This summer, downtown Montréal is the place to be!

June 8, 2023 6mn
This summer, nearly thirty festivals and major events will take place in the Montréal Centre-Ville, as well as a hundred or so free activities and an unparalleled shopping and dining experience with more than 300 terraces and patios

With spring already here and summer just around the corner, the heart of the city of Montréal is preparing to welcome 9.5 million tourists and the downtown area is getting busier. A beautiful and lively Place Phillips, the revitalization of the Shoni district, green and colourful urban furniture, a network of accessible restrooms and activity brigades 7 days a week: these are some of the key features that the SDC Montréal Centre-ville will offer during the sunny season to meet the needs of local and international visitors, as well as the tens of thousands of downtown residents.

“Green light for an exceptional summer in downtown Montréal, one of the most dynamic and popular in North America! Nearly thirty festivals and major events will take place in the downtown area, as well as a hundred or so free activities and an unparalleled shopping and dining experience with more than 300 terraces and patios. The SDC’s efforts are focused on welcoming the millions of visitors expected in the coming months, as well as the growing number of residents who live in the city center. This summer, downtown is definitely where it’s at,” says Glenn Castanheira, executive director of the SDC Montréal centre-ville.

Phillips Square: check it out this summer

Montréal Centre-ville is gearing up for an exciting summer, with no less than thirty major festivals and events that make Montréal’s reputation – from the Grand Prix to the Festival international de Jazz de Montréal, Francos de Montréal, Mural, Just for Laughs and C2 Montréal.

In addition to these must-see events, there are several new summer activities. Phillips Square promises to be the new green place to bask in the sun right off Sainte-Catherine Street. Some forty bistro-style tables and chairs will be available for workers, residents and families to picnic, rest or simply hang out. Beginning in July, free musical performances will be held sporadically at lunchtime to enliven the space.

A few steps away from Phillips Square and the Sainte-Catherine West pedestrian zone, 696 Sainte-Catherine West is being transformed into the OXY open-air art gallery. Currently under development, this unique space will present a light-filled exhibition in the heart of Canada’s largest shopping district. Also keep an eye out for the Murelles project, produced in collaboration with Tourisme Montréal, which will be back downtown this summer with the addition of three new alleys that will be transformed into convivial public spaces that combine public art with vegetation.

P’tit Coin: a network of 10 accessible restrooms in the downtown area

To make life easier for all downtown visitors, especially families, the P’tit Coin network offers clean, accessible and free public restrooms between Atwater and Saint-Urbain. After a successful pilot project in 2022, the network is expanding this summer to include 10 members of SDC Montréal centre-ville: Delta Hotels by Marriott Montréal, Centre Sheraton Montréal, Complexe Desjardins, Montréal Eaton Centre, Place Montréal Trust, Hudson’s Bay of Montréal, Carrefour Industrielle Alliance, Maison Alcan, Centre St-Jax and Faubourg Ste-Catherine.

An ever cleaner and greener downtown

As summer approaches, more than 1,000 flower boxes and 68 green boxes, including 20 new potted trees, are being installed by the Montréal Downtown Cleaning Brigade to add greenery and beauty to newly restored Sainte-Catherine Street from Sherbrooke Street to René-Lévesque Boulevard until September. At the end of the season, the trees will be taken to a nursery and planted.

For everyone’s convenience, the Montréal Downtown Cleaning Brigade and Ambassadors are doubling down on their efforts for the summer season, working seven days a week to clean and maintain downtown streets. Last month, they cleared over 175,000 liters of trash from the streets. Their work is also an asset in making the experience more pleasant and safe for both visitors and local businesses.

Shoni : Tastiness everywhere

A bustling festive and gourmet district, very popular among students and residents, Shaughnessy Village, also known as Shoni, lacks neither character nor food choices. From Guy Street in the east to Atwater Street in the west, behind every second door is a feast for the taste buds. Korean barbecues, Japanese izakayas, Thai grills and Chinese restaurants abound to offer varied and sometimes unusual experiences in one of the densest neighborhoods in the country.

This summer, every effort is being made to raise awareness of the charm and diversity of this well-kept secret in the heart of the city. Colourful, leafy patios, rest areas, contests, and greenery everywhere… Although less than 1 square km large, Shoni offers many treasures that await discovery.

300 patios and more
Downtown Montréal is known for the diversity of its commercial and culinary offerings, and this is even more true during the summer season, when you can enjoy a happy hour or a business lunch at over 300 patios. Some of these offer breathtaking views of the city.