Experience a century of historical charm and old world elegance in the heart of this romantic setting, the world famous Fairmont Empress. This tour takes approximately 90 minutes and enlightens our guests about all the history of that beautiful heritage building. Wearing replica outfits from 1908, the year that The Empress first opened its doors, the tour guides will help you to discover -

  • how the hotel was built on water
  • the incredible & tragic story about Francis Rattenbury, the architect, his distinguished career and dramatic decline
  • tales of famous guests and wealthy residents
  • the hotel's eventful history as a world-renowned landmark
  • why the hotel was slated for demolition
  • what happened to the beautiful stained glass dome and much, much more!

Knowing the history of the hotel makes the "Tea" experience much more memorable! We conduct a tour that operates every day from mid May to mid October at 10:00 a.m. daily. In the off-season a private tour can be arranged for a groups min of 5pp max 20pp. Please call Dining reservations 250.995.4688 or 250.592.9255 to make arrangements. It is important to note that we must begin the tour before 11:30 a.m. as we have restricted access to some of the public dining areas after this time. Again... a wonderful activity to arrange with afternoon Tea or just the tour itself!

The Fairmont Empress Tour starts at 10:00am. Please meet by the Fairmont Empress store located next to the Tea Lobby (on the Belleville Street end of the hotel) at 9:55 a.m.

Tour Cost: $13.00 + tax Canadian for Adults; $6.50 + tax for children 6-12 years; children under 6 are free. Tickets can be purchased at the Dining Reservation Desk at the Fairmont Empress or by reserving ahead by calling 1-250-995-4688.

The tours are wheelchair accessible and all ages are welcome! Click here for a photo tour of the Fairmont Empress.

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