Which Canadian Prairie City is All The Rage in 2018?

Last year it was featured in Vogue and then USA Today. This year, a certain understated city is the only Canadian destination to be named in the New York Times 52 Places to Go list! That’s right, ladies and gentleman, you heard it here! The humble, prairie city of Saskatoon is all the rage! The bridge city is making a splash on the world scene… and it ain’t so humble anymore.

Saskatoon

The Remai Modern on Riverlanding (Photo Credit: Tourism Saskatoon)

But what’s got everybody talking about the ‘Paris of the Prairies?’ Aside from a rapidly developing riverfront and a thriving arts and culture scene, this surge in buzz can be attributed in large part to the likes of  Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque and a number of other well-known 20th-century artists!  8000 world-renowned pieces including works from these masters have found a home in the heart of Saskatchewan at the newly opened Remai Modern Museum.

Saskatoon is all the rage

Photo Credit: Tourism Saskatoon

This museum, though undoubtedly world-class in its appeal, is truly a home-grown treasure. The movement to build a gallery of this magnitude in Saskatoon got the momentum it needed when, in 2011, local philanthropist and entrepreneur, Ellen Remai, announced one the largest private donations in Canadian art history. A sum from the Frank and Ellen Remai Foundation literally got construction off the ground, and the museum, itself a feat in world-class modernist architecture, will seek to support international exhibits for the next 30 years with the continued support of this foundation. The museum’s hallmark collection, 405 Picasso linocuts, were also donated by the Remai’s in 2012. In true understated prairie style, Ellen Remai’s explanation for this generosity was simply, “A great city deserves great art.”

Saskatoon is all the rage

Drift Café in Riversdale (Photo Credit: Tourism Saskatoon/ Carey Shaw Photography)

But art is not the only thing happening in the bridge city! The award-winning (and recently expanded) airport is ready to receive visitors in search culture, world-class cuisine, and plenty of sunshine. Over the past 15 years, Saskatoon has experienced an unprecedented season of growth and diversification, an urban existential crisis of sorts, which has given rise to a whole host of items never before known to the city.

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WinterShines and Nuit Blanche join a whole host of other well-established events on the festival scene and are undoubtedly fueled by the palpable growing sense of optimism surrounding the life and culture of Saskatoon. Evidence of gentrification is everywhere but never more significant than in the core neighbourhood of Riversdale which has become a hot-bed for hipsters and foodies. Then there is the development of Riverlanding, a large portion of the South Saskatchewan River bank which is now home to a water feature, picnic areas, a riverside café, and an outdoor gym, and which frequently plays host to outdoor sporting and cultural events.

Saskatoon is all the rage

Nuit Blanche Night Time Arts Festival (Photo Credit: Tourism Saskatoon/Nick Biblow)

When you consider that sunny Saskatoon is full of green spaces, caters to families, sits idyllically on a beautiful riverbank and is affordable to boot, the question becomes not why Saskatoon is all the rage, but how it kept itself a secret for so long!

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