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MONTRÉAL French Flair & Architectural Innovation

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Departure Dates

  • Jun 24, 2018 - Jun 28, 2018


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MONTRÉAL French Flair & Architectural Innovation

Explore Montréal, one of Canada’s most exciting cosmopolitan destinations, and encounter the city’s priceless architectural heritage, rich history, and a special “joie de vivre” that has characterized this region for centuries. Visit the interior of several historic private homes, tour neighborhoods that have been restored and revitalized in recent years, and get a taste of some of the city’s finest restaurants and Francophone culture.

Study Leader

ROLF ACHILLES is an independent art historian, writer, and lecturer specializing in stained glass and architecture. He is currently the curator of the Smith Museum of Stained Glass Windows and an adjunct faculty member in Historic Preservation at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

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Hotel Accommodations: Four nights at Montreal’s recently renovated Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth

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Montréal’s Old Town

Take independent flights to Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (YUL) and transfer independently to the Fairmont The Queen Elizabeth hotel, centrally located in the city’s historic district. This afternoon embark on a walking tour to discover the essential historic sites of Montréal’s Old Town. Start at Place d’Armes and gain private access into the Séminaire de Saint-Sulpice, the city’s oldest building, erected by Sulpician priests in 1675. Visit the magnificent Gothic Revival Notre-Dame Basilica of Montréal, with its intricate wood carving and 32 exquisite bronze panels by Quebec sculptor Charles Daudelin in the Sacred Heart chapel’s soaring altarpiece. The tour will also pass by the Old Courthouse, City Hall, Château Ramezay, Bonsecours Market, and Place Jacques-Cartier with its charming cobblestone streets. Gather this evening with your fellow travelers for a traditional French-Canadian dinner. (D)

Mont Royal Park & the Plateau

Take a morning scenic drive up to Mont Royal Park, created in 1876 by American landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, who also designed New York City’s Central Park. Enjoy beautiful views of the city while standing next to the awe-inspiring basilica of Saint Joseph’s Oratory at the park’s summit. Dedicate the remainder of the morning to exploring the cosmopolitan and eclectic Plateau neighborhood with its unique range of architectural styles, from working-class homes to noteworthy institutions and extraordinary contemporary residential designs. Take a guided stroll through two former villages and uncover the history and architecture of this emblematic neighborhood. After lunch at a cozy French bistro, the remainder of the day is at leisure for independent exploration. (B, L)

Latin Quarter

Start with a private visit at Avmor Group’s original headquarters on Sainte-Hélène Street in Old Montréal. Here, a staff member will share founder Avrum Morrow’s love for Montréal and its art and architecture, including his special collection of commissioned paintings, sculptures, photographs, and drawings by various artists, depicting the inspiring façade of the historic building. The growing collection includes more than 300 artworks 40 years. Next, embark on an architectural tour of Montréal’s Latin Quarter, a vibrant neighborhood undergoing revitalization and transformation. Observe the architectural diversity of this neighborhood, from the Beaux-Arts Gilles-Hocquart Building (1908–1911) and former location of the École des Hautes Etudes Commerciales (HEC) to the Châteauesque Viger Hotel and railway station (1898), an emblematic monument in full transformation, and the Judith- Jasmin Pavilion (1976–1979), a development known for integrating the former Saint- Jacques Church’s bell tower into a modern building. Enjoy a gourmet lunch at Montréal’s preeminent cooking school, the Institut de Tourisme et d’Hôtellerie du Québec (ITHQ). Return to the hotel and enjoy the remainder of the afternoon at leisure for independent exploration. (B, L)

The Golden Square Mile

Discover the Canadian Centre for Architecture (CCA), an international research center and museum founded in 1979 by local architect Phyllis Lambert and designed by Peter Rose. Tour the CCA including a walk through the Shaughnessy House mansion (1874) and the CCA Sculpture Garden by Melvin Charney. Enjoy a private gourmet lunch at the Museum of Fine Arts, whose original building was designed by the Maxwell brothers. This afternoon discover the history of Montréal’s golden age of 19th-century manors and villas on a guided walking tour of the Golden Square Mile district. See how the wealth of Scottish shipping, rail, timber, and banking magnates affected the neighborhood’s rich architectural heritage, and gain special access into one of the district’s historic homes for a tour of its lavish interiors. In the evening gather for a celebratory farewell dinner at a lovely restaurant within walking distance of our hotel. (B, L, D)


After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer independently to Montréal- Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (YUL) for independent flights returning to the United States. (B)

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