When it comes to planning large-scale events — we’re talking multiple thousands of people here — one of the main challenges for the event planner is finding an appropriate venue. The conundrum is that as we dream bigger and expand the scope of an event, the choice of venues actually decreases. Fortunately, Montréal offers a few immense options.
When you’re ready to make it big in Canada’s events and convention capital, these mammoth venues will host the grandest of gatherings.
PALAIS DES CONGRÈS DE MONTRÉAL
The Palais des congrès de Montréal is the city’s AIPC-certified convention centre. It offers flexible and functional facilities that scan 113 rooms that can accommodate thousands of visitors, offering virtually limitless configuration possibilities. Trade shows can accommodate nearly 2,000 booths, while the rooftop makes an idea location for social events.
Since its inauguration in 1976, more than 67 million visitors have been inside the Olympic Stadium, which has — along with the iconic Montréal Tower — become the international symbol of Montreal. The stadium has accommodated sporting events, salons, fairs, shows, exhibitions, film shoots, social events and more. Equipped with some 56,000 seats in the stands, it is the largest amphitheater in all of Québec.
Maximum capacity: 56,000
Sample events: Toronto Blue Jays vs Boston Red Sox (2016), Women’s World Cup Soccer (2015), Monster Trucks (annually)
The Bell Centre is home to the beloved Montréal Canadiens hockey team. As one of the largest venues in the city, the arena is also the mainstage for the world’s biggest entertainers when they stop in Montréal (such as Beyoncé and U2). But it’s not just for hockey games and pop concerts. The Centre Bell can be configured into many different venues, covering every possible kind and size of show, from a private centre ice banquet to an intimate 2,000 seat operatic performance to a full-blown rock n’ roll concert.
Maximum capacity: 21,000
Sample events: Rihanna (2016), Harlem Globetrotters (2016), Stevie Wonder (2015),
The IGA Stadium hosts numerous sporting and special events, with the highlight of the year being the internationally-popular Rogers Cup. This prestigious professional tennis tournament organized by Tennis Canada is classified as a Masters 1000 event on the ATP World Tour schedule. The IGA Stadium has a Centre Court (11,437 seats), Court 1 (4,517 seats),10 outdoor courts (hard) and 16 indoor courts (hard & clay).
Maximum capacity: 12,000
Sample events: Rogers Cup (annually), live music, corporate banquets
An immense public plaza surrounded by shops that is the ideal venue for corporate events, product debuts and fashion shows. Guests enjoy direct access to the Hyatt Regency hotel, as well as Montréal’s beloved underground pedestrian network.
Maximum capacity: 5000
Sample events: Montréal en Lumière (annual festival), Jeux CS Games 2016 (intercollegiate computer science competition), 100 electric guitarists (2015)
PLACE DES ARTS
Place des Arts is a major performing arts centre, and the largest cultural and artistic complex in Canada. Located downtown, in an area known as the Quartier des Spectacles, the complex is home to the Montréal Symphony Orchestra, Les Grands Ballets Canadiens, and the Opéra de Montréal.