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Great Toronto Museums to Visit

September 18, 2017

Toronto MuseumsOnce you have enjoyed all the great exhibits at the Royal Ontario Museum, there are several other great Toronto museums that you should check out. Here are some of the must-visit stops in Toronto for a museum enthusiast.

The Textile Museum of Canada

You can learn about the history of fabrics and textiles at this museum that’s only a 8 minute walk from the Qwest furnished suites and features a collection of 13,000 pieces dating back to 100 AD. The museum covers nearly 200 world regions and the oldest item in the collection is from the Nazca culture of Southern Peru. From ceremonial cloths to quilts to carpets, it’s a fascinating way to learn about cultures of the past via the clothes they wore and textiles they used.

Aga Khan Museum – Toronto Museums

Learn about the history of Muslim civilizations, in both a historical and contemporary perspective, at this midtown Toronto museum. The stunning architecture of the museum is also fascinating, with dramatic modern lines and a dazzling white façade. The lovely space also features a peaceful public park and a great restaurant called Diwan serving fusion cuisine.

The Bata Shoe Museum

Have you ever wondered what the Ancient Greeks used to wear on their feet? Or been curious about the height of the world’s highest platform shoe? The Bata Toronto MuseumsShoe Museum celebrates the wild, weird and highly fashionable in the world of shoes throughout the ages – from clunky old clodhoppers to the shiny sports shoes of the 80’s and every era in between.

The Gardiner Museum

This museum is dedicated to the art of ceramics. It has a display of both permanent and special travelling exhibitions and the works on display are truly exquisite. This cultural hot-spot also has drop in ceramics and sculpting classes for both children and adults.

The CBC Museum

The Canadian Broadcasting Commission is a Canadian institution – it has brought programming to our home and native land for over 70 years. At this museum you can learn about the founding of the CBC and take a look back through the years at some classic Canadian television and radio programming. You can even see a CBC microphone from 1910 and Mr. Dressup’s famous Tickle Trunk.  It is in the CBC building on Front Street West right next door to our 300 Front furnished condo rentals!

The HockToronto Museumsey Hall of Fame

Hockey is Canada’s iconic national sport and this Toronto museum celebrates the history of hockey in Canada. You can see the coveted Stanley Cup, watch videos of unforgettable moments in hockey history and see what hockey gear used to look like back in the day. The Hockey Hall of Fame is a must visit for any sports fan and it’s right on Yonge and Front Street in the heart of the action in Toronto.

These are just a few of the best Toronto museums beyond the Royal Ontario Museum that you can check out during your next visit to Toronto.

Downtown Toronto, Entertainment, Family Vacations in Toronto, Toronto Entertainment, Toronto Family Travel, Toronto History, toronto toursim

Toronto Strange Activities to Do

August 30, 2017

Toronto Strange ActivitiesOnce you have been to Toronto a few times and you have covered the most popular tourist attractions – The ROM, the CN Tower, the Hockey Hall of Fame, Casa Loma – you might be curious about what else there is to explore. When you go beyond the main sights you can discover a strange and quirky side to Toronto, with plenty of unusual and intriguing spots to visit and things to do. Here are a few Toronto strange activities hiding beneath the surface when you explore a little deeper.

Toronto Strange Activities – The Rage Room

If you are feeling stressed out, the Rage Room in North York offers you the opportunity to take out all of your aggression on inanimate objects with your choice of weapon. You’ll be suited up in protective gear including a face shield and gloves, given a crowbar or baseball bat and you can go to town on plates, glasses and beer bottles – without having to worry about the cleanup.

You can even bring a box of your own stuff to smash. They even have Bluetooth speakers so that you can express your rage to the angry playlist of your choice. Talk about a unique technique for stress relief!Toronto Strange Activities

The Biblio-Mat

The Monkey’s Paw is a cool and quirky bookstore and it is home to the Biblio-Mat, the first device of it’s kind. It is a vending machine that dispenses a random vintage book for $2. A creative alternative to the discount sidewalk bin, the book dispensing machine is a fun novelty. It whirrs and vibrates dramatically before delivering the book and you never know what subject matter or size of book you will receive

The Knit Cafe

If you love to craft sweaters and scarfs, drop in for a knit session at the Knit Cafe, Toronto’s coffee shop for those who love knitting. The cafe offers classes and get-togethers and also serves sweet treats and espresso throughout the day. They also offer a great selection of yarn, so you can stock up for your next project.

Indoor SkydivingToronto Strange Activities

If you don’t have the nerve to actually jump from an airplane but you do want to experience the sensation of freefall, check out iFLY Toronto indoor skydiving. They have a 45 foot tube that has a powerful torrent of air running up through it, strong enough to keep your body aloft. It feels like you are falling through the sky, but it’s a lot less terrifying than jumping out of a plane. It is even possible to organize an indoor skydiving party – so why not think about it as a venue for your next birthday?

What are some Toronto strange activities you’ve discovered? Share your travel tips and discoveries with us in the comments! In addition, be sure to check out these family fun outdoor activities as we wrap up summer in Toronto!

Business Travel, Corporate Housing, Downtown Toronto, Lifestyle talk, Toronto Family Travel, toronto toursim, Vacation Travel

A Bookworm’s Choice of Bookshops Toronto

August 25, 2017

Bookshops TorontoToronto has plenty for literature lovers to discover. After all, some of the most well known Canadian novels are set within this city – including works by Michael Ondaatje, Timothy Findley, Robertson Davies and Margaret Atwood. If you are a bibliophile, you’ll find many fascination bookshops Toronto spots.

Bookshops Toronto
The Monkey’s Paw

This quirky and arcane used bookshops Toronto is a treasure trove of the weird and wonderful. You’ll find lots of beautiful, strange and fascinating books there and you’ll want to get lost for hours perusing the shelves. If you can’t decide on a book, you can put a toonie in the famous Biblio-Mat machine, which is a custom-designed vending machine that dispenses a random book.

Balzac’s CoffeeBookshops Toronto

Named after the French novelist and playwright, Balzac’s is the ultimate place to get your coffee and reading fix. It is located within the Toronto Reference Library – a huge storehouse of knowledge within stacks and stacks of tomes. The largest library in the city, it is known for it’s modern architecture and intriguing free event schedule. It is also home to one of the largest collections in the world dedicated to Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s life and work.

Type Books

This gorgeous bookshop is located on Queen Street, across from Trinity Bellwoods Park. You’ll gasp with delight as you enter and are greeted by the shelved packed with fiction, art books, design books and more. Check out the front of the store, where you will be greeted by the staff’s latest selection for books on exciting hot topics. Type Books went viral with this amazing video, which shows what happens in a bookstore at night when the lights go out.

The Library Bar

Bookshops TorontoIf you have had a full day of exploring Toronto’s literary side and you are in the mood for a drink to cap off the evening – why not head to this swanky bar in the Royal York Hotel? The cocktails are named after famous writers, so you could have a Margaret Atwood Margarita or an Alice Munro Rosemary Martini.

Hemingway’s

Another choice for a drink spot is Hemingway’s, named after the famous novelist who one lived in Toronto as a young man. Unfortunately, Ernest really didn’t like 1920s Toronto – which is why he moved to Paris, which he found to be much more of a “moveable feast.” Hemingways is known as one of the best bars in Yorkville. Owner Martin McSkimming is from New Zealand and serves a menu of world-renowned New Zealand lamb and several excellent Kiwi wines.

These are just a few of the many places that book lovers will adore in Toronto. You could also check out A Novel Spot, Another Story, Acadia and many more!

Downtown Toronto, Lifestyle talk, Toronto Entertainment, Toronto Family Travel, Vacation Travel

Toronto Bloggers You Should Be Following

July 18, 2017

Toronto BloggersToronto is home to creative and expressive people who work in all mediums and blogging is no exception. Here are some excellent Toronto bloggers whose posts you should be reading as a part of your daily routine whenever you are in TO.

Toronto Bloggers
Ate by Ate – Food Blog

This blog is written by Deb, who chronicles good things to eat around Toronto “bite by bite.” She is really good at going in depth to passionately cover Toronto’s food scene and her blogs are more similar to magazine articles in their scope and detail. Also, her blog is great because it is easy to search by neighbourhood for great dining ideas.Toronto Bloggers

JetSet Justine – Fashion and Lifestyle Blog

If you are looking for ideas and inspiration on how to be more elegant and stylish, Justine is a great role model. She shows off the hottest outfits and demonstrates how to apply that killer eyeliner, how to style leggings or pose in a bikini. She often writes about her favourite restaurants in Toronto and cool events such as the Toronto Food and Wine Festival and Toronto Fashion Week. She writes in a witty, self deprecating style that will make you want to keep reading.

The Mellyboo Project – Travel Blog

Melissa is a Toronto native, but as you can see from the exciting far flung tales on her travel blog her adventures have taken her all over the world from Australia to Africa to Hong K

ong. She has a passion for exploration and new experiences and loves learning about new cultures around the world. However, she also writes a lot about her home, such as this blog post with tips for getting around Toronto.

Abbey’s KitchenToronto bloggers – Food Blog

Abbey is passionate about food and it shows in this beautiful blog, dedicated to the most delicious treats that Toronto has to offer. She is a registered dietitian, a TV nutrition expert and founder of Abbey’s Kitchen Inc, which is a food and nutrition media brand. The blog features recipes, restaurant reviews, coverage of food events and much more.

The Debonair Dude – Fashion Blog

Aram Eginliyan was born and raised in Toronto with an Armenian background and he is fascinated with the concepts of personal presentation and style. His blog is all about how to be a stylish and elegant gentleman and his beautiful fashion photographs are allToronto Bloggers set within the streets of Toronto. If you are a guy who wants to ditch the jeans and grubby hockey jerseys and look a little more put together, check out his very chic style ideas.

These are just a few of the awesome Toronto bloggers you should check out. Do you have any other Toronto bloggers whose posts you love to follow? Let us know in the comments below!

Community Events, Downtown Toronto, Entertainment, Events, Family Vacations in Toronto, Lifestyle talk, Toronto Entertainment, Toronto History

Happy Birthday – Canada Day 150 Years Old

June 30, 2017

Canada DayThis year’s Canada Day celebrations will certainly be a once in a generation event. We mark 150 years since Confederation and this landmark birthday is being celebrated all over the country with huge events, fireworks shows and much more.
The Canadian Federal Government announced that it would be spending approximately half a billion dollars on the 150th anniversary- which means it will be a massive party!

Canada Day 150 Events Happening in Toronto

The theme of this year’s celebrations will be TO Canada with Love and the city will also be hosting Canada 150 Mosaic, which is an exhibition of over 80,000 paintings and 150 individual murals across the country. Here are some of the exciting things that will be happening in Canada this weekend:

This exciting celebration will include arts, dance, food and musical performances from the Barenaked Ladies, Ron Sexsmith, Belly, Dvsn and Buffy Sainte Marie.Canada Day

Celebrate Canada’s Birthday and your love of delicious barbequed ribs at this festival. The event will also feature live music, midway games, pony rides and much more.

Admission is free and celebrations will be taking place from 10am to 10pm, including roaming performers, music and dance performances, games, children’s activities and much more.

While you are out and about, check out some of our favorite places to eat for brunch!

What Does Canada 150 Mean?

The year 2017 marks the 150 year point since Confederation. In 1867 the Dominion of Canada was created as per the British North America Act. This brought together the colonies of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick Canada Dayand the Province of Canada into one country – merging together English and French speaking Canada. The new Dominion of Canada was composed of four provinces, Quebec, Nova Scotia, Ontario and New Brunswick.

However, it could be argued that Canada as we know it is only turning 35 this year. It was in 1982 that Canada “patriated” the constitution, which allowed us to amend it without Britain’s approval. This was the event that enacted the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms and it is when July 1st changed from “Dominion Day” to “Canada Day.”

But of course, this land is older than 150 and people lived in North America long before 1867. It was in 1142 that the Iroquois Confederacy was formed, which brought together five nations over the area which is now Canada, Kentucky, Ohio and Virginia and formed a “Great League of Peace.”

Even before that, the first evidence of human inhabitants in Canada has been dated back to 30,000 BCE – when people crossed over the Siberian land bridge as the Ice Age ended. A village discovered in British Columbia is one of the oldest human settlements in North America and pre-dates the pyramids.

Indigenous people have been living on this land for thousands and thousands of years and the ownership of the land is a contentious issue still not resolved, which is why many choose to celebrate Canada Day alternatively.

No matter how you measure it, these days the modern nation of Canada is a cultural melting pot that celebrates diversity and is home to a mosaic of different ethnicities and traditions.  What does it mean to be Canadian? It’s more than just beaver and maple syrup and snow shovels and hockey: it’s our identity of kindness, politeness, inclusion, acceptance and understanding – which is certainly something to celebrate. Happy Canada Day!