With its whitewashed walls and a red roof, Hôtel Tadoussac is a landmark in the Québec seaside village of the same name. Opened in 1864, it could easily be argued the old time resort hotel is a destination in its own right. Overlooking the beach and Tadoussac Bay, its beautiful grounds make it hard to leave. Hours are easy to lose, simply sitting outside, watching the world, and whales, go by.
Though its vibrant colors make for a great first impression, the property’s old school charm stems from more than just its exterior paint. Along with plenty of cushy spaces to sit in the lobby with a seaside view, there’s a large table topped with a jigsaw puzzle; another smaller table is set for a round of chess or checkers. Wooden screen doors, squeak and bounce a bit when they fall shut. Large white chairs and red umbrellas are scattered across a swath of green grass that stretches almost all the way to the beach.
The hotel has 149 rooms. Cozy and modestly decorated, they come with all of the expected amenities like a flat screen television, coffee maker, hair dryer and iron. My second floor room had a view of the St. Lawrence and a window that opened, allowing the sea breeze to blow through. There’s no air-conditioning, but with summer temperatures that typically range from the mid to upper 60s, you won’t miss it.
In all likelihood, you won’t spend much time in your room anyway. The outdoor pool, shuffleboard court, tennis court and small putt putt course all come with a beach and water view. Depending on the time of day, guests can watch whales or shooting stars from the second floor deck. On the ground floor there’s a game room, with a pool table, ping pong table, shuffleboard table and an assortment of other non-electronic activities.
And than there’s the whales. The waters surrounding Tadoussac are part of the whale-studded Saguenay-St. Lawrence Marine Park. Migrating minke, fin, humpback and even blue whales come here in the summer to feast. Beluga whales like it so much they spend the entire year in Tadoussac. Whale watching boats run daily, all summer, but it’s a quick walk to the Pointe-de-l’Islet trail where most days you can easily spot whales from shore.
The hotel has two on-site restaurants and a café. Full-service dinner is offered at Le William Restaurant, dinner and breakfast buffets are served at Le Coverdale Dining Room, while lunch, drinks and afternoon tea are served at Le Coquart Café Lounge Cocktail Bar.
Tadoussac is fairly small and compact, so you can park your car at the hotel and forget about it during your stay. The Marine Mammal Interpretation Centre and the village’s handful of shops and restaurants are all walking distance from the hotel.
Hôtel Tadoussac is about a three hour scenic drive from Québec City. English and French are widely spoken.
Rates for a room with a water view range from $169 CAD to $269 CAD ($128 USD to $204 USD) per night, based on double occupancy. All rooms are non-smoking.
Photos and review by Dana Rebmann. Dana’s stay was hosted by Hôtel Tadoussac and Québec Maritime, but as always her thoughts and opinions are her own.