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Scandinave spa Old Montreal: a great spa for solo travellers

An honest review of my favourite spa in downtown Montreal

Scandinave spas in Canada are well-known, and most associated with water therapy circuits at ski resort areas where you can soak in a series of large hot pools while gazing off at beautiful mountains. Scandinave spa Old Montreal is quite different. It’s a true urban oasis and my favourite secret place to relax when I’m visiting the city.

And while most Scandinave spas attract couples or groups, if you’re a solo traveller looking for an excellent spa in downtown Montreal, a place to chill after you’ve checked out of your hotel but before heading to the airport, or an afternoon of wellness, here’s all the reasons I recommend Scandinave spa Old Montreal!

Just need the facts? Jump to the prices, hours, etc.

This review of Scandinave Spa Old Montreal is part of the series 100 Baths, my search for the world’s best spas and public bathing rituals.

Disclosure: My blog contains links from Affiliate programmes. At no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase from these links, I earn a small commissionThank you for supporting my work and the site!

Scandinave spa Old Montreal
Scandinave Old Montreal’s low-key entrance

Where is Scandinave spa Old Montreal?

This Scandinave spa is an intimate indoor space in historic Old Montreal, right across from the St. Lawrence river and steps from Notre Dame Cathedral and some of the city’s best restaurants. From the outside, you might even walk right past it.

Now, by “intimate” I mean small. Which is one of the reasons I suggest you visit solo. The other is Scandinave’s “Silence is Golden” policy — no talking, not even a whisper. I previously complained about the “shushing police” at Scandinave Whistler, but here…it makes a lot of sense, and creates the perfect atmosphere for meditative self-care.

Scandinave spa Old Montreal
No swimsuit? No problem. You can buy one on site.

Hot. Cold. Relax.

After check-in, you’ll find a modestly sized but well-outfitted change room, and then you can pretty much see the whole water circuit at a glance. However, the layout makes great use of its footprint and still has all the hydrotherapy basics you’re looking for: a hot pool, steam room, sauna, cold plunge, and places to relax.

First up, the hot pool, which is tucked into a corner. Large, frosted windows let the sunlight in while providing privacy. I like to sit beneath the waterfall spout for a shoulder massage, then zone out in waters until I’m fully warmed. The pool fits only about 4-5 people comfortably, another reason to go alone.

sauna in Montreal's Scandinave spa
A traditional Finnish sauna. Photo by Scandinave.

The Finnish-style dry sauna at Scandinave Old Montreal is one of my favourites in the country. Maybe it’s the little wooden headrests. Maybe it’s just the right amount of hot. But I could easily fall asleep in there. There’s also a eucalyptus steam room that will make you sweat.

For your cold you can choose the plunge pool or a shower. And then, it’s time to relax.

The Ultimate Nap Space

I’ll admit, at big outdoor spas I spend most of my time in the waters – I figure I could read a book in a lounger at home. But at Scandinave spa Old Montreal….I never skip the relaxation. You’ll find bean bag chairs, and futon beds which are nice for couples, but my go-to zone is the Zero Stress Room – darkened to near-black, with tiny lights and soft music and ….zzzzzz.  

Scandinave Spa Old Montreal

No matter what state my body and mind is before entering, I exit Scandinave spa Old Montreal in a state of total relaxation. I recommend it for warming up during a freezing Montreal winter or recovering from an extra late night of Montreal’s famous nightlife any time of year.

Know Before You Go

My last visit was July 2021. Updated info January 2024. Always check their website for latest info and promotions.

Where: Scandinave spa Old Montreal/Vieux Montréal is at 71 de la Commune West, Montréal Québec, a five minute walk from Place D’armes Metro station. The space is not accessible for wheelchair users.

When: Open every day from 10am to 9pm. Ages 18 and up.

What to Bring: Just your swimsuit. Robes, towels, sandals, lockers, and water/tea are provided. Change rooms have hair dryers and straighteners. Apparently they also put out smoothies throughout the day but I’ve not seen it. There is no food on site.

How Much: There are two prices for the Hydrotherapy. If you want to guarantee your timeslot, advance reservations cost $85 to $100 (depending on day of the week, and season); or take your chances with walk-in for $75 to $85, subject to capacity. Scandinave spa Old Montreal also offers a full menu of massage services, which include access to the water therapies circuit. Discounts are sometimes available for evening visits, students and locals. For tickets and current promotions click here.

Recommended Read

Want more spa inspiration?  Lonely Planet’s Wellness Escapes is a lovely hardcover filled with eye candy photos of hot springs, saunas, spas and other wellness resorts from around the world. These are expensive and often remote destinations, but even if you never get there, you can use this as a starting point for researching dream trips.

Disclaimer: Some of the links on my blog are from Affiliate programmes, including Amazon Associates. At no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase from these links, I earn a small commission.

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