Early last week I booked a night at a hotel through the online site, hotwire.com. It's an interesting website that offers discount hotels, flights, and car rentals. Basically you select your destination ( i.e. Montreal - downtown) and your dates of travel, then hotwire will give you a list of locations and prices to pick from. Using this information you make the purchase. THEN they send you a confirmation email with all the details - confirmation number, hotel name, address, and contact information. The catch? No refunds. Although for the price we paid that can hardly be considered a catch.
So we managed to scoop a one night stay at a 4-star hotel for less than half the price. The deal was even sweeter than that considering that it was May 2-4 weekend and there was a 2 night minimum stay for the rest of you chimps.
Saturday we hit Montreal hard, checking out the Biodome, the Botanical Garden, and the Insectarium all before 2. Then we headed over to the hotel for some hot-tubbing and a swim in the pool.
After that we watched history as the Sens beat the Sabres and made into the Stanley Cup Finals. Go SENS go! Ok, I'm not exactly a diehard but I do strongly support our Canadian teams.
After the whoops and cheers died down we headed out for a stroll down Ste Catherine St. in search of a family friendly restaurant. We finally settled on a pizza joint overlooking Phillips Square and Christ Church Cathedral. No complaints here. For dessert we hit a Second Cup for a Chillatte and some chocolate chunk cookies. Yummy but freakin' expensive.
The next day was spent strolling the streets of Old Montreal and the Old Port (check out the live webcam). It was a little cool in the wind but the sun was still shining and the good times were still rolling.
After checking out the Notre-Dame de Montreal Basilica (yes folks, this is where Celine Dion was married to her manager/husband aka "grand-papa" in 1994) we made our way back up to Ste-Catherine in time for lunch. Our stomachs were growling so we basically hit the first restaurant that looked like it had something on the menu for the whole family. Reuben's Restaurant & Deli. Food was okay fine but I couldn't help but feel that it was quantity over quality.
Bellies full we waddled back outside to check out the shopping in Montreal's Underground City. Wow! This place is huge... well, technically it's the largest underground complex in the world. So if your heading down there and your sense of cave dwelling navigation is a little off I suggest taking this map.
A fine start to a long weekend.
We'll be back, Montreal!