Waterloo was originally part of a large parcel of land given to the Iroquois alliance in 1784. Almost immediately, the native tribes began selling off parts of the land. The first wave of immigration to the area consisted of Pennsylvanian Mennonites. By 1816, the newly established township was named after Waterloo, Belgium and continued to be an attractive destination for German immigrants. Waterloo was incorporated as a full-fledged city in 1948.
Today, Waterloo boasts two universities and a number of high-tech firms and financial companies. As part of Canada's Technology Triangle, Waterloo is a major center of economic development in the province. It's also home to world-class dining, shopping, and entertainment venues, making it a great place for a vacation. No matter your reason for visiting Waterloo, it's important to find the right hotel that allows you to enjoy everything the Tri-Cities has to offer.
Best Time to Visit Waterloo, ON
As with any location in Ontario, the best times to visit are during the spring and fall shoulder seasons. Peak season occurs during the summer months when restaurants, attractions, and parks become crowded not only by tourists, but also by local families. Canadian summers are brief but pleasant, so if you don't mind the crowds or increased hotel prices, June to August can be a wonderful time to visit.
April and May provide a nice sweet spot for visiting Waterloo between the chilly winter and crowded summer. Average highs tend to rest in the 50s or 60s, which is ideal for sightseeing. Temperatures do drop after dark, though, so be sure to wear layers. If you don't mind the chilly nights, you can score a great hotel deal during the spring months.
September through November offers pleasant weather that can't be beat. Hotel rates start to drop at the end of the summer season, but local fall festivals can hike up prices, so be sure to plan your trip well in advance to get the best deal.
If you plan on braving a Canadian winter, expect temperatures in the 20s and 30s from December to March. While biting winds tend to keep the tourists away, you'll still find plenty to do throughout the Tri-Cities. Even better, hotel rates are at their lowest during the winter season.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in Waterloo, ON:
Waterloo by Star Rating
Below are 3 charts demonstrating mean price trends by star rating class in Waterloo, ON. You can use these charts to determine the cheapest time to stay in Waterloo for any future trips.
Luxury Hotel Options in Waterloo, ON
If you prefer to book a more upscale hotel in Waterloo, you're in luck. Les Diplomates B&B Executive Guest House is adjacent to Sugarbush Park in an elegant Victorian-style building. While the bed & breakfast only offers four rooms, each is upscale with cable television, a DVD player, free Wi-Fi, and a fireplace. Some even add whirlpool tubs, and bathrooms are either private or en suite. Social areas at the bed & breakfast include a parlor and formal dining room. Parking is free, as is a delicious five-course breakfast, which is served on fine china. Afternoon tea is also available for an extra fee.
Housed in an 1890 building, Waterloo Hotel is a refined accommodation near Waterloo Park and the Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery. Guest suites are traditionally decorated with pine floors, high ceilings, antique beds, feathered duvets, and tiled bathrooms. They also feature coffeemakers, cable TV, free Wi-Fi, and gas fireplaces. Off-street parking is free, and guests are also entitled to breakfast vouchers that allow them to dine at local restaurants.
Located within walking distance of THEMUSEUM, Crowne Plaza Kitchener – Waterloo is an elegantly modern hotel with a contemporary seafood restaurant on-site. Guest rooms are bright and airy with paid Wi-Fi access, flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and microwaves. Suites add free Wi-Fi, separate living areas, and whirlpool tubs. There's also a fitness center, indoor pool, and business center on the property.
Affordable Hotel Options in Waterloo, ON
3 Star Average Prices: $112.50
Finding an affordable hotel in Waterloo is easier than you might think. Hotel Laurier – King Street Residence is an affordable dorm-style accommodation geared toward budget-minded travelers. In fact, the dorm is used by Wilfrid Laurier University students during the semester. Both self-contained flats and dorm rooms are available, and you can expect amenities such as a single bed, wardrobe, work desk, and internet access. Guests share bathrooms, and every floor offers a common area with a television, sofas, and kitchen appliances.
Canadas Best Value Inn in Kitchener is another great option. This simple lodging is located close to the Woodside National Historic Site and features free parking and continental breakfast. Pets are allowed, and guest rooms offer Wi-Fi, cable television, microwaves, and mini-fridges. Some rooms add kitchenettes, which can help you stretch your budget even further.
Howard Johnson – Kitchener Conestoga is an unfussy hotel offering guest rooms and suites with flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, microwaves, and coffeemakers. Additional guest amenities include an indoor heated pool, a free continental breakfast, a whirlpool, a business center, and a fitness center.
Conveniently located off Highway 8, Knights Inn Kitchener is a relaxed budget hotel near the Centre in the Square Theatre and THEMUSEUM. Guest rooms are simple but feature free Wi-Fi access, mini-fridges, and coffeemakers. Some rooms add separate living areas and kitchenettes, making this lodging a great option for families. Knights Inn Kitchener also includes free parking and continental breakfast, and there's a hot tub and seasonal outdoor pool on-site.
2 Star Average Prices: $89.99
Best Discounts in Waterloo, ON
If you know where to stay, you can save even more money on your trip to Waterloo by taking advantage of special discounts and promotions. Many area hotels, including Holiday Inn Kitchener – Waterloo Conference Center, offer discounted rates to certain demographics. AAA/CAA members, seniors, and government employees can enjoy as much as 20 percent off an accommodation's best available rates. Just be sure to book the special rate in advance and show proof of eligibility at the time of check-in.
Other properties offer their own specials throughout the year. For instance, The Waterloo Hotel offers a weekend special that includes free breakfast, internet access, and free parking, all at a discounted rate that's perfect for a weekend getaway. Special group and event rates are also available at many area hotels.
Best Value Options in Waterloo, ON
Waterloo boasts many mid-range hotel options that give you plenty of value for the money. Four Points by Sheraton Waterloo – Kitchener Hotel & Suites is a modern property within walking distance of the Conestoga Mall. The unfussy guest rooms feature bottled water, mini-fridges, free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, work desks, and microwaves. Upgraded rooms add pull-out sofas and kitchenettes, while suites include separate bedrooms, living areas, or whirlpool tubs. There's a casual restaurant on-site as well as a lounge, fitness center, hot tub, and indoor pool.
The newly renovated Comfort Inn Waterloo is another great option close to the city's universities. The guest rooms are modern and stylishly decorated with coffeemakers, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi. Parking is complimentary, and there's a currency exchange service on-site for international travelers. You can also experience the hotel's family-style restaurant, which is located adjacent to the property.
Must-See Attractions in Waterloo, ON
Whether you're visiting Waterloo for business or for pleasure, there are a number of nearby attractions worth seeing. The Conestoga Mall is your go-to shopping destination in the Tri-Cities. With more than 130 retail spaces, a food court, and a cinema, it's the perfect place for an afternoon excursion. Not only can you relish in a bit of retail therapy, but you can also learn about local history at the City of Waterloo Museum, which is conveniently located inside the mall by the entrance to the food court.
If you're visiting Waterloo with children, you won't want to miss THEMUSEUM. Ontario's premier children's museum, THEMUSEUM boasts a range of interactive exhibits to keep young minds engaged. The site's temporary exhibits are always changing, providing something new for children with each visit, but the venue's permanent exhibits are also designed to keep kids coming back for more. Express your creativity on the Virtual Graffiti Wall, view the plants adorning the Living Wall, create sculptures in Construction Alley, and hone your stop-motion skills at the Animation Station.
As the only Canadian gallery dedicated to ceramic, enamel, glass, and stained glass, the Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery is a favorite among art lovers. The gallery boasts more than 900 items in the permanent collection, which spans five exhibition galleries. Few galleries play as significant a role in the preservation and promotion of Canadian artists' works.
Exploring everything Waterloo has to offer can take some time, but no matter what your itinerary includes, your visit here is sure to be a memorable one. Whether you're looking for a luxury hotel or something more budget-friendly, you can find the perfect Waterloo hotel to meet your needs and budget.
The City of Waterloo is a vibrant place to visit, with so much to do and see. With so many hotels in Waterloo, whether you come here for a business meeting or a family vacation, you are sure to enjoy all that this picturesque place has to offer, including lively arts and cultural scenes, a bustling uptown core and vibrant public spaces.
Waterloo offers a range of internationally-acclaimed museums and galleries, stunning architecture, exciting nightlife, fantastic shopping and a diverse array of eateries and bars.
It has a rich history heritage that you can learn more about at the City of Waterloo Museum, by visiting the historic district or by taking a stroll around Waterloo Park.
Waterloo is one of the cities that belongs to Canada Technology Triangle. The main area's attractions are excellent education at University of Waterloo, urban amenities, strong sense of community and rewarding lifestyle.
Sleep cheap in Waterloo
If you are travelling to Waterloo on a tight budget on holiday or a cheeky city break, there are various cheap hotels which can accommodate your basic needs.
The below are the top three hotels in Waterloo offering lowest prices.
HB Guest Home 2, just a stone's throw away from the University of Waterloo provides all guests with spacious and clean rooms. Main amenities include free WIFI and parking. Prices start from as little as $59 per night.
Canada Best Value Inn, located within 15 minute drive of University of Waterloo offers main amenities such as complimentary WI-FI and parking. Every of the 30 rooms has kitchenette as well as balcony. Prices start with as little as $80 per night.
Comfort Inn Waterloo, situated right in the heart of Waterloo provides extensive range of perks such as WI-FI, bar, lounge and laundry service. Every room offers LCD TVs and refrigerators. If you want to be close to city center and enjoy the Waterloos' attractions, then book a room from just $89 per night.
Luxury accommodation in Waterloo
If you are looking for vibrant, stylish and sophisticated hospitality then look no further than two hotels in Waterloo where you can relax and indulge in luxury. The two luxury hotels offer a range of facilities that one can only dream.
Delta Waterloo is an inner city hotel offering contemporary rooms and suites along with technologically advanced conference facilities. For those who want to stay fit while being away, Delta Waterloo provides world class fitness facility including gym and indoor pool. Located in the heart of Uptown Waterloo, you can enjoy stunning scenery, excellent shopping and range of eateries and bars at your door step. Prices start with $198 per night.
Homewood Suites by Hilton Waterloo, located yards away from the attractive village St. Jacobs surrounded by beautiful skiing trails offers spacious rooms equipped with kitchen, LCD TV and complimentary WI-FI. The amenities and services include: fitness and gym facilities, laundry service, gift shop and currency exchange. Prices start with $190 per night depending on the season of the year.
Must do things in Waterloo
With so much to do and see in Waterloo, there are range of attractions to enjoy for everyone. When choosing your hotel in Waterloo, you need to think what you would like to and whether you mind commuting in case you are in the outskirts of the city. From green areas such as Waterloo Park where you can go for a nice stroll to fascinating museums like Earth Sciences museum where you will find about treasures of out earth.
If you fancy a bit of history, you should pay a visit to the city of Waterloo museum which offers permanent display for the City's Heritage collection.
Going out in Waterloo can be an exciting experience for you and your friends. With dynamics cocktail bars like Elements and glorious pubs like Mcabe's Irish Pub, it is no wonder that visitors are considering Waterloo a great place to go out.
FAQs about hotels in Waterloo