We just came back from a family trip in Quebec City and I cannot stop raving to family and friends about the place. As soon as we landed it felt as though we were in a different country all together. Perhaps somewhere in Europe. With streets and buildings over 400 years old, Quebec City is a history book just waiting to be explored by visitors. One of our favourite historic buildings was actually the hotel we stayed in. Located directly in the heart of old Quebec, the Auberge Saint Antoine is nestled between the Museum of Civilization and a smattering of art galleries and cafes.
Checking Into Auberge Saint Antoine
To be greeted with genuine smiles is everything and checking into the hotel was an absolute breeze for us. The doormen not only brought our luggage up, but showed us all the details of our suite too. From how use the coffee machine to how to operate the thermostat. By the end of our first day there, everyone knew Henry by name and we truly felt like guests.
Each room at the Auberge Saint Antoine is decorated with a different theme in mind. Some are modern and some are very traditional. We walked in our suite and were immediately enchanted by it’s classic Parisian cottage feel and the beautiful decor. I was so thankful to have a separate sitting room from the bedroom so that we could put Henry to sleep and still enjoy the night to ourselves. My husband and I have stayed in hotels where we had to put Henry to sleep in a closet or just next to our bed and then spent the rest of the night whispering in the dark. Worst.
We had a gorgeous view of the St. Lawrence river and Henry loved when the cruise ship docked in front of us.
The room was stocked with a fantastic selection of coffees and teas, which made our mornings that much more relaxing.
My favourite part about hotels are the bathrooms. Some can be terribly disappointing, yes, but when they’re great, they’re REALLY GREAT. I spent each night in the massive soaker tub and enjoyed the smell and feel of all the luxurious lotions and potions.
We felt like royalty in our bedroom. With a high four-post bed and an insanely comfortable mattress, we had rockstar sleeps every night. If you travel with little ones, you know how important it is to have a dark room for naps and at night. Our room was equipped with blackout curtains that certainly made the room dark enough for Henry to fall asleep in.
The Auberge Saint Antoine is an expert when it comes to details. Everywhere we looked, we were in awe of what we found. Here are just a few of our favourite things:
For Baby: a gorgeous (& comfortable) wooden crib, a teddy bear, a book, and a diaper bin. I have to say, having a diaper bin saved us. There’s nothing worse than having to be “creative” with smelly diapers 😉
Bathroom: a dental floss dispenser, a Japanese toilet with a full on seat heater & welcoming music (actually the best thing ever), and heated floors
Reading materials: forget the cheesy pamphlets and binders that you’d find in a typical room. The Auberge Saint Antoine hooks you up the latest fashion magazines and a large coffee table book all about the history of the building itself and all of the artifacts inside of it.
The decor at the Auberge Saint Antoine is like looking through a magazine with more authenticity, ultimate luxury and comfort.
You’re immediately drawn into the hotel by it’s gorgeous lobby with it’s unique seating and lighting, giving you just a taste for what’s behind those walls.
The reason why the decor is so inviting, stylish and so classic is because of the owner of the hotel. She herself has has a hand is designing every single element of the hotel, right down to the colourful pillows. That’s why you feel immediately welcome into every space of the room – it’s so personal and intimate.
Dining at Auberge Saint Antoine
The Auberge Saint Antoine has just recently updated both of their dining spaces just in the past month. We were lucky enough to stay there just a few weeks after they had completed their makeovers.
Breakfast was included with our stay and to be honest, I was expecting a typical continental breakfast with pastries and maybe oatmeal if we were lucky. How wrong I was. On our first morning, we waltzed in at 10am like the early birds we are (thank goodness they serve breakfast until 10:30am). You have the choice of heading to the buffet or choosing from the a-la-carte menu.
Since we have a little one who doesn’t like to wait long for his food, we hit up the buffet right away.
This isn’t your typical buffet by the way. Each day, they have a slightly different variation but here are the main dishes you’ll find:
freshly squeezed orange & grapefruit juice
bacon, sausage & ham
french toast, pancakes & crepes
chilled oats & cereal
We also ordered from the a-la-carte menu and got these amazingly healthy and tasty green smoothies. I’m such a sucker when it comes to green smoothies and glad I tried it because it was a must-have!
All the food at Chez Muffy is locally sourced from the hotel’s farm in Île d’Orléans. The quality of the food is noticeable and the farm-to-fork concept made me feel so good about Henry eating there.
With the natural light spilling in from this historic Maritime warehouse, the classic decor and the most delectable food, we were all in heaven. Each morning after finishing breakfast, I seriously couldn’t wait until the next morning when we could do it all over again!
The Artefact Bar is one of the first things you see when you enter the Auberge Saint Antoine, and for good reason! The decor is insane. Art deco, jewel toned and historical pieces come together to make for the most inviting and chic atmosphere we found anywhere in the city.
Although it’ll be a few more months until I can enjoy I cocktail, each drink looked and sounded amazing. But you definitely don’t need a drink to enjoy this space. The ambiance is spectacular and offers live jazz music every Thursday night.
When pregnancy cravings kick in, it’s usually my husband that heads out the door to get my craving-du-jour. So lucky for him (& for me) the Auberge Saint Antoine offers 24 hour room service. At 10pm, I had a hankering for a chicken salad and HAD to have it. I called down and asked for a house green salad (no dressing) with grilled chicken (no seasoning) and balsamic vinegar on the side… I know, so high maintenance 😉 20 minutes later, it arrived at our door and it was perfect. Honestly, I couldn’t stop talking about my fabulous chicken salad for the rest of our stay there!
Canot à Glace
Named after the famous boat races in Quebec, the Auberge Saint Antoine has a ice cream and dessert parlour located right next door to the hotel.
The Auberge Saint Antoine is a museum within a hotel. On every wall and next to each individual room, you will find artefacts dating back to 1608. Each item has been tastefully displayed around the hotel to preserve the history of the site 400 years ago.
A staff member will take you around the hotel and explain the significance of all the artefacts, the reason why they’re being displayed and some fun stories to go along with them.
We were completely fascinated with each artefact we saw and learned about all the different periods of Quebec City’s most significant archaeological sites. The tour took about 20 minutes and is offered completely free to guests of the hotel.
I managed to sneak in a few workouts after Henry went to sleep and loved every minute of it inside this gym! Not surprisingly, the decor was fabulous and the whole place was decked out with every piece of equipment you could possibly imagine.
Favourite places to walk to from Auberge Saint Antoine
Although I could have spent my entire vacation inside the Auberge Saint Antoine, we did venture out thanks to some helpful hints from the concierge. We didn’t need a car for the entire four days we were there because everything was within walking distance!
Here are some of our favourite walkable spots:
River Cruise port: Here’s where you can set sail across the St. Lawrence river for tours of Quebec City. We went on an afternoon sailing that took us to the Montmorency falls and learned a ton about the history of Quebec along the way. (2 minute walk)
Petit Champlain: This is an adorable little street full of one-of-a-kind boutiques and restaurants. (5 minute walk)
Upper old town: Take the funicular up to old town and arrive at the Chateau Frontenac – a definite must-see! (15 minute walk/ride)
Limoilou: This area of Quebec was so fun to walk around in. There were a ton of quirky little hipster spots that we enjoyed and a massive kid’s toy store called Benjo that Henry spent over 2 hours in. No joke. (45 minute walk)
More than a Boutique Hotel
If you’re visiting Quebec City for any length of time, the Auberge Saint Antoine is a must. It’s better than any boutique hotel we’ve stayed in and doesn’t really even fall into that category. This museo-hotel reaches an entirely different echelon with it’s level of detail and one-of-a-kind services.
We’re already planing our return visit and cannot wait to receive the royal treatment again!
Love, peace & Quebec City