March 29, 2021
Category: Blog Posts
Dining Week Staycation Itineraries
This time around for Downtown Dining Week, we partnered with downtown hotels to offer Edmontonians incredible staycation packages from April 13 to 25. Make the most of your stay and explore the core.
JW Marriott Ice District Staycation Itinerary
There’s no denying that one of the biggest draws at JW Marriott is the food and drink offerings by famed Canadian restaurant group Oliver and Bonacini that operates several eateries in the hotel. After checking into your hotel room, head back down to catch Happy Hour 3 pm to 6pm at the hotel’s Lobby Bar. Enjoy oysters with all the fixings for $2 a pop and a decent glass of sangria, Braven mule or aperol spritz. We’ll cheers to the start of a great weekend.
After you’ve indulged in appies and drinks, head to Braven for the main event of the night, a three-course menu led by award-winning chef Anthony Walsh. Be sure to try out the Tuscan onion soup as a starter and end your meal with a delicious peach sorbet. These are just two of the courses that are included in JW Marriott’s Downtown Dining Week Staycation package that includes an overnight stay and a three-course meal for two starting at $239 a night.
Walk off those calories with a tour of the neighbourhood. The Neon Sign Museum at 104 Street and 104 Avenue transports you back to a time of chrome-covered cars and slicked-back hair, as the walls of the Telus building and the Mercer Building feature refurbished signs from the past. Enjoy a night stroll in the neon glow and take some time to read the historical plaques that accompany each sign.
The next day, start your morning with a relaxing massage and facial at the Spa by JW. We recommend a body scrub, facial or couple’s massage. It’s absolutely worth splashing out the extra bit of cash for. Make sure to book your appointment ahead due to limited hours.
Fairmont Hotel Macdonald Staycation Itinerary
Once, you’ve dropped off your bags, it’s time to discover the great outdoors. With more than 160 kilometres of pathways stretching from the city’s north edge to the west, the Edmonton river valley is Canada’s largest urban park. The most accessible way to get down to the valley is via the 100 Street Funicular and luckily for you, it’s located right behind the Fairmont Hotel MacDonald. Once you’ve taken the free ride to the bottom and crossed over the pedestrian-only bridge, head west on the Central Valley trails to Rossdale Plant and the iconic Waterdale Bridge. On any given day, the multi-use trails are teeming with joggers, power walkers and nature-lovers.
Next head over to the Confederation Lounge right next to the lobby and reward yourself with a drink at the Fairmont Hotel Macdonald’s revamped patio. Decked out with comfortable couches and tables, it’s an ideal spot for cocktail hour. For Downtown Dining Week, the Confederation Lounge is offering a three-course dinner for $65 that includes braised beef cheek accompanied with English peas, gnocchi, buttermilk shallots and topped with natural jus. This dinner for two is included in the hotel’s Downtown Dining Week Staycation package starting from $324 a night.
The Edmonton Downtown Farmers Market is a year-round stop for all your produce and grocery needs and has been an Edmontonian favourite for years. Now, located in the historical GWG building on 97 Street, this farmers market is buzzing on Saturdays and Sundays from 10 am to 3 pm with more than 75 vendors selling fresh seasonal fruits, veggies, meat, cheese and other provisions to stock your kitchen cupboards. Free parking is available in the Impark lots East of the building.
Union Bank Inn Staycation Itinerary
If you’re looking for locally made art and gifts, head to TIX on the Square located on the southwest corner of Churchill Square. TIX is a not-for-profit box office and gift shop owned and operated by the Edmonton Arts Council. You’ll find products that reflect Edmonton’s story and landscape with locally made photography, clothing, books, music, art, and fine craft, including jewellery and pottery. We dare you to leave there empty-handed.
Spoil yourself during Downtown Dining Week with Madison’s Grill three- or four-course dinner. Our picks are the wild spring onion and cauliflower fritters appetizer and the salmon filet with crab and artichoke for the main event.
Later that evening, walk over to the Arts District across from Churchill Square. For Downtown Spark, The Art Gallery of Alberta, Citadel Theatre and Winspear Centre are hosting three distinct family-friendly digital experiences on the facades of their buildings. These displays will feature the incredible work of local artists, showcased on large outdoor LED screens or with laser projections and accompanying sound.
The Westin Staycation Itinerary
You don’t have to venture far from The Westin to fall in love all over again with downtown. Hit up Rice Howard Way for retail therapy at The Artworks, arguably one of the best gift shops in town. If the sun is out, grab a seat on the patio at Sherlock Holmes Pub or head to Dalla Tavola Zenari for a glass of vino before dinner back at the hotel.
Pace your drinks as your Downtown Dining Week dinner at The Westin includes a glass of red or white wine. Lift your taste buds with a poached quail egg appetizer topped with ajad sauce and foraged greens. For the main dish, try the butter glazed flank steak cooked to perfection. Feeling sweet? Treat yourself to the home-style carrot cake!
Get up at the crack of dawn and go for a quick dip in the hotel’s pool. (It’s open to one family per hour and must be booked in advance.) Then head to Rice Howard Way where the the perfectly executed flat white or frothy latte awaits you at Credo and Lui-Chi’s. If you’re looking for a full breakfast, De Dutch does it right with savoury and sweet pannekoeken.
Before heading home if you’re feeling up to it, grab a scooter and head to The Quarters to check out the Downtown Edmonton Farmers Market and Winter Birds, a Downtown Spark exhibition perched atop the roof and in the courtyard of Co*LAB at 9641 102A Avenue. Lime Scooters is offering a discount to riders who visit Downtown Spark. Use code DTSPARK to receive one free unlock per person.
Courtyard by Marriott Itinerary
Though most downtown’s indoor arts and cultural institutions aren’t open right now, there are still a ton of options for arts lovers. Head to Downtown Spark activations at the Arts District. The Art Gallery of Alberta, Citadel Theatre, and Winspear Centre are hosting three distinct multi-disciplinary digital experiences until April 30. This family-friendly event will feature local artists in video micro-exhibits that will be displayed on LED screens with accompanying sound.
One of the best things about the Courtyard by Marriott is its views of the Edmonton River Valley. For dinner, reserve a table by the window or, if the evening weather is warm, head to the patio. Or try nearby - Ruth’s Chris or Madison’s Grill who are both offering Downtown Dining Week menus.
An art-worthy trek, the Alberta Craft Council on 106 Street promotes the work of artists and artisans throughout Alberta. Take home a one-of-a-kind item from the shop. After shopping, head a couple blocks west to Capital Boulevard (108 Street) to take a City of Edmonton self-guided art tour.