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Toronto Neighbourhood Spotlight: Chinatown

May 18, 2018

Toronto ChinatownToronto is a delightfully diverse city and its many neighbourhoods reveal cultural influences from around the world. Let’s take a close look at one of those exciting neighbourhoods – Chinatown.

Introduction – Chinatown

Everything from food markets to bars to music shops to vintage clothing boutiques and much more are located within this compact neighborhood, running along Spadina Street. It is one of the largest Chinese districts in North America and is home to ethnic Chinese from Vietnam, Taiwan, Singapore, Hong Kong and elsewhere.

One of the best times to visit this neighborhood is during Chinese New Year, when there will be a loud, noisy and exciting Dragon Dance parade winding through Dundas Street.

Must Visit Spots in Chinatown

  • For authentic noodles, chow mein, dim sum and other Chinese favourites, check out King’s Noodle Toronto Chinatown(This is just one of the many great restaurants in the neighborhood! Come with a big appetite!)
  • This Old Chinatown Food Tour offered by Toronto Food Tours is led by a culinary professional and will take you on a guided adventure sampling some of the yummiest treats Chinatown has to offer.
  • The infamous Furama Cake and Desserts is well known in Chinatown as a hub of activity and a spot for older Chinatown residents to catch up on gossip over tea. It’s a great place to try some delicious cream buns.
  • If you are the type of person who is obsessed with beautiful stationery, you’ll love The Paper Place. This shop features gorgeous paper, art supplies, notebooks, books and more.

History

Chinatown in Toronto first began in the 1890s, when many American Chinese emigrated from California (due to the racial conflict there) and from the Eastern USA (due to the economic depression). One of the first to establish here was a man named Sam Ching, who opened a laundry business on Adelaide Street. He was the first Chinese person to be listed in the city directory of Toronto and there is now a lane named after him.

Chinatown TorontoChinatown went through two phases in it’s history. There was the original “First Chinatown”, which became a slum area for incoming immigrants from the 1890s to the 1950s and was razed in 1955 to make way for Nathan Phillips Square and Toronto New City Hall. Then there is what is known now as the “Old Chinatown.” Although a small Chinese community was already in this location before the 1950s, the businesses that had to be relocated from the first area moved here.

How to Get There

Chinatown is accessible by the 510 Spadina and the 506 College Streetcar. It can also be reached from the St. Patrick Subway Station, which is about two blocks west along Dundas Street.

What’s your favourite spot? 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!

Entertainment, Events, Fitness and Health, Holiday Events, Lifestyle talk

How to Stay Healthy Over the Holidays

December 28, 2016

Healthy Over the HolidaysStaying healthy over the holidays can be a challenge. The weather outside is cold and we spend most of our day indoors, breathing in recycled air and possible germs. The abundance of alcohol and sugary treats over the holiday season reduces our immune systems, making us more susceptible to illness. The stress and pressure of preparing for New Years events can decrease your health even more – making you a target for flu bugs to colds and much more.

However, there are a number of ways that you can keep yourself healthy over the holidays.

Keep Up Your Exercise Routine

It’s tempting to ditch your workouts and let your days fill up with parties, errands and holiday preparations. However, it is important to keep your exercise routine as much as possible. Staying active will give you more energy, help you deal with added stress, boost your immune system and help you manage your weight during the holiday season. Squeeze in a visit to the gym whenever you can and try to enjoy active holiday activities such as going for a walk in the snow with your family. When staying in your furnished rental in Toronto, you can utilize the gym in the building which is included in your rate, so you dont have to pay extra to work out.

Reduce Your Alcohol Consumption

Healthy Over the HolidaysThe holidays bring with them a number of situations where alcohol is consumed, from a mug of mulled wine to cocktails and drinks at the New Years party. It’s fine to have a few festive drinks, but be careful not to go overboard. When you drink too much it will reduce your immune system function, put a strain on your liver, raise your blood pressure and add a lot of empty calories. Try to alternate your alcoholic drinks with non-alcoholic ones at a party or an event so that you can cut back and stay healthy over the holidays.

Fill Up on Healthy Food

If you are going to a holiday get-together where you know there will be a lot of sweets, cookies, candies and other unhealthy treats, make sure that you eat a full meal of healthy, nourishing food first. Then, you will be less likely to eat as many unhealthy treats.

Take Time to De-Stress

The holidays can be a stressful time. There are a lot of commitments to friends and family, a lot of events to attend and plan for as well as the financial stress of gifts. You might find yourself being stretched thin and feeling stressed. Make sure that you give yourself time to take a break and recharge. Allow for time for yourself to enjoy activities that reduce stress, such as going for a walk, practicing yoga or listeniHealthy over the holidaysng to some calming music.

Stay Warm

When the weather outside is frightful, make sure that you keep yourself warm and bundled up. A warm coat is important, as well as a hat and gloves to reduce heat loss through your head and hands where you lose the most heat.

Keep these tips in mind so that you can stay healthy and make the most of this holiday season.

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

Visiting Toronto in Winter

November 28, 2016

Visiting Toronto in WinterVisiting Toronto in winter might send a shiver down your spine, but as long as you bundle up there are a lot of things to enjoy in this chilly city during the winter months. Plus, there will be fewer tourists, flights and accommodation will be less expensive. You may even have the opportunity to get to know the locals. Here are some of the reasons visiting Toronto in winter can be enjoyable.

There’s Always Somewhere to Skate when Visiting Toronto in Winter

Toronto has approximately 50 skating rinks run by the city, which means that no matter where you are you can always find somewhere to strap on your skates and glide gracefully across the ice (or crash awkwardly into the boards). Check out the rink at Nathan Phillips Square, the Colonel Samuel Smith Park skateway in Etobicoke or the covered rink at Greenwood Park.

You Can Feast at WinterliciousVisiting Toronto in Winter

When you have worked up an appetite with all of that skating, you can warm up inside and enjoy the fantastic culinary scene that Toronto has to offer. Winterlicious will run in the last week of January for two weeks and during this time many restaurants throughout the city offer a menu of discount fixed price dinners. Each menu showcases starters, entrees and desserts and features the specialties of the restaurant. The 2017 event will take place from January 27th to February 9th and more than 200 restaurants will be taking part.

You Can Warm Up Inside a Museum

When the weather outside is chilly, you can stay warm within some of Toronto’s fantastic museums and art galleries. The Royal Ontario Museum and the Art Gallery of Ontario are the big names, but there are also many others to explore including the Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art, the Ontario Science Centre and the Bata Shoe Museum.

You Can Do Some Underground Shopping

Want to be able to shop until you drop without having to brave the freezing temperatures? The underground PATH system has 19 miles of retail shops and restaurants, making it the largest underground shopping complex in the world. You can spend all day shopping, eating and exploring without ever having to venture outside.

Hockey Season will Be in Full SwingVisiting Toronto in Winter

Cheering along with the roaring crowd at a Toronto Maple Leafs game is an essential Canadian experience to have during your visit to this great city. Winter is the best time to do this, as you will be visiting right in the middle of the hockey season. If you want to learn more about the sport before the game, you can visit the Hockey Hall of Fame and learn the stories of the best players in the NHL.

These are just a few of the many reasons why visiting Toronto in winter is great, even during the coldest months of the year. Wear a toque, breathe the crisp cold air, stop for regular hot chocolate breaks at Tim Hortons and enjoy!

About me, Community Events, Events, Giving Back

Giving back to the Toronto Humane Society

May 26, 2016

Toronto Humane SocietyDelsuites cares about the local community and makes an effort to contribute and make the world a better place. That’s why they recently got involved with the Toronto Humane Society and donated five bags of gently used towels.

During a recent visit at the shelter, Lauren and Suelyn were able to take a tour inside the Toronto Humane Society and visit with all the animals that are currently in their care. They met with a wide range of animals that are up for adoption.  They also got to meet animals who had recently undergone surgery and learned a little bit about the history of the organizatioToronto Humane Societyn.

The Importance of Donations and Volunteers

The Toronto Humane Society is a non-government funded charity organization that relies on donations of any sort; whether that means supplies from pet stores, food donations or monetary donations from a wide range of sources. You can also become a monthly donor at the Toronto Humane Society and provide the animals with the daily support they need for as little as 60 cents per day. Also, they wouldn’t be able to operate without the help of over 500 volunteers who help at the society on a yearly basis.

These volunteers have a number of very important roles involved with keeping the centre running and taking care of the animals. Their daily roles include walking dogs, socializing the animals, providingToronto Humane Society them with care and grooming. They will bottle feed kittens, cuddle with puppies and socialize other small species including: mice, guinea pigs, rabbits and hamsters.

The Toronto Humane Society also provides public spay and neuter services for cats and dogs in order to reduce the number of kittens and puppies that enter the shelter every year.

A Positive Impact on the CommunityToronto Humane Society

The services that the Toronto Humane Society offers benefit the community in a lot of positive ways, which is why Delsuites is thrilled to donate and support what they do. First and foremost, they change the lives of dogs and cats who may otherwise be injured or living on the streets. Also, by offering free & low-cost spaying and neutering services they reduce the number of stray animals that wind up on the streets.

The medical and behavioural programs the Toronto Humane Society offers sets up the animals to lead a happy and healthy life in their new homes and give them the best opportunity to thrive. The society focuses on prevention and education and it takes a leadership role with partnering shelters. The educational programs that it offers empower people to take care of their animals.

Without the work that they do, the number of unwanted births would skyrocket and drive greater numbers of animals into the shelter. To find out more about the Toronto Humane Society and what they do, or perhaps find your own furry companion a forever home, you can visit their website.