, English and Arab and comes to Francofolies with a… / Read More →

An unforgettable bachelorette in Montréal

Ladies! Hands up if you think planning bachelorette party is all about kinky headbands and copious amounts of alcohol…. Well, it’s time for you to update your idea of a girl’s day out because here in Montréal, we’ve got a hundred other things you can do to make this a day t0 remember for your bride-to-be. And hey, if naughty headgear and brightly coloured cocktails are your thing, then never fear – we’ve got those too! Gastronomic Bachelorette For a day perfect for female foodies, start with a sunrise breakfast cruise with Bateau Mouche, then hook up with the in-the-know guides at Montréal Craft Beer Tours or Round Table Tours,  where you can learn about some of Montréal’s trendiest neighborhoods while tasting everything from local chocolate to craft beer. If you’re starting to feel full, mix it up with a cocktail class at Ateliers Saveurs, or one of the city’s fantastic cooking classes such as the macarons workshops at The Lincoln Apartment Bakery or a pasta class at Mezza Luna. Finish your culinary journey at one of Montréal’s many gourmet restaurants (we like the charming Chambre à Part), then, if the gourmet day hasn’t gotten the better of you, slip… / Read More →

Experience Montréal in the lap of luxury

Looking for pampering? You’re in the right place. Montréal gets a ton of high-fallutin’ international guests every year, whether it’s Jazz Fest musicians, pop superstars, Formula One racers or star hockey players. Hell, even visiting comedians need paraffin mani-pedis! The result? Our service industry is poised to satisfy your every need and make your trip to La Belle Ville the most memorable it can be. Here’s your cheat sheet to the best things in life. SLEEP WELL High-end stays abound in Montréal, for all the reasons mentioned above. From Madonna to Aretha Franklin to Lady Gaga, we’ve hosted all the divas! Exacting guests flock to the gorgeously redesigned Ritz-Carlton Montréal, where you can leave your classically appointed suite and be at La Maison Ogilvy in five minutes flat.
 Hôtel Le St. James is probably the city’s most luxurious stay, nestled in a historic Old Montréal building appointed with priceless antiques. Loews Hôtel Vogue, Hôtel Le Crystal and InterContinental Montréal are perfect downtown pied-à-terres, with incredibly comfortable rooms and great bars and restaurants. To be within seconds of the Old Port, you’ll want to stay at either the sleekly contemporary Hotel Gault, Hotel Nelligan (the rooftop terrasse bar is a must),… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal March 11 to 17

As much as Montréal loves its winter festivals and snow sports, the city welcomes spring with open arms – we’re feeling a hint of it this week as restaurants roll out new dishes, film festivals and art events open our eyes on the world, our sports teams fight to the finish, and dance, theatre and live music keep us inspired. Spring sights and sports With winter festivals over and the city starting to thaw out, thoughts of spring are in the air – see our Guide to Spring Break Montréal Style for high-energy nightlife and restaurant ideas or find all kinds of things to do with kids of all ages in our Spring Break for families in Montréal guide. Downtown’s underground city welcomes art lovers to do some shopping and see excellent contemporary art in expansive exhibition Art Souterrain. Celebrate the luck of the Irish on on March 17 at the city’s best Irish pubs, see the Olympic Stadium tower lit up in green, and stick around for Montréal’s legendary St-Patrick’s Day Parade on March 20. In sports action, the hockey season isn’t over for the Montréal Canadiens – they play the Wild on March 11 and the Panthers on… / Read More →

OSM highlights for spring and summer 2016

The internationally-revered Orchestre symphonique de Montréal continues its blockbuster 2015-2016 season with a major 10-city U.S. tour that runs from March 14 to 26 to mark the 10th season of Grammy-winning Maestro Kent Nagano as OSM music director. The program will include Stravinsky’s immortal The Rite of Spring which audiences in Montréal can see the OSM perform first at the Maison Symphonique de Montréal at Place des Arts, from March 8 to 10. There are also several other must-see concerts to wind down the OSM’s 82nd season: French conductor Alain Altinoglu will appear for the first time with the OSM, in Holst’s The Planets as well as works by Simon Bertrand, Scott Good and Jeffrey Ryan (April 12, 13 and 14); while Finnish conductor Jukka-Pekka Saraste will be heard in Shostakovich’s Eighth Symphony (April 20 and 21). Also, Russian conductor Vasily Petrenko will make a much-anticipated return to the OSM in Mahler’s Symphony No. 1, “Titan” (May 11 and 12). Music lovers and film buffs will also enjoy the program Dina Gilbert and Movie Soundtracks with Dina Gilbert, OSM assistant conductor, and legendary Québec actor and the evening’s host, Rémy Girard (April 26). This concert is presented without projections. The Toronto Symphony… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: March 4 to 10

Where better to be in winter than in Montréal? Immerse yourself in the entertainment and culinary arts of the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE winter festival, the city’s all-ages Spring Break activities, hockey games and Barbegazi sports, dance, theatre, film, art and live music. Brighten up MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE keeps downtown bright and bustling until March 5 with music and theatrical performances, extraordinary meals (including pay-their-age prices for kids), and a free outdoor site at downtown’s Place des Festivals featuring multimedia shows, ice slides, a Ferris wheel, a zip line, fabulous food and more – get the inside scoop with our MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE SURVIVAL GUIDE. Art lovers can do some shopping and see excellent contemporary art throughout the underground city during winter exhibition Art Souterrain. Consult our Guide to Spring Break Montréal Style for high-energy nightlife and restaurant ideas. On the glittering ice at the Bell Centre, watch the Canadiens play the Stars on March 8 and the Sabres on March 10. And make your visit even smoother with these Montreal-specific apps. Delightful menus Along with the many fine dining options at MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, sit down to a gourmet meal during restaurant festival Relâche Gourmande, highlighting special table d’hôte menus… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: February 26 to March 3

This week everyone’s talking about Nuit Blanche, Montréal’s city-wide all-nighter event with free music, theatrical performances, art exhibitions and more, part of the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE winter festival. Add to that Spring Break activities for all ages, butterfly spotting, the games festival, dance, theatre, film, art and live music. All night long Spend the night of February 27 out of the town with thousands of jubilant Montrealers – and do it just right with our Nuit Blanche Survival Guide, letting you in on what it’s all about and what not to miss, from circus acrobatics and African dance to YouTube battles, NFB documentaries, the Karnival dance party and must-see contemporary art event Art Souterrain throughout the underground city. Nuit Blanche highlights Montréal’s biggest family-friendly festival of the season, MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, featuring music and theatrical performances, culinary feasts and workshops, and a free outdoor site at downtown’s Place des Festivals with music, multimedia shows, ice slides, a Ferris wheel, fabulous food and more – get the inside scoop with our MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE SURVIVAL GUIDE. And if you’re technically inclined, make your visit smoother with these Montreal-specific apps. Urban outdoors Whether you’re outdoors or having an indoor day, find something… / Read More →