Ottawa castle lowers drawbridge and welcomes international travelers once again

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August 9e Canada has started allowing entry to fully vaccinated US citizens and permanent residents. September 7e foreign travelers from around the world have also been allowed entry provided they are fully vaccinated with a vaccine approved by Canada. Visitors to Canada will also need a Covid-19 molecular test prior to arrival and must download the ArriveCAN app for mandatory submission of information. If your destination is Ottawa, you can fly to Toronto and rent a car or take a train to Canada’s charming capital.

Fairmont Château Laurier once again welcomes visitors with security measures in place to protect everyone. As of September 22, you will need proof of vaccination and photo ID throughout Ontario if you want to access non-essential activities such as indoor restaurants, movie theaters, gyms , health clubs, sporting events and nightclubs. All Chateau Laurier restaurants will require it, as this also applies to visitors from other provinces and countries. So go put your papers in order and choose your most dazzling royal outfit – the majestic castle awaits you.

The Chateau Laurier is one of Canada’s most recognized monuments and an important part of history. Sir Wilfrid Laurier, Canada’s seventh prime minister, officially opened the Royal Castle in 1912. Among the first hotel rooms with interior plumbing, rooms cost two dollars a night. The castle, as it is often called, has hosted an impressive roster of artists, politicians, heads of state, royalty and former prime ministers and presidents.

The old French Renaissance building is reminiscent of days gone by when kings and queens danced and dined in this fairytale setting for over 100 years. That’s where your regal outfit comes in. After whetting your appetite with a swim in their art deco pool, head to La Terrasse for a delicious feast (vegan options are available). The sunset views are breathtaking and the cocktails and mocktails are second to none.

Other dining options include Wilfrid’s Restaurant, Zoe’s, and in-room dining for those lazy days. Afternoon tea in Zoe’s stylish living room is not to be missed, where you can enjoy delicious sandwiches, scones, wraps, pies and other elegant treats in the image of British royalty.

Save time wandering the hotel lobby and extravagant hallways to experience the old-fashioned renaissance. Historic grandeur is around every corner with sleek turn-of-the-century furnishings, gleaming marble floors, hand-painted ceilings, and gleaming chandeliers. Discover the original black and white photos of famous photographer Yousuf Karsh that line the paneled walls. He operated a photo studio on the sixth floor when he lived at the castle with his wife, Estrellita, for 18 years. Maybe you’ve seen his other collectibles in museums around the world.

The elegant suites preserve a glamorous atmosphere of yesteryear and offer views of the Parliament Buildings of Canada, the locks of the Rideau Canal or Major’s Hill Park. Wrap yourself in a comfortable white bathrobe (children’s bathrobes are also available) with a good book, then sleep like queens and kings in a luxury Sealy mattress.

Covid-19 protocols are in place and our temperature was taken before we even walked inside. Hand sanitizer stations are scattered everywhere, even in the elevator. The staff wear masks and are always friendly and helpful.

“In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have partnered with top experts to implement new safety standards and improved operational protocols and procedures that are among the strictest in the hospitality industry.“- Fairmont Château Laurier

To learn more about their security measures, click here.

Before your fairy tale ends, step out the front door towards the water for a hike along the Ottawa River Trail. Fall may have officially started, but summer weather in Ontario is here for a little longer. If you are looking for outdoor activities for the whole family in Ottawa, here are a few to get you started. The castle is a short walk from the ByWard Market, the Rideau Center Mall, grocery stores, several museums, and trendy Sparks Street – a favorite pedestrian promenade where you can rent bikes, grab a coffee, or people-watch – six feet away of course.

For more activities and travel ideas, check out Ottawa Tourism.

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