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Across Canada, the universities nestled in each of our cities are hubs for innovation, creativity, and social interaction. Here in Montreal, Concordia University is a case in point.
The university campus has much to offer students and oftentimes locals, too, including vibrant eateries and beautiful spots primed for relaxation and focus. Now, as students prepare for their return to campus this fall, we wanted to learn about their favourite spots in and around Concordia — so we asked them.
Here are five of the best locations recommended by Concordia students in Montreal and why each spot brings them joy.
Upon recognizing the need for an upscale burger restaurant in the Notre-Dame-de-Grâce district, one local foodie launched Notre-Boeuf-de-Grace (NBG). What started as a fun and intimate restaurant dishing up notable eats in 2015 has grown to nine locations across Greater Montreal.
This spot is favoured by second-year history student Greg Krychman. “I started at Concordia in January 2020, and I only had a few weeks to really get to know the campus before the COVID pandemic shut everything down,” he says. “One spot I did go to is NBG, which serves burgers.”
Krychman tells Daily Hive, “the food is amazing,” and pays a special mention to the “really helpful” staff. “I went there on Fridays because I wanted to treat myself — because there’s nothing better to do on a Friday after a long week.”
Early morning or late evening study sessions are something all students and recent grads can relate to. The Webster Library on Concordia’s Sir George Williams campus is a popular choice for many, seeing over two million visitors per year between 2017 and 2018.
The library went through its final phase of transformation in late 2017, which was celebrated with a reopening ceremony the following spring. Today, in addition to offering traditional library services, it has a technology sandbox and a visualization studio.
Creative writing graduate Tyler Jadah (now Daily Hive’s Montreal City Editor) shares his fond memories of the Webster Library, noting its expansive space. “Concordia Library was my go-to spot for studying, coffee drinking, and the occasional nap (we’ve all been there),” he says.
The CJ Building Atrium
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Back in 1962, Concordia’s Drummond Science Complex opened its doors, and just over four decades later, it was transformed by renovation and expansion into the university’s Communication Studies and Journalism (CJ) Building.
Now, the building is home to an open lounge, a small cafe, and teaching and research facilities with cutting-edge technology. Monika Tesiorowski, who studied her communications major and marketing minor at Concordia, says the atrium in the CJ Building at the Loyola campus is one of her favourite places.
It has “the cutest little coffee corner and floor-to-ceiling windows looking out over a gorgeous courtyard,” she tells Daily Hive. But visiting this spot is not limited to one particular time of the year. Tesiorowski says there’s “no better place to watch the seasons change and get your work done.”
Tucked away on Boulevard de Maisonneuve, Reggies Bar is Concordia’s official student bar. This down-to-earth, student-run restaurant, bar, and co-op dishes up delicious eats at affordable prices.
Students have the option to stop by after class to study, hang out with friends, or attend events organized by Concordia’s student groups. Meanwhile, ordering anything from the nachos to the mac and cheese bowl on the menu can be done using contactless Interac Debit.
“They have sandwiches and all kinds of snacks,” says Krychman of this spot. “The staff was really nice and welcoming, especially to someone who’s brand new and just getting to know the environment.”
Housed within the Concordia Engineering and Visual Arts Building on Rue Sainte-Catherine is Le Gym. While the gym, which is expected to reopen once it’s safe to do so, is primarily for Concordia students, faculty, and staff, it also offers memberships for the public.
With a training space covering 10,000 sq ft, 75 strength stations, 75 state-of-the-art cardio machines, and more, it’s equipped with everything students need for a solid workout or personal training session in between classes. Along with Webster Library, Jadah says it was “equally encouraging having Le Gym five minutes away.”
He adds, “Le Gym is [in] a prime location; you can work out and still be minutes away from your class.”
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