Networking Without Borders: Unlocking the Super Power of Carrier Hotels

May 1, 2024

Have you ever wondered how a business located in Toronto or Montreal is able to utilize cloud services hosted in Germany or Singapore? Or how people living a world apart can conduct a video call with each other? 

In other words, what is happening at a technical level that makes global internet connectivity possible? 

Certainly, the underlying physical network plays an important role - namely fiber cables running underground, under oceans, or strung along hydro poles to connect point A to point Z. But ultimately, interconnectivity is the key, and more specifically, interconnectivity between carriers. 

Here’s how it all comes together at a (really) high level:

Tier 1 Carriers (ISP networks that make up the global internet backbone) connect with Tier 2 Carriers (ISP networks that purchase internet service, AKA IP Transit, from Tier 1 carriers) who, in turn, connect with Tier 3 Carriers (small-scale ISP networks that purchase IP Transit from Tier 1 and 2 carriers to re-sell to end customers such as businesses and consumers). 

But where does all of this interconnectivity actually happen? Where does everyone meet up

The answer is a special kind of data center called a Carrier Hotel. Imagine the astronomical costs of building long haul fiber all over the world to interconnect carriers the old fashioned way. Carrier Hotels solve that problem by bringing service providers together in a centrally located, highly secure, and robustly powered data center environment. 

Let’s take a deeper dive into what makes a Carrier Hotel so unique. 

Strategic Location - Carrier Hotels serve as regional internet hubs and are typically located in major cities and metropolitan areas, providing built-in disaster resilience, easy access to public transportation, and close proximity to a host of potential customers, partners, and internet exchanges. 

Site Security - Given their economic importance and public visibility, Carrier Hotels typically obtain industry standard compliance certifications such as ISO:27001 and SOC 2 that adhere to strict physical and cybersecurity controls, such as access control systems, biometrics, video surveillance, and disaster recovery. 

High Availability - Carrier Hotels conduct routine maintenance and capacity planning to ensure the site can operate without interruption in a failure or outage scenario, and utilize redundant power sources, Power Distribution Units (PDU), Uninterruptible Power Supplies (UPS), and backup fuel generators to guarantee uptime and scale. 

Fiber Diversity - Carrier Hotels mitigate the risk of single points of network failure by utilizing diverse upstream fiber routes from carriers that enter the facility through multiple pathways. Dedicated building meet-me-rooms and redundant internal fiber routes are used to interconnect client networks reliably via fiber. 

Network Reach - Carrier Hotels provide ubiquitous access to a diverse range of carriers, telecommunications service providers, and peering opportunities, ensuring reliable, borderless network connectivity and competitive pricing opportunities for businesses. For a list of eStruxture’s on-net carrier partners, click here

eStruxture currently operates three strategically located, best-in-class Carrier Hotels that feature many of the benefits listed above, along with flexible colocation options, friendly and responsive data center technicians, dependable smart-hands service, and custom network and cloud connectivity solutions. 

TOR-1 (151 Front St. W, Toronto, ON)

  • Ontario’s premier telecom hub and carrier hotel located in downtown Toronto 

MTL-1 (800 Square-Victoria, Montreal, QC)

  • High-density carrier hotel located in the heart of downtown Montreal

VAN-2 (555 W Hastings St, Vancouver, BC)

  • Strategically located carrier hotel facility located in downtown Vancouver

To learn more about how eStruxture Carrier Hotels can benefit your business operations, don’t hesitate to reach out to your account manager today. 

About Rich Davidson 

Rich Davidson is a seasoned IT and Network professional with over ten years of experience designing, building, and operating mission critical networks. Rich has a passion for technology and business, and endeavors to deliver efficient, forward-thinking network solutions that meet the strategic objectives of customers and stakeholders. 

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