Montreal Canada comes alive this weekend, as one of their summer’s hotbed music festivals kicks off. Starting back in 1980, Ray Charles et al were the cats meow of the day with 12,000 music lovers and fans. Montreal’s Jazz Fest now sees more than two million attendees pass through the city for the event and 2,500 musicians from over 20 countries.
Montreal’s downtown area Quartier des Spectacles will dive into its 33rd year with more than 800 concerts around the city which will range from outdoor (free) concerts to inside venues where you need a ticket to attend.
There’s a Battle of the Bands event as showings by Norah Jones, James Taylor, Liza Minnelli, Seal, CéU, Esperanza Spalding (the one who beat out Bieber at the Grammys), Chris Botti, Ziggy Marley, Janelle Monáe, Meshell Ndegeocello, Billy Bragg, and electronic sensation Tangerine Dream.
As for planning your logistics, here are Fodor’s top picks for where to eat and where to stay: (see our comments on some of these picks as a few were included in our own write-ups when we did restaurant reviews of Montreal last summer).
Eating in Montreal:
- Au Pied de Cochon where the title dish, “pig’s foot,” is stuffed with foie gras. WE AGREE and included it as our top pick last summer when I was there for Montreal Festimania. See my write-up on Montreal restaurant picks here.
- Garde Manger and Le Bremner helmed by the trendy and celebrity chef Chuck Hughes.
- L’Express for authentic bistro fare – try the steak frites andBordeaux.
- Lawrence in the Plateau Mont-Royal neighborhood for brunch.
- Barocco and Bocata on St. Paul Street for oysters and cocktails, wine and elevated tapas like beef cheek and burrata.
Sleeping in Montreal:
- Hotel Le St-James is the indulgent choice.
- Hotel Nelligan has beautiful exposed stone architecture.
- Le Petit Hotel, if you’re on more of a budget, set in the heart of Old Montreal.
Photo credit: ©FIJM/DenisAlix
Renee Blodgett is the founder of We Blog the World. The site combines the magic of an online culture and travel magazine with a global blog network and has contributors from every continent in the world. Having lived in 10 countries and explored nearly 80, she is an avid traveler, and a lover, observer and participant in cultural diversity.
She is also the CEO and founder of Magic Sauce Media, a new media services consultancy focused on viral marketing, social media, branding, events and PR. For over 20 years, she has helped companies from 12 countries get traction in the market. Known for her global and organic approach to product and corporate launches, Renee practices what she pitches and as an active user of social media, she helps clients navigate digital waters from around the world. Renee has been blogging for over 16 years and regularly writes on her personal blog Down the Avenue, Huffington Post, BlogHer, We Blog the World and other sites. She was ranked #12 Social Media Influencer by Forbes Magazine and is listed as a new media influencer and game changer on various sites and books on the new media revolution. In 2013, she was listed as the 6th most influential woman in social media by Forbes Magazine on a Top 20 List.
Her passion for art, storytelling and photography led to the launch of Magic Sauce Photography, which is a visual extension of her writing, the result of which has led to producing six photo books: Galapagos Islands, London, South Africa, Rome, Urbanization and Ecuador.
Renee is also the co-founder of Traveling Geeks, an initiative that brings entrepreneurs, thought leaders, bloggers, creators, curators and influencers to other countries to share and learn from peers, governments, corporations, and the general public in order to educate, share, evaluate, and promote innovative technologies.