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“Great Canadian Art Collection”

Canadian Club Brand Center
Ranked #4 of 92 things to do in Windsor
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Learn about the birth of Canadian Club whisky and the history of Hiram Walker. You will experience a guided tour through the original 1894 office building, a replica of a 16th Century Italian Renaissance Palace, highlighting the periods of the Prohibition Era. We’ll visit the Speakeasy and see where the gangster meetings took place, the boardroom that now features group of seven paintings, and the sampling room that outlines our key markets. The tour also includes a formal whisky tasting.
Reviewed April 5, 2012

I have been on two tours in the last year and a half. The architecture, the riverfront gardens and the art collection alone are worth the the five dollar admission.

For me the highlights of the art collection which is on the second floor are the Group of Seven paintings. The Tom Thompson painting is my favourite. Although few in numbers, the paintings are impressive and of great quality. I believe there are more Group of Seven paintings here than at the Windsor Art Gallery.

The offices have the original furniture which in itself is worth seeing.

The gift shop offers quality items at reasonable cost. There were deep discounted items on sale both times I was there. Note that this is a great place to purchase items that representative of the City of Windsor.

As noted in many of the reviews, the basement room in which Al Capone did his business is also very interesting. I understand that it is available to be rented which would be great for a evening of cards with up to eight or ten friends or for a small meeting.

One of the visits was on my sons birthday. His girl friend organized the tour and tasting which was a nice way to spend a few hours with their friends followed by a lunch at a local restaurant. Please note that there are discounts with groups.

I am not sure but I think they are no longer providing a free glass.

This tour is a gem which very few locals are aware of. It would be of interest to those who like architecture, history, art, riverfront gardens and of course tasting various aged Candian Club Whiskey. Of course minors and non drinkers are welcome and would enjoy the tour.

For out of town visitors, the Center is located on the Detroit River approximately two and a half miles east of downtown core. Note that East is away from the bridge to Detroit. There is free parking and there are city buses that will drop you off near the complex. Ask the driver to let you off at the Train Station which is a minute walk away.

As a local resident, this my favourite hidden gem in Windsor Ontario.

4  Thank cdngb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"al capone"
in 31 reviews
"beautiful building"
in 19 reviews
"great tour"
in 23 reviews
"hiram walker"
in 42 reviews
"whiskey tasting at the end"
in 6 reviews
"visit windsor"
in 6 reviews
"interesting history"
in 4 reviews
"history lesson"
in 4 reviews
"detroit river"
in 7 reviews
"prohibition"
in 52 reviews
"architecture"
in 19 reviews
"tours"
in 22 reviews
"samples"
in 15 reviews
"stories"
in 14 reviews
"growth"
in 3 reviews
"company"
in 10 reviews
"heritage"
in 5 reviews
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243 - 247 of 260 reviews

Reviewed April 4, 2012

I have driven by this building countless times over the years and never thought to give it a visit until recently. This is something for the people of Windsor and Essex County to be proud of and it deserves more attention. A beautiful building inside and out. An interesting and inspiring tour that takes you back in time, highlighting a rich and under-appreciated local history that has helped shape Windsor into the uniquely Canadian community it is today. If you like whiskey, you'll enjoy the sampling at the conclusion of the tour. Gift shop also has some cool merchandise. While I may be biased because I am from the area, I went with some non-locals that enjoyed the tour as well. If you're from out of town and visiting the downtown area, you are a short drive (or walk, if it's a nice day!) away. Being a local, I was impressed by the number of out-of-towners in our tour. Maybe the word is spreading and this is no longer a 'diamond in the rough'?

1  Thank Chris B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 22, 2012

Great historical building, woodwork, stonework and craftsmanship beautiful. Tour is very informative.

1  Thank coldincanadaOntario
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 13, 2012

Beautiful historical building on the waterfront, well preserved with original furniture from the prohibition era in the US. Speak easy where Al Capone made deals for rum running. Art work from the Group of Seven. Samplings of Canadian club a must do.

2  Thank Pamela H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed January 5, 2012

For a modest fee, about $5, you get to tour the premises and hear some interesting stories. The tour winds up with a tasting of four types of Whiskey at the end an a shot glass for a souvenir. My wife and I were the only ones on our tour, so I do not know how it would be with a bunch of people. Ask about the gunshot in the basement room if your guide fails to mention it. Al Capone allegedly put a slug into the wall.

Whatever you do, go!

4  Thank aperris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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