With the arrival of warm weather, Montreal and its 730 kilometers of bicycle paths become a playground for bicyclists. Whether discovering or exploring the city, a bike ride always begins with a bicycle (in good condition preferably). That’s why we visited three stores/workshops to help you enjoy this summer season on two wheels!
Allo Vélo: with a latte please!
Head to Saint-Henri to discover a one of a kind address: Allo Vélo. Open for 4 years, this bar-coffee shop-workshop was born from the 3 founding partners’ love for cycling and coffee, among them Lamar Timmins, who worked as a tour guide in Germany.
When entering the shop we’re instantly seduced by the bikes and their vintage looks: lemon or mint green, or pale pink polka dots and black ebony, the urban bike frames at Allo Vélo are very charming. But why offer bicycles manufactured in Poland, Denmark and Amsterdam?
"Cycling is a way of life in many countries and cities in Europe. The bicycles we import are very good, fully equipped and require little maintenance." explains Lamar Timmins, co-owner of Allo Vélo.
In addition to selling these beautiful European bikes exclusively in Canada, Allo Vélo has an online store that will delight cyclists from Vancouver to Halifax.
Mécanocycle: Shimano Specialty
Located at the back of an ancient building in Griffintown, Mécanocycle is more than just a repair workshop and new bike store. Greeted by the owner, Steve Rouleau, we found a nice studio shop that offers a wide range of new bikes, as well as high quality repair and maintenance service at an affordable price.
For under $100 you get a mount alignment, cleaning and piece by piece checking and verification, all done by expert bike mechanics.
"I'm like a bicycle surgeon. They are completely dismantled and each piece is thoroughly cleaned with solvents, oil and products from Teflon. The technique is not at all harmful, unlike a water cleaning." explains Steve Rouleau, owner of Mécanocycle.
Certified by Shimano, a world leader in the field of cycling, Mécanocyle serves residents of Griffintown and anyone else looking to explore the bike paths lining this flourishing Montreal neighborhood.
Montreal on Wheels: the city as you've never seen it
Founded by André Giroux, a lawyer by training and hockey player at times, Montreal on Wheels has been in Old Montreal for 20 years. What could be simpler than leaving your bike in the morning for a tuning and picking it up later in the day? His repair shop mainly serves area residents and neighboring businesses.
On the rental side, we were pleasantly surprised by all the choices: a traditional bike, racing, tandem or cart, you will find everything you need from the wide fleet of bicycles and accessories available for rent. Firmly on your seat? Get ready to explore Montreal from every angle with a multitude of city tours accompanied by guides certified and trained at the Quebec Institute of Hotels.
"We offer guided tours of Montreal to suit all tastes. Our tours allow cyclists to explore an unknown Montreal. Even as an avowed history buff and having spent 9 years in the business, I’m still learning new things about the city!" Michel Deshaies, manager of Montreal on Wheels.
Architecture, street food, culture and the outdoors: you’ll never see the city in the same way again!
5165, Notre-Dame Street West
27, de la Commune Street East
1619, William Street, local G10b