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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

Find Cowboy Chic in Calgary

Flush with oil money and a surging economy, the town made famous by its rodeo is becoming a sophisticated big city.


1. Where to Stay

The Fairmont Palliser  

Thanks to trickle-down profits from the energy industry, Calgary's creative class is booming. And as more people come from places like Toronto and Montreal to check out the scene, stylish digs like Hotel Arts (from $93) in Inglewood are popping up to accommodate them. The former Holiday Inn has been transformed into the city’s first true boutique, with in-room wet bars, triple-sheeted duvets, and Saint Germain, one of the city’s best restaurants. The most coveted rooms: the trio of pool-view suites outfitted with couple’s rain showers and private balconies.

Everyone from Exxon execs to visiting heads of state opt for the Fairmont Palliser (from $140), one of Canada’s grand early-twentieth-century railroad hotels dripping with robber-baron elegance (note the hat-tipping bellhops, grand fireplaces, and marble pillars). The hotel’s attached to the downtown train station in case you want to hitch a two-hour ride into Banff National Park.

Collapse into thick pillow-top mattresses in the recently refurbished rooms at the Delta Bow Valley (from $130), a business-catering hotel in the government district. North-facing rooms have gorgeous views of the Bow River, which winds through the city and features an adjacent running trail.

Published on Aug 28, 2007 as a web exclusive.

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