Ottawa Rocks With Room-Service Concert Series

Nefe will be performing at the Room Service Concert Series on July 2. Her songs include “Let Me Know” and “Minute”. (Photo Courtesy RBC Bluesfest)

After being postponed in April, Ottawa Tourism and RBC Bluesfest announced Room Service Concert Series: An Ottawa Hotel Exclusive will take place over four weekends beginning Saturday and running until July 10 with 20 participating hotels.

This initiative will offer fans a safe and exclusive concert and comedy experience over eight nights, no tickets required. Anyone staying in a participating hotel on one of the nights of the promotion in June and July will have access to the scheduled concerts for that particular night through the TV in their room, with no logins or special codes. These concerts are exclusive to participating hotels.

An American multi-instrumentalist, songwriter, record producer and arranger, Booker T. Jones is known for his work on Repo Men (2010), X-Men: First Class (2011) and Rush Hour (1998). (Photo Courtesy RBC Bluesfest)

“We were disappointed when we had to postpone the Room Service Concert Series in April but we’re very excited to roll this out in June and July. Ottawa Tourism is proud to support this innovation — the first of its kind that we’ve seen — to safely increase business to our local hotels and provide a much-needed boost to Ottawa’s tourism industry,” says Michael Crockatt, President and CEO of Ottawa Tourism. “We hope people take advantage of this special opportunity and make a full weekend — or two, or three — out of it. All the elements of a fantastic staycation are in play: great music and comedy shows, comfortable and secure accommodations, and a much-needed change of scenery.”

Concerts begin at 7 p.m. EST each night and last approximately three hours. Each evening’s entertainment will be hosted and moderated by Lola Plaku, CEO of New York-based Lola Media Group. Plaku will host a live Q&A session with select artists, for which the public will be able to submit questions during the show.

A Canadian indie pop band from Burlington, Walk off the Earth will be thrilling fans at Room Service Concert Series on July 3. (Photo Courtesy RBC Bluesfest)

Ottawa Tourism reports restaurant patios are open and outdoor tour companies such as Haunted Walk and Escape Bicycle Tours and Rentals are operating. Following a successful pilot project last summer, 1,500 e-scooters are available throughout much of the city for short trips.

Farmers’ markets are open — including a new Saturday producers-only market on York Street in the popular ByWard Market neighbourhood and a Wednesday night market (4-8 p.m.), at the west end Parkdale Market. Parkways lining the Ottawa River are open for cyclists, inline skaters, and runners on weekends, not to mention hundreds of kilometres of recreational pathways. The border with Quebec has reopened, with the Canadian Museum of History’s Queens of Egypt exhibition a big summer draw.

This promotion aims to increase visitation to Capital Region hotels in a safe way, stimulating the local visitor economy, which continues to be hard hit by the pandemic. In 2019, Ottawa saw visitor spending of $2.2 billion; whereas now, Ottawa Tourism estimates a loss of more than $1.4 billion of that spend in 2020, and a further loss of $1.4 billion in 2021.

Mark Monahan, executive director of RBC Bluesfest, is robed up and ready to enjoy the broadcast of the event’s concert series. (Photo Courtesy Ottawa Tourism)

Ottawa Tourism has also updated COVID-19 information on its website and are encouraging anyone visiting the city to refer to official government sources of information. They also recommend that visitors to the city can download the COVID Alert app from the Government of Canada.

“We’ve pulled out all the stops to provide memorable weekend experiences,” says Mark Monahan, executive director of RBC Bluesfest. “While we wait to enjoy in-person events again, we’ve found a way to scratch that itch for a shared musical experience by bringing together a variety of great artists for hotel patrons to enjoy.”

Country music singer-songwriter Tim Hicks from St. Catharines will be making an appearance at Room Service Concert Series (Photo by Dustin Rabin)

Musical Lineup

• Friday, June 18: Alan Doyle; Natalie MacMaster & Donnell Leahy; Fortunate Ones
• Saturday, June 19: Myles Goodwyn; Tim Hicks, Lindsay Ell
• Friday, June 25: Lennon Stella; Sofia Franklyn; Larkin Poe
• Saturday, June 26: Gerry Dee; Jeremy Hotz; Kyle Brownrigg
• Friday, July 2: Third Eye Blind; Moon vs Sun; Nefe
• Saturday, July 3: Lido Pimienta; Fousheé; Walk Off The Earth
• Friday, July 9: Colin James; Booker T. Jones; Christone “Kingfish” Ingram
• Saturday, July 10: A Virtual Conversation with Pete Davidson and Alex Moffat from SNL; Orville Peck

Participating Hotels

Alt Hotel Ottawa
Andaz Ottawa ByWard Market
ARC The.Hotel
Best Western PLUS Ottawa City Centre
Cartier Place Suite Hotel
Courtyard by Marriott Ottawa Downtown
Delta Hotels by Marriott Ottawa City Centre
Fairmont Château Laurier
Hyatt Place Ottawa – West
Homewood Suites by Hilton Ottawa Downtown
Hilton Garden Inn Ottawa Airport
Holiday Inn & Suites Ottawa Kanata
Holiday Inn Express & Suites Ottawa East – Orleans
Hilton Garden Inn, Ottawa Downtown
Le Germain Hotel Ottawa
Les Suites Hotel, Ottawa
Ottawa Embassy Hotel and Suites
Ottawa Marriott Hotel
Sheraton Ottawa Hotel
The Westin Ottawa


Ottawa Tourism Website:

RBC Bluesfest:

Room Service Concert Series: An Ottawa Hotel Exclusive

Rod has previously worked for and is currently freelancing for Huffington Post Travel. He’s also written travel articles for the Toronto Star and Up! Magazine. Living in Toronto but raised in the small central Ontario village of Holstein, Rod is a country boy at heart who has never met a farmer’s market he didn’t like.

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