The bar and club scene of Montreal became renowned during the days of Prohibition in the United States when Americans thirsty for their favourite alcoholic beverages made the short trek across the border. Today, the nightlife of the city is just as booming as it was back in those days – even more so, with the numbers bars, clubs and discos in addition to other nightly entertainment venues.
The famous Cirque de Soleil is based in Montreal and at the Pavillon de la TOHO you can take in performances by acrobats from all over the world. Students of the National Circus School give an annual performance in June and there is an exhibit space featuring more than 100 artifacts from circus life. The venue itself is worth a visit just to see how recycled pieces of an amusement park were used in the construction of the building.
Interested in the opera or classical music? Well you are in luck when you visit Montreal with the performances by L’Opera de Montreal. From September to April of each year you can take in a show at Place des Arts. The L’Orchestre Symphonique de Montreal also performs at Place des Arts and offers free performances in the parks of the city during the summer months.
However, when it comes to nightlife, most people think in terms of bars and clubs. Montreal is blessed with an abundance of both, which means you can take your pick and visit a different one e very night of the year. In the downtown core of the city, the Hard Rock Cafe has a terrace with seating for 30 in addition to the inside seating. It does tend to get crowded on weekends, but the dance floor is large enough to accommodate the large crowds.
Take in some Irish music at Hurley’s Irish Pub or enjoy jazz at Maison de Jazz. Newtown is a tr-level club with specialty drinks such as the French Kiss Martini. At this venue, you can enjoy the restaurant on the second floor and the disco in the basement. During the summer months, the rooftop terrace is a great place to take in the sight of the city lights.
In Old Montreal, Les Deux Pierrots is a sports bar where you can socialize with your friends over drinks as you take in the game on the big screen TV. If you want to enjoy a fine meal and listen to jazz music, then Modavie is the place for you in this part of the city.
The be all and end all of jazz and indie music in Montreal is the Casa del Popola in the Plateau Mont-Royal section of the city. Le Dival Orange is a hopping nightclub with traditional music from North Africa as well as jazz and country music.
Take in a cabaret show at Chex Mado in Gay Village or dance to the rock music of Club Soda. If you are looking for something a little quieter in the Village, then the Gotha Salon Bar Lounge might be more to your taste with its relaxed atmosphere.
The downtown streets of Montreal are alive with activity during the evenings and nights with the many bars in this area. This is especially true on the weekends during the summer months. The bars tend to open at 11:30 a.m. and remain open until about 3 a.m. Happy hour usually lasts from 3 to 9 p.m. and there is usually beer on draft available in most locations.
The Casino de Montreal offers loads of opportunity to dance with Lady Luck in the slot machines and gaming tables. It also features four restaurants and patrons must be of legal drinking age.