Esplanade Tranquille and its rink: a destination for cultural, sporting and artistic exploration for all in the Quartier des Spectacles

Press release | For immediate release

Montreal, March 8, 2022 – Officially opened on February 21, the Esplanade Tranquille skating rink is a new must-visit destination for making the most of winter in the Quartier des Spectacles. After hosting the MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE festival and the show Cadence by Les 7 Doigts, Esplanade Tranquille and its pavilion continue to welcome Montrealers daily, providing a warm and friendly setting. From now until the end of winter, the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership is offering a free and varied program. The public is invited to discover a host of activities for all ages combining art, food and recreational sports, including the Esplanade’s first culinary arts event, which will take place during maple sugar season. Winter is still in full swing in the Quartier des Spectacles!


From March 10 to 13, art and gourmet delights unite on Esplanade Tranquille with the Tranquille sugar shack. With winter winding down in the city, maple syrup season in the Quartier des Spectacles will revisit harvest traditions with an artistic twist. The Sucrier Urbain team will be well supplied with its syrup from the Beauce region to demonstrate the sweet delights of maple products and the steps in its production, from tapping the trees to making maple taffy on snow, which everyone will get to sample for free between skating sessions. In addition, renowned pastry chef Patrick Bouilly and his students from the ITHQ will present a series of demonstrations of maple sugar sculpture. The public will be able to taste the results!


Until the end of winter, Sundays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., children and parents are invited to the Ice Garden, a play space on the rink where kids can learn to skate. Instructors from Patin Patin will be there with mini-Zambonis and teaching materials to encourage children ages 2 to 10 to learn while having fun. No reservation required.

Wednesdays from 4 to 7 p.m. and Saturdays from 2 to 5 p.m., skaters will be invited to benefit from the expertise of Patin Patin’s instructors. During free-skating time slots, they will roam the ice to help skaters of all ages and experience levels improve their stride.

While there will be background music at all times, Esplanade Tranquille will also feature special themes with the Classical Noon playlists on Wednesdays at noon and Disco Fever, which will have Montrealers dancing on ice on Saturday evenings. Lastly, after sunset the skating rink is illuminated by Bruno Rafie with colourful lights.


![]( "The Grand Salon of the Esplanade Tranquille pavilion © Ulysse Lemerise / OSA"

Visitors are invited to explore the Esplanade Tranquille pavilion, next to the skating rink. Open daily, the space designed by FABG architects includes numerous multi-purpose rooms, with interior design by Zébulon Perron.

Upstairs, the Grand Salon is a warm and welcoming public space for relaxing and socializing. With a great view of the rink, a central fireplace and a casual, cozy atmosphere, it’s the perfect place to hang out after skating. A café operated by Patin Patin serves snacks and a selection of hot and cold drinks. Lastly, the self-serve library provides books and magazines for reading on-site. The library offers Quebec literary classics, the writings of Henri Tranquille, children’s books and magazines.

Inside the library, an exhibition called Henri Tranquille et sa libraire Tranquille, curated by Diane Bernier, invites the public to explore the rich history of the Tranquille bookstore and its influence, closely linked to the personality of its owner, Henri Tranquille. Visitors will get acquainted with this cultural institution, which stood on the site of Esplanade Tranquille until the 1970s, through a series of displays featuring reproductions of archival materials, photos and unpublished writings.

Practical information


Esplanade Tranquille is the newest public space in the Quartier des Spectacles. Located at the intersection of Clark and Sainte-Catherine streets, it is a human-scaled space: a backyard for all Montrealers. This versatile, all-ages, all-seasons plaza in the heart of downtown features a warm design and a diverse cultural program, as well as a refrigerated skating rink in winter and a large terrasse in summer.

The public space pays tribute to Librairie Tranquille, a bookstore once located on the site, and its owner, Henri Tranquille (1916-2005). It is an important place in contemporary Quebec history, since the store hosted the launch of the Refus global manifesto in 1948. The Esplanade Tranquille project is the result of a collaboration among stakeholders, with funding from the governments of Quebec and Canada and the Ville de Montréal. The work was done as part of the major projects component of the Fonds Chantiers Canada-Québec.

To learn more about this new public space in the Quartier des Spectacles and its constituent spaces, see the online press kit.


The Quartier des Spectacles is Montréal’s cultural heart, boasting North America’s most concentrated and diverse group of cultural venues as well as numerous festivals and events. The Quartier also hosts innovative urban installations involving cutting-edge lighting design and immersive environments. The Quartier des Spectacles has become an international showcase for digital public art.

The Quartier des Spectacles Partnership, founded in 2003, is a non-profit organization with more than 85 members active in the district. It is responsible for animating the Quartier des Spectacles by programming cultural activities, managing and animating public spaces, providing distinctive illumination and promoting the Quartier as a must-visit cultural destination. The Partnership benefits from the support of the Ville de Montréal.

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Communications Mingotwo
Mélanie Mingotaud
(514) 582-5272