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Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

Ireland
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36 posts
71 reviews
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Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

We are planning to visit Montreal (and Canada) for the first time in July and have found good prices for these 2 hotels; now we need help in deciding which to choose.

The Sofitel seems nicer but would would we be constantly in the metro?....we couldn't afford taxis on a regular basis!

Our priority is a good hotel with easy access to the main tourist spots and to restaurants.

We have been studying maps of the city but it is difficult to estimate distances etc so we would be very greatful for any help.

Montreal
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for Montreal
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1. Re: Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

Well, it's about a 20 or 25 minute walk between the two hotels if that gives you any idea of distances.

The easy answer is: it doesn't matter which one you choose. Sofitel puts you right in the modern downtown, so glass towers and shopping and restaurants and cinemas and bars and clubs and so on -- but also traffic and noise and such. The Intercontinential is just at the beginning of Old Montréal, which is charming and slower paced and for those who come from cities with no old left, it's very nice; however, those who come from Europe or elsewhere with old, it's just another fairly European-looking place. However, you do have access to the river, plus there is a fair number of good restaurants and even nightlife close by.

So both are in really good neighbourhoods with most of what you'd like. It just depends: do you want modern North American feel by your hotel, or an older European flavour to wander around after dinner?

Montreal, Canada
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for Quebec, Montreal, Quebec City, Mont Tremblant, Miami, Miami Beach
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2. Re: Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

Well coming from Ireland you will probably not spend more than a day in Old Montréal so you will also end up taking the métro often. Downtown having more to offer and in a wider variety of prices that would be my pick.

Ireland
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3. Re: Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

Thanks to both Tristou and rickb for your help.

I had made a stupid assumption that the area around the Convention Centre and Old Montreal (being the original centre) was actually still the city centre, and that there was little happening around the Sofitel but now I realise that I was wrong.

When you live in a very small town (pop. 3,000) big cities can be quite overwhemling,so I think I have a lot of homework to do before travelling.

Thanks again!

Montreal, Canada
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4. Re: Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

Like tristou said, it doesn't make a huge difference between the two, but i would choose Sofitel because you would be in the heart of the action. Shops and restaurants would be steps away. The metro would be at your doorstep so you could take it anywhere.

The Intercontinental also has restaurants nearby but many are business restaurants (weekday lunch clientele, closed otherwise) or fancier evening restaurants. IC is between Old Montreal and Downtown, so it is convenient but in your case i would vote for being in the heart of either neighbourhood.

Please DO opt to use the metro instead of a taxi, it is very convenient and easy to use. The lines are color coded and maps are everywhere. All you need to figure out is the color of the station you want to go to and the direction. Then just follow the signage on the ceiling.

Ireland
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5. Re: Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

Hi Sylve648,

Thanks so much for your advice; I shall definetly go ahead with the Sofitel now that I know that it's in the centre of things.

Thanks also for help with metro; as I mentioned, using taxies is not really an option for us, so it's good to know that the metro is easy to use.

Toronto, Canada
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6. Re: Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

I stayed at the Intercontinental last time I was in Montreal, and thought it was excellent. Stayed a few years back, and it was old and tired, but it had a major refurbishment recently, and it was amazing the difference. Staff were very good too, especially the conceriges. We stayed in a club room, with access to the lounge, and enjoyed delicious nibbles in the evening, and very good quality wine (and beers and spirits too, but I am a wine drinker). I thought the location was ideal - a short walk into the historic part where there are tons of bars and restaurants in the evening, an easy walk to many of the touristy things to do (museums etc), and just across from the metro to go further afield. The only place we got a cab from / to was the airport and train station (with suitcases), and up to the top of Mont Royale.

Ireland
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7. Re: Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

Thanks for your advice Emma, it seems like both hotels are well located; I will just have to toss a coin!

8. Re: Sofitel or Intercontinental for 1st visit

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