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Destination feature meet Carrie Often spotted running in heels from event to event or discovering new restaurants for her e-zine, www.zurbaines.com, jet-setter Carrie is happiest in Montréal, whether at a cocktail party, unwinding at a spa or shopping at one of her favorite boutiques for her next party outfit. july/august 2014 91 Happy Girls Guide to montreal I happily slink through a buzzing crowd of patrons as I make my way to our table. We heard that the Holts Café was a hot spot for business lunches and mid-afternoon shopping breaks, but the sheer Pac-man-like shuffling to reach the table really drives the point home. This is the place to be. As conversation floats around me, I scan over the menu and compile a mental list of standouts that make my mouth water just reading the description. It is a lengthy list, but I manage to make up my mind and choose the warm goat cheese salad, which amounts to a pile of watercress, pecans and apples drizzled with a warm maple and apple cider vinaigrette. We also select an order of the truffle-oil potato chips and chives for the table since this appears to be the dish locals crave and the server pushes it as a must. In the meantime, while I anxiously await our server’s return, I jump into the chatter my girlfriends are having about the decor and atmosphere. Holts Café is nestled on the first floor of Holt Renfrew, Montréal’s luxury fashion destination for more than 175 years, and has a primped and polished modern design. Sitting just outside the women’s fashion area, I ogle the latest collections from Burberry, Theory and Judith & Charles while noshing on my delectable lunch. It is the perfect playground for my fashion-focused girlfriends and me to fuel up before we dive in wallet first. But we aren’t in this alone. Clearing our plates and licking our lips, in walks our shopping guide for the day, Carrie MacPherson, who is affectionately described by one of the ladies as “ Montréal’s own Carrie Bradshaw.” I spot Carrie as she elegantly saunters through the crowd as if on a runway in an outfit we would all happily steal and a glamorous necklace to top it off. Introductions are made and instantly I know we are all in for a legendary shopping and city tour. And so, I asked Carrie to pass along her top shopping spots, most adored spas, and delicious restaurants picks to you in this happy girls guide to Montréal. ´by Leah Murr “I love Montreal for its joie de vivre attitude. We live to eat, drink and play. Creativity is omnipresent – there’s a festival, concert or party everywhere you turn. And we communicate in our own language, combining English and French in the same sentence.” — Carrie MacPherson


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