Editor’s Note: At the time of writing, the Quebec-wide confinement measures were in place at both resorts. Dining options were limited to in-room dining. We recommend visiting the resorts respective web sites to check on the current regulations. Given the popularity of the outdoor winter activities, it’s still possible to enjoy a wonderful couple’s getaway or family holiday. Enjoy!            

When you’ve walked around your neighbourhood so often that you’re on first name basis with people you’ve only waved at previously – it’s time for a little road trip to enjoy some fresh air, outdoor winter activities, luxurious accommodations and outstanding cuisine. The historic Fairmont Le Château Montebello and ideally located Fairmont Tremblant are perfect choices.

Fairmont Hotels and Resorts have successfully developed and implemented their AllSafe protocols in all hotels and resorts. In addition to social distancing, masks and frequent temperature checks, each room is left vacant for 48 hours between guests. Not even the cleaners enter the room. Last fall we stayed at two Fairmont properties in Quebec and felt completely safe and secure. For more information about the AllSafe program, please visit: www.ALLStayWell.com

For a family vacation or a couples’ getaway, the historic and unique Fairmont Le Château Montebello and the action-central location of Fairmont Tremblant are ideal locations just ninety minutes from Montreal.

Fairmont Le Château Montebello

Fairmont Le Château Montebello

The six sided fireplace dominates the lobby –
the heartbeat of this unique resort

Ranked by Travel & Leisure magazine as one of the Top 10 Resort Hotels in Canada; Le Château Montebello is famous for its outdoor winter activities that include a refrigerated outdoor skating rink, several kilometres of cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, a toboggan slope for children (and kids at heart), dog sled rides, and indoor curling. This year, two of the four curling sheets have been converted for indoor skating. In addition to the two cross county trails around the hotel property, guests are able to use longer trails available on the resort’s golf course. We walked the first nine holes last fall and it was easy to imagine how lovely it would be for skiing in the winter.

The resort’s huge indoor pool is open all year – and it’s great way to relax those muscles after a day of cross-country. In the same complex, guests can compete on the squash court or the indoor tennis courts. Le Spa has its own building, and offers a wide range of treatments, including a salon for couples, complete with cozy fireplace.

Fairmont Le Château Montebello

Le Château Montebello have a choice of renovated (above) or classic rooms

Even with reduced capacity and health practices, the outstanding summer of 2020 enabled the Food & Beverage Department to experiment with new procedures and menu items that have been carried forward. “We’ve had to adapt to a 60% maximum occupancy, and that has given us opportunities to try some new things;”said F&B Director Mathieu Deschenes in a recent conversation. “We have single use sheets of paper that have a QR code so that guests can download a menu onto their iPhones. They can order food and beverages from their lobby location and within a few minutes a server brings their order.”

Another pop-up innovation was the 5 â 7 shrimp and oyster champagne bar that is now offered in the lobby bar on Friday and Saturday evenings. Noted F&B manager Mathieu; “During the summer we tried a pop-up shrimp & oyster bar and guests loved it. We also offer a special on champagne and sparkling wine, and that too has been really popular. We’re very proud of our wine cellar, of which more than 50% of our inventory consists of private imports.”

Fairmont Le Château Montebello

Le Spa at Montebello can accommodate couples

“During the summer we noticed a lot of younger guests, people in their late 30s and 40s, in couples and families. Their comments and feedback were superb”; noted Public Relations Executive Jennifer Wilson. “Everyone was having fun, and we have a family carnival atmosphere here at Château Montebello all year long. With a focus on outdoor activities in all seasons, social distancing has been easy. ”

Constructed in just a few months by a work force of 3,000 men, Fairmont Le Château Montebello is celebrating its 90th Anniversary until July 1 of this year. There is excellent 90th Anniversary Package at $90 per person, based on double occupancy with breakfast included. The package is available Sundays through Thursdays until June 30th, and it is an excellent value.

Fairmont Tremblant

Fairmont Tremblant

Fairmont Tremblant is conveniently nestled at the base of the mountain

With its European-style village at the foot of Mont Tremblant, this destination is the most popular downhill ski destination in Eastern Canada. Located at the base of this majestic mountain, Fairmont Tremblant offers skiers and non-skiers alike an excellent location. We’ve visited with children and as a couple, and we’ve always enjoyed the convivial atmosphere, first class accommodations and cuisine. Fairmont Tremblant consistently earns 4 and 5 star ratings on Trip Advisor, and Oprah Magazine ranked the surrounding village as; “One of the Top 28 Most Magical Christmas Towns and Villages in the world.” And it’s all happening right next to Fairmont Tremblant.

Fairmont Tremblant

Oprah Magazine if full of praise for the
Mont Tremblant Village

For skiers, it just doesn’t get any better than Fairmont Trenblant. Pick up your skis and boots from the locker area adjacent to the slopes, walk out the door and you’re ready to go. The mountain operators are following the reduced lift capacity protocols. Normally guests can purchase lift tickets at the hotel, but with reduced mountain capacity this year; all tickets must be purchased at www.tremblant.ca

The Bonfire & Igloo Experience has already been a success with couples and families. Adirondack chairs (with heavy blankets) are arranged around an outdoor fire pit. Children can play in the igloo, and everyone can enjoy hot chocolate and s’mores. This duration of this memorable family experience is 90 minutes and the rate is $100. Ice skates are available on a complimentary basis for the outdoor rink adjacent to the St. Bernard Chalet.

Fairmont Tremblant

Mont Tremblant is the most popular ski destination in Eastern Canada

The resort has both indoor and an outdoor all-season pool with a heated deck. Nothing like swimming while skiers slide by! (During the current health restrictions, the indoor pool is closed and reservations are required for the outdoor pool.)

Winner of the Open Table Diners’ Choice Award, the Choux Gras Brasserie Culinaire has been a guest favourite since it opened. The L’Axe lobby restaurant offers casual dining, and take-out service is available from Le Ricochet from 7am until 2pm. In-room dining is offered to all guests from 7am to 10pm. Given the fluctuating health restrictions, my suggestion is to visit the resort’s web site and check the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page for the status on restaurants.

Fairmont Tremblant

Fairmont Tremblant is offering a “Just Like Home”
family condo package

Fairmont Tremblant has some excellent packages for couples and families alike. The “Stay Close” is in place until June 30th, 2021. Guests who purchase one night get a second night for free, provided it’s during the same stay. Buy two nights and get another two complimentary nights. Bookings must be made by March 15. We took advantage of this program last fall and it’s a great value. (Some blackout dates apply.)

For families, the “Just Like Home” condo vacation offer is a 30% discount for a studio, junior suite, one-bedroom or two bedroom suites, based on two adults and two children. The condo suites have fully equipped kitchens and rates start at $489 per night for a three night minimum reservation. This is a very competitive rate when compared to an all-inclusive package, and it includes a $100 credit for any hotel service, complimentary resort services and parking for one car during your stay.

“Fairmont Loves February” offers a 30% discount off the best available rate for any accommodation until February 28. Moment Spa is participating with second free massage session.

Fairmont Le Château Montebello: For information and reservations: www.fairmont.com/montebello. Toll free: 1-800-441-1414 or directly with the resort: 1-819-423-6341.

Fairmont Tremblant: For information and reservations: www.fairmont.com/tremblant or by phone directly to the resort: 1-819-681-7000