As seen on screen: Calgary filming locations for Fargo, Wynonna Earp, Cool Runnings & more

If you’ve been watching the brilliant FX show Fargo, and are familiar with Calgary, you may well have recognized a few places. All three seasons of the show were filmed in Calgary, and when stars such as Ewan McGregor (season 3) were there, it definitely caused a buzz around the city. Hot new show Wynonna Earp is currently being filmed in Calgary, and new studios at the Calgary Film Centre are set to now attract more shows. Over the years, lots of top shows and movies have been shot there. Many of these Calgary Filming locations are easy to find and open to the public, so you can check them out on your next visit. Here’s a list to get you started:

The Bear’s Den Restaurant. Located just outside of Calgary, this seriously cool spot was featured in a key scene of Fargo (season three, episode five). The interior is amazing, with 16ft high ceilings, cherry wood walls, and lots of taxidermy on display. Head there for a decadent meal of Alberta beef, elk, bison, or fish, and enjoy the classic style it exudes. Read More

Searching out the best Aeroplan Alternatives

When Air Canada announced in May that they would be withdrawing from the Aeroplan program in 2020, like many Canadians, I was rather annoyed. Shares in its parent company Aimia crashed in response to the news. However, share prices recovered somewhat as Aimia promised to build on its program and still offer travel rewards – they just haven’t said exactly who they’ll be partnering with and WestJet released a statement saying they’ll be keeping their loyalty program in house, so I’m not hugely confident. As I’m just about to cash in my points for an airline ticket, I wonder whether it is time to consider some Aeroplan alternatives rather than keep racking up points in a program with an uncertain usefullness.

I’ve been collecting Aeroplan points for years, and use a TD Aeroplan Platinum Visa credit card to boost the number of points I earn. I trade my points in in to take extra flights or bring a family member on work trips with me. Admittedly the Aeroplan program had got less useful a few years back when they introduced tiers of membership and rewards, but I was still loyal to the program and it definitely made me choose to book on Air Canada over WestJet. I hadn’t even considered whether this loyalty was misplaced, and I could have been getting more bang for my buck elsewhere. Read More

20 ways to have the BEST Calgary Summer

Summer in Calgary is HOT! We mean that both figuratively and literally. The weather in Calgary is glorious throughout the summer months, and there’s so much to do that encompasses every possible passion and interest. To spark your imagination for your next Calgary visit, we’re listing our best Calgary summer ideas for you:

  1. Take a paddle-boarding lesson on the Bow River with Undercurrents. Already know how how to use the board without falling flat on your face? Just rent one and head out to one of the glorious lakes around the city instead (Undercurrents also rent inflatable roof racks so you can transport the board).
  2. Go day drinking on a patio. This handy guide from Avenue Magazine helps locate the perfect patio in Calgary according to factors such as how late each patio is open, how bright or shady it is, whether there is parking, if brunch is served, and other vital info.
  3. Grab a cone at Village Ice Cream, because this small batch hand crafted ice cream is incredible, It doesn’t matter what flavour you go for, they’re all amazing.

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Six of the Absolute Best Travel Apps

Seeing as how you’re carrying a super computer on your phone, you will want to ensure you are getting the most out of your device. Yes, you use it for social media and games, but for frequent travelers, having the right apps can make life away from home a lot easier. We’ve rounded up six of the best travel apps you’ll want to download to your phone right now:

If you want to find the cheapest flight possible to wherever you’re going, Skyscanner is the app you need. Seriously, don’t book any flight without consulting Skyscanner first. More than 60 million people use Skyscanner, because it finds you the best selection of flights at the best prices, and is easy to navigate. Read More

10 Ways to Love a Winnipeg Summer Even More

A visit to Winnipeg is always fun, whether you’re a first timer or have been dozens of times, there’s always something new and fun to find in the city. Visiting in the winter is charming, but a Winnipeg Summer is the best – for so many reasons. Here are 10 to get you started on your Winnipeg Summer visit:

1) Go sip craft beer on the Barley Brothers fabulous new patio in the sunshine. Truth be told there are lots of excellent micro-breweries and brew-pubs in Winnipeg, and you could make a great day out of visiting a few of them. What makes Barley Brothers stand out is the fact that it has the most beer taps of any lounge in Canada, and they offer beers from breweries around the world. So whatever your favourite kind of beer is, you’re bound to find it here. Read More

Coming to a Calgary Conference This Summer? Lucky You.

There are plenty of great reasons to visit Calgary for a vacation, but sometimes we find ourselves visiting a city for a conference and know very little about it. This summer Calgary is hosting many big conferences and meetings, from the Operational Excellence in Energy, Chemicals & Resources Summit and TECNOVATE in June, to the Meeting of the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology in July (to name just a few of the diverse meetings happening here). If that’s the case for you, and you’re arriving in Calgary with little knowledge of the city, let me first congratulate you: Being invited to a Calgary conference is a real stroke of luck.

Why? Calgary is a young, fun city with an incredible restaurant scene, surrounded by the majestic and easily accessible Rocky Mountains, and is filled with cool neighbourhoods and sprawling urban parks. It would be a crime if all you saw of the city was the inside of the conference venue, so here are five places you should be sure to escape to between sessions or when the work and schmoozing is done. (Heck, why not add on a few extra days here too, you’re going to love it here.)

For a night outRanchman’s Cookhouse and Dancehall is the quintessential cowboy bar, complete with two-step classes and a mechanical bull. Come here for beers, or a steak, and watch excellent country bands playing to a full dance floor. If Ranchman’s looks familiar, you might recognize it from the movies Brokeback Mountain and Cool Runnings. Read More

15 Family Travel Hacks to Make Your Next Vacation the Best Ever

While of course we’re going to say that staying in one of our comfortable and luxurious suites is THE ultimate family travel hack (we do have full kitchens, washers and driers, and plenty of space for everyone), there are some really easy and cool ways to make all your family trips a smoother and more fun experience. Check out these genius family travel hacks (and book with us next time you bring your kids to Calgary or Winnipeg):

Road Trip Hacks

Check out some family friendly books on CD from your local library. There are plenty that are great stories for all ages (and won’t bore you stupid to listen to) like the massive seven book long Chronicles of Narnia, or Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy for older kids and teens.

For preteens invest in a really hard game for their tablet that they’ll get totally sucked into. Monument Valley is a great one, as is Ghosts of Memories.

Throw pillows in the back of the car, not only for sleeping on, but also to provide a base for colouring books or games.

Portion out snacks in ziplock bags so that you’re not going to bust through that mega-bag of crackers or candies in one go. Read More

Five Places Every First Time Winnipeg Visitor Should See

If you’re heading to Winnipeg for the first time, whether it be for business or pleasure, prepare to be surprised: Winnipeg is a seriously cool city with a lot going on. This highly under-rated city has an excellent restaurant scene, vibrant arts community, and plenty of cultural attractions. Added to that, Winnipeg is a pretty city surrounded by beautiful parklands. Here are five places that every first time Winnipeg visitor should be sure to check out:

The Forks sits on the banks of the Red River, and is home to a National Historic Site, the fantastic Canadian Museum of Human Rights, a huge market with 300 vendors selling local produce and crafts, and lots of sweet indie boutiques. Plenty of the city’s best restaurants are to be found here, including the fabulous Smith Restaurant which specializes in farm to table dining. Read More

20 Reasons to Spend Summer in Calgary

Calgary is an awesome city. Okay, we are based there so we may be a teeny-tiny bit biased, but there’s so much to do in Calgary year round that it is always a great time to be there. However, Summer in Calgary holds a special allure, and we wanted to give you 20 reasons to spend this summer in Calgary, or at least part of this summer. Here we go:

  1. Calgary Ukrainian Fest (June 3 – 4) is a celebration of all things Ukrainian (dance, music, lots and lots of fantastic food). As well as being lots of fun, there’s a strong cultural and educational component, so if this is your heritage, then you can explore that there.
  2. As soon as the weather warms up, patio dining and drinking is a pleasure that Calgarians embrace whole-heartedly. There are lots of sweet patios in Calgary, and when Open Table put together a list of the best 100 patios in Canada, 11 in Calgary made that list.

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Business Travel Hacks for Beginners

When you take your first business trips, it can be a pretty exciting experience, especially if you’re someone who hasn’t traveled an awful lot up until that point. Most newbie business travellers get a few things wrong when they start, and may end up with more out-of-pocket expenses than expected. Here are some simple business travel hacks for beginners that’ll get you acting like a pro from day one away from the office.

Create a universal packing list to keep on your phone. There are certain things you’ll likely always need to take with you on the road, and things that it is really easy to forget to take, or leave at the hotel (phone chargers, earbuds, medications). If you have a basic list to reference before and during every trip, you’re less likely to forget anything (or need to buy replacements when you get where you’re going). There are plenty of apps that can help you with this, but Evernote is a popular one for keeping life organized.
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