Press release | For immediate release

Montreal, December 12, 2022 – At Esplanade Tranquille, the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership is now offering a varied free program featuring music, literature, fireside chats and recreation. In addition, from December 17 to January 6, numerous original Holiday-themed activities for everyone will create memorable moments for visitors of all ages in Montreal’s cultural heart.

Montrealers, visitors and tourists are invited to the Esplanade’s warm and comfortable setting to make the most of the winter with a host of activities on the rink, as well as enjoying fireside literary gatherings in the cozy chalet.


On and around the skating rink

Kaboom bumper cars (December 17 and 18, from 3:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.) will take over the ice for the perfect combination of the classic amusement park ride and a thrilling winter driving experience! No reservations. Ages 3 and up, adult accompaniment required.

Santa Claus (December 18, at 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m.) will skate a few laps with his loyal elf. The same day (December 18, at 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 7 p.m.), Les Soupis by Imagicario – illuminated puppets inspired by winter tales – will make an appearance.

Delivering more Christmas magic, the Quatrissimo (December 21, at 4:30 p.m., 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.) and Chœur enharmonique de Montréal (December 22, at 4:30 p.m., 6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. and December 30, at noon, 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.) vocal ensembles will sing carols, and the duo of Jetté-Maziade (December 31, at noon, 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.) will lead a rousing New Year’s singalong.

The public will also get a chance to admire the impressive exploits of Miss Bonbon (December 24, at 11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m.) with her juggling and hula-hoop routines on skates, while the figure skating club Les lames argentées de Montréal gives solo (December 29, at 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.) and group (January 6, at 7:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.) performances.

Finally, sculptor Julien Doré will demonstrate his talent (January 2, from noon to 3 p.m.) by transforming three large blocks of ice into a beautiful work of art.

Inside the Esplanade Tranquille pavilion

In the Réfectoire, children are invited to participate in decadent cookie decorating workshops (December 17 and 18, from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.) led by elves Lancelot and Kim. In the Grand Salon, children’s stories (December 29 and January 5, at 10 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 2 p.m.) presented by Théâtre de la Source will feature tales from around the world, from the ice floes of the Far North to the villages of China and the mountains of Ecuador.

At all times until mid-January, the Grand Salon will be decorated with gorgeous ornaments created by paper artist Pauline Loctin.


In addition to the regular musical soundtrack, there will be special thematic activities with Midis classique (classical, Wednesdays from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.) and La fièvre du disco (disco, Saturdays from 7:30 to 11 p.m.). On Fridays from 7:30 to 11 p.m., local DJs will turn the rink into a dance floor with the festive Patins platines series. In December, don’t miss the ZamalFunk duo (December 16), DJ Kelly of RAPMOMMIES (December 23) and the Tumbao! MTL collective (December 30).


The Patin patin team will be available all winter to help people improve their skating. On Sundays, children ages 2 to 10 and their families are invited to have fun in the Jardin de glace (ice garden) (10 a.m. to 1 p.m.), a playful space for learning at your own pace. Wednesdays and Saturdays, novices are invited to learn from the expert team of instructors (Wednesday from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. and Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.).


Starting December 20 inside the pavilion, the Grand Salon hosts twice-monthly Tuesday evening (7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.) casual discussions about the art of words on themes inspired by the intellectual, visionary and nonconformist bookseller Henri Tranquille. Les mardis Tranquille are hosted by Julie Laferrière, a moderator, journalist and cultural mediator who will welcome inspiring guests from the world of literature and writing, with plenty of time for audience participation. For the first mardi tranquille, Laferrière welcomes author, storyteller and singer Michel Faubert and actor and author Geneviève Rochette, who will have a discussion on the theme of tales across cultures. In French. No reservations.

In the same location, the public can learn more about the Tranquille bookshop and its owner thanks to the exhibition Henri Tranquille et sa librairie Tranquille, browse the self-service library or borrow a board game from the Ludothèque game library.

Finally, hungry visitors have multiple options. Galaxie Brasserie serves European-style dishes while Patin Patin offers snacks and a large selection of hot and cold drinks in the Grand Salon and outside.


Skating rink open daily from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. (11 p.m. Thursday-Saturday).

Special Holiday hours:

December 24: 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
December 25: noon to 11 p.m.
December 31: 9 a.m. to 1 a.m.
January 1: noon to 11 p.m.

Full schedule and programming details:

Equipment rentals and skate sharpening by Patin Patin.
Changing rooms and lockers available.
Food service by Galaxie Brasserie and Patin Patin.

Free admission


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.


Les moments lumineux du cœur de l’île is downtown Montreal’s collaborative winter project. It is the result of a fruitful collaboration among the Alliance centre-ville partners: the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership, SDC Montréal centre-ville, the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal, Tourisme Montreal and the Ville de Montréal. The initiative is a continuation of a series of summer projects launched in 2020. The winter Moments comprise a variety of outdoor activities organized by the partners and other cultural and economic stakeholders active in the area bounded by Atwater, Sherbrooke and Papineau streets and the St. Lawrence River. The Moments include a host of original winter activities to be enjoyed outdoors in the downtown core: interactive and luminous installations and experiences, festivals and events, exceptional opportunities to meet talented local artisans, beautifully illuminated public spaces and other delightful surprises. From November to March, these initiatives have been brought together under the communication campaign Les moments du coeur de l’île and invite Montrealers, visitors and tourists to enjoy the luminous winter wonders of the heart of the island that make Montreal a unique winter destination.

More information:


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.

More information:

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Mélanie Mingotaud
Communications Mingotwo
514 582-5272


Chloé Goldstein
514 812‑2193