Two tickets to nowhere.
Forget the stress of travelling. You don’t need to buy an overpriced air ticket to board a busy, congested plane all for the sake of “getting away.”
Solution? We present “the staycation.” A stay-at-home-vacation that will give you a little recharge without breaking the bank.
What does this provide? An opportunity to fall back in love with the city of Calgary. A weekend of stay-cationing is perfect, because during the workweek we are so caught up in our daily routines and responsibilities. Many of us forget to stop and really embrace where we live. You need to disconnect to reconnect.
However, if you are going to do this, we say you should go all-out. You need to make it sexy, luxurious and experience the heart of all that is Calgary. What do we suggest? A do-it-all weekend at Calgary’s own boutique hotel – Hotel Arts.
Pack your bags
This stay-cation does not include cleaning, laundry or grocery shopping. What does this mean? You get the luxury of getting to pack as many outfits as you like, for every possible occasion or activity. It’s not like you have to lug them around in an airport or shove them in a carry-on. Another bonus? You don’t have to pass through customs – so you can BYOB. Bringing a bottle of wine or case of beer from the house is an affordable option and keeps it personal, too!
Check out to check in: It’s the weekend and it’s a vacation, so check in is at 3pm. Book a half day, or skip lunch to leave a bit early. Strutting out of the office before everyone else will put you in real “vacation mode,” even if you aren’t going far. Loosen your tie, kick off your heels- the grind is over for the week – and this is about you!
Friday Night Date
It’s your first night on the staycation, so you’ll likely want to check out the digs and the surrounding areas. The restaurants within and near Hotel Arts offer a little something for everyone– but the best part? They are all party-dress and best-suit appropriate, so you’ll still get to dress up for a night on the town.
The Pre Game
Raw Bar by Duncan Ly
Raw Bar by Duncan Ly is the ideal place to get the weekend going. It’s a sexy lounge with a fantastic cocktail selection. From classic martinis to the divine peach old fashioned, there’s a wide selection. If you’re looking for a light snack, they have a Viet modern menu with some flavor packed treats to choose from. Beef short rib steamed buns, crispy sweet and sour prawns or crispy sweet potato and ginger spring rolls with a coconut soya sauce. Or, go for the classic classy of pairing bubbles and oysters. Raw Bar by Duncan Ly has a great selection of east coast and west coast oysters with pineapple, cilantro or a Thai chili mignonette. Plus, seafood is an aphrodisiac…
Just around the corner from Hotel Arts is Taste- a cozy tapas bar that features their small plates in bite form. This will be perfect for appetizers or a night of drinks and snacks. Take your time and go through the designed for sharing menu. With a rotating seasonal list you can expect some innovated treats like duck fat popcorn, elk Carpaccio or stewed calamari and a selection of handmade desserts.
Yellow Door Bistro
If you want to stay close, walk through the lobby to Yellow Door Bistro. You can’t miss it – it’s literally a yellow door. Who’s behind this yellow door? Executive Chef Duncan Ly prepares bistro-inspired dishes using classic ingredients with a contemporary twist. The décor is cool and classy- perfect for a celebration date or just because you’re on vacation.
CHARCUT Roast House
A five-minute walk from the hotel and you’ll find yourself at CHARCUT, a funky roast house with a European flare. The best part? It’s at the foot of the Calgary tower, our city skyline landmark. You’ll feel like a tourist in your own city! Experience the award-winning menu with chef-driven cuisine and local ingredients. The room is lively and energetic. Your perfect dinner destination awaits.
Gypsy Wine Bar + Bistro
Gypsy is a little bit more intimate and quiet, so you can come here if you want that tantalizing after dinner conversation. The wine list is extensive and seasonal, so you’re sure to find something here that suits whatever mood you’re in, or whatever mood you’d like to get in…
Saturday Day Date
Notice how we are saying brunch, not breakfast? Yeah, you better be sleeping in on your stay-cation!
Yellow Door Bistro
If you didn’t go for Friday dinner, brunch is a must. The bistro adapts to daylight perfectly, the windows open up to let the sun shine in and let the breakfast food roll. In addition to the inventive a-la-carte brunch menu items (banana chocolate chip pancakes are a must have…) there’s also a brunch buffet for anything your heart desires. From a build-your-own omelette bar, self-serve porridge to a selection of the classics, there’s something to comfort and satisfy everyone. Not to mention it’s only an elevator ride away from your humble abode.
Like any other vacation, you want to use up the day doing fun things in the city. This may be your hometown, but we encourage you to get around like a true tourist – no cars allowed!
Bike share program
Hotel Arts offers a bike share program for all guests – hello stylish beach cruisers! These flashy fun bikes are available on a first come-first serve basis, so if you do choose to get up early this will work in your favor. Don’t worry you can get breakfast on the go or on the way!
The Main Dish
This awesome market offers fresh food on the go and is right near the hotel in the heart of the YYC. You can come here for a classic and affordable sit-down breakfast menu, or grab something from the variety of gourmet-baked goods to take on the bike and go. Where to next?
This is the main bike-able date destination we want to suggest. First of all, it’s the perfect day-date. The zoo is always that date everyone says they want to do, but never get around to doing it. Why? Probably because it’s off the Deerfoot and always means battling traffic and parking in order to get there. When you’re in vacation mode, on cruiser bikes, you might as well add to the fun and make your day of biking worthwhile. Lock up your bikes and strut around hand in hand “awe”-ing at the animals. Cliché? Maybe. Boring? Never. Fun? Always.
Treat each other to a morning of relaxation. A few blocks away is SOMA spa- Calgary’s urban oasis. Book a couples massage or experience one of SOMA’s other signature services.
Dessert for Dinner
End your day of biking with a quick stop at Village Ice Cream. This local-run spot features the best local ingredients in their “from scratch” ice cream. It’s downtown location and busy-vibe will be a fun way to end the day. Our top pick? Well, you know those mint Girl Guide cookies? They crush them up, and put them in ice cream – “Guide’s Mint.” Ahh-may-zing.
Your day of biking in the sun will leave you a bit tired and worn out. It’s likely you’ve endured an ice cream coma by now, too. Prepare perfectly for a night in and make full use of the luxurious accommodations of the hotel. Crack open that bottle of wine, toss on the complementary housecoats and spend the night watching a movie.
It’s checkout day. Like any other vacation, this is the time to hang around the hotel and get the last of that vacation life before stepping back to reality. Check out is at 11 so you can leave your bags at the front desk or request a late check out and hit snooze for a bit.
Orange juice and champagne in one hand and a book in the other. Spend your morning sitting at the pool at Hotel Arts. It’s a fantastic way to waste a day. There’s an ultra-sexy outdoor lounge and it sets the perfect ambiance for reading, tanning and swimsuit-strutting.Do this before or after checkout as a final hurrah on a weekend of self-indulgence and ultimate luxury.
Alright ladies and gents, you better have treated yourselves to the ultimate stay-cation. You may have to go back to work on Monday, but remember, a vacation isn’t far away.
To book a stay-cation of your very own visit www.hotelarts.ca or call 403.266.4611