Live it up in Grand Style

Think of Mont-Tremblant, Québec, and snow and ski slopes immediately come to mind. However this destination offers a variety of enjoyable activities and events year-round.

As bed-and-breakfast owners in Niagara-on-the-Lake, it was a rare treat to realize to have four free days to ourselves during our summer peak season. Eager to spend time with family members from Montréal, we couldn’t resist an escape to Mont-Tremblant—the perfect place for our family gathering. The challenge: find comfortable accommodation suitable for six adults and three children under the age of six.

AN IDEAL SOLUTION

Tremblant Living, which manages several vacation rental properties in the area, proved to be the answer to our conundrum.

We booked a stunning, three-level, four bedroom, 3.5-bathroom townhouse within walking distance of the pedestrian-only Tremblant Village. We couldn’t have been more delighted with our choice. We felt like royalty as we settled into our luxurious surroundings and relaxed following our long road trip from the Niagara Region. On the dining table, a chocolate welcome treat from a local village shop awaited our arrival. Nice touch!

Touring the Mont-Tremblant area. (Melissa Gayle)

Elegantly furnished throughout, the open kitchen, dining and living room concept on the main level ensured we would be able to spend ample time together. An adjoining screened-in gallery with barbecue and additional dining facilities, within earshot of a bubbling brook for added ambiance, would be the perfect venue for the family dinner we had scheduled for the following evening. The second level housed a master bedroom with ensuite facilities as well as two more bedrooms and a second washroom, while the lower level included a bedroom with ensuite washroom, a second living room and an outdoor deck complete with hot tub overlooking a private yard and ravine. And with numerous smart TVs positioned throughout the townhouse, our World Cup soccer fans wouldn’t miss a single game.

Clowning around in Mont Tremblant Village, Québec. (V&V Hospitality & Media Services)

During our stay, we toured two more properties. One was a luxurious chalet situated within an enchanted forest setting. It featured a chef’s kitchen, five bedrooms and bathrooms, an immense great room with a dramatic fireplace, a hot tub, billiards table and more. Another, a spectacular country manor near Fairmont Tremblant, boasted an indoor swimming pool and comfortable accommodation for 16 to 20 people. Both properties would be ideal venues for corporate meetings and cocktails and the gardens at either property provide perfect settings for small, intimate weddings.

DAYS OF EXPLORATION

Our rental property included unlimited access to the gondola ride for all occupants. A steep, thrilling ride to the mountaintop offered panoramic views of the lakes, villages and deep green terrain in the area.

Climbing walls in Mont Tremblant Village, Québec. (V&V Hospitality & Media Services

Back in the village, there were a variety of restaurants, intriguing shops and activities to investigate. Our nephew, Ethan, had a whale of a time climbing the rock wall while his younger brother, Zack, tried to imitate his hero’s shenanigans. Later Ethan joined his father and uncle on two separate runs down the mountain on board the Skyline Luge, a go-kart-style adventure. Beaming faces upon their return told the story!

Our activity choices were endless. Unique golfing experiences awaited duffers at Le Diable and Le Géant, two championship courses with beautiful greens and heart-stopping views. As a spa lover, I was impressed by the number of choices I had in the Tremblant area. Other diversions included mountain climbing, mountain- and road-biking, zip lining, walking and running trails, canoeing excursions, Lake Tremblant cruises, astronomy nights at the Velan observatory, a casino, a via Ferrata and Brébeuf Beach.

Racing a go-kart down the mountain at Mont Tremblant. (V&V Hospitality & Media Services)

Add to these a list of events and festivals, such as the extreme Spartan and Ironman workouts in May and August respectively, the outdoor Tremblant International Blues Festival in July, spectacular autumn colours and you have a recipe for a great year-round destination for all interests and ages.

Overcoming challenges at the Spartan Race in Mont-Tremblant. (Jason Baxter)

DINNER IS SERVED

One lovely option Tremblant Living offered at additional cost was the services of a chef to cook our meal on-site. Who could resist?

Our family dinner was prepared by Frédéric Baësa, a chef Parisien and owner of Couleurs Gourmandes, whose fine French cuisine combines rich bio and farm products from the Laurentians with the wild mushrooms he loves to forage in the area. A native of the Paris region, Chef Frédéric worked in the field of international and European cuisine for 19 years before settling in the Laurentians in 2001. Here, he discovered a wide variety of wild mushrooms, native plants and high-quality local products. With his culinary knowledge, he shared his passion for French cuisine and helped us develop a menu tailored to our individual preferences and tastes.

Wanderlust is just one of many events held in Mont Tremblant Village. (Melissa Gayle for Wanderlust)

Our evening meal began with an appetizer of trout and sauerkraut marinated in Rose Bay, topped with whitefish caviar, whipped cream and dill on a wild salad and finished with a tasty chef dressing. The entrée consisted of medallions of bison and spice-crusted mushrooms, accompanied by a wild mushroom risotto, all served with Frédéric’s mouth-watering homemade focaccia bread. The repast ended with an opera cake served with crème anglaise and Labrador tea.

All too soon our family reunion came to an end. Now we are faced with a new dilemma. How do we top this?

TRAVEL PLANNER: While we chose to drive, Porter Airlines (flyporter.com) offers air service from Toronto Island Airport to Mont-Tremblant while Air Canada (aircanada.com) provides service from various Canadian gateways to Trudeau International Airport in Montréal. Shuttle services are available from either airport to Mont Tremblant Resort as well as within the Mont-Tremblant area. For more information, visit:

Tremblant Living: TremblantLiving.ca

Tourisme Laurentides: laurentides.com/en

Tourism Mont-Tremblant: mont-tremblant.ca/en

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