Montreal is a town of different passions, food, fashion, sports and nightlife.
The best way to do it is with an insider, a friend in the know.
That is what I will try to be for you.
First thing first, you got to choose the season and the day for your night out. I would recommend summer time because it is when all the festivals (F1 racing, Jazz Fest, Just for Laughs…) are in town and people are running to these events. Winter is so rough and cold that when there is a little bit of sunshine and heat people come out and party almost every night. Best days are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays.
Montrealers are friendly people and most speak both French and English. We love tourists and foreigners but please don’t keep talking about how it is better in your city, we love ours.
Do dare to talk to people about almost anything except separation of Quebec from Canada and religion (maybe hockey if the Canadiens got beat up the night before.) Courtesy is a must and it is consider very rude not to be. Be yourself.
As you probably know Montreal is a fashion city, so don’t bring your typical button down from the plastic wrapper, slack jeans and your prom shoes. You have to make sure you dress to impress and if you forgot to pack something worthy take a stroll to:
Les Cours Mont-Royal
Here you can find all the latest local and international designers as well as spas and hairs salons to get rid of that overdue haircut.
When you set out always grab a pre-drink or as we call it an Aperitif. If you want to expand your rolodex or mingle with the business crowd go for the 5 a 7, our equivalent of happy hour from 5pm to 7 pm.
Here are a few good places to do so:
- OLD DUBLIN PUB (Great Scotch and beer selection)
- Phillips Lounge (Martinis Tapas)
- Buvette Chez Simonne
Before anything else, please make sure you tip while you are out. Service personnel are always working for tips and here in Canada, they have to pay taxes on what you should have given them. The custom is to tip 15% of the total bill, quick tip the taxes are 13.5% so average it up and you will have great service and very poor if you don’t, trust me.
While on the subject of money, you should expect to pay about 5-8$ for a pint of beer and about 8-15 for cocktails depending on your addiction to expensive liquor. Of course this depends on the places. The most expensive place to have a drink is our famous strip clubs where a single beer can fetch up to 10$ each. Cover charges are usually 5-15$ and can go up to 25-40$ for the after hour clubs (which are alcohol free btw)
Now to serious things, party central in Montreal is Crescent street, where you have more clubs and bars you can count. It is a younger crowd but you got MANY options there.
Here are a few good spots on Crescent Street:
- Stogies Cigar Lounge (Great BYO cigar lounge with a nice selection of Single Malts)
- Club Electric Avenue
If you are looking for the more upscale types of party, definitely check out St-Laurent Street at the corner of Sherbrooke Street. There you will find all the supper clubs and the very top of the socialite crowd of Montreal. Everything is more expensive there and it is where you come to have a blast and blow a pay check.
Here are a few spots on St-Laurent Street:
- Restaurant Buona Notte
- MED GRILL + BAR + ETC
- Cafeteria Resto Bar
- Restaurant Globe
When 3am rings and all the bars close, it is time for the munchies to be taken care of. One of the great places to go is Schwartz’s at the corner of St-Laurent and Pine Avenue. That is the world famous smoke meat deli. It never closes and there is always a line up but it is well worth it. It is also a great place to pick up someone for the rest of the evening.
Here is some great other bars/clubs:
- Tokyo Bar
- Club La Boom Montreal
- Time Supper Club
- Club 1234
- Bar Blizzarts
Montreal is the perfect match between Europe and America, the meeting point of both cultures. We eat late, we drink good, we smoke, we party, we dance, there is very little oppression and discrimination and people are friendly.
If you keep your mind open, follow the vibe, enjoy the music and respect the people, you will have great night with a lot of inside jokes for the years to come.
Have fun in Monreal, Canada
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