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What's the best neighborhood in Calgary for a first time visitor?

I've never been to Calgary and I'm a little overwhelmed by all the hotel options. I'd like to stay in a hotel that is central and gives me good sense of what Calgary is like. I'd love to know where locals tell their friends to stay when they visit, and why those areas and hotels are special. thanks!

5 Answers

answered by
Olivia from Calgary, Alberta

I would say stay in the SW area around Aspen Woods and Discovery Ridge as well as west hills and fish creek park would be a wonder place to visit, if you like downtown Princess Island park is very beautiful in the summer time. 

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Aspen Woods (attraction)
  2. Discovery Ridge (attraction)
2 thanks

answered by

I would agree with Jodi, Hotel Arts is a great boutique hotel with a lovely inner courtyard pool and lounge. Some of my personal favourite places to eat around 1st Street would be TASTE,Cafe KoiRaw BarThe BeltlinerVintage Chophouse and Tavern  plus many others within a few blocks of the hotel! A few a little further from the hotel, but definitely in walking distance are Cibo CalgaryWURST Restaurant & Beerhall and Rajdoot.

Great pub experiences in the area can be found Hop In Brew Pub or Drum & Monkey for a laid back pint. St. James Corner Restaurant & Irish Pub has great fish tacos (which are a super deal on Tuesdays). The Ship & Anchor is lively and hosts an epic Punk Rock Bingo and live music, or try National BeerhallCraft Beer Market or Last Best Brewing & Distilling.

Definitely walk along 17th Avenue as there are many great eating, drinking and relaxing establishments!

If you head through downtown to the River, walk West along the pathway and over one of the pedestrian bridges into Kensington. Another great place for eating out. Try LOT 102 for their amazing fried chicken!

You might guess I eat out a lot... but there is such a great variety in this City! 


Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Hotel Arts (hotel)
  2. TASTE (attraction)
  3. Cafe Koi (restaurant)
  4. Raw Bar (restaurant)
  5. The Beltliner (restaurant)
  6. Vintage Chophouse and Tavern (restaurant)
  7. Cibo Calgary (restaurant)
  8. WURST Restaurant & Beerhall (restaurant)
  9. Rajdoot (restaurant)
  10. Hop In Brew Pub (restaurant)
  11. Drum & Monkey (restaurant)
  12. St. James Corner Restaurant & Irish Pub (restaurant)
  13. The Ship & Anchor (restaurant)
  14. National Beerhall (restaurant)
  15. Craft Beer Market (restaurant)
  16. Last Best Brewing & Distilling (restaurant)
  17. LOT 102 (restaurant)
2 thanks

answered by
Jodi from Calgary

I would suggest finding something near 17th avenue SW and 4th street SW. This is where people migrate at all hours of the day and night and you will easily find yourself at home with the number of bars and restaurants. Hotel Arts is close and walking distance. Key words for trendy neighborhoods would be: Mission, Beltline, Kensington  

There are a lot of hotels in the down town core that are geared for business travel - usually expensive. Down town tends to die down at night and due to the economy has been a lot quieter in general.

I would also make it a point to leave the city and head to Banff, Canmore, or Lake Louise. You don't even need to make it to a town to enjoy the foothills and the mountains.  

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Hotel Arts (hotel)
  2. Mission (attraction)
  3. Beltline (attraction)
  4. Banff (city)
  5. Canmore (city)
  6. Lake Louise (attraction)
2 thanks

answered by
Ashley from Calgary

Staying downtown isn't that great because it tends to die down a lot after 6pm and then unfortunately you get a lot of the homeless population roaming around, although I would say it's probably not as bad as parts of LA. It's a big commuter city so people usually go to their burbs after work, which are like micro epicenters.

17 Ave SW (SW), Kensington Rd NW and 4 St SW (SW) areas are the liveliest -- lots of great pubs, restaurants, shops, etc. This is usually where "locals" hang out. 17th Ave is our favourite but we're probably biased because we used to live in the area. 

The Sheraton Suites Calgary Eau Claire would probably be alright, although it's a good 30-40 minute walk to 17th, it's right by the river and Princess Island which is a nice park in the middle of the city.  

Make a point of seeing the mountains if you can though, the best thing about Calgary is that it is a big city with easy access to plenty of nature.

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. 17 Ave SW (attraction)
  2. Kensington Rd NW (attraction)
  3. 4 St SW (attraction)
  4. Sheraton Suites Calgary Eau Claire (hotel)
1 thanks

answered first by
Rob from Calgary

I am not sure what you budget is.  If you want to be central and you are not concerned about cost there are couple of places the Le Germain Hotel Calgary is nice as is the Sheraton Suites.

If you want to spend less and don't mind hoping a train for about a 5 - 10 minute ride into the downtown Best Western Village Park Inn will save you some money.

Hope that helps.

1 thanks

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