We said goodbye to Jasper early driving out into the darkness at 7:30am. After a few days of clear weather the Icefields Parkway was a much easier drive and we made good time arriving at Lake Louise within 3 hours. Although it was still December 12 in Canada the sun was rising on the 13th in Australia and birthday wishes for Shan started rolling in. Lake Louise was still the magical winter wonderland we visited the previous week but this time was special as we drove up to the Chateau to check into what is one of the most glorious hotels in the world. Thanks to Ads highly developed negotiation skills we managed both an early check in and upgrade!! It felt like being in a real life Hallmark Christmas movie as we were met in the grand foyer by the bell hop wearing a name tag – Mr Belvedere! He took the kids over to a special counter for their own check in and after they signed their names into a large leather bound book they were able to pick toys from a huge wooden chest.
We spent the morning exploring the expansive hotel and shops before venturing out into the snow. The walk around the edge of the lake was amazing then returning over the lake itself was memorable, there’s something charming knowing that you’re walking on thick ice that is normally the most fabulous blue lake. After getting sufficiently cold Ad and the kids went back to our room to relax and warm up while Shan treated herself to a birthday boozy hot chocolate before her massage which was secretly organised as an early birthday surprise.
While she was gone the hotel staff delivered a birthday package of chocolate coated strawberries, gummy lollies (for the kids of course), popcorn and chocolate and walnut cookies. The level of service provided by the Fairmont staff was second to none, making us feeling like VIP guests and creating the most amazing memories.
We had a celebratory dinner that evening at the Fairview Bar & Restaurant and it was absolutely beautiful. The food matched the amazing view of the lake from our table.
Later that night the sky cleared and the view of the moonlit lake from our room was extraordinary and had to be seen to be believed.
Tomorrow would be the 13th and officially Shan’s birthday and the day we drive to Pincher Creek and reunite with the McGlynn Family whom we cannot wait to see!!