Montréal is always hosting a festival or an international convention, so the hotels are consistently booked. This takes visitors by surprise. Many of the quaint auberges have a small number of rooms, so they fill up fast. It's necessary to book months ahead for the Grand Prix, the Jazz Festival, the World Film Festival, and all holiday weekends.
From mid-November to early April rates often drop, and throughout the year many hotels have two-night, three-day, double-occupancy packages at substantial discounts.
When pricing accommodations, ask what's included. You can assume that all rooms have private baths, phones, and TVs unless otherwise noted. If no meals are included in the room rate, "No meals" is stated toward the end of the review. Breakfast is noted when it’s included in the rate.
Most hotels are wired, with a business center in the lobby. Smaller auberges may not have televisions and air-conditioning, but often have Wi-Fi.
Bathtubs, plush bathrobes, and fluffy white duvets are popular here for winter comfort. Bigger hotels have day spas and health clubs, as well as some of the city's finest restaurants.
Most of the chain hotels—Le Square Phillips Hotel and Suites, for example—have great pools. Avoid smaller auberges, however, because noise travels and the charming ambience doesn't go far with children. Hotels in the Old Port are popular with families because they're near the Centre des Sciences de Montréal and the Lachine Canal bike path.
Given that they are in a major city, the hotel rooms here are generous. Budget rooms and auberges are the exception, with rooms measuring less than 300 square feet. Otherwise, expect standard sizes of about 400–700 square feet.
Parking is a sore point in Old Montréal. Your car will feel like a tank on the narrow streets, and you can expect to pay heftily for valet service in this part of town. Elsewhere, there’s often parking available under the large-scale hotels. This is a blessing in winter, when you don't want to shovel snow and de-ice your car. If possible, avoid taking your car.
Aside from during the Grand Prix, the World Film Festival, and the Jazz Festival, it's possible to get a decent hotel room in high season for C$200 to C$300. Take advantage of Web-only deals and ask about promotions.