MONTREAL, Sept. 22 /CNW Telbec/ - The summer of 2009 was a very good season for the Quays of the Old Port of Montréal. Over 3.3 million visitors flocked to the site this summer, an increase of 13.7 percent over last summer. This success can be explained by, among other things, the innovation and vitality of the Quays' 2009 programming. Throughout the summer, over 20 appealing events took place at Montréal's stunning St. Lawrence River showcase, including the new Circus Arts Promenade (over 650 free performances), enhanced by the varied settings of the Quays' five popular restaurant-patios. These remarkable summer 2009 results solidified the Quays' position among visitors as an up-beat gathering place for people of all stripes and one of Québec's most popular recreation and tourism destinations. "The summer of 2009 paved the way for us to innovate and create an intimate and long-lasting relationship between Montréalers and the Quays of the Old Port of Montréal," said Claude Benoit, President and CEO of the Old Port of Montréal Corporation.
The summer programming at the Quays of the Old Port stood out for its creativity and remarkable variety. Montréalers had an embarrassment of riches to choose from: circus arts; rock, classical and jazz concerts; architectural video projections; tours of historical sailing ships; and tango nights, to name but a few. And the large majority of these events were free of charge, making them accessible to even more people.
The Quays: creating spaces, experiences and emotions
A new initiative for 2009, the Circus Arts Promenade hosted some 650 free performances for five days a week over a two-month period by artists from The 7 Fingers circus troupe and the crew of the sailboat La Loupiote. This transformation of the Promenade into a quasi-permanent showcase of the circus arts actively helped to position Montréal as a world circus-arts capital and celebrated the vitality of the discipline in our city. Kicked off by the Cirque du Soleil's show Ovo at the Quays from April to July 2009, and marking the 25th anniversary of this great Québec-based circus institution, the Promenade and its display of circus arts was enjoyed by over 160,000 visitors.
The Architectural Projections doubled in size in 2009, comprising two historic sites: the Conveyor Tower and, new this year, 357C de la Commune Street West (the former Commissioners building). Using cutting-edge technology and the software program Photon, developed here in Montréal by the firm VYV, these projections put the spotlight on our heritage buildings by giving viewers a unique audiovisual experience. Understandably proud of the success of the Architectural Projections, Daniel Langlois, owner of 357C noted that "with a careful use of the unique possibilities offered by this technology, the producers created a remarkable work that marries the modern with the historical." Renowned director Michel Lemieux stressed that "such large-scale works of art immerse us in a surreal world, allowing us to see the city in an entirely new light."
Fruit of a collaboration with the team of M for Montréal, The SIRIUS Event - M on the Quays took flight once again this year, much to the delight of music lovers. This event also doubled in size, with some 26 free performances by up-and-coming artists on the stage at Place des Vestiges. Whether devoted fans or just intrigued listeners, over 10,000 people took advantage of the sunny Labour Day weekend to enjoy the best of Montréal's most promising young musicians in the unique setting of the Quays of the Old Port of Montréal.
Other major events in 2009
- The arrival on the Quays of MÜVBOX, a reinvention of the old-time
canteen into a modern restaurant offering an environmental, ethical and
affordable dining experience.
- Midis I Musici, weekly outdoor musical lunches with Montréal's famous
- The Off Festival de jazz opened its program with Tremblement de fer,
composed for the occasion by Pierre Labbé and premiered at Shed 16 with
50 musicians on stage.
- Transports exceptionnels, a dance event for "dancer and mechanical
shovel," one of the highlights of the Festival TransAmériques.
- The remarkable Escales Improbables, theatre with unusual interactions
between actors and audience.
And two new festivals:
- Saveurs et tentations, featuring a taste of Québec gastronomy and local
products such as cheeses, wines, game, vegetables, and pastries.
- Montréal Classic Boat Festival: a chance to see some magnificent
vintage boats and meet the owners of these splendid vessels.
The patios of the Quays: trend-setting gathering points for Montréalers
The Quays' five patios--Café des Éclusiers, Origine Bistro, Scena, Terrasses Bonsecours, and Bistro Vû--remain ideal places to get together with friends for a delicious meal in a relaxing, friendly atmosphere and a unique setting on the St. Lawrence River.
Along the waterfront
Cruise lovers had more to choose from this year with bike & boat tours from Latitute 45degrees nord and yacht rentals from Croisières Absolû for private or corporate excursions. The numerous guided cruises and dinner cruises remain very popular, taking advantage of the marvelous St. Lawrence and its many possibilities for outings.
The Port d'escale, the Quays of the Old Port's already well-known marina, enhanced its reputation with its excellent services and a more attractive positioning in the pleasure-craft market. Able to accommodate about a hundred boats of all sizes, the Port d'escale has made significant efforts to attract pleasure-craft customers from Ontario, Eastern Canada and the Northeastern United States.
The Quays: a maritime atmosphere right next to downtown
The tugboat Daniel McAllister, docked in Basin no. 1 near the entrance to the Lachine Canal, is the oldest tug in Canada and the second-oldest ocean-going tug in the world. Much to the delight of strollers along the Quays, it was recently and spectacularly restored.
The reputation of the Quays of the Old Port was further enhanced with the arrival of two tall ships from the United States, the Flagship Niagara in July and the Pride of Baltimore II in August, eloquently highlighting the essentially maritime character of the Quays and thrilling visitors. Come back next year for another encounter with these splendours of the sea and icons of a bygone era.
The Quays of the Old Port: a powerful economic stimulus
With over 5 million visitors annually, the Quays of the Old Port plays an important role in Montréal's economy and acts as a powerful tourist draw. The Old Port of Montréal Corporation, manager of the Quays of the Old Port, is committed to positioning the Quays as a not-to-miss Montréal destination through programming that is both rich and original, and to firmly anchoring itself in Montréal's personality.
The Quays of the Old Port wishes to thank its principal partner, the Government of Canada, and its sponsors TELUS, Pepsi and Sleeman-Unibroue, along with its official environmental partner, the Canadian Wildlife Federation.
Quays of the Old Port: positive results for summer 2009!
Bold programming at the Quays of the Old Port of Montréal generates
higher attendance in 2009
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SOURCE Old Port of Montréal Corporation
For further information: For further information: Julie Mailhot, Press Agent, (514) 283-8085, (514) 838-4524, firstname.lastname@example.org; Source: Old Port of Montréal Corporation