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Intercontinental Montréal Unveils the Re-Imagined Nordheimer Conference Centre

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Nordheimer entrance

Located in the Quartier international – the literal crossroads between the Old Port and the city’s modern downtown – the InterContinental Montréal bridges eras and neighbourhoods in a prime position to discover Montréal both old and new. In close proximity to the Palais des congrès de Montréal and joined with the World Trade Centre Montréal (WTCM), the InterContinental provides easy access to the city’s conference hotspots. The InterContinental offers 357 rooms including 23 luxury suites, noted dining options, and a unique glimpse of Montréal history old and new. In 1991, the InterContinental received a rare “four-diamond” rating from AAA, the first such rating in all of Old Montréal.

S. Bernhardt - Banquet

A New Heart for an Old Building

Twinned structurally with the Nordheimer Building, constructed in 1888 by the Abraham and Samuel Nordheimer, the hotel’s conference hosting capabilities have just increased by 3,365 square feet due to the unveiling of the building’s beautiful new ballroom. Under 17-foot-high ceilings and bathed in natural light, the Nordheimer Conference Centre is a new gem on Montréal’s conference landscape. Seating options range from 300 people banquet style and up to 400 in cocktail style. In the 19th century, the celebrated Nordheimer piano was produced at this location, and as a nod towards that proud history, the A. & S. Nordheimer Ballroom is room is named for the musical brothers and The Piano level is bedecked in black and white with a grand piano as centrepiece.

Le Piano Nordheimer

A Storied History Across the Boards

Besides acting as a flagship location for Nordheimer pianos, the building previously hosted the Nordheimer’s Hall, a 1000-seat theatre graced by legendary performers from around the globe. Past the distinctive pink granite façade and spectacular Romanesque Revival stone archway, a period who’s-who including celebrated French actress Sarah Bernhardt tread the boards in front of an enraptured audience of Montréalaise. Maurice Ravel, whose beloved Bolero is an eternal favourite, also presented his works in person with an infamous concert. Taking a page from history, each room in the Nordheimer Building is named after one of its famous prior denizens, giving antiquated legends like opera soprano Emma Albani, General Tom Thumb, and Dolly Dutton their rightful place in Montréal history.

Intercontinental

Local History, Floor by Floor 

Seldom does ascending a building’s floors double as a history lesson, but the Nordheimer Conference Center gives an insight into the development of Montréal floor by floor. Let’s take a quick look from the basement up:

  • The Early Settlers (basement): Inspired by Early Settlers including Narcisse Lapierre and Jacques Archambault
  • The Arts (ground floor): Dedicated to The Arts, inspired by figures such as architect John-James Brown and Paul Pierre Henry
  • The Stage (2nd floor): The influence of The Stage and luminaries like Sarah Bernhardt and Charles Stratton Sherwood can be felt throughout the second level.
  • Music (3rd floor): Music takes the spotlight, with references to Maurice Ravel, Emma Albani, Gédéon Belfour, and piano manufacturer Gerhard Heintzman
  • Vice (4th floor): Figures like Lucia Bellatini, Augustine Joseph, Charles Delafond, William Wilcom, Camille Watson, and Alexander Fraser lend to this floor’s titillating tribute to Vice.
  • The Piano (5th floor): Dedicated to the Nordheimer Brothers.

Edifice Nordheimer 1

Les Voutes - De soir

La Ruelle des fortifications (rouge et noir)

CHEAT SHEET

Venue: InterContinental Montréal Hotel
Address: 360 Saint-Antoine Street West
Rooms: 357 rooms and suites
Meeting Spaces: 19 with 25,163.3 ft² (2,337.75 m²) meeting space
Largest Room Capacity: 1,000 in reception-style
Website: montreal.intercontinental.com/en/meetings
Twitter: @iCMontreal
Virtual reality visit: youtube.com/watch

Archival photo of the Nordheimer store and warehouse in 1896: ©McCord Museum of Canadian History, Montréal, II-114790. Special collaboration within the framework of a partnership agreement. Photo: William Notman.

Read this next: Mariner’s House: A venue at the heart of Montréal’s history

 

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