Walking around Montreal will stimulate your senses. You can hear English being spoken on one corner and just across the street hear French in another conversation. It’s good motivation to pick up a second language and makes you wonder why learning a second language isn’t more prominent in the States.
Walking along Saint Laurent Blvd., I saw incredible murals, which originated from the Mural Arts Festival that happens every summer for eleven days. The festival brings artists from all over the world to create murals, experience concerts and seminars and, of course, indulge in delicious cuisine. I had to chance to talk with the founder of Mural Arts, Andre Bathalon, and he expressed his excitement about the annual festival as an outdoor gallery for people to enjoy. He mentioned people coming from all over the world to take pictures of the murals that are visible until the following year’s fest.
Montreal’s food scene has exploded, and unlike the States, you won’t find a lot of chain restaurants in the city. The residents of the city are spoiled by countless independent restaurants, creating a competition for survival. I dined at Jatoba, one of the hottest new restaurants. Jatoba is in its second year of business and is spearheaded by Chef Olivier, who brought his talents to Montreal’s business district from Quebec City, where he fell in love with Asian cuisine. Jatoba serves a fusion of Asian and South America cuisine.
Following Jatoba, I headed to Pandore to dance off my delicious dinner. Pandore is a supper club with the only rooftop lounge in Montreal. The dimly lit venue has a great ambiance, attracting patrons wearing blazers and cocktail dresses. You can come listen to live music and have dinner, or if you’re the fashionably late type, you can arrive around midnight. The DJ spins all the hits, packing the dance floor. You can dance under the stars all night or, at least, until the lights come on at 3am.