Sometimes the best way to relax, recharge and be re-inspired is to grab a few of your best gals for a weekend getaway.
Being in Canada, you really have the world at your fingertips, but it can be a challenge to find a spot that is easily accessible and explorable within one weekend.
Luckily, Calgary is a big and exciting city, but its core lends itself perfectly to walking, biking, and exploring in a fun-filled couple of days. It’s home to a variety of historical neighborhoods, the Rocky Mountains and prairies, and is a melting pot of cultures, making it an exceptional destination for a weekend adventure.
Here’s a planner to help you choose the best spots in downtown Calgary for a trip with the ladies!
PICK THE PERFECT HOTEL
Wherever you end up during your weekend away, you want somewhere perfect to call home base. Calgary’s downtown core is home to incredible hotels that host attractions like live jazz performances and swanky cocktail bars. Many offer packages with deals and discounts for the city’s best attractions, too, so be sure to check out all hotel options to find your perfect spot.
BEGIN WITH BRUNCH
Calgary takes its brunch very seriously; it is the most important meal of the day after all. Get an early start to the day with the girls at Monki Bistro, a popular local hot spot. Their menu is filled with all of your brunch favourites, with a twist. Alforno Bakery and Café is located right by the river in the heart of Eau Claire, and its charming aesthetic will have you snapping photos of every moment and dish. Another option is Buttermilk Fine Waffles, where you’ll find an extensive list of sweet and savory waffles to choose from that are almost too pretty to eat, or the laid-back but elegant Blue Star Diner.
SHOP ‘TIL YOU DROP
A girl’s weekend is never complete without a bit of retail therapy. New to the downtown CORE Shopping Centre is Simons, a Quebec-based department store that fills five levels of the historic Lancaster Building on Stephen Avenue. If you’re looking to do boutique shopping and keep your purchases local, check out 17th Avenue, 4th Street/Mission, historic Inglewood or Bridgeland. These unique neighborhoods are home to shops such as The Cinder & Sage Loft, The Livery Shop, Adorn Boutique and so many more local treasures.
ENJOY A CULINARY EXPERIENCE
Calgary is known for its diverse culinary landscape, so heading to at least one of these dining spots is a must for a true Calgary experience. If your crew is craving Mexican, head to Native Tongues Taqueria. In the midst of their rustic décor, you can feast on the very best street and market foods of Mexico. At Calcutta Cricket Club, be transported to a so-cal club from the 60’s and share plates inspired by the West Bengal state in India. If you’re looking for dinner with a view, head to CHARBAR in the historic Simmons Building in East Village. Here you can dine on their rooftop patio and get a panoramic view of the deep blue waters of the Bow River.
FIND SOME RNR
It’s important not to spend your entire weekend on the go. Be sure to stop, relax, and enjoy some downtime with your girlfriends! For a full out pampered afternoon, head to the RnR Wellness Spa in the Fairmont Palliser where you can receive a luxury massage. If you’re looking for a more chill experience, then head to the outdoor pool at Hotel Arts. There you can clink your cocktail glasses, laugh until it hurts and enjoy some of Calgary’s beautiful sunny weather in a tropical-inspired setting.
CHEERS WITH COCKTAILS
As the sun starts to set over the Bow River, the best way to get the night started is with a few cocktails. An obligatory cheers boomerang on your Instagram story is a must, or else did the trip even happen? Both Bridgette Bar and Proof Cocktail Bar offer old fashioned concoctions that are meant for sipping — seriously. For a bit of a more casual atmosphere, try a beer flight at Last Best Brewery or a fresh minty Mojito at Ricardo’s Hideaway.
DANCE THE NIGHT AWAY!
Enjoy Calgary’s vibrant nightlife and let loose! Isn’t this what you all came for, after all? Head to BrokenCity on Saturday for 90’s hip-hop night and Do the Wop all night long. At HiFi Club, they like to blur the lines between a live music venue, dance club and art gallery, so expect the unexpected. If you and your ladies just like to rock out to top 40 and a little bit of modern country, then Cowboys is where you should head!
A relaxing and inspiring visit to Calgary is just what the doctor ordered. Now all that’s left to do is find the perfect hotel, gather the girls and get packing.