Staycations are the new vacations! yay thanks COVID!! but honestly it has been super nice getting to have a break from the everyday routine and explore home again. Of course, this varies depending on where you live given the COVID cases and your situation. For my 30th birthday my parents and sister gave me the BEST gift EVER… watching Kensi for two nights. This gave me an opportunity to relax, unwind and have some me time. Which let’s be honest, was several years in the making. Having a staycation in Calgary was the perfect balance.
STAYCATION WITH HOTEL ARTS
I knew that staying in Calgary was a must for me it being the first time I was going to leave Kensi overnight. I wanted to be close enough but far enough to be able to feel like I was disconnecting. In order to feel like I was going somewhere else I knew Hotel Arts would be the place to stay at. Not only is it downtown with close proximity to restaurants, shopping and local attractions but it also has an outdoor pool! Here in Calgary that is hard to come by!!
At the start I was a little worried about staying a hotel with everything that is going on with COVID, but honestly from the moment you walk in you can see all the sanitary efforts Hotel Arts has put into place. Hand sanitizer stations all throughout, social distancing protocols everywhere, and you even see staff cleaning constantly. It definitely gave me peace of mind!
Our room was amazing, by far the biggest hotel room I have ever stayed in. Had a king size bed, beverage station, desk and even a seating area with downtown views. Definitely an added bonus for me because I could actually see our apartment building from it hehe. Once we settled in we headed down to the pool for some drinks and it was absolutely perfect. The service was amazing, the food super delicious and the weather was certainly on our side. What staycation dream are made out of!!
Being downtown I knew that I didn’t want to drive around. I wanted to explore what was around the hotel either walking or via Bird Scooters, which I am obsessed with. I first ever rode a scooter when we we’re in Europe and I was tired from walking and the scooter saved our time there. Here in Calgary there is designated bike paths throughout the city which make me feel super safe to ride around with a scooter. Bird scooters are a convenient way to get around and I never had an issue finding them. Several times they were right outside out Hotel Arts which were an added bonus.
LITTLE PAMPERING FOR THIS BIRTHDAY MAMA
I don’t know about you… but honestly for me I wanted to get my hair styled as a treat. Yes, I know, I am very easy to please but when you have a one year old every minute is precious. As part of my staycation I knew that going to see Anna from Pure Form Salon would be the cherry on top! I have been going to Pure Form Salon for years and I love that place. The customer service is amazing, the stylist are super talented and Anna gives an incredible head massage. Every time I leave an appointment with Anna I feel like a million bucks!
WHERE TO EAT IN CALGARY
Calgary has some great eats; I wanted my staycation weekend to include some of my favourites as well as some new places. A block away from Hotel Arts you will find Native Tongues Taqueria which in my opinion has the best tacos in Calgary! I know I need to try other tacos but cochinita, pollo and frijoles are my favourites. Between the tacos, drinks and service it was a great start to the weekend. After dinner we had some drinks at the pool and then to sleep.
On the Saturday we had brunch at Yellow Door Bistro and it was my first time visiting. I love the decor that Hotel Arts has but the restaurant is by far one of my favourite designs ever. Reminded me a lot of London, barn wood windows on the walls, mismatched dining chair and the ceiling lamps…. oh my are they stunning. It was the perfect backdrop for an amazing and delicious brunch.
For lunch we ventured out to Kensington (how could we not right) and eat at Freehouse. Another place where the decor and food was on point! We enjoyed some drinks and pizza. Did I mention that they have weekend mimosas for $1.50!! Yes, you read that correct… $1.50. I need to take Kensi here and have her try the Queen of Kensington flatbread which was amazing. And you know, Kensi is my little queen so it seems super fitting!
After lunch we explored the walked around and explored the area and headed over to Holy Cow Gelato and Donuts for dessert. It’s a new shop next to Vendome and it’s so good! I had the gelonut and it was so tasty, a donut with a scoop of gelato onto… best invention ever!
After a well-deserved nap from eating and walking around we went to Alforno Cafe and Bakery. I had been to Alforno before but only for brunch so I was excited to try out their dinner menu and it did not disappoint. You can never go wrong with pasta and wine… so much so that I spilled on my white top.
CALGARY TRAVEL GUIDE
This Calgary travel guide offers it all, from your must see landmarks, to the most delicious restaurants and insta-worthy spots. Really does show how staying central makes it easy to get around.
Instructions on how to download the map can be found on my ‘SANTORINI TRAVEL GUIDE‘.
ENDING AN AMAZING STAYCATION
Oh going back to reality…. the hardest part of it all. But I was also excited because I was going home to my little monkey. Being a mom is never easy, it is the most demanding job of them all and realizing that sometimes you need a break is ok! Being able to sleep as long as I wanted, eat whenever I wanted and eating warm food for that matter was a great treat. Remember that sometimes you need to put your needs first… even if it’s just for an hour a day or a weekend away!
Disclaimer: This post may contain affiliate links. Some of these products / experiences were gifted to me but this post contains my honest thoughts and experiences.