A year has passed since the iconic Mount Royal Hotel burned down, and Banff lovers are eagerly awaiting its reopening. In December, the hotel announced that should take place around June.
Alt Hotels by Germain Group is also scheduled to open in Calgary’s East Village this year, boasting large windows and great views.
Hilton will open its first Canadian Tru by Hilton property in Alberta this year, with two more in the works in Ontario in 2019. The midscale brand is designed to appeal to travelers who seek “simplicity and value without compromising quality.” Properties have reimagined and expanded lobbies and tech-savvy amenities like mobile check-in and superfast WiFi and charging stations.
Montreal has been experiencing a luxury construction boom of late – and its hotel scene is playing a role. Perhaps the most anticipated new property in all of Canada is the Four Seasons Hotel Montreal, an 18-story, mixed-use complex on the downtown corner of Rue De La Montagne and Rue Sainte-Catherine Ouest, on the site of the former Hotel De La Montagne. Part of the hotel project will be located on top of the 220,000-square-foot Holt/Ogilvy retail complex and department store.
When completed towards the end of the year, the $250-million project will include 166 rooms, three restaurants, a 6,000-square-foot ballroom, a 2,000-square-foot terrace, a bar and a spa, plus retail shops, and 18 luxury residences priced at $3.5-$15 million. The exterior, creating a buzz in architectural circles, will feature a curtain-wall of tinted windows that are, at times, overlaid with gold-plated metal grids.
For those inclined to minimalist décor, Hotel Monville, a member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts, will bring king-size beds, high-tech touches, an outdoor terrace 60 feet in the air, and meeting space for up to 150.
The delayed – or should we say long-awaited – Hotel X Toronto, under construction at Exhibition Place on the waterfront, still takes the spotlight in the Big Smoke. Part of the boutique Library Collection – which includes several beautiful properties in Manhattan – the 406-room property will feature a rooftop pool and bar, as well as a tanning lawn overlooking beautiful views of the city skyline and Lake Ontario. The adjoining 90,000-square-foot sports center will have four indoor tennis courts, two heated outdoor pools, a golf simulator and space for hot yoga. There will also be a seasonal beer garden, a 243-seat cinema, and an art gallery. For the little ones, be they two- or four-legged, there will be a gigantic play area, dog beds and pet-friendly room service.
Marriott will be opening not one, not two, but four properties in Toronto this year. The most spectacular will be the St. Regis Toronto, opening in the fourth quarter. A renovation of the Trump Hotel and Tower, it will be Canada’s first St. Regis Hotel, offering the brand’s luxury design touches and signature butler service.
The Marriott Markham is also scheduled to open in March, in the heart of Canada’s tech hub in downtown Markham. With an eye to the local urban art scene, it will feature a contemporary art collection, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Cartier, M Club, The Greatroom, and an elevated infinity pool with floor-to-ceiling windows. The Next Gen Meeting Space will offer up 9,500 square feet of flexible space on one floor, with two outdoor terraces for entertaining. When the weather outside is frightful, guests can use an underground tunnel to access the Rolex Boutique, Cacao 70 and Caffe Demetre.
For a younger audience, the AC Montreal Centre Ville, opening in April, is designed with a European “je ne sais quoi.” Its studio-like guestrooms have open closet systems and hardwood floors; there is also a 21-meter swimming pool and a communal lounge to encourage creativity and a social buzz.
The second quarter of this year also will bring the Civic Hotel, a boutique Autograph Collection property in the heart of a new Surrey City Centre. It promises 144 guest rooms, state-of-the-art conference and meeting space, a rooftop deck, and a “curated culinary experience.”
Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants will open a four-star boutique property mid-year in the Bloor-Yorkville neighborhood. A full conversion of the current Holiday Inn Toronto Bloor Yorkville, the 13-story property will have 189 guest rooms, including 18 suites and one Presidential Suite; 2,000 square feet of meeting space; a restaurant and bar; a fitness center; and a nightly social hour.
Travelers can thank the Silver Hotel Group for turning a Comfort Inn into a $300-a-night gem. The 11-story building has been outfitted with plush leather club chairs, houndstooth throws, and Crosley turntables complete with vinyl to spin.
Real estate is tight in Vancouver, and while Marriott’s Canada President Don Cleary has said he would like to see a W, a Ritz Carlton and a St. Regis open there in 2018, few properties are actually under construction.
Vancouver's Central Business District this summer will add the 202-room, four-star boutique Exchange Hotel, which will occupy the first 11 floors of the new Exchange Tower being developed by Credit Suisse and designed by Harry Gugger Studio.
To the north, travelers can look to the sea at the boutique SeaSide Hotel, scheduled to open towards the end of the year. From Executive Hotels & Resorts, the property will be located in The Shipyard development at lower Lonsdale (Lolo), on the North Vancouver waterfront, offering 71 oceanfront rooms and suites, an ocean-facing spa suite, and a lobby bar offering panoramic views.