Often accommodating movie crews, acrobats, dancers and musicians on tour, the rooms in this apartment-style hotel are homey, with fully equipped kitchens and living rooms with flat-screen televisions.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Go elsewhere for glamour. This property gets the job done with professionalism, but doesn’t wow anyone with style or personality.
What they have is square footage. These “apartments”—two types of studios, three types of lofts and three types of suites—are nice and big. They have full kitchens, dedicated work desks, closets and free Wi-Fi. The carpets are a bit dull and severe.
Arguably the best room in the suites, the bathroom threatens to upstage the kitchen. Think soaker tubs, designer tiles and white accents.
The lobby, if you could call it that, doesn’t make much of an impression. There’s a reception desk at the end of a hallway, near the elevators. That’s it. However, the staff is exceptionally kind and accommodating.
The indoor rooftop pool and gym are definite highlights and feel rather like a fancy spa. It makes up for the lack of pizzazz in the rooms.
The bright breakfast room is a delight, with big windows and newspapers. Kids have enough space to run around. The vibe is casual and friendly. It's fine. It's all good.
A short walk from La Maison du Festival Rio Tinto Alcan and Place des Festivals, the hotel overlooks Place Phillips Street and Birks, the historic jeweler. The McGill Metro stop is right under La Baie and taxis are constantly whizzing along rue St-Catherine.
Sharing the same sidewalk as the hotel is a great place for pizza made in wood-fired ovens, Pizza Il Focolaio (3-minute walk). For something fancier, reserve a table at Nora Gray (10-minute ride) for their updated Italian menu and thoughtful wine list.
To meet some locals who work in creative fields, spend the evening at Furco (5 to 10-minute walk), or sample the crazy cocktails at Le Red Tiger (10-minute ride). Their Vietnamese menu is also worth exploring.
WHY WE LIKE IT
The art deco building, designed by Ernest Cormier (1885–1980), is right downtown near the iconic department store La Baie, so you'll never get lost. After a busy day of shopping and museum-hopping, you can take a relaxing swim in the glassed-in pool on the rooftop or just take in the views from the wooden sundeck. Kids love the breakfast room, and parents appreciate the sun-filled laundry room. When you consider the excellent room rates (starting at $149) and location, this hotel is a sensible choice.