Over a year ago now, a movie came out that changed the lives of little kids across the world. Frozen is still an international phenomenon and has become the highest grossing animated film ever made. If like me, you are living with a Frozen fanatic, you may have heard of the Adventures by Disney tour through Norway which was the inspiration of Frozen’s fictional land of Arendelle. If you aren’t
ready to head to Norway just yet, don’t fret, the perfect Frozen adventure is waiting for you in Quebec City, Canada.
A Chariot Fit for a Princess
Quebec City is easy accessible from a variety of airports. I suggest flying with Porter Airlines which departs from Toronto, Boston, New York, Chicago and more. We arrived at the downtown island airport in Toronto, Ontario to be treated like royalty. Charlie and I awaited our royal chariot eating free cookies and
enjoying a free beverage and wi-fi in the lounge. Once aboard, I was treated to a glass of white wine while my tiny princess watched, you guessed it, Frozen on her iPad. One of my favorite things about Porter Airlines is that you do not need to turn off electronics during landing or take-off so the smaller members of your family are distracted during these usually more painful portions of the flight.
The Château Frontenac (Arendelle Castle)
Much like Arendelle Castle, Anna and Elsa’s childhood home, the Château Frontenac is a gorgeous castle full of art, furniture and places to explore. In the film, Arendelle Castle is located atop a cliff guarding the fjord that leads to the harbor. The Château Frontenac is built in a similar manner over the old fortified Quebec City facing the St. Lawrence River.
As we drove through the gates of Old Quebec, my daughter Charlie, who is 4, nearly fainted. She was so excited and truly convinced we had arrived in Arendelle. She also point it out someone must have upset Elsa as it was quite cold outside.
While she sang, “Let it Go,” in the lobby, I checked us into a fabulously renovated suite and our Frozen weekend officially began. In the past few years, the Château Frontenac has undergone a multi-million dollar renaissance project. That being said, the old charm of the hotel particularly in the common areas has been maintained. When you open the door to your room, you literally arrive in a whole new world of beautiful fabrics, modern lighting and a gorgeous seating area with a view of the St. Lawrence river. We spent our entire stay in the hotel, swimming in the indoor pool, checking out the spa and dining on local Quebec cheeses, maple syrup and of course chocolate in honour of Anna and Elsa.
While staying at the Fairmont Château Frontenac, kids under 5 eat for free off the kids menu while kids 6-11 eat for half price off the adult menu. For extra royal treatment, make sure to treat your kids to breakfast in bed. Another great royal add-on is to arrange an in-room movie night with the hotel. The hotel will provide you with a movie rental and a delivery of fresh made popcorn and juices. You obvioulsy know what animated hit I would recommend.
Hotel De Glace (Elsa’s Ice Castle)
Once you have spent a night or two in absolute luxury in the Château Frontenac, you will want to complete your experience by checking into the Hotel de Glace located a 20 minute drive away. The hotel is open for tours during the day but at night becomes a private ice sanctuary for the families staying within its icy walls.
I have seen pictures of the Hotel De Glace for the past 6 or so years. The hotel has been open for 15 winters so far. I must admit, as I entered through the welcoming centre and made my way down the path toward the hotel, I was absolutely blown away. In person, the hotel is even more stunning and unbelievable than in photos.
Charlie ran into the lobby and immediately stopped in her tracks and just stared at the chandeliers. Everything in the hotel is made of ice.
I was a little nervous about checking in with a four year old but as soon as we entered the warm learning centre, my worries were laid to rest. A kind woman named Sophie taught each family how we would sleep in the sleeping bags, what to wear to bed and how to stay warm. She then took us out to the hotel where the kids played a
variety of games while the parents watched, sipping on vodka concoctions out of ice glasses to warm up. I was worried that Charlie wouldn’t be allowed in the spa areas but was glad to find out they were open to everyone. We settled in for a warm soak before bed.
Sleeping in the ice hotel is an experience all its own. Charlie, like Elsa, didn’t seem bothered by the cold at all. Instead she immediately drifted to sleep by the light of our fire, which is for ambiance only not heat. I woke up a few times during the night to check on my tiny princess and found her happily dreaming away. All in all, it wasn’t that cold and we shared an unforgettable night in the Hotel de Glace.
A Frozen Adventure in Canada
Our Frozen adventure in Canada was beyond compare. As we stepped back into the Quebec Airport and were warmly welcomed by the Porter staff, I almost shed a tear that it was nearly over. As we embarked on the flight home, Charlie immediately fell asleep in the large comfy seats and I sipped on a glass of wine and thought about our adventure. These are moments I will never forget and I now must admit I have a slight obsession with Frozen too.