Put it on the travel list: Hotel William Gray in Montreal

Although we are still fighting off this horrendous global pandemic and stuck in lockdown…. It doesn’t mean that we can’t dream about traveling again once it’s all over. We all know that we will all be a part of rebuilding our economy when we are again allowed to so.  

So, in case you haven’t heard, Hotel William Gray is the boutique hotel to stay at in Old Montreal. Perfectly balancing contemporary design with historic, 18th century architecture, there is simply  nowhere better to spend your days when visiting Canada’s second largest city. Keep reading to  discover more about the hottest hotel in Montreal right now. 

Historic Meets Modern Accommodations

The team behind Hotel William Gray is expert at pairing modern details with historic features.  Case in point: Maison William Gray, which is the section of the hotel located in a restored 18th  century mansion. There are a select number of king-bed rooms and suites in the Maison William  Gray portion of the hotel, each of which features stone walls, cathedral ceilings, and all-white  furnishings, as well as contemporary artwork and marble bathrooms. In essence, Maison  William Gray offers the best of both worlds. However, if it’s a totally modern experience you’re  after, then perhaps one of the Deluxe or Alcove rooms (pictured above) is for you. These rooms  are situated in the newly built portion of Hotel William Gray and offer sweeping views of the Old  Port, writing desks, rainfall showers, more contemporary artwork, and bold, colourful accents,  such as canary yellow wingback armchairs.

The Scandinavian Spa Experience

A quick stroll through Old Montreal, the historic neighbourhood the William Gray calls home,  and it would be hard to believe that there could be a 5,500 square foot spa—complete with an  outdoor pool—hiding within the hotel grounds. And yet…there is! Spa William Gray is hands  down one of the best perks of this hotel. The spa is a peaceful respite from the bustling city,  offering its visitors warm quartz massage beds, a Spa Wave sound therapy system, a  Scandinavian-inspired hot-cold thermal water circuit, a Himalayan salt room, a Finnish sauna,  experiential showers, and a seasonal outdoor pool. The best part of all this? Hotel guests  receive preferential rates for the Scandinavian water circuit and outdoor pool. 

Food & Drinks: From Authentic Italian Coffee to the Best Rooftop Terrasse in Old Port

Considering this is a boutique hotel, smaller than many of the larger chain hotels in the area,  you will be amazed by all of Hotel William Gray’s incredible food and drink options. We’ll break it  down by the recommended order in which you could visit each of them.  

First up: Olimpico. Cafe Olimpico is a Montreal institution. The original location is up in the Mile  End neighbourhood, but when owners heard that Hotel William Gray was opening, they  partnered with the Hotel to open the city’s second location right inside the William Gray  premises. Authentic Italian coffee, from espressos to cortados, is what you’ll find here, not to  mention to-die-for Italian pastries like Nutella bomboloni and almond cornettos.  

After spending your morning at Olimpico, next up is lunch, and Perché is the place to go.  Perché is William Gray’s terrace lounge serving up healthy, California-inspired fare—think poke  bowls, fish tacos, and all the sangria your heart desires. 

In the evening, be sure to make a reservation in advance for the hotel’s signature restaurant,  Maggie Oakes. Maggie Oakes has quickly risen to become one of the best eateries in the city,  serving dishes made from honest, seasonal ingredients on the daily. Offerings range from  house-cured charcuterie to the Wagyu burger with foie gras. Post-dinner, you’ll want to make  your way up to the 8th floor, where you’ll find the trendiest rooftop patio in Old Montreal,  Terrasse William Gray (pictured above). Small bites and an extensive cocktail list are what you’ll  find here, but the real draw is the view. From the Saint Lawrence River to the Montreal  Observation Wheel, you can see it all from this stellar vantage point. 

Photo credit: WILLIAM GREY HOTEL 

Emily Southey
Emily Southey is a freelance writer from Vancouver. Currently based in Toronto, it was during her time studying History and English at McGill and University College London that she became interested in writing. When she's not working, you can typically find her in a museum, baking cupcakes, watching Disney musicals, or Instagramming her new favourite coffee spot.