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Update: 2016

It appears the Rodeway has disappeared and at the moment (at least when I went by in late September) there didn't appear to be any hotel concern occupying the old Champlain. I sure hope someone takes it on. It would be a shame to see this stay empty (or even worse, torn down).

Rodeway Inn - Hotel Champlain
2 Front Street, Orillia
(705)325-0853
Pet-Friendly!

Hotel Champlain, Quality Inn, downtown OrilliaThis is a familiar sight to most people who live in or visit Orillia; the long-standing Hotel Champlain, located just off the waterfront at the corner of Mississaga and Front Streets.

The original Champlain hotel got it's start back in May of 1932, and while the interior of this grand old hotel has undergone many upgrades and changes over the years, the face she presents to Orillia remains much the same - the Georgian style columns and porticos retain their old world elegance and the brick facade it's sturdy charm.

Some years ago (35 or 36 I think) I spent a weekend in this hotel. At that time, it was a little shabby - the rooms were small, and the one in which I was installed had a single bed of the old tubular iron variety - possibly c. 1910 or so. The attached bath was small but useable, though plumbing pipes were exposed and still of the old cast iron. This was not uncommon in old buildings. While the fittings and furniture were worn, the room was clean...and it's cost was $9 a night.

Today, a number of restorations and refurbishments later, the charming lobby is still charming and dressed in a style befitting an old matriarch. The floors above were reconfigured to create some slightly larger more modern rooms, and at the moment, she now known as the "Rodeway Inn Champlain", but I'm certain you'll find any long-time local will still call it "The Champlain" ... it will always be The Champlain to me, no matter what name is on the sign (and geeze, the new sign seriously doesn't go with the hotel).  The fact that you are but a few steps from the waterfront, the main street (next door to a larger grocery and a liquor store and the local Royal Canadian Legion doesn't hurt) and other local attractions should keep The Champlain filled to capacity on most weekends.

Parking is minimal for this hotel, however there is a large parking area in the plaza lot directly attached to the hotel's parking area. Being located within walking distance of most waterfront events (Canada Day Celebrations, Cottage and In-water Boat Show, Tribute Artist Weekends, Downtown Classic Car show, Scottish Festival and many other similar events) as well as numerous restaurants (one in the hotel, one across the street, and half a dozen or so a short walk up the main street) and the downtown shopping district make it easy for visitors to get around on foot, saving gas and enjoying the area up close, rather than from a car.

Although the hotel is not one of the most highly rated (three stars), it is quaint and clean (keep in mind that this one of Orillia's older buildings and has a historical ambiance), and is in a perfect location for visitors attending any events hosted in the downtown area - and, one of the local hotels that will take pets.

Orillia - Tux Waterfront Patio at the Hotel ChamplainThe old Tux Nightclub waterfront Patio - was once part of the offerings at the Hotel Champlain. The patio fronted on Mississaga Street, across from the liquor store and the Zoo Bar & Grill, and it's portion looked out onto the waterfront. At the time this was taken, the building's side panel was painted with a tropical sunset and a large bottle of Smirnoff vodka. Now ... well, now the marvelous painting is long gone and the patio bar, a memory (although there has been talk of a revival so ... we shall see)