Canada

8 Best Hotels in Charlottetown for Your Next Trip to Prince Edward Island

Explore Canada's smallest yet historically most significant provincial capital with a stay at one of these Charlottetown hotels.

Quick, which Canadian city is home to the world’s longest-running musical seen by 2.5 million people, offers the continent’s only authentic Chinese junk boat tour, makes the best ice cream in the country and is within a 45-minute drive of 20 golf courses? The answer will surprise many because it’s one of Canada’s smallest cities in its smallest province: Charlottetown, PEI.

It’s also the country’s birthplace, where the Fathers of Confederation met in 1864 to create Canada. Relive some of the city’s rich history by booking a room in the same hotel where some of those delegates stayed at the Charlottetown Conference over 150 years ago. Stay in a contemporary luxury hotel across the street from the Confederation Centre for the Arts where the Anne of Green Gables musical still runs. Enjoy your opulent room in a sumptuously furnished Victorian Inn that’s also a National Historic Site before walking down to the pier for that unique boat tour or heading out for a round of golf on courses that have hosted some of the world’s best.

In the midst of all this history, you’ll find local gastronomy, craft breweries, big outdoor celebrations and a mild Maritime climate, making for a perfect vacation destination.

The Charlottetown Hotel Where Canada was Born

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Just seven years before the now famous Charlottetown Conference of 1864, a local developer converted a store into the Pavilion Hotel. Today, it’s the main building where The Great George operates. Here, delegates lobbied and fiercely debated the pros and cons of creating an independent nation.

Nearly a century and a half later, after the historic landmark had fallen into disrepair, local investors purchased and restored the storied structure to its former glory. They updated its many and varied rooms and its historic lobby with contemporary comforts, furnishings and services, making this one of Canada’s truly unique boutique hotels.

From the outside, The Great George resembles a streetscape of adjoined row houses, each painted a different cheerful colour. Seventeen buildings in all make up the hotel, taking up nearly a full city block. Take the guided historic walking tour to learn more about the history of these buildings.

In the lobby, a stuffed leather sofa invites you to sit before the fireplace with a glass of wine or local craft beer, the first of which is complimentary at happy hour each afternoon. Homemade cookies are available until midnight. Guests rave about these and other special services at the hotel, consistently rating it at the top of Charlottetown accommodations.

Among the 54 suites are those with loft bedrooms and larger units with two to four bedrooms. One of the most enticing Experience Packages at The Great George is the Romance Package, which comes with a bottle of sparkling wine, chocolate-dipped strawberries, locally made truffles and a rose petal turndown service. Checking into one of the Romantic Hideaway Suites with king bed, fireplace and double Jacuzzi makes for a complete getaway for that special occasion.

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The Great George

Top rated
9.3 Excellent (698 reviews)
Excellent Location 9.5 / 10
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Lovingly Restored Treasures at Fairholm National Historic Inn

Within a short stroll of The Great George, another set of historic buildings stretched across more than half a city block constitutes a second iconic Charlottetown property. The Fairholm National Historic Inn is the centrepiece of this remarkable collection that includes the Hillhurst Inn, the Cranford House and the Carriage House.

The five-star Fairholm Inn is a National Historic Site partly because of the work of the Rogers family, the previous owners for a century until 1999. Irene Rogers—the last of the family to live there—was instrumental in Charlottetown’s preservation movement of the late 20th century, ensuring that her own historic home was a shining example. The current owners worked hard at restoring the property, carefully researching and working to bring back all its original splendour.

Many of the home’s existing features, like mint condition, 100-year-old wallpaper in the foyer and fireplaces throughout the building remain, while renovations include the addition of en-suite bathrooms and other modern comforts. All the restoration work was completed within the guidelines of its Historic Site status. The result is that today, the Fairholm is a shining star in one of Canada’s most historic cities.

The Hillhurst Inn, another heritage property on the same grounds, offers spacious rooms with gorgeous original woodwork and grand views over historic streetscapes. At the Cranford House, large windows, decks and balconies overlook the extensive gardens from open concept suites—some with private entrances—creating the sense of grand spaciousness. The large, six suites of the Carriage House all have private entrances and full kitchens, giving each the feel of a private apartment.

The four properties are linked by meandering pathways through gardens to a gazebo and outdoor fireplace.

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Fairholm National Historic Inn

Top rated
9.2 Excellent (362 reviews)
Excellent Location 9.1 / 10
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A tempting boutique hotel in Charlottetown

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Another Charlottetown property presents the restoration of a completely different kind. Once the motel-style Islander, new management transformed it into the 45-room boutique hotel named for the street on which it stands.

The Hotel on Pownal offers an excellent combination of value and contemporary comfort and style. The lobby and breakfast room downstairs at street level offer complimentary coffee, tea and freshly baked cookies before a cozy fireplace, providing welcomed refreshment for weary travellers of all ages. Those cookies are a reminder to the young ones that the main outlet for Cow’s Ice Cream, once named Canada’s best ice cream, is a short drive away.

The Hotel on Pownal excels at assembling tempting packages for families, couples and groups. While some include movie passes and tickets to live music or sports events, others encourage guests to explore Charlottetown’s culinary and craft brewing scenes. A weeknight reception with complimentary wine and local craft beer get guests in the mood for a night out in Charlottetown’s downtown with lots of options for entertainment, attractions, dining and shopping.

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The Hotel on Pownal

Top rated
8.9 Excellent (764 reviews)
Excellent Location 9.5 / 10
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The Perfect Place To Stay On Charlottetown's Waterfront

At least three characteristics recommend Charlottetown’s Delta, the most prominent building on the waterfront. In 2017, the hotel began $6 million in renovations to all guest rooms and hallways all the way up to the tenth floor. These renovations are in addition to previous improvements on the main floor in the lobby and restaurant. The entirely renovated rooms come with all new furniture, giving the hotel a contemporary feel of comfort and style.

The hotel’s rooms and the nearby convention centre overlook Charlottetown’s wharves and floating docks where everything from sailboats to cruise ships to North America’s only authentic Chinese Junk Tour share berths. Casual outdoor dining is available dockside at the hotel’s Brakish patio. Inside, at the Water’s Edge Restaurant Bar and Grill, island fish, beef, pork, chicken, cheese, beverages, vegetables and fruits feature prominently on the menu in dishes like Island Steak and Chips made with famous PEI potatoes, or Chicken Supreme made with very special PEI black garlic.

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Delta Hotels Prince Edward

Top rated
8.7 Excellent (972 reviews)
Excellent Location 9.3 / 10
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A Central Hotel for Anne of Green Gables Attendees

The central location of The Holman Grand is just one of the characteristics that place it among Charlottetown’s best. The Holman is literally across the street from the historic PEI Legislative Assembly building and the Confederation Centre for the Arts, where the Anne of Green Gables musical continues on stage, extending its Guinness World Record run. The Holman’s neighbourhood is itself part of downtown Charlottetown. The building’s stylish exterior adds to the attractive streetscape at night with its creative lighting.

Inside, the check-in desk is in the seven-storey atrium, a feature that helps brand the Holman as “grand.” The extensive spa and massage services, the waterfall pool and the sommelier-inspired dining at the Redwater Rustic Grille have helped build the Holman’s reputation as Charlottetown’s luxury, chic hotel. PEI mussels and oysters, as well as a local cheese board, are favourites on the lunch menu. The restaurant’s wine cellar holds 120 labels, including signature island vintages, which make evening dining at the Redwater a special experience.

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The Holman Grand Hotel

Top rated
9.1 Excellent (1060 reviews)
Excellent Location 9.4 / 10
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A Peaceful Stay in A Former Notre Dame Convent

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Another particularly special Charlottetown renovation is the Sydney Boutique Inn. This former Notre Dame Convent—it later served as a school for girls and finally a nursing home for nuns who lived here—dates from 1857 and retains that sense of hushed privacy one would expect of such a building in a quiet residential neighbourhood, but still within walking distance of downtown.

Exterior and interior features like the clean architectural lines of the five-storey brick walls, solid wood doors, hardwood floors, detailed stairwells and heritage door and window trim lent themselves well to restoration and renovation into the luxury rooms, suites and apartments the building now offers.

The creators of the inn worked to retain the historic significance of the property while creating a new life for the building. Much of the original woodwork remains, while furniture, draperies and kitchens are custom made. The luxurious bathrooms are outfitted with marble features and designer fixtures. Wool carpets cozy up the spaces that are built within the structural walls, staying true to the original footprints of the rooms. The finest rooms are the executive king suites with lavish king beds and luxurious linens, elegant furniture and even crystal chandeliers. High-speed internet and smart TVs are decided departures from the building’s days as a home for its former frugal residents.

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Sydney Boutique Inn & Suites

Excellent Cleanliness 9.3 / 10
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Great Dining at This High Rated Charlottetown Hotel

Sure, the Dundee Arms is a highly rated Charlottetown hotel with 22 finely appointed rooms, befitting its heritage as a Queen Anne Revival mansion built in 1903. But it’s the remarkable dining scene here that makes it a real standout in this small city filled with exceptional accommodations.

Visit the Hearth and Cricket Pub for the traditional pub menu and local libations enjoyed in the casual atmosphere of a British-style pub, complete with fireplace. Live entertainment makes Friday evenings particularly special. The more formal Griffon Dining Room presents a seasonally themed menu inspired by local produce, seafood and farmed ingredients. In summer, the large, outdoor patio that seats 72 is a favourite local gathering spot. The Dundee Maple Butter Tart is a Charlottetown favourite.

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Dundee Arms Inn

Top rated
8.5 Excellent (553 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.1 / 10
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PEI’s First Five-Star Bed & Breakfast

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The five-star Elmwood Heritage Inn—it’s the first PEI bed and breakfast to achieve such a rating—is so full of character that it was selected as the location for the film “Mrs. Asheboro’s Cat,” starring Ellen Page.

The Elmwood was built by Arthur Peters, the Premier of PEI from 1901 to 1908 and a member of the Cunard family famed in the early 20th century for their worldwide cruise ship line. Hardwood floors and eight original fireplaces—all still in working order—are just some of the features that help retain the opulence one would expect in a building of such pedigree. Simply arriving at the house down the hundred-metre drive beneath the dozens of towering elm trees that give the inn its name feels like a journey back in time.

Each morning, guests descend from the eight deluxe rooms furnished with period antiques and cozy, colourful quilts to the decorous dining room. Here, a gourmet breakfast is served, including home-baked goods, fair-trade coffee, freshly squeezed orange juice and specialty teas, all enjoyed by candlelight. The hosts like to say that the Elmwood was built for comfort and for entertaining traditions they are continuing today.

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Elmwood Heritage Inn

Top rated
9.4 Excellent (162 reviews)
Excellent Cleanliness 9.5 / 10
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