Color Montréal sample

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24 Places to Visit and Color

Jake Rose

Illustrations by Various Artists

Photo by Paolo Costa Baldi

1. Olympic Stadium/Park Designed in 1972 by Roger Taillibert, the Olympic Stadium resembled a gigantic shell, open at the center and complemented with a 175-meter-high mast. While work began at the Olympic Park in 1973 and the Stadium’s first columns emerged in 1974, labor disputes over the following years threatened to endanger the Olympic Games’ start date. Nevertheless, the opening ceremonies began without a hitch on July 17th, 1976. During the Games, Montreal’s Olympic City contained the massive Olympic Stadium and the luscious Olympic Village. After the Olympics concluded, the Régie des Installations Olympiques transformed both Olympic Stadium into the new home for the Montréal Expos baseball team and the Olympic Village into rental apartments. 1987 was a big year for the Stadium, as the 92-meter-high Montréal Tower was finally completed, the mobile Kevlar roof was hoisted and deployed, and the cable funicular and Observatory opened; the Velodrome was transformed into the Biodôme in 1992. Today, the Olympic Park site hosts the home of the CF Montréal soccer team in the Saputo Stadium and the Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium.

Photo by Diego Delso

2. ' Montreal City Hall Montréal City Hall has a more turbulent history than its peaceful façade suggests. Located in Old Montréal, this four-story Second-Empire-style architectural jewel went up between 1872 and 1878, and survived a severe fire in 1922. It was from this balcony that French President General de Gaulle uttered his famous “Vive le Québec libre!” (Long live free Québec) during a state visit in 1967. At dusk, when it is lit up, it is absolutely spectacular. Behind the City Hall, lies the Champ-de-Mars. Two lines of stone runs across the surface. This is one of the few spots in present-day Montréal where you can still see physical evidence of the fortified town of yesteryear.

Photo by Boris Kasimov

3. ' Montreal Clock Tower Built and designed between 1919 and 1922 by Paul Leclaire, the forty-five-meter-high Clock Tower marks the entrance to the port and is a memorial to sailors lost at sea in wartime. Its extremely precise clock mechanism was made in England by Gillett and Johnston, and is a replica of Big Ben in London. Like Big Ben, its accuracy is legendary, and sailors would set their own time pieces by it. The Clock Tower was the port’s timekeeper in an era when wrist watches were not yet common. With its powerful light, the tower also served as a lighthouse to guide incoming ships. The structure was originally designed to conceal the sheds that once lined the quays. Classified as a federal heritage building since 1996, the tower provides spectacular views of the St. Lawrence River and the city for those willing to climb its 192 steps to the top.

Photo by Jaime

4. Square Saint-Louis Located in the Plateau neighborhood, Square Saint-Louis will probably look familiar thanks to the many tourism posters and guidebook covers that display its image. The graystone Victorian row houses, with details in pink, purple, and other eye-popping hues, embody a certain Montréal attitude–grounded in history yet with a playful, contemporary edge. Laid out in 1876, the square has been described as one of Montréal's most beautiful due to its European elegance of tree-lined paths and fountains. Students of poetry may want to pay homage to Émile Nelligan, whose monument sits in the square’s southeast corner near the house on avenue Laval where he once lived.

The Michal and Renata Hornstein Pavilion. Photo MMFA, Annie Fafard

5. The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts Founded in 1860, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) is the oldest art museum in Canada and a leading museum in North America. Its collection showcases Quebec and Canadian heritage and international art from a critical and intercultural perspective, and comprises some 45,000 paintings, sculptures, graphic art works, photographs, multimedia installations and decorative art objects dating from antiquity to the present. The MMFA’s exhibitions span every discipline from archaeology to fine arts, to contemporary practices. Laid out over five interconnecting pavilions, the Museum complex includes over 80 exhibition galleries, the Bourgie concert hall, an auditorium and movie theatre, the Boutique and Bookstore, an in-house publishing department, a public sculpture garden and the Michel de la Chenelière International Atelier for Education and Art Therapy. A pioneering museum in the provision of art therapy, the MMFA works with the community, education, health and technology sectors to give all people exposure to art through inclusive and enriching experiences.

Photo by Thomas1313

7. St. Joseph's Oratory Founded by Saint André Bessette and Brother Abundius in 1904 as a small wayside shrine, Saint Joseph's Oratory was built by Dalbé Viau, Alphonse Venne, Dom Paul Bellot, and Lucien Parent over the course of five decades. Marked as a Minor Basilica in 1955 and completed in 1967, the Oratory is known today as the world’s largest shrine dedicated to Saint Joseph. Receiving over 2 million visitors yearly, they welcome everyone to partake in panoramic views, music concerts, and special religious celebrations. Located atop of Mount Royal in the heart of Montréal, come discover its natural, cultural, and spiritual treasures as you marvel at the Art Deco votive chapel containing 10,000 candles, the Oratory Museum featuring nativity scenes from around the world, the beautifully decorated Garden of the Way of Cross, the neoclassical Crypt Church, and North America’s largest domed Basilica.

Photo by Pymouss

10. Biosphere Mandated by the United States Information Agency in 1964, Richard Buckminster Fuller developed the geodesic dome as the structure for the United States Pavilion at Expo 67. The dynamic, free-standing structure is composed of cylindrical steel tubes sub-divided into side-by-side plastic covered triangles. This concept required a vastly smaller number of materials than conventional architectural designs of such magnitude. The Biosphere's structure reproduces over 75% of a sphere’s surface and is the largest building of its kind in the world. Fuller's work quickly became a symbol of Expo 67. After Expo 67, U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson donated the United States Pavilion to Montréal. From 1968 to 1976, the Biosphere hosted exhibits, works of art, and a movie theatre. The scientific aspect was featured with animated activities on photosynthesis, soil conservation, and pollution problems in cities. In 1995, the Biosphere became a museum that promoted the environment and its protection. The renovation was carried out with Environment Canada, which has occupied the premises ever since.

Photo by Concierge.2C

12. Habitat 67 Designed by Moshe Safdie for Expo 67, Habitat 67 is Terre des Hommes/Man and His World’s official legacy and its only intact original pavilion. Located at Cité-du-Havre, a century-old artificial peninsula expanded for Expo 67, Habitat 67 enjoys breathtaking views of the river, downtown, and the Old Port of Montreal. In creating Habitat 67, Moshe Safdie wanted to offer a fragment of paradise for everyone. Located in the Cité-du-Havre, Habitat 67 benefits from an incomparable geographical location: in front of the river, downtown, and the Old Port of Montréal. Its terraces offer an unparalleled panorama: city lights, the silhouette of the bridges, the beauty of the maples, oaks, and poplars. Add to this idyllic atmosphere the gentle sound of the river and the Habitat 67 wave, the sea air, and the sky as far as the eye can see. Located near St. Helen’s Island, Old Montréal and the Casino de Montréal, this hybrid of quiet and hectic living redefines the urban residential experience with panache.

Photo by Jiaqian AirplaneFan

15. ' Jardin Botanique de Montreal Considered to be one of the city’s jewels, Jardin botanique de Montréal is recognized as one of the world’s greatest botanical gardens. Founded by Brother Marie-Victorin and Henry Teuscher in 1931, the Jardin became world-renowned in 1980 when it hosted the Floralies Internationales de Montréal. Spread out over 75 hectares, the Jardin takes visitors on a voyage through the plant world as it invites them to explore the gardens and the exhibition greenhouses, and to discover different cultures. With its collection of 22,000 plant species, 10 exhibition greenhouses, the Arboretum, the Frédéric Back Tree Pavilion, the Courtyard of the Senses, and the impressive Rose, Japanese, Chinese, First Nations, and Tea Gardens, it’s a perfect place to enjoy fresh air and natural beauty. Located just minutes from downtown Montréal near the Biodôme and Olympic Park, the Jardin botanique de Montréal is a veritable living museum of plants from the four corners of the globe. Have a nice visit!

Photo by Eric L Tollstam

22. ' Old Montreal Home to the city's most historic and newest attractions, Old Montréal provides an unbeatable glimpse into city's many lives throughout its extensive history. While the memory of Jeanne Mance, Jacques Cartier, and de Maisonneuve can still be felt on the cobblestone streets, Old Montréal and the Old Port make up one of the city’s most constantly evolving and dynamic quarters, with attractions ranging from cathedrals and museums to an observation wheel and river cruises. Old Montréal is a district of contrasts. Alongside the Notre-Dame Basilica’s grace and the Bonsecours Market’s glistening dome awaits a wealth of cutting-edge design shops and forward-thinking restaurants. The riverside pathways that teem with joggers and cyclists throughout the day swell with strolling couples after the sun goes down. The area’s buildings transform nightly into glowing beacons with innovative lighting effects and the modern Grande Roue de Montréal Ferris wheel offers new vistas over a grand quartier nearly 400 years in the making.

Photo by joseph s l tan matt


23. Festival International de Jazz de Montreal Founded in 1979 by Alain Simard, André Ménard, Denyse McCann, and Alain de Grosbois to bring the planet’s best musicians to the public, the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal has since become known as the world’s largest jazz festival by the Guinness World Records. Synonymous with musical passion for over 40 years, the Festival has made Montréal the venue where fans of all types of jazz-related music rub shoulders with jazz aficionados in its purest form through its free outdoor shows. All on a unique site that is designed to meet festivalgoers’ every need, be a major tourist attraction for Montréal, and serve as a springboard for jazz musicians. Montréal is without a doubt the true heartbeat for Planet Jazz!

Color Montréal is filled to the brim with the city's most iconic settings, like Olympic Stadium, the Biosphere, Square Saint-Louis, and Habitat 67, among many others.

Through its 24 beautiful black-and-white line drawings and detailed descriptions, “Color Montréal” masterfully highlights what makes this saintly city so special to its residents and visitors.

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