Family Vacations in Toronto, Lifestyle talk, Toronto Family Travel, Vacation Travel

Tips for Travelling with Kids

October 8, 2014

Family TravelTravelling with kids can be an overwhelming experience, especially for the first time. However, it can also be a fun and rewarding experience to discover a new city with your family. Here are a few of our tips that will make the journey easier.

1. Prepare your child for the airport. As your kids may not understand the full experience of traveling, prepare them before the trip by reading books like “Airport” to educate and excite them about their upcoming journey.

2. Consider What to Bring, Flying Times, and Keeping Your Child Entertained on the Flight.
Being prepared can make the flying experience for your family easier. Have a backpack prepared with everything for the flight so it’s easy to find. Bring snacks that will take your child a long time to eat (like raisins) since in-flight options are limited or cost extra. Time your flights to your child’s sleeping schedule or try the red-eye flight. Consider buying a seat for your child, especially on longer flights for ease and comfort. In addition to having portable electronics amped up with your child’s favourite apps and games, surprise your child. Buy a new book or toy for the plane and wrap it up in tissue.

3. Consider renting an apartment, suite or condo. Though hotels have their perks, rentals can give you more space as well as the amenities or perks you may not find in a hotel. For instance, you may have a better supplied kitchen, watch movies without the pricey hotel tag, or invite friends over to dinner in your dining room. DelSuites is a great option if you’re in Toronto. DelSuites will help make the transition easy by providing a FREE ‘Kids Care’ gift for every child ages newborn to 14. Items including bath toTravelling with Kidsys, children’s books, playing cards, itunes gift cards and more.

4. Stay in an area where there is lots to do within walking distance. Being in a central area will keep you close to the action but nearby your accommodation. This will be helpful for those scheduled nap times and dealing with jet lag. It also helps if you are having meals at your short-term rental apartment for lunch or dinner. Location is key when planning your family vacation.

5. Get your child involved in the planning process. When considering activities, show your little one pictures of what he or she might like to do in location. Being involved in the process makes them more excited about the decisions they made. Look at local playgrounds, parks, and outdoor spaces. Not only are these a great way to see a new city like a local but also free!

Traveling with kids can have its moments but it can also be revitalizing. What are your tips for travelling with kids and your family? We would love to hear!

References:
Joanna Goddard – 10 Tips for Traveling with a Baby
Joanna Goddard – 10 Ways to Entertain a Toddler on a Plane
Oh Joy – Traveling Abroad with a Toddler

Community Events, Events, Lifestyle talk

DelSuites at We Day 2014!

October 6, 2014

We Day 2014On Thursday October 2, 2014 the team at DelSuites and Del Condominium Rentals volunteered at the annual We Day event at Toronto’s Air Canada Centre. It is the team’s first year of volunteering with this event that has gained attention around the country. We wanted to share this experience with you and educate you about this wonderful event and how anyone at any age can get involved with charity.

What is We Day?We Day 2014
Brothers, Craig and Marc Kielburger of non-profit organization Free the Children, created We Day in 2007 as a movement for youth to come together to create change and make the world a better place. The Kielburgers have redefined charity and that anyone at any age can make a difference in their communities. The yearly event held in large venues such as the Air Canada Centre in Toronto kick-starts a year of action through We Act, a one-year commitment for youth to take one local and one global action. Schools and youth groups receive curriculum-based resources, campaign materials and personal support to achieve these goals.

You cannot buy a ticket to We DWe Day 2014ay. Participants earn their “ticket” through the We Act and as a result, youth are empowered to be more engaged and active global citizens. These actions have also extended to the greater community from adults to corporations (like us!) with non-profit involvement.

Why We Day?
All extensions of We Day (We Act, Me to We, and Free The Children) aim to empower a generation to shift the world from “me” to “we”—from a focus on the individual to the power of community. It is the platform for social change, no matter what age. The youth are our future to act and continue sustainable change.

Impact
We Day 2014 We Day has grown by leaps and bounds since its inception seven years ago. From 8,000 participants in 2007 in Toronto to more 278,000 youth attending events in cities across North America, the event is now a movement. Over $37 million dollars has been fundraised for thousands of charities and almost 10 million hours volunteered for local and global causes. Even more so, alumni have continued their efforts to sustain social change and justice, with 80% volunteering for more than 150 hours in a year on average, and 79% of those who are voting age having voted in the most recent national election, double the rate of their peers.

Speakers and Performers, 2014
This year, some of the world’s most renowned speakers and performers joined in We Day in Toronto. Col. Chris Hadfield (the first Canadian to walk in Space), Queen Noor of Jordan, and Katie Couric spoke. Repeat guests include Canadian rockstars Hedley, Lights, and the cast of TV Show Degrassi.

We Day 2014The energy from those who have accomplished so much in our lives is passed down to our youth who believe and can inspire local and world change beyond this day.

For more information on how you can participate or get involved with We Day, go to http://www.weday.com/

Business Travel, Lifestyle talk, Toronto Family Travel, Vacation Travel

Top Ten Essential Travel Apps

October 1, 2014

Essential Travel AppsA smartphone can be your most convenient tool and resource, especially when you travel. Here are a few of our favourite travel apps to save you time, money, and frustration when you’re on the road.

Whats App Text anyone anywhere without having to pay for those pricey SMS charges. It works across different smartphones, and users can create groups, and send each other unlimited images, video and audio media messages.

Hotel Tonight
If you’re booking a last minute trip, Hotel Tonight compiles hotel rooms that are available that day, starting at noon. Not only can you get a room at a curated hotel for less but the new “Look Ahead” feature shows availability for the week ahead in select cities. Those cities are: NYC, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Washington, DC, Chicago, San Francisco, San Diego, and Dallas.

Airbnb This popular home-stay travel apps enables you to save money on pricey hotels and stay in local neighbourhoods. Of course, if you are in Toronto for a longer stay, book our furnished apartments, suites, or corporate housing. Our guest services department can also give you local tips.

Icoon Picture Dictionary  Sometimes, a picture is worth a thousand words. (Especially when you don’t speak the language!) Icoon’s Picture Dictionary takes all of the fuss out of trying to explain your message by categorizing pictures in sections such as body parts, foods, lodging, and more.

Maps.Me Search detailed maps from all over the world offline (translation: no roaming fees from other Map apps like Google Maps). Auto suggestions around your Essential Travel Appslocation and a bookmark feature for your highlighted places makes this a must-download.

Hop Stop This all-in-one app lets you get door-to-door transit, walking, biking, and taxi directions in over 300 cities worldwide. Some of its features enable you to find nearby subway stations and bus stops, estimate travel time and cost for a taxi, and find wheelchair accessible and stroller friendly routes.

VSCO An acronym for Visual Supply Co., this photography app has several filters which will make those scenic snaps more visually appealing and up amplify your instagram game.

XE Currency This currency converter makes it easy for you to figure out how much something costs immediately. It may come in handy when you’re negotiating with taxi drivers.

Curb (formerly Taxi Magic) Speaking of taxis, Curb is a good alternative to Uber if a car isn’t available or you don’t want to pay the Uber price. The app estimates the cost of your trip and you can pay from your phone. You can book a nearby taxi or schedule a ride for later. It is available in 45 American cities.

Word Lens This quirky app lets you translate those foreign signs via use of your phone’s video camera. A favourite among frequent travelers.

Tell us: What are your favourite travel apps?

Business Travel, Downtown Toronto, Entertainment, Food & Recipes, Lifestyle talk

Top 5 Bars in Toronto for Corporate Executives

September 25, 2014

In our work-obsessed era, office hours can go well into the night, especially for executives who tend to have meetings well after 5:00 p.m. Here are our top 5 bars in Toronto for that business drink or dinner.
Top 5 Bars in TorontoBar Buca
Savour over an impressive selection of Italian wines and offal-inspired small bites. The 38 seat snack bar on the ground level of a condo on Portland Street is ideal for that cinq à sept. No reservations.

The Roof Lounge
This storied bar, 18 floors on top of the Park Hyatt has bartenders as old as the space. Whether it’s a classic martini or a scotch on the rocks, this is the spot to have business discussions in a low-key yet old-world setting. It is a popular spot during the Toronto International Film Festival and loved by celebrities and locals alike.

Nota Bene This sophisticated restaurant on the edge of the Financial District executes crafted cocktails in a subdued setting. Sommeliers are on hand to help you with your selection. Should you stay for dinner, there are private dining rooms available for your business meeting. Affordable pre-theatre menus are also available from 5-6pm on days there is a performance at the Four Seasons Centre for Performing Arts.

Real Sports Bar Though the bar can be loud and raucous–it is North America’s largest sports bar, after all–Real Sports is a casual spot where you can kick back and Top 5 Bars in Torontorelax on a weeknight or a game night. The two-story location has a variety of options (e.g. Executive Suites, Gardens Room, and Players Lounge) if you’re looking for a private function for your company.

Canoe
On the 54th floor of the TD Tower, the restaurant that started Oliver Bonacini’s empire, is one of the most renowned dining experiences in Toronto, if not in Canada. The bar doesn’t disappoint with its views of the Toronto Islands, banquette seating in the corner, and inventive cocktail list like the Dill Pickle (gin, Grand Marnier, white cranberry, lime, and dill).

Most of our these top 5 bars in Toronto are located right near DelSuites furnished apartments. Ideal for corporate housing in Toronto. Cheers!

 

Downtown Toronto, Food & Recipes, Lifestyle talk

Cheap Eats under $15 in Toronto

September 16, 2014

Cheap Eats in TorontoToronto can be quite an expensive city for standard of living, especially when dining out. However, with its multitude of ethnic eats and takeaway spots, if you know where to go, you can get some cheap eats for under $15. As many of these places are popular, try to go in off-hours on weeknights to avoid line ups and bring cash just in case. Here are our top picks:

1. Banh Mi Boys – With two central locations (Queen and Spadina; Yonge and College), this Vietnamese inspired joint is a quick walk away from your short-term rental or your go-to spot during your extended stay in Toronto. Though they’re known for their delicious banh mi, they have Vietnamese style tacos, and their infamous fusion-filled kimchi fries, which is the closest you’ll get to a replica of a Korean-style poutine.

2. Panago Pizza – For the times when you just want to stay in and relax, Panago delivers a variety of options for your tastes. If you want to pick up, there are locations close to our Midtown rentals as well as the downtown furnished rentals (300 Front Street West).

3. Fresh – Since its inception in downtown Toronto in 1999, Fresh has blazed the trail for healthy-inspired fare without the cost. With locations across the city, Fresh is close to the Republic building and the 173 Duplex in Midtown; and downtown furnished condos Toronto with locations at Spadina and Richmond and Bloor and Spadina. Large salads could easily be two meals for under $15 but the best deal here is the soup, salad and cornbread combo for $10. Whether it’s a meal or a smoothie, eat-in or take-out, you can call in advance to pre-order, as this popular spot is frequently busy.

4. Aroma – With locations across the city, including Yonge and Eglinton and King and Spadina (close to the Icon and Element locations), Aroma is your best bet for a grab and go lunch with a coffee or hot chocolate. Best bets: the salmon sandwich and chicken salad are both under $10 each. Bonus: you get little chocolate with your meal or your hot chocolate.

5. Cheesewerks –  Stock up on the comfort food of gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches and homemade sodas for under $10. Sandwiches have been named after different cities that are near and dear to the owners hearts. I’m a huge fan of the Los Angeles. Eat in or take out to your furnished condo at the Icon building located at 270 Wellington Street West.

6. Sense Appeal – Known as one of the best coffee shops in Toronto, Sense Appeal now has a gourmet-inspired lunch menu for those on the go.

7. Sushi InnCheap Eats in Toronto – You wouldn’t expect a meal for under $15 in Yorkville, but there’s a reason this joint is always packed. You can get 6 maki and a drink/tea will keep you satisfied. Quick service and turnaround so you can get back to your furnished suite at the James Cooper Mansion at Yonge and Bloor!

8. Feel Good Guru – Another option for the health conscious and located right across the street from Trinity Bellwoods Park, you could eat facing the park or take it to go for an outdoor picnic on a leisurely sunny day. Plant powered wraps and salads average around $12. Noodles and combos average around $15. Looking for a good juice? Those liquid substitutes will fill you up for about $8.

9. Seven Lives Tacos – This Kensington Market hot-spot is the closest you’ll get to So-Cal tacos for $5 each! Fill up on the famous Garbernardor (marlin and shrimp), or the grilled octopus. Cash only.

10. Pai – Chef Nuit Regular hasn’t slowed down since her departure from Thai restaurant, Khao San Road, over two years ago. Most mains average around $14, including her famous pad thai. A short walk from your furnished suite at the Qwest building located at Richmond and Simcoe.

11. Kanga –  Stock up on Australia’s national snack of miniature beef pies and its many variations at this new spot in the Entertainment district. The best part? You can buy frozen varieties of the Butter Chicken, Canadian (steak and bacon), and traditional pie to bring home to your furnished apartment in downtown Toronto, if you don’t feel like cooking!

12. Ghandi’s –  Gorge on the hefty portion of the Butter Chicken Roti for about $13. A true hole in the wall at Queen and Bathurst. Call ahead to order.

13. Caplansky’s – Zane Caplansky serves up some of the best smoked meat in the city. A traditional sandwich will set you back $8. If not at College and Spadina, check Twitter for the whereabouts for tCheap Eats in Torontoheir food truck, Thundering Thelma.

14. Swatow – Choose from over 28 varieties of noodle soups at this Chinatown institution. Recommended: shrimp dumpling soup and deep-fried salt-and-spice duck (which they call roast duck), and General Tao chicken. No dish is more than $10 each and if you come in a group, you can share among the different dishes.

Toronto truly is a great city to eat on the cheap and with this list, you now know where to go to satisfy your tastes! Enjoy a night out during short term stay in Toronto. Now tell us, what are your top cheap eats in the city?