The Marché Bonsecours is a large two-story public market, located in the old town district of Montréal, which serves as a piece of living history.
The market faces the St. Lawrence river and the city’s “Vieux port,” a tourist and historical hub for the city. Before the market was constructed the site housed a variety of projects, including the “Théâtre Royal,” where none other than Charles Dickens once staged a play. Construction started on the market in 1844 by the British architect William Footer and the Marché opened for business by the beginning of 1847 where it continued to serve as the city’s main market for over a century.
While the farmer’s market closed in the 1960s, the Marché now serves the city as a mall complete with boutiques featuring local artisans as well as outdoor cafés and restaurants. It is also used for municipal office space and the halls and banquet rooms on the lower and upper floors are available to rent for a variety of events, including Montréal’s “Semaine de la mode” (Fashion Week).
Located in the middle of rue Saint-Paul, the Marché and the area surrounding it truly capture the essence of Montréal’s incomparable European history. The street is a city landmark that’s lined with endless cafés and restaurants offering local and international cuisine, not to mention art galleries and convenience shops all decked out with quintessential European flair. Much of the street is even made of cobblestone.
In addition to enjoying the history on display at Marché Bonsecours, customers can buy local, rent out one of the beautiful halls, or even stage a wedding. The past and future of Montréal are alive and well at this consumer dreamland.