I stay at the Banff Centre a few times each year on average with some of the time at BIRS, which is the Banff International Research Station (a building at the Banff Centre dedicated for supporting mathematics-related research workshops). The building is comfortable, quiet and pleasant. There is a social room with games, beer, snacks, etc and is a nice place to drop by to meet up with other residents looking for company.
The bathrooms are modern. The internet connection is good but can be quite slow especially in the evening. Instead of a television in each room, a rather antiquated SUN work station is provided. These workstations were useful a decade ago but I doubt anyone uses them now that laptops, ipads etc are so ubiquitous.
Three meals a day are included in the all-expense-paid workshops and the food is buffet-style in the nearby Borden building. The food is high quality, fresh and well presented, but for me the vegan options are not so good. Sometimes there is good vegan food and sometimes I am relying on steamed vegetables and salads only. However, the chefs will prepare a meal for me if I say I can't find anything good for vegans and they are friendly about doing so. A few years ago food was properly labelled but the labelling is less comprehensive now.
Parking on site is free and easy to find. A short walk from BIRS down the hill and into town makes the location quite convenient plus it is also easy to walk up Tunnel mountain for a view. The location is within Banff National Park, which is one of the most beautiful, scenic and adventurous places in the world.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- The Banff Centre, a globally respected institute for advanced training in the arts and leadership, located in the vibrant mountain destination of Banff, Alberta in the Canadian Rockies, offers professional conference facilities and services for groups of up to 1,000 delegates. The Centre is a renowned site for Canadian and international business, government, research, scientific, and educational meetings. The Banff Centre’s inspirational setting and creative, educational environment provide the essential framework for productive learning and engagement. ... more less