Bonsecours Market (Marche Bonsecours), Montreal

Bonsecours Market (Marche Bonsecours), Montreal

Bonsecours Market (Marché Bonsecours) owes its name to the adjacent Chapel of Our Lady of Good Help (Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours).

Inaugurated in 1847, for over a century this was the primary agricultural market for the Montreal area. Also, for a brief period – just one session, in 1849 – the building housed the Legislative Assembly (Parliament) of United Canada and, throughout 1852-1878, accommodated the Montreal City Hall.

The elongated two-story Neoclassical edifice with a tin-plated dome and columns is considered one of the main achievements of Canadian architecture. In 1984, it was designated a National Historic Site of Canada. The design – by British architect William Footner – was influenced by Dublin's Customs House. Further additions, including a 900-square-meter concert and banquet hall, completed in 1860, were designed by Irish-born Montreal architect George Browne.

The building continued to serve as the farmer's central market, as well as a venue for banquets, exhibitions, and festivals until it was closed in 1963. After standing idle for a few years, it was slated for demolition.

Luckily, the property was later transformed into a multi-purpose facility with a mall incorporating outdoor cafés, restaurants, and exclusive boutiques selling authentic Canadian crafts such as jewelry, leather, and hand-blown glass – all made in Quebec. Those keen on maple tree products will be particularly delighted to find here a huge variety of relevant merchandise including beer, wine, butter, and even lollipops.

However, if shopping isn't your prime interest, you may just as well walk around the site and find some pretty angles to photograph the building's grand-looking exterior. Or, perhaps, grab yourself a seat in one of the cafés and restaurants lining the facade and have a good time.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Montreal. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Bonsecours Market (Marche Bonsecours) on Map

Sight Name: Bonsecours Market (Marche Bonsecours)
Sight Location: Montreal, Canada (See walking tours in Montreal)
Sight Type: Shopping
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

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