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BOUTIQUE HOTELS : WHERE TO STAY FOR YOUR GIRLS GETAWAY

Montreal is known for her sassy collection of boutique hotels. And I’m often asked, “Which one should I book?” Since each one has a distinctive personality, it’s an important question, because where you check in can set the tone and pace of your ladies’ night out. Here’s a little cheat sheet to guide you in the right direction.

AHOY! BOUNTY IN THE OLD PORT

Ever since I was a kid, I’ve had a bit of an obsession with boats – apparently, I’m not alone. The Old Port has been packed with nautical nerds and seafaring fans ever since five tall ships (Bounty, Pride of Baltimore, Lynx, Roald Amundsen and Unicorn) sailed into Montreal on Thursday.

STREET PROFILE: SAINT-PAUL

Our Montreal Street Profile series has already hit Bleury, Parc and, most recently, Maisonneuve. Which is convenient, because even though we’re now heading down to Old Montreal to check out Rue Saint-Paul, these two streets share something in common…

EMERGING ART FESTIVAL IN MONTREAL

Back for a 7th edition, Montreal’s international festival,  Les Escales Improbables (translation: improbable pauses), returns to the Quays of the Old Port of Montreal between September 8 and 12. On the menu: dance, music, performance, visual art and theatre – all very improbable of course!

THE ANIMALS OF BONSECOURS ISLAND

Love animals? Run down to the Old Port.  The photos are fabulous! On Bonsecours Island (sounds like a pirate place, non?) at the Quais / piers of Old Montreal’s port area, there are 140 of the best animal photos in the world.  Fifty of these are being shown for the first time.  The exposition also has a video, which is really great to watch.  The show is a partnership between the famed Smithsonian Institute in Washington, the National Geographic Collection, and the renowned international photographer Vincent Munier.  It’s fun for everyone.  And the animal photos are amazing.  They should be.  Vincent has been awarded the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Award – three times!

MONTREAL IN THE MOVIES 1: MESRINE

Montreal-set Mesrine: Killer Instinct the latest major motion picture to showcase the city’s atmospheric neo-Noir setting… After a long 2-year wait since its release in France, Mesrine: Killer Instinct, the first part of Jean-Francois Richet’s diptych about 1970s French bank-robber/folk hero/international playboy Jacques Mesrine, opens in select North-American cities. A-list French actor Vincent Cassel (he played opposite Viggo Mortensen in David Cronenberg’s Eastern Promises, and in Stephen Soderbergh’s Oceans 12 and Oceans 13) gained twenty pounds and several configurations of appealing retro facial hair to slip into the skin of Mesrine. 

RETRO INBOARDS GATHER AT CLASSIC BOAT FESTIVAL

Remember those gorgeous, sleek, low, wooden boats that whipped by in the movies?  Ladies usually wore a Hermès scarf and big Jackie Kennedy sunglasses.  The men drove the boat. You’ll be able to see 80 of these classics at the Festival du Bateau Classique in the Old Port (McGill and de la Commune Streets) of Montreal, from August 20th through the week-end.

MONTREAL’S HISTORIC PATIOS

Some of Montréal’s historic patios date back 300 years. Cool off in the shade of old trees, beautiful gardens, and thick brick walls.

CHÂTEAU RAMEZAY: TIME TRAVEL GARDENS

Built in 1705, the Chateau Ramezay, is a beautiful grey stone building in Old Montreal is the oldest private history museum in Quebec. Built in 1705, it was the home of Governor Claude de Ramezay, a classically elegant structure with solid, thick walls and a beautiful garden.

FLICKR PHOTO OF THE WEEK

Located in the heart of Montreal’s “International District” is a fountain designed by famed Quebec artist Jean-Paul Riopelle. The statue, entitled La Joute (or The Joust in english), is a group of bronze sculptures that incorporate the elements of fire and water in revolving 32 minute kinetic sequence. It’s a romantic gem that many travelers overlook. Our photo of the week is by Jason Iplunshu, who also has a fine selection of other Montreal shots. Good work! —————————————————————————————————————— Submit your Montréal pictures to our MONTRÉAL BUZZ FLICKR GROUP. And see our previous PHOTOS OF THE WEEK.