Canada

7 Great Stays in Waterloo Region - Canada's Tech Heartland

From its recent fame as a technology hub to its fascinating history as a Mennonite colony, Waterloo Region offers plenty of things to see and do.

For fans of technology, Kitchener-Waterloo – and the region of southern Ontario that surrounds it – has a magnetic pull. As Canada’s busiest technology hub, it boasts the second-highest start-up density after Silicon Valley. The University of Waterloo’s world renowned computer science faculty inspired Google and Amazon to set up outposts here, at the beginning of the so-called digital era. Similarly, the world-renowned Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics regularly hosts eminent scientists like Stephen Hawking, adding even more brainpower to Waterloo Region’s technological cachet.

For those less interested in digital assets, the Waterloo Region offers a myriad of other attractions for visitors – from tours of the local Toyota manufacturing plant to the bucolic 19th century atmosphere of St Jacob’s, a village just outside of Waterloo. Home to a large community of Old Order Mennonites, the St Jacob’s Farmer’s Market is where Mennonite families have gathered for generations. Don’t be surprised to hear the clip clop of horses and buggies on county roads around these parts! It’s well worth a drive in the country to see the perfectly neat farms, rolling hills and catch a glimpse of 19th century farm life as it has been lived, unchanged, for the past 150 years.

While exploring Waterloo and its surroundings, any one of the following hotels is a solid, affordable choice. If you plan to visit during Kitchener-Waterloo’s Oktoberfest, make sure to book well ahead as it’s one of the country’s largest fall festivals.

Walper Hotel

For most of the 20th century, the Walper was the place to go in Waterloo, hosting guests like Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, the Queen Mother and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Today, the historic hotel in downtown Kitchener has been re-imagined as a sophisticated boutique hotel. In-room pour over coffee and mid-century modern furnishings appeal to contemporary travellers while blending perfectly with the hotel’s original wooden floors, Victorian arched windows, and lofty ceilings. Each of the 92 rooms is unique in layout and design, making this a favourite frequent stay for design-focused visitors coming north from Silicon Valley and other tech capitals.

Hotel Walper

Kitchener
8.3 Very good (1048 reviews)

Courtyard by Marriott Waterloo St Jacobs

With pops of fresh crimson and vermilion, the brightly renovated Courtyard by Marriott Waterloo St Jacobs hotel is perfectly located, with the town of St Jacob’s a short drive away and the local farmer’s market right outside the door. The Bistro offers fine dining with farm-to-table dishes that showcase Waterloo’s wealth of food producers. Rooms are cozy, many with fireplaces and en-suite whirlpools. With its executive centre and state-of-the-art fitness centre, this is a favourite spot for vacationers and business travellers alike.

Courtyard by Marriott Waterloo St Jacobs

Top rated
Waterloo
8.6 Excellent (1002 reviews)

Homewood Suites by Hilton Waterloo St Jacobs

Located close to St Jacob’s, the Homewood Suites by Hilton Waterloo St Jacobs is another ideal roost for visitors seeking local colour at the farmer’s market, or shoppers who fancy a trip to the excellent outlet mall. After a day of browsing the shops on Main Street, head back to the hotel for a social evening featuring complimentary drinks and eats, featuring local brews and Waterloo Region food specialties.

Homewood Suites by Hilton Waterloo/St. Jacobs

Top rated
Waterloo
9.1 Excellent (1306 reviews)

Best Western Plus Waterloo

For a no-fuss stay with bright and spacious rooms, this Best Western Plus meets guests’ expectations and then some. The pool is popular with families and the adjacent mall and nearby restaurants make this a winning location for a longer stay.

Best Western Plus Waterloo

Waterloo
8.3 Very good (1503 reviews)

The Inn of Waterloo

Another great base for a longer stay, The Inn of Waterloo has a unique, park-like setting, beside a large conservation area. It’s located close to RIM Park where most major sporting events take place, and its supersized indoor swimming pool has a spacious lounge area and other amenities that create a relaxing, spa-like atmosphere – perfect after a day of touring.

Inn of Waterloo & Conference Centre

Waterloo
7.6 Good (1948 reviews)

Crowne Plaza Kitchener Waterloo

The Crowne Plaza is one of the area’s more upscale roosts, so don’t be surprised to spot wedding groups who adore its stately ballroom and elevated decor. It also knocks it out of the park (and onto the fairway) when it comes to golf too, with nearby Rockway Golf Course offering a great experience for seasoned punters.

Crowne Plaza Kitchener-Waterloo

Kitchener
8.1 Very good (1276 reviews)

Delta Hotels by Marriott Waterloo

Located next to the Perimeter Institute, the Delta‘s sleek, almost Scandinavian interior appeals to visiting scholars, students and families attending festivities at either of the two universities nearby. The modern aesthetic and sensibility extends to amenities too, with EV charging stations in the garage and smart TVs with Netflix in the rooms. Pets are also welcome!

Delta Hotels Waterloo

Top rated
Waterloo
9.2 Excellent (1376 reviews)