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Stunning mountains greet you on all sides in Banff, Alberta, where the town site lies in a river valley, wrapping around Tunnel Mountain. Located in Banff National Park, a UN World Heritage Site, Banff plays host to hot springs, gorgeous views, wildlife and many tourists. With a tourism industry since the 1880s, Banff has lots to offer, which can make it tricky to plan a Banff Girls’ Weekend Itinerary. After driving into Banff National Park, check in to The Fox Hotel & Suites, located right on the main street of Banff Avenue. The Fox Hotel & Suites offers the perfect room for a Banff Girls’ Weekend in their Two Bedroom Superior Suites. These suites offer four double beds plus a pull out couch, so everyone has lots of space but can still share the same hotel suite! There are also two full bathrooms, several televisions and a small kitchenette. The kitchenettes include coffee and tea makers, a microwave, a mini fridge, a bar sink, plates and cutlery and most importantly, wine glasses! The best feature of the hotel, however, is the amazing indoor/outdoor grotto-style hot pool.
Time for Dinner
Once you have dropped your bags and settled in, find yourselves some dinner at El Toro, a three-minute walk down the road. El Toro is known for their Châteaubriand for two, a beef lover’s delight with 16 ounces of beef tenderloin, a starter soup or salad, vegetables, roasted potatoes, Bearnaise sauce and the final flourish of being carved right at your table. The myriad of rave reviews do El Toro justice and thankfully you are staying just down the road, so you can slowly walk back after topping off your feast with a decadent warm Callebaut chocolate cake that is baked to order. It’s a girls’ weekend, so you can treat yourselves to the finer things in life!
Shopping in Banff
After sleeping in the comfortable Mountain Luxury Beds® at The Fox Hotel & Suites, enjoy a complimentary continental breakfast while checking your email on the wifi. After breakfast, take a stroll down the street to check out the variety of boutique stores, art galleries, ski shops and coffee shops available.
Grab a Cup of Coffee
As you make your way back towards your hotel, stop for a light lunch of a yogurt parfait, made with house-made granola and fruit compote, and delicious coffee at the Whitebark Café.
Treat Yourself at the Spa
Now that you have walked and shopped to your heart’s content, head to the next block for an afternoon of relaxation and pampering at the Red Earth Spa. Sip on cucumber water as you unwind in the lovely, large hot tub at Red Earth Spa, while chatting with the girls. While you wait for your appropriately named Dream Cloud Massage, you can detox in the steam room and rinse off in the rain shower. The Red Earth Spa provides complimentary fruit, a lovely selection of teas, cool water and a high-end mountain getaway feel. They happily cater to large groups, which is perfect for your Banff girls’ weekend getaway!
Dinner & Dancing
Put the kitchenette to good use by sipping on some cold bubbly while you get ready for dinner and dancing. To get to dinner, take the convenient Roam bus, an environmentally friendly transit service which even includes GPS tracking so you can see arrival times at ten select stops, or on your phone! The Bison Restaurant & Terrace is your destination for an elegant, ethically sourced, dining experience. Maps show the points of origin for many ingredients, living up to their tagline of “Regional. Seasonal. Canadian.” Highly attentive staff make your large group right at home, with nary a wine glass going empty as you dig into superb food, in a welcoming atmosphere. From the suit and dress crowd to the après ski, the Bison works for everyone, while maintaining a very Banff ambiance. Be sure to celebrate your meal with a slice of cake served with a sparkler! Wined and dined, get your dance on at the Aurora Nightclub, the true night-club in Banff. If your Banff girls’ weekend itinerary is in need of VIP status, or includes a birthday or stagette, make a reservation so you can enter with no line and no cover.
Hot Pools & Brunch
Start your slow day with a trip to the hot pool in your hotel, a wonderfully relaxing feature with an open sky light to above. A sauna and showers are built into the stunning Cave and Basin themed hot pool area. Finish your epic Banff Girls’ Weekend Itinerary with a delicious brunch at Melissa’s Missteak. Do not let the name fool you, this hopping joint serves food that impresses for very reasonable prices. They also serve breakfast late into the day, in case you aren’t in a get-up-and-go mood after dancing the night away. As you drive home through Banff National Park, keep your eyes open to spot some wildlife while you gaze at the stunning Canadian Rocky Mountains.