Working from away: Stay productive and feel rejuvenated
Imagine gazing over a tranquil, forest-ringed lake as you complete a report on your laptop, strolling over to a nearby cafe to lunch on fresh organic food, and feeling creative and revitalized when you return to your desk. Given the rise of remote working, with 45 percent of Canadians in a recent survey preferring to work remotely at least three days per week, taking a Canadian "workcation" can make that vision a reality.
Make the most of flexible work arrangements and combine your work-from-home office with a local getaway. Take an afternoon call on a sunny harbour pier; work on your big presentation and brainstorm from nature from your deck with a mountain view; and maximize your getaway by adding on vacation days to come back to work mentally restored.
Whether you stay close to home or visit a neighbouring province, you can enjoy an extended city hotel stay, an awe-inspiring mountain lodge escape, or a relaxing vacation rental getaway. Here are some suggestions to help you plan a working vacation in Canada.
Five quick tips to make a workcation work for you:
- Seek out accommodations that offer seamless connectivity - to work networks and to local amenities.
- Consider a VPN (Virtual Private Network) to protect your private business interests.
- To practice self-care, use ergonomic workspaces and take regular breaks.
- Bring your four-legged friends by booking a pet-friendly stay.
- Consult local health regulations, travel restrictions, and safe travel guides prior to your trip.
In Vancouver, enjoy the outdoors in a city surrounded by nature. A short walk (or bike ride) to both scenic Coal Harbour and False Creek, L'Hermitage Hotel offers all the comforts of home with luxury service. Enjoy elegant suites with in-suite laundry, 24-hour in-room dining and complimentary bike rentals for guests.
The Fairmont Chateau Whistler-recently named "Best Resort in Canada" in Cond? Nast's Readers' Choice Awards - offers year-round discounts for British Columbia residents. Whistler is ideal for combining a ski weekend with a week-long workcation-with no need to hurry home on Monday. Roam around Lost Lake or the Cheakamus River and feast on local fare like Stellar Bay oysters at Araxi, beef tenderloin at Bearfoot Bistro, or vegan potato salad at The Green Moustache.
At the secluded Spirit Ridge resort in Osoyoos, cap off a productive workday by visiting the Solterra Desert Spa-perfect for a romantic couples massage-or sipping Indigenous-made wines. Don't forget your four-legged colleague; this pooch-friendly property also has a 24-hour enclosed dog park.
Prince's Island Park and the Bow River lie a short walk from the Residence Inn by Marriott Calgary Downtown. This spacious, pet-friendly hotel makes work-life balance easy with seamless connectivity, free grocery delivery service and in-room kitchens. Grab a pre-work cappuccino at nearby Analog Coffee. When the workday is over, check out landmarks like the National Music Centre and Calgary Tower, or local favourite attractions like the Inglewood Bird Sanctuary and Paddy's Barbecue & Brewery.
The JW Marriott in Edmonton's new ICE District is an ideal jumping-off point for fishing in the North Saskatchewan River or Segway tours with River Valley Adventure Co. The gleaming business hotel is close to authentic gastropubs and the outdoor Neon Sign Museum.
In Banff and Jasper, check into cozy vacation rentals, including cabins and lodges. Plan ahead for a safe and healthy road trip. For a quick break, enjoy strolling the pristine Rocky Mountains. Or revel in the tranquility of a mid-week vacation day and go snowshoeing or fat biking.
With a breathtaking view of the South Saskatchewan River and next-door access to the Remai Modern art gallery's collection, the Alt Hotel Saskatoon embodies the flexibility and fun of a one-location workcation. Hike along the nearby Meewasin Trail through landscaped parks and under historic bridges before getting back to business.
Just two hours north of Saskatoon, Lost Creek Resort offers quiet spacious modern cabins to set up your office, and ample hiking and cross-country skiing opportunities, and elk and fox sightings.
Consider staying at the Delta Hotel, which offers a vibrant downtown location and ergonomic workspaces to enhance your productivity. Or blend work and relaxation at Fort Garry Hotel with staycation packages, complimentary yoga passes, and Ten Spa's Turkish steam baths. For some revitalizing downtime, inhale the fresh breeze off Winnipeg's Red River as you admire the Canadian Museum for Human Rights' dramatic architecture. Then visit the riverfront The Forks to shop for books and First Nations art or devour wood-fired pizza and cinnamon buns.
Overlooking Lake Ontario, the Intercontinental Toronto Centre offers remote workers a work-from-hotel package with daily, weekly and monthly rates. This includes 24-hour virtual concierge and business centre access and reduced laundry fees. Between business calls, explore Toronto's vibrant neighbourhoods or shop local boutiques for a new Zoom look.
Escape the city and mix things up from traditional Muskoka cottage country with Hockley Valley Resort. Only an hour northwest of Toronto, it has everything you need for the work half of your stay. And plenty more options for the vacation component: spectacular golfing, 16 ski runs, and a large spa with reflexology and signature body scrubs.
The picturesque, 1896-founded Gananoque Inn faces the St. Lawrence River and the 1000 Islands archipelago. After work, indulge with a rejuvenating massage at the spa or dine on raspberry maple chicken at the in-house Watermark Restaurant. Feeling adventurous? Take a helicopter tour.
At Montreal's Mount Royal Park, enjoy an invigorating walk around Beaver Lake and admire the city skyline. Then stay productive at H?tel Le Crystal, whose rooms include ergonomic desks and fully equipped kitchenettes. Or check out the hip Hotel Griffintown, geared for longer stays with convenient places to break from the virtual meetings and sample lobster ravioli at nearby Chez Sophie or craft beer at Microbrasserie 4 Origines.
Quebec City's luxurious Auberge Saint-Antoine offers business and leisure packages that include in-room breakfast and lunch and personal access to a printer and scanner. For a taste of nature, drive to Montmorency Falls or Jacques-Cartier National Park.
Mont Tremblant is ever-popular among Quebec skiers seeking Laurentian Mountains vacation rentals. In the Le Massif de Charlevoix ski area, the 15-bed Mirechalet creates a new group remote working option if you're looking to travel with your bubble.
An hour's drive from Saint John, the Algonquin Resort was founded in St. Andrews by-the-Sea in 1889. Today, this Tudor Revival-style hotel offers stay and play packages, making it the perfect quiet place to refresh yourself and move your business plan forward. Lunch on New Brunswick delicacies, like seafood chowder and lobster rolls. Then take a break and tee off on the award-winning golf course, or treat yourself to a relaxing treatment at the holistic spa.
In downtown Halifax, stay at the luxe Prince George Hotel with its pet-friendly accommodations and well-appointed workspaces. Duck around the corner for pre-work coffee at local haunt Weird Harbour Espresso Bar. Wander the harbourfront during your lunch hour, or jump in the car and venture off the beaten path to The Canteen in Dartmouth, where you can lunch on fresh mussels and frites
Prince Edward Island
From the vintage cannon-laden Victoria Park to the waterfront boardwalk at Confederation Landing, there are plenty of outdoor spaces to explore during a lunch or afternoon tea break near Charlottetown's The Hotel on Pownal. The business-oriented, 45-room boutique hotel provides a complimentary breakfast-to-go and fresh-baked cookies each afternoon, plus recommendations from locals on where to dine and shop.
Newfoundland and Labrador
Situated on a 140-acre oceanfront estate an hour from St. John's, Newfoundland, the red-roofed, turreted Doctor's House in Green's Harbour has corporate and luxury packages for workcationers. Power through your to-do list and then bliss out at the well-appointed spa, dine on organic food at the in-house Secret Garden restaurant, or gaze over Trinity Bay.
In the land of the Northern Lights, Yukon teleworkers enjoy service that shines at Whitehorse's Edgewater Hotel. Opposite the river and set among the historic downtown, the hotel is decorated with Indigenous art and offers high-speed connectivity. For relaxation, walk the five-kilometre Millennium Trail or visit the Yukon Wildlife Preserve, and then feast on bison burgers at Dirty Northern or upstairs at Miner's Daughter.
In the Northwest Territories, Chateau Nova Yellowknife, a long time favourite of business visitors, is an ideal workcation spot. Explore Fred Henne Territorial Park and sample Yellowknife eateries from the hotel's Quarry Restaurant to the nearby Zehabesha Traditional Ethiopian Restaurant.
Iqaluit, the capital of Nunavut, is home to The Discovery, a boutique hotel that provides ergonomic work desks, plus complimentary wifi and newspapers. To make the most of your stay, add some vacation days, and engage in adrenalized kite-skiing or snowmobiling on frozen Frobisher Bay.
Right across Canada, there are wonderful workcation options that will elevate your productivity and your spirits.