When you pull up to the Quattro Hotel and Conference Centre, amid the fast food restaurants and low-rise motels along Sault Ste. Marie’s Great Northern Road, you might not suspect that this Ontario lodging is a gateway to adventure.
But as I learned during an autumn stay in this Northern Ontario city — just across the bridge from its Michigan counterpart of the same name — you can find all sorts of outdoor activities in and around “The Soo.” And the Quattro Hotel is a convenient, family-friendly base for an active holiday.
Here’s the scoop:
Hotel Facilities and Guest Rooms
Revamped and upgraded from a former Comfort Suites, the Quattro Hotel’s updates start in the taupe and lavender lobby, where guests can congregate on several couches and seating areas.
The hotel’s 157 guest rooms are located in three different wings. The front sections of the building are two-story low-rise structures, which house some guest units, as well as the Vinotecca Italian restaurant, the fitness facility, and the hotel’s meeting rooms. Most of the guest rooms are located in the seven-story tower at the back of the property.
Dark wood furniture, white linens, and purple accents decorate the guest rooms, which all have partially-separated sitting and sleeping areas. Electrical outlets and reading lamps are next to the bed, with plenty of additional outlets at the desk across the room. One-cup coffeemakers, microwaves, and mini-fridges are also standard, as is complimentary Wi-Fi.
Rates include a light breakfast buffet at Vinotecca, which is also a fine choice for pastas and steaks later in the day. To work off your meal, you can head for the good-sized fitness room or the indoor saltwater pool.
With numerous outdoor adventures in and around the city, though, you might want to take your exercise outside.
As you drive northwest out of the city, along the shores of Lake Superior — the deepest of the five great lakes, you can stop at one beautiful waterside spot after another, from Batchawana Bay Provincial Park to Lake Superior Provincial Park, which is one of my favorite Ontario destinations.
At Lake Superior Provincial Park, start at the Agawa Bay Visitor Centre to check out the well-designed exhibits about the lake and the surrounding region. Then head out to explore the hiking trails, sandy beaches, and rocky coves. You can follow a short path to the Agawa Rock Pictographs that Ojibwa people painted on a lakeside rock face hundreds of years ago.
Another great day trip from Sault Ste. Marie is the Agawa Canyon Tour Train, a one-day rail trip into the northern wilderness. Do this tour, which takes you to a scenic canyon that famously inspired Ontario’s Group of Seven landscape painters, in the fall if you can, when the trees are decked out in their autumn reds and golds.
But you don’t even have to leave the city to set off on an outdoor adventure. I had the chance to learn to fish, on an afternoon excursion with Angling Algoma, where ace fishing guide Adam Valee helped me hook a substantial largemouth bass (don’t worry, we threw it back).
Of course, you don’t have to stay at the Quattro Hotel and Conference Centre to have adventures like these.
But this unassuming property is a comfortable base to return to — whether you’re exploring the Lake Superior shore, riding the rails into the wilderness, learning to fish, or enjoying other awesome northern Ontario experiences.