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Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

calgary
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Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

My husband and I are travelling to Montreal - neither of us have been to the city before. He is on business, I'm tagging along. Work for him is somewhere near Ste Anne-de-Belle-Vue, I'm free all day but would like to explore downtown.

We are thinking midtown might be a good inbetween if we can get something near the metro. He will have a car but I'm on foot - but not at all opposed to transit! We were looking at Ruby Foos - any comments on that? Love to hear any other suggestions!!

Thank you! Merci!

:-)

Montreal
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1. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

Well, Ruby Foo's would be a logical choice since it's close to a métro and has parking and is close to the freeway. It's just not the prettiest area around, although you are very close to Pushap which is a great vegetarian Indian restaurant :)

Although parking can pose a problem, you might consider nonetheless a hotel closer to downtown -- perhaps on the western edge of downtown with easy access to the freeway (du Fort leads to the freeway, for example, as does Saint-Jacques. He'll be against the traffic anyway, and if he's taking the 20, it may actually be quicker from there than getting stuck on Décarie at rush hour to get down to the 20.

I was surfing www.bonjourquebec.com and found Hotel Château Saint-Marc which is just a few blocks from the freeway entrance. That little section of houses surrounding the Canadian Centre for Architecture is just beautiful, although the neighbourhood after that is more bland 60's highrises. However, it's incredibly vibrant and interesting and full of great restaurants and there's Concordia University right there so lots of students and very multicultural and just a short walk away from great shopping and the museum and so on... plus it's a very English neighbourhood which will make it feel more familiar (although truth be known, you won't have a problem anywhere).

Quebec
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2. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

Don't stay at Ruby Foo's. The area hotel booking sites call midtown is not where you want to be. In the evenings, after hubby gets home, you will feel very restricted to what is around that hotel. It will not make his travel to Ste Anne de B any easier, he will be driving against traffic both ways anyway.

My advice would be to stay downtown, lots of buzz and stores and easy access to the metro for seeing other things further away. Things for you in the daytime and for both of you at night.

If you give a per night budget, and style of hotel, we can probably help with suggestions.

You might enjoy a Greyline bus tour, they are great for single travellers with limited time. Organized stops at all the main attractions. My brother did it and loved it as it gave him a great city overview.

Edited: 20 January 2012, 12:50
Old Montreal
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3. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

Never hear of midtown. Sounds like a swindle. Ruby foo not best location for a 1st time visit.

I just came back to montreal from a business trip yesterday and it's unbelievable how the streets downtown are covered with ice. The city wants to kill us. But I digress.

calgary
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4. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

Thank you so much for the advice!!

Tristou - Chateau St Marc looks lovely - I'm trying to make a sell to my husband! :-) He gets swayed by places that include breakfast, to that is a plus!

bogwoppit - I will look into the Greyline tour - we did a similar thing in Barcelona - and it was very good for establishing your bearings and learning about the city - thanks for the tip!

Platipus - we had a winter like that last year here in Calgary - sitting at a standstill in my car at an intersection, I had a school bus sliding on the ice *sideways* towards me!!! I tolerate winter - but sometimes it is a bit crazy - I agree!!

Are there any other hotels in the area you suggest Tristou? I was looking at the info on Ruby Foos and it didn't look like it was going to be very pretty. I'm a bit spoiled - the last time in Quebec I was in Quebec City and stayed at the Chateau Frontenac (perfect place for a Bat Conference!) - such a belle province!

Also would it be a good idea to take our skates? :-)

I would also love to hear some suggestions of good places to eat - we have the car and love trying new restaurants! Indian, vietnamese, sushi, anything tasty and I would LOVE to hear about favourite bakeries!! :-)

Thanks so much for the advice!!

:-)

Quebec
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5. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

You might look at the Fairmont Queen Elizabeth. It is above the train and metro station and gives you instant access to Montreals underground city. A great thing for avoiding the cold and ice on the streets. Hubby can also take a commuter train out to St Anne de Bellevue from there. There are often good deals on the Fairmont site.

Join their loyalty scheme "the presidents club" and get free wifi in your room, discounts in their resto and spas. The hotel is in a very good location for exploring.

For Indian food I really like Taj on Stanley street.

There will be ice to skate on, bring your skates or rent here.

calgary
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6. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

Does anyone have any info on the Hotel Maritime Plaza on Guy Street?

Apparently my husband's company has a "list" and this is one of the hotels on the "list".

Would the Hotel Maritime Plaza rate as good? Bad? Will commuting out towards Ste Anne -d BV be a pain? The Tripadvisor reviews are somewhat ambivalent...

bogwoppit - thanks for the tip on the indian food! I was looking at Fairmont Queen Elizabeth - I will see if that one is on the "list"!! :-P Husband is bent on driving...so it will be commute by car...

Are there interesting places to skate downtown? :-)

Quebec
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7. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

Well funny you should ask, we had a thread where this hotel was discussed a few days back.

tripadvisor.ca/ShowTopic-g155032-i51-k507676…

I have stayed there when I won it on Hotwire. It is a basic three star that could do with upgrading. Rooms were clean, but dated, as are the common areas. Location wise it is good, you can walk to many things in the downtown area. Including the buffet Maharajah, cheap Indian food where you can eat your face off for a low price!

Maybe share the list with us and we can give you a blow by blow. Do check the user reviews as they can often tell you more than the DE's can beyond location.

Skating favourite would be the Bonsecours Basin in the Old Port or the Beaver Lake on the Mount Royal.

Montreal, Canada
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8. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

Same area as Hotel Saint-Mathieu there is Hotel du Fort, small hotel annexed to a private hotel management college. It will be less expensive to park indoor around than smack in the middle of Downtown (about 8 to 10 street east). Of course if you stayed at the Chateau Frontenac in Qc there is the sister property Fairmongt Queen Elizabeth in Mtl although the building doesn't have the cachet of the Chateau but service will be on par. There is a lot of indoor parking garage in the block of the Fairmont and Gare Centrale but if not valet parking it can be a bit convoluted to get to the car and then you will have some driving on the streets to do before reaching highways.

Rochester, New...
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9. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

i stayed at the hotel maritime plaza in my one trip to montreal (going again in 2 weeks!!). was february 2010. the hotel was average at best - suitable for myself and kids but the indoor pool was FREEZING. very close to bell center which was key fo rmy trip to a habs game.

Milton, Vermont
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10. Re: Travelling at the end of this month, need hotel advice! :-)

I second bogwoppit's suggestion of the Queen Elizabeth Hotel. It's most suitably located with easy access to the commuter trains, subway, and underground city which includes food and shopping. Traffic can be ridiculous especially on the 20 and your hubby will be spending most of his time sitting in it. Ruby Foo's?? Stay away! There are plenty of other hotels in the downtown area with easy access to restaurants, shopping, transportation, etc. If you can post the list as suggested, that will help narrow down the choices.

For Indian restaurants, The Taj is pretty good and so is Buffet Maharaja. If you really want the real deal, you'll need to go up to Jean Talon St. It's mini India there and the spots are not fancy but you get close to the real thing. Greek food is located in the Greek Village, mainly along Prince Arthur St. You can bring your own wine. If you want Chinese, head down to Chinatown and look for Keung Kee. It's located upstairs and across from the big Chinese buffet restaurant.

Enjoy your visit to Montreal. Cheers!