Quebec City Tour #5: Saint Sauveur

St-Sauveur, Quebec

Saint Sauveur, like neighbouring Saint Roch, has a tangible working class past, but this is where similarities end. Saint-Roch is in the throes of gentrification and is rapidly becoming a new downtown. Saint-Sauveur has retained its modest rundown feel, but is one of the few places attracting a noticeable immigrant presence in lilywhite Quebec City. This is the neighbourhood to hit for asian markets, african shops, and latino grocers. They’re right there in between the old-school Roi de la patate, Au Royaume de la Tarte, and Tabagie de l’ouvrier.

St-Sauveur, Quebec

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Saint-Sauveur is the cheapest neighbourhood to live in within a 15 minute walk of the centre. It therefore attracts university students, who are moving into digs next to crack houses. Among the rows of tacky vinyl, fake-stone siding, and kitschy plastic decorations there’s the odd gem: large 19th-century mansions, rows of well-restored old mansard houses, or even this.

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The Bissonnette home, built in the chateau style, stands out in Saint Sauveur. It was the home of Dr. Bissonnette from 1924 to 1975.

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Saint-Sauveur Church

The most well-known landmark in the neighbourhood is not the church spire but Taverne Jos Dion. Founded in the 1930s, it is the oldest tavern in the city still serving beer today. Apparently, it was also the last men’s-only tavern in the city until the law obliged them to admit women in 1986. It still has an authentic feel with the stuffed hunting trophies on the wall and hard-boiled eggs in vinegar at the counter. Although intellectuals, fashionistas, men and women now congregate there from the cooler neighbourhoods nearby, it’s not quite like the hypertavernes on Montreal’s Plateau. It still attracts its fair share of local workers, truckers, and drunks.

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This entry was written by Patrick Donovan , posted on Thursday March 15 2007at 10:03 pm , filed under Architecture, Canada and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink . Post a comment below or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

One Response to “Quebec City Tour #5: Saint Sauveur”

  • Last time I was in Quebec, I only had time to do a quick drive-through of St. Sauveur after wandering around St. Roch. It’s a very interesting part of town, like southwest Montreal only way, way more working-class-fabulous, if that’s even possible.

    I hope you’ll do Limoilou one of these days. I don’t know much about it but I like the name.