JC Stays: Quebec City Marriott Downtown

Our deputy editor finds the perfect location to stay if you're exploring Quebec City


With its charming atmosphere, shops, scenery and restaurants, Quebec City is a wonderful place to wander around – with a great deal to do, but almost all walkable if you stay near Old Quebec.

But if you also want to avoid the bustle of the centre, Quebec City Marriott Downtown makes the perfect compromise: it's in the most fantastic location just a few minutes from the old part of town but outside the most crowded areas.

The hotel itself is elegant and European in feel, with attentive, friendly and helpful staff plus the usual facilities including a restaurant/bar downstairs and a fitness centre (which we didn’t use) as well. However, there is no special lounge for Marriott Gold members.

If you’re travelling with kids as we were, a large family room was perfect for us. Ours was on the second floor and had plenty of space, with two double beds and a sofa bed – excellent as it meant the children didn’t have to share – along with a spacious bathroom.

The hotel is appealingly quiet after a busy day exploring, but the only downside was the view – or lack of it. In such a beautiful place it wasn’t great to look out onto a roof!

The hotel offers breakfast although it’s worth paying extra for the cooked version, which included waffles and eggs – the standard offer isn’t quite so exciting. As the city is full of delicious places to eat, you won’t be short of choices nearby.

Once fuelled up, the hotel is set near the Palais Montcalm music house and just across the square from the St Jean Gate, one of the gates of the old city which brings you in to the main (touristy) part of town.

In 15 minutes, you can reach the lower town and harbour for a boat trip along the St Lawrence River or to visit some of the museums.

Turn the other way, and the 10-minute stroll towards the parliament building takes you through Esplanade Park and its historic battlements. Or it’s easy to find yourself in one of the newer, trendier parts of town where you can shop or eat (again!) without bumping into the hordes of tourists until you retreat once more to the hotel.

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