Valtteri Bottas was second in his Mercedes, about six seconds back.
This weekend is round seven of the 2018 Formula 1 World Championship, which takes us to Montreal's Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, home of the Canadian Grand Prix.
The lone Canadian driver Lance Stroll of Montreal saw his early-season woes continue with a 17th place finish in the first 20-minute qualifying session, to leave him in the next-to-last row on the race starting grid.
All this left Vettel in command after 40 laps, 5.7 seconds clear of Bottas with Verstappen third ahead of Ricciardo, Hamilton and Raikkonen.
Stroll and Hartley's coming together saw the safety auto deployed but that was the extent of the drama.
Jacques Villeneuve, the retired 1997 world champion, had led a parade lap earlier in the day in the Ferrari his late father drove to that victory.More news: Merkel Allies Call for Unity After Trump's G-7 'Affront'
"I think Ferrari have had a slightly better package all round, they've been doing a slightly better job so we've got to do more".
"We thought the chance of having cars to overtake at the beginning would be likely". Mercedes dominated in Spain, Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull dominated in Monaco, Sebastian Vettel dominated in Canada - three different teams on top on three very different weekends.
"I think I was a bit in trouble after Friday practice, but I guess I woke up the right way today".
"Perfect is a good way to describe this", said a delighted Vettel. But I just struggled in the session and wasn't able to pull it through.
"Red Bull will also be a threat, but it's cool to see three teams fighting for the win".
Meanwhile, qualifying didn't start as planned for Romain Grosjean.
Ocon came back at the Renaults in the closing stages of the race, prompting Renault to ask Hulkenberg to pick up the pace to prevent Sainz coming under attack. "The car's been working really well.to be third is great for us".
Fernando Alonso had no reason to celebrate his 300th grand prix, forced to retire his McLaren on lap 43 and the Spaniard will doubtless be pleased to leave Canada to focus on taking part in the Le Mans 24 Hours next weekend.