Montreal has no shortage of true boutique hotels offering an intimate environment with upscale amenities that reflect its rich cultural heritage. My picks are the best-of-the-best relying heavily on customer opinion, with careful analysis to the overall satisfaction of a typical guest stay, the quality of on-site dining, the effectiveness of the concierge and other staff, guests' satisfaction with the hotel’s amenities, plus the convenience and enjoyment afforded by the location.
More and more travellers are looking for rewarding travel experiences to share with loved ones. It is my expectation and sincere hope that these hotel picks accomplish just that!
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: This hotel is highly impressive to its guests who can’t seem to say enough good things about it. It offers what many guests feel is a perfect experience with exceptional value in an excellent location.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: Guests liked the breakfast and lunches here but this was not really the stand-out feature of the hotel and some did find the food a little pricey. Those who did eat on site discovered a great pizza and risotto, perfectly cooked and seasoned scallops, as well as some tantalizing salads.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: The hotel exudes high class and fashion. Guests loved the interior design, high-end bedding and superb bathrobes in the room. Open spaces, clean lines, modern furnishings, oversized windows and quaint terraces provided a sense of grandeur in a modern yet peaceful setting. There was also a quiet fireplace area for reading and relaxing in the lobby at this exceptionally clean and well kept facility.
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: The staff were outstanding and made the stay superb. It was the best service received to date on the planet. They were committed to excellence, understood customer service and were strikingly courteous and helpful with a rare gracious attitude.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: Considered prime. In Old Montreal surrounded by great little restaurants. A short walk to Metro, the promenade at the Old Port, the Underground City, attractions, museums, art galleries and great shopping.
LIMITATIONS: Not all rooms have coffeemakers and sometimes guests felt breakfast was a little pricey with a limited menu.
IN A WORD: A simply chic boutique with minimalist décor exuding style and wrapped in classic architecture.
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: Guests loved this charming and classy hotel for providing an outstanding experience in an outstanding location. It was an amazing hotel with magnificent public spaces.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: Fabulous drinks at the bar and yummy room service breakfast. Delicious lunch, oversized arched windows with gracious sheers, large portions for charcuterie plates, chandeliers and excellent dinner at Suite 701. Great sushi at Kyo. The Terrace is a lively spot at night, overlooking the Place d’Armes and the lights of Montreal. Impeccable quality.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: Guests loved their typically large and classy rooms, some with tall ceilings, arched windows, exposed brick, hardwood floors and oversized jetted tubs. The excellent spa offers a great couple’s massage. Essentiel Elements toiletries!
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: Staff were knowledgeable and friendly, helpful with dinner and spa reservations and child care. They provided personalized service making guests feel welcome, cared for and pampered. The hospitality was incredible and their kindness unforgettable.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: A perfect Old Montreal location, very close to Metro, Notre Dame Basilica, the old port, amazing restos and boutique shops, all in walking distance.
LIMITATIONS: Some guests complained of street noise from traffic and the bar across the street and occasionally a guest missed having tea and a tea kettle in the room.
IN A WORD: Modern luxury meets old world magnificence in the heart of Old Montreal.
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: Guests were blown away with the value of this hotel. It was ‘a little bit of Paris without the jet lag’ according to one guest, and definitely a place to come back to for many.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: Guests were very impressed with the food here, to say the least. Each day they woke up to a superb, complimentary 3-course breakfast which made guests feel pampered. Gourmet treats! Many, drawn again to dine at the locally popular Bonaparte Restaurant in the evening discovered delicious once again. Outstanding French cuisine at a reasonable cost. Exquisite.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: Gleaming hardwood floors, exposed brick, nicely appointed European-style rooms, with Louis Philippe-style furnishings, some with king beds, mini-fridges, double Jacuzzis and a private terrace. Gorgeous.
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: Attentive, professional staff able to make each guest feel special. A 5-star experience.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: Walking distance to Old Port, nightlife, Notre Dame Basilica. One block from the best restaurant street in Montreal. Next door to Centaur Theatre--Montreal’s English language theatre, and close to Scandinavian Spa.
LIMITATIONS: Guests said some of the rooms were on the small side and could have used more seating or storage space.
IN A WORD: Imbibe the delicious flavours of France in Old Montreal.
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: Guests love this hotel and for many it’s their go-to place in Montreal. It’s a romantic getaway, a classy place to celebrate an anniversary and it offers affordable luxury in a beautiful setting.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: Excellent. Breakfast at the restaurant was well prepared and delicious. Very nice formal dining. Eclectic menu. Gourmet food. The steak at Méchant Boeuf was out of this world. Breakfast and evening latte in Atrium were excellent with the feel of being in a plaza. Guests liked the Terrace Bar with its nice views, good food and good times.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: Jaw-dropping gorgeous. Old brick, large windows, beautifully appointed rooms with super comfy beds. Impeccably clean and delightfully cozy. The gas fireplace in the lobby is large, throws off nice heat and is surrounded by tasteful comfortable furniture.
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: The concierges were absolutely fantastic. Their kindness, thoughtfulness, creativity and generosity are one of the best memories of this wonderful hotel.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: The location is great: In the heart of Old Montreal, lots of shopping and fabulous restaurants nearby, a block from the Basilica of Notre Dame, a short walk to the Metro. Excellent.
LIMITATIONS: Light sleepers may find noise challenges from guests and music at the on-site bar or club across the street, as well as street partiers and garbage pick-up trucks.
IN A WORD: Unique upscale comfort at a great value. Worth every penny!
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: Amazing! Majoring on rustic charm, great views and an ideal location, this property and its excellent staff have what it takes to create the perfect boutique experience.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: Delicious food and excellent prices at Gaspar Tavern. Have a nightcap in the lobby bar. Enjoy the tasty omelettes, Eggs Benedict, crepes and Assiette santé--or healthy plate--for breakfast.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: Wonderfully clean and very comfortable rooms with wood beams, stone walls, exposed brickwork and big windows with Juliette balconies facing the port. Deep soaker tubs and jetted showers in some rooms. Inviting lounge area near lobby.
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: Highly amenable, gracious and capable concierge staff are able and willing to overcome all obstacles and help guests with everything…even broken car windows and broken luggage.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: Take a stroll along the river promenade, browse the shops and enjoy the great restaurants in the area.
LIMITATIONS: During the busy tourist season, some guests may hear noise from the street, or music from the rooftop terrace.
IN A WORD: View the river, take in the dinner and drink the wine from this historic property’s rooftop terrace, imagining a time gone by.
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: There’s no doubt that guests loved staying here. The hotel succeeded to provide a very satisfying and memorable stay for many guests with its beautiful exposed stone and brick feature walls and its quaint, but impeccable rooms which exude a romantic and rustic beauty.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: Le Petit Café is a comfortable lobby-turned-café offering a delicious welcome with fresh baking and premium brewed coffee, lattes and cappuccinos available 24 hours per day. A French-style continental breakfast is served free to guests at the café each morning and features authentic Montreal bagels, croissants, fresh fruit, yogurt and guests’ choice of coffee drinks.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: All rooms have windows that open to a Juliette balcony, plush king or queen beds, hardwood floors, laptop safes, multi-jet rain showers, iPod docks, free fast Wi-Fi, bathrobes and slippers and comfortable heating and cooling. Most have brick or stone feature walls. Simple. Modern. Elegant. For guests who want to stay active, the hotel offers free access to a nearby gym and free bike rentals, great for use along the waterfront biking trail.
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: Among the best. Exceptional staff made guests’ stays as enjoyable as possible. There was no end to the praise offered for these genuinely helpful and sincere individuals that were often mentioned by name in the reviews.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: Perfect for accessing the best restaurants and charming shops, in this more serene and less touristy Old Montreal location, but still close to art galleries, museums, Notre Dame Basilica, shopping, Metro and the promenade and bike trail along the waterfront.
LIMITATIONS: During the busy tourist season, rooms facing St. Paul Street may be aware of street noise, although many insisted the hotel was very quiet.
IN A WORD: This little hotel is big on modern comforts which are given in a happy marriage to a charming and historical setting.
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: A quaint setting. A great vibe. A comfortable stay. This is THE place to stay in Old Montreal if you are travelling with children or a pet and want to eat in sometimes. Many guests loved this hotel and said they’d do it again.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: The dining is good albeit with slow service, a limited menu and a pricey breakfast. The restaurant is under separate management and doesn’t treat the hotel guests with special consideration, and sometimes it can be rented out for a party, leaving guests searching for a place to eat. Otherwise the dining room is airy and pretty and offers a garden terrace in the summertime which guests can use when it is not already booked by a large group.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: Guests loved the suites. They were nicely furnished, had a warm ambiance and best of all were spacious, each with a kitchenette--stove top, mini-fridge, microwave, and Nespresso machine --great for a quick brekky in the morning. Guests also loved the large beautiful bathrooms.
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: The staff is cordial and professional and guests found the concierge a great resource for restaurant recommendations and other information. Guests say they are awesome, gracious and kind.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: Excellent. A short walk to many good restaurants in the area, boutique shops, the Notre Dame Basilica, the Old Port promenade, and the Montreal Science Centre. Near a great patisserie on Rue Royale. An easy walk to Metro.
LIMITATIONS: Rooms overlooking the street can be noisy on weekends and courtyard rooms may hear wedding music on occasion. A few guests think the rooms are getting tired.
IN A WORD: A comfy place to call home with a cobblestone street in Old Montreal.
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: This hotel was definitely a guest-pleaser, a unique and fun experience for the art-loving guest and although not dripping with luxury, guests found a clean, spacious room with a comfy bed.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: There is no restaurant on site, but guests can enjoy wine and cheese at Botero Wine Bar, along with cocktails, a friendly conversation and a beer. Guests are also treated to Starbucks coffee in the morning and fruit-infused water all day. In-room dining is also available.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: Louis-Philippe décor, great beds, high ceilings, steam showers and jetted tubs. A small fitness centre and best of all original artwork by Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and Robert Indiana, just to name a few.
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: An eager to please younger staff doing a great job of meeting needs. Valet staff stood out as extra helpful and the bartenders at the wine bar were fun to chat with in the evenings. Guests called the staff kind, discreet, available and helpful.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: Located between Old Montreal and downtown, it is simply parfait! Close to everything in Old Montreal and close to the downtown area, train and Metro stations. Take a horse-drawn carriage ride, right outside Notre Dame Basilica and see the old city. Enjoy the patio at Boris Bistro for lunch or dinner.
LIMITATIONS: Dim lighting in the rooms and bathrooms were mentioned by some reviewers as well as small bathrooms that were not always that well laid out.
IN A WORD: An artistic gem in Old Montreal.
OVERALL SATISFACTION OF THE TYPICAL GUEST STAY: Guests simply loved this hotel and considered it a destination in itself, especially in the winter when Montreal becomes quite cold. It was a place to get away for a mother-daughter time, or for a romantic weekend and always the perfect place to celebrate a special milestone. Old world luxury with museum quality appointments and art works provides a splendid setting in which to spend quality time.
THE QUALITY OF ON-SITE DINING: Occupying the grand Banker’s Hall with high ceilings and stunning décor that takes your breath away, XO Restaurant is considered by locals among the best fine dining venues in Montreal. Guests are treated to crystal chandeliers, a carefully curated wine list, comfortable sofa seats with cushions, smoothie shooters, and intimate alcove dining on the mezzanine. Scrumptious. Amazing. Memorable.
SATISFACTION WITH AMENITIES: Guests loved the sumptuous Frette linens on comfy beds, the stunning views from top floors, the jetted showers and deep soaking tubs and fast free Wi-Fi. And there was the well loved spa, brilliantly updated from the original bank vault and encased in stone walls, it offers private dressing rooms complete with steam room, sauna and shower. Guests also enjoyed quiet moments in the hotel’s library which offers historical books to read, comfortable chairs and a cozy atmosphere.
CONCIERGE EFFECTIVENESS: The staff shone. They were ‘yes’ people. We were treated like princesses! Impeccable service. Highly professional, attentive and friendly.
LOCATION’S CONVENIENCE: Right in Old Montreal near many quality restaurants, shops and galleries. Connected to the Underground City, guests loved being able to shop and reach the Metro underground on rainy or cold winter days. An easy walk to the Notre Dame Basilica, the old port promenade and city attractions. Central… and next door to Starbucks for that morning moonshine.
LIMITATIONS: Guests who were conscious of their budget, found dining on site could add significantly to the overall cost of the stay. And guests who need a morning coffee to wake up before getting dressed may miss having a coffeemaker in the room.
IN A WORD: A bank-turned-museum-and-hotel with world class dining and décor. Magnifique!