Welcome to Old Montreal - Vieux Montreal
Historic riverfront neighborhood with picturesque views, exclusive properties, and vibrant streets.
If you’ve been seeking a charming neighborhood to get cozy in, look no further than Old Montreal. This lively, picturesque area is a historic one, telling the story of its past with 17th-century cobblestone pedestrian streets and private drives with a diverse range of New France era structures and extraordinary towering gothic residences. After residential abandonment due to the relocation of many local businesses following The Great Depression in 1920, the architect and urban planner Daniel van Ginkel played a major role in saving the area with his vision for a revolutionary revitalization. Today, residents are drawn to the energy-filled, flower-lined squares dotted with friendly shops, cafes, and businesses that have a European feel due to the dazzling architecture. The St. Lawrence River on the southern border of the community brings a certain peace to the neighborhood, as well as recreation and beautiful vantage points from sidewalk cafes along the water. Old Montreal’s early and current culture is highlighted by museums and spaces that shine a light on legendary locations. The neighborhood has an inviting small-town atmosphere and big stories from the past to fill in the gaps.
What to Love
- Stunning architecture and history
- St. Lawrence River access
- Lively squares and shops
- Amazing views and atmosphere
People & Lifestyle
After its 20th-century restoration, Old Montreal has returned to its roots as a residential base, but in a new and exciting way. The cultural hub has attracted the nightlife and hospitality industry, resulting in stylishly-restored buildings and warehouses that now serve as numerous bars, clubs, and hotels. Residents take part in the fun and enjoy reveling in local leisure, whether it’s a stroll through a riverfront park, casually watching summertime street performers at Place Jacques-Cartier, or shopping along popular streets. The neighborhood is accessible from the Orange Line's Place-d'Armes and Champ-de-Mars metro stations, which means you can get anywhere you need to go for work or play. You can also jet off on the local ferry or take advantage of the network of bicycle paths. One of the oldest urban areas in North America, Old Montreal is perfect for those who love galavanting, seeing, and eating their way through history.
Dining, Entertainment & Shopping
There are more than a handful of wonderfully exciting eateries to discover in Old Montreal. The Italian neighborhood cafe, Marinelli Brothers, is the perfect culinary gathering spot in the heart of the area. There’s a little something for everyone, from freshly baked Italian pastries to paninis. Tommy Café is an opulent, bi-level coffee shop and bar featuring amazing Old Montreal architecture and serving up both sweets and sandwiches. For French dining and a wine bar with a side of old-timey jazz and live music, stop by Modavie when it opens back up. One of Canada's ten finest heritage buildings and a beautiful two-story domed public market, Marché Bonsecours, is a crucial pillar in the community. Fun fact: it also briefly accommodated the Parliament of United Canada for one session in 1849!
Things to Do
In addition to a bright array of restaurants and shops, Old Montreal is also home to Igloofest, an annual outdoor music festival, as well as International Fireworks Festival, a competition in which major companies representing their respective country provide the population with front row seats to the latest techniques and innovations in the field of pyrotechnics. The Jacques-Carter Bridge shuts down vehicular and cyclist traffic, and residents walk and gather to see these spectacular views from the grandstands at La Ronde and the amusement park nearby. Tour the Notre-Dame Basilica, Montreal Science Centre, the iconic Clock Tower, or Pointe-à-Callière Museum — which holds some of the city’s archeological ruins.
Old Montreal in Vieux Montreal has several highly rated schools and educational facilities of note, including St. George's School of Montreal and The Sacred Heart School of Montreal.