It’s hot in Montreal and it’s only going to get hotter. And in a world where Murphy’s law runs true, this is the day my air conditioner died.
While summer months usually beg to be spent outside, there are some days where the cool breeze of air conditioning is the only possible solution.
So get your shoes on and get out the door while we take you through the best way to eat, drink and play an entire day away in Montreal. All while indoors and in the sweet, sweet air conditioning.
10 am: Brunch at Cartet
Where: 106 McGill St
What: Located in Montreal’s Old Port, this French bistro is where you need to start your day. Their portions are huge, their coffees are fantastic and their communal tables make for a cozy and sometimes lively experience. There are healthy options, there are gluten-free options and there are covered-in-delicious-fat-and-cheese-options. Warning, if you go on the weekend you will wait in line. But it is worth every minute.
12 pm: Culture at Phi Centre
Where: 407 Saint-Pierre Street
What: You’re fed. You’re caffeinated. You’re ready to take on the world (if it includes air conditioning). It’s the perfect time for a little culture. Only a five minute walk away from Cartet is the Phi Centre, a Montreal staple for art and technology. Check out Jim Carrey’s political cartoons in his world premiere of This Light Never Goes Out. More of a Black Mirror fan? Then you have to check out >HUM(AI)N. This exhibit focuses on some of the most mind-blowing virtual reality and AI technology.
1:30 pm: Midday drinks at Pub Saint-Pierre
Where: 410 Rue Saint-Pierre
What: You’ve worked hard. It has to be a time for a break. And how else could you wax philosophical about the art you just saw than with a drink in your hand? They make awesome cocktails like their Caesar or try their Ocho old fashioned that comes with chocolate dipped bacon. Need I say more?
3 pm: Musée Grévin Montreal
Where: 705 Saint-Catherine St W
What: Speaking of wax, we're leaving the Old Port and heading downtown to Montreal’s wax museum. It’s a little creepy. That’s to be expected in any wax museum. But you’ll have the warm buzz of your midafternoon drink to take the edge off. It’s a pretty wild experience with extravagant scenes and eerily life-like celebrities. Now’s your chance to get a pic with Justin Trudeau for the true Canadian experience! Duck into the underground RESO below to avoid walking along the sweaty streets...
5 pm: Walk the Underground
Where: Check out this map
What: If you've just left the museum, you have easy access to Montreal's Underground city which links two metro stations and has over 1600 stores and restaurants. Now's the time for a little window shopping and enjoying the lack of blistering heat. You can easily kill a few hours here.
6:30 pm: Game Time at the Forum Games Centre
Where: 2313 Saint-Catherine St
What: Since you're walking the underground, grab one of the metros to Atwater station, just a few short stops away. It doesn't matter if you are a bowler, pool player, basketball thrower, or arcade lover. This place has it all. Two floors of every game you can think of.
8 pm: Dinner at Le Fantôme
Where: 1832 Rue William
What: It's time to fill up again. It's about an 8-minute taxi ride into Griffintown - home to some of the most cutting-edge restaurants in Montreal. La Fantôme is a mouth-watering, hedonistic pleasure. The menu is constantly changing as they source fresh local ingredients. But whatever you order will leave you in heaven.
10 pm: Time to Head Home
Where: Home Sweet Home.
What: Don’t you have work tomorrow? Then call it a day and head home. Unless you don't have to. Then just keep reading...
10 pm: Nightcap at Bar Le Mal Nécessaire
Where: 1106B St Laurent Blvd
What: We're going to skip the clubs tonight. Working up a sweat dancing is the opposite of what we want to do. We're heading to a hidden basement bar in Chinatown to wind down the night. Yeah, this place is a Necessary Evil. Think 70s tiki village with large doses of alcohol.
That's it. You've made it through a full day inside. Your pockets may be a bit light, but your body is thanking you for the air-conditioning.