There is perhaps no other hotel in Canada so beloved and gracious as The Fairmont Empress, presiding as she does over Victoria's Inner Harbour. Experience a century of historical charm, understated elegance with modern luxury. The full-service Willow Stream Spa at The Fairmont Empress offers a combined blend of pampering and elegance to provide a haven of tranquility from today's world of active lifestyles.
You will find something for every interest from ocean bound whale watching adventures to fabulous shopping just footsteps away from your home away from home at The Fairmont Empress.
During the summer months, The Fairmont Empress in Victoria, British Columbia, serves Afternoon Tea to more guests than most hotels in London, England. More than 800 people per day come to enjoy a tradition that has been part of the hotel since she first opened her doors in 1908.
The hotel has long been accustomed to entertaining Hollywood celebrities; Rita Hayworth, Jack Benny, Pat O'Brien, Douglas Fairbanks, Katherine Hepburn, Bob Hope, Bing Crosby, Tallulah Bankhead, Roger Moore, John Travolta, Barbara Streisland, Harrison Ford and a host of others have passed through its lobby.
In 1965, there was much debate on whether to tear down what was becoming a faded, dowdy hotel, to make room for a more modern, functional high-rise hotel. One local newspaper warned that, 'Without this splendid relic of the Edwardian era, literally tens of thousands of tourists will never return. This is the Mecca, this is the heart and soul of the city.' The decision was announced on June 10, 1966: The Fairmont Empress would not be demolished. Instead she would embark on a $4 million campaign of renovation and refurbishment, playfully dubbed 'Operation Teacup.'