Travel News: Vancouver Cocktail Festival, PEC’s latest chic hotel and Nordic culture near you

Welcome drinks

The inaugural edition of Vancouver Cocktail Week ( is scheduled to debut March 6-10. Presented by the Alchemist, the BC-based beverage magazine, ticketed events will include dinners with cocktails at participating venues; a walking tour of Gastown, with tales of its secret Prohibition-era speakeasies; and Fun City Gala, a rooftop party at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver. Also on the menu: five to seven happy hours in restaurants and bars in the city.

What’s old is new again

The latest landmark in Picton, Ontario, took years to build – with a history that stretches back even further, dating back to 1879. The new Royal Hotel opened its doors earlier this month, paying homage to the historic property of the same name which had fallen into disuse. While the heritage exterior has been restored as much as possible, what’s inside has been completely reimagined. Find 28 classic rooms and five Scandi-chic suites, a farm-to-table restaurant (currently open for takeout), and a future outdoor pool and garden oasis. The hotel, in soft-launch mode for now, will toast its grand opening in May.

One of the rooms at the new Royal Hotel, which has just opened in Picton, the largest city in Prince Edward County.

Bridging Cultures

Can’t jet-set in Northern Europe? You can always learn about the contemporary arts and culture of the region, near you. This month marks the start of Nordic Bridges, a national initiative led by Harbourfront Center to encourage cultural exchange between Canada and the Nordic countries. The multidisciplinary program will open with “northern lights(January 20 to February 13), a series of illuminated outdoor artworks on the central Queens Quay West campus; other exhibitions and events will take place throughout 2022.

After being shown in Copenhagen, the art installation

New York for less

The very first New York Hotel Week is underway: At more than 110 participating hotels, located across the five boroughs, travelers can get 22% off standard room rates — the ones you’d see on official websites — until February 13. Visit for booking links and full listing. The promotion also overlaps with other city initiatives, including New York Highlights Week (January 18 to February 13), which offers two-for-one tickets to attractions, museums and other experiences.

The William Vale in Brooklyn is one of more than 110 hotels participating in NYC Hotel Week.

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