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Ottawa – A place to stay on any budget

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By Tyrone Burke


Ottawa has a wide variety of places to stay, ranging from a youth hostel that is housed in a converted jail to luxurious hotels that host visiting heads of state when they visit the Canadian capital. Of course, there is also much in between these two extremes.


The Fairmont Chateau Laurier and Lord Elgin are long-standing downtown hotels on the higher end of the price spectrum. Both of these hotels are housed in fine older buildings and have beautiful public spaces. This is particularly true of the Chateau Laurier, which has a grand lobby and ballrooms. It is Ottawa’s most famous hotel. The Chateau Laurier is next to Canadian parliament and frequently hosts political meetings in its boardrooms. The Parliament Buildings are visible from rooms on the west side of the hotel.


The Lord Elgin is just a few blocks to the south of Chateau Laurier on Elgin Street. This hotel is immediately across the street from Confederation Park, a square that frequently hosts public events such as concerts and this hotel is the ideal location to experience the Winterlude festival.


There are a number of other hotels in the downtown core, and the Arc stands out among them. This downtown option is newer and boasts Ottawa’s hippest rooms. In this boutique hotel, no two rooms are alike in design. Be sure to check out the downstairs lounge. It has a modern, urbane feel. Also worth mentioning in the downtown core is the Residence Inn by Marriott. With large suites, a complete breakfast and perfect location this is also a remarkably affordable hotel in the city centre.


Ottawa’s most unusual lodgings can be found at the Hostelling International – Ottawa Youth Hostel. Housed in a disused jail, the hostel has 110 beds for rent.


Ottawa’s suburbs also have many hotels. Many of these are chains, and are more inexpensive than downtown hotels. Chateau Cartier in Aylmer, Quebec stands out among the city’s suburban hotels. This sprawling hotel has a golf course, spa, and location near the Ottawa River and Gatineau Park.