Over New Years my family and I embarked on a journey to Canada’s most breath-taking landmarks; the Rocky Mountains.
Our trip began in Calgary, and after landing three hours later than planned due to flight delays, we were happy to finally check into the Fairmont Palliser. The Palliser is conveniently located downtown, putting us in close proximity to many major sites including the Calgary Tower, the TELUS Spark, and the Scotiabank Saddledome. Greeted by the fireplace channel and chocolate truffles, the Fairmont sure knows how to welcome their guests.
The highlight of this particular Fairmont for me was the in room dining menu. After a quick morning gym session, I was able to come back to my room and order a vegan tofu scramble and fresh pressed green juice; a delicious post-workout meal in the comfort of my giant hotel room bed.
The location of the hotel was perfect; it placed us within minutes of several ma and pa diners for brunch the next day and we got back from the Saddledome after watching a Flames game in under ten minutes.
Although our stay at the Fairmont Palliser was limited to a short two nights, they were a lovely two nights, with the Fairmont continuing to exceed expectations in every area of customer service.
Next up on our itinerary we made the breath-taking drive towards Banff. After stopping to enjoy the gorgeous Vermillion lakes and stroll through the town of Banff, we headed over to Canada’s Castle in the Rockies for lunch at the Bow Valley Grill of Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel.
Greeted by the most outstanding waiter I’ve ever encountered, Barrie was able to provide us with a ton of information about the area and make us some kick ass mimosas! Our meals were exceptional, but I’m really bad at the whole taking Instagram-worthy photos off food, because I’m too eager to eat! So you’re just going to have to take my word for it.
After having the chance to explore the property, I was a little disappointed we hadn’t made arrangements to spend a few nights here. I mean check out this view!
You can bet I will be making another excuse to head out to the Fairmont Banff Springs Resort as soon as possible to indulge in the incredible hot springs and maybe even play a round on its championship golf course.
Finally, later that night we reached our final destination: the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise. Stepping into the lobby of the hotel I felt as if I was Charlie from the Santa Clause stepping into the North Pole for the first time. You could feel the magic in the air the second you stepped through the golden revolving doors. Everywhere you turned there were eager children dashing past their parents juggling hot chocolate, or families smiling together in front of the lobby Christmas tree, and couples squeezing hands tight to warm up. The cheer was spread throughout the property like a holiday virus.
Once again we were greeted by welcome treats, but what I wasn’t expecting was to be greeted by this view. Photos will never do beautiful Lake Louise justice, but waking up to this everyday certainly turned me into a morning person real quick.
The highlight of the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise was the extensive amount of carefully planned holiday activities that would put the cherry on top of any winter vacation. Whether you prefer to enjoy a magical sleigh ride around the lake or snow shoe your way across it, there is something for everyone. The hotel rents all the equipment to their guests including skates and sticks, which we took advantage of to play Canada’s game on the most scenic rink I’ve ever seen.
Afterwards guests can warm up with a drink from the ice bar, or for those with a sweet tooth, some maple syrup on a stick from the maple syrup bar.
The hotel also offered a variety of indoor family activities for those who needed a break from the cold, including storytelling and movie nights. On top of the many activities on the property, guests can also rent ski and snowboard gear to take up to the Lake Louise ski resort, or arrange a day trip out to the famous Johnston Canyon.
With all the extra holiday activities being offered the property was lively and packed with people, as most of the hotel amenities are opened to outside visitors not staying in the hotel. (Note that guests still receive priority for dining reservations and activities.) I noticed the service was a lot slower than my previous experiences with Fairmont hotels and resorts, most likely due to the high volume of people and being understaffed through the holidays.
Nonetheless, being able to ring in 2016 under a clear sky full of stars and faint Northern Light action was a truly unforgettable experience. And the complimentary hot chocolates weren’t a bad touch either. 😉
My experiences with the Fairmont Hotels and Resorts were nothing short of luxury and made my trip to beautiful Alberta even more incredible. After all, where else can I wake up every morning in the mountains?