Looking for an easy weekend escape? From luxurious rural retreats in Alberta and Quebec to an urban oasis in Toronto, these three spots will take you away from your everyday.
Azuridge Estate Hotel, Priddis, Alta.
You’ll feel like you’re lord or lady of the manor when staying at Azuridge, an estate hotel set on 13 acres of rambling countryside, a mere 30 minutes outside Calgary. With a design influenced by the historic architecture of the Canadian Pacific Railway’s Rocky Mountain train stations, the property is both stately and inviting. Step into the Tiger’s Eye Den for your welcome cocktail before being ushered to your gemstone-inspired room. Each of the 13 guest rooms boasts a sunken tub and floor-to-ceiling windows that frame gorgeous views of the forested foothills. All guests receive butler service, plus a complimentary mini-bar stocked with champagne and nibbles. Don’t miss breakfast in bed—served by your butler, of course. Rates from $348. —Jody Robbins
Fairmont Le Manoir Richelieu, La Malbaie, Que.
A mere two hours from Quebec City, in the quaint region of Charlevoix, Le Manoir Richelieu sits perched on a cliff overlooking the St. Lawrence River in the village of La Malbaie—a perfect countryside escape. With 405 guest rooms and suites, and several restaurants, the resort will more than accommodate a family reunion, but it also fits the bill for a quiet couple’s retreat. In winter, you can snowshoe, dogsled, snowmobile or ski—with cross-country skiing and downhill skiing at the nearby Le Massif de Charlevoix or Mont Grand-Fonds ski resorts. Or you can stay warm and cozy indoors—the property has great heated pools as well as a spa, and is even connected by a tunnel to a casino, if you’re feeling lucky. Rates from $199. —Diana Ballon
Designed to resemble a bottle of champagne and bubbling over with works by Canadian artists, this 46-storey hotel is full of surprises. The light-filled lobby features a soaring glass entryway and fun pops of colour in the lemon and violet seating areas, and the 567 tastefully decorated guest rooms and 16 extended-stay suites offer expansive views of downtown or Lake Ontario. The hotel also boasts the award-winning SOCO Kitchen + Bar and a perfect location: the CN Tower, Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada and Rogers Centre are mere steps away. In winter, guests will enjoy the indoor walkways that connect the hotel to PATH— 30 kilometres of underground shopping and access to the subway. Rates from $139. —Debra Smith
How the Grand Railway Hotels Changed Tourism in Canada
Canada’s grand railway hotels helped pave the way for the country’s tourism industry, when they were built in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Today, see first-hand how this history has been preserved at three existing hotels: Banff Springs in Banff National Park, Château Laurier in Ottawa and Royal York in Toronto.