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Community Events, Downtown Toronto, Events, Family Vacations in Toronto, Lifestyle talk, Toronto Family Travel

Toronto in Ten Photos

November 25, 2014

Capturing Toronto in ten photos is not an easy task because this city is so vast. There are a number of things to do and a number of icons that define the city. We have illustrated the city from a local viewpoint with a mix of those icons that make Toronto just what it is. Luckily, our landmarks are within walking distance of your furnished apartment in Toronto. Hopefully, this provides inspiration for you to photograph your Toronto.

Toronto in Ten Photos1. Evergreen Brickworks
The Brickworks, as it’s affectionately known, is an old brick factory which provided bricks for the construction of some iconic Toronto landmarks such as Massey Hall and Casa Loma. The Brickworks is now used as a cultural space and for events. Check out the kilns and the interesting graffiti on the walls; the farmer’s markets on the weekends; and Cafe Belong, for a leisurely brunch. Around the site, you can sit by the pond or hike behind the area over to Rosedale through Milkman’s Lane or north to St. Clair via Moore Park.

2. Toronto StreetcarsToronto in Ten Photos
These trolleys are a signature icon of Toronto. Concurrently, they’re offer one of the best ways to see our massive metropolis from east to west for $3. Just hop on the Queen Streetcar and it will take you all the way from Roncesvalles where King and Queen intersect, past through Parkdale, Queen West, Corktown, Leslieville, and to the Beach all the way to Neville Park. Make sure you check out the old streetcar yard at Queen and Greenwood, which will move to Leslie and Lakeshore. The streetcars have also gotten an upgrade and are currently of use along Spadina Avenue.

Toronto in Ten Photos3. Kensington Market
One of the most colourful, eclectic, and bohemian neighbourhoods in Toronto, Kensington Market is also designated a National Historic Site. Once populated by Jews and Italians who sold items and gifts. After the recession in the 80s, Latin American immigrants began to move in and this habitation is reflected in the many Latin American stalls and grocery stores in the market. Now you’ll find more modern cafes, restaurants and shops (from vintage to modern) in the neighbourhood. Don’t forget to check out Pedestrian Sundays, when the market closes its streets to pedestrian traffic and celebrates on the last Sunday of every month from May to October.

4. Queen Street WestToronto in Ten Photos
Queen Street West is considered one of the most exciting neighbourhoods in Toronto and was recently rated by Vogue as the second coolest neighbourhood in the world. This section of Queen, which expands past University to Lansdowne Avenues, is a hodge-podge of trendy boutiques, an eclectic mix of restaurants, vintage shops, bars, art galleries, Trinity Bellwoods Park, and two hotels (the Drake and the Gladstone). It is the perfect street for an afternoon stroll.

Toronto in Ten Photos5. Trinity Bellwoods Park
Aforementioned, Trinity Bellwoods Park is one of the mainstays of the Queen Street West scene. Whether you’re biking, running, playing tennis or partaking in other activities at its adjacent community centre, this is one of the best people-watching spots in the city. Grab a blanket, some homemade food, or head over to one of the local cafes across the street for the ideal picnic spot.

6. Graffiti Alley
Toronto in Ten Photos Located just south of Queen Street West, this alley filled with local graffiti and artwork is not only an alternate route away from the people traffic, it’s an underrated destination in Toronto. Expanding from Spadina close to Bathurst, this alley is just a glimpse at the growing graffiti scene in Toronto, whose walls have now been marked by icons Banksy and Sheppard Fairey. Want to learn more or meet others while checking out great art? Check out the local tour by the Tour Guys.

Toronto in Ten Photos7. Great Food
Toronto’s food scene is eclectic, multicultural and always evolving. You can get great deals but you do need to know where to go. Some great areas to dine in the city are Queen Street, King Street, Ossington, Kensington Market, and Dundas West. The Junction, St. Clair West, and Leslieville are underrated for their dining scenes and you should explore and dine in these areas if you have the chance. One of my favourite spots is Fresh, the healthy food chain, which has a great lunch special of their soup, salad, and cornbread combo for $10!

8. CN Tower ViewsToronto in Ten Photos
It’s hard not to try to find the best spot of this view. From our 300 Front Street West furnished apartments in downtown Toronto, you’ll feel so close to the tower, you can almost touch it. Head over to Fort York or the BMO Exhibition field for that landscape view. Downtown, you’ll get a good glimpse from OCAD (and some great architecture to photograph as well right near the AGO). Further east, Polson Pier and Ashbridge’s Bay are your best bets to get that skyline shot.

Toronto in Ten Photos9. Toronto’s East End and the Best Skyline View
If you have a chance to head east, Riverdale Park East is your best bet for stunning skyline views. A few blocks south of the Danforth on Broadview, it’s a quick streetcar ride or 15 minute walk down to the park. Make sure to go to the best coffeeshop in town, Rooster Coffeehouse to help take in the view. Across the park, head to Riverdale Park West and up the stairs, you’ll find the free Riverdale Farm, Toronto Necropolis, and the historic Cabbagetown district.

10. The St. Lawrence MarketToronto in Ten Photos
Ranked as the world’s best market by National Geographic, the St. Lawrence Market definitely lives up to its reputation. Whether you’re looking for meat, fish, cheese, bread, or produce, it’s all here. Specialty items like mushroom truffle dip, oils, or gorgeous bouquets are all here too. You won’t be starved for lunch. Check out the famous Carousel Bakery for its peameal bacon sandwiches, St. Viateur for those famous Montreal bagels, or Buster’s Seacove to satisfy that fish craving (lobster, halibut, shrimp, and much more!). There’s nothing like it on a Saturday morning.

Hope you enjoyed our photos! If you could choose ten photos to describe Toronto what would they be?

Photos: Complimentary of Natalie Taylor

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.

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!

 

Community Events, Downtown Toronto, Events, Family Vacations in Toronto, Food & Recipes, Lifestyle talk

Ten Must Do’s in August in Toronto

August 8, 2014

After a long, harsh winter, Torontonians are taking advantage of one last month of the prime summer season to enjoy festivities, long weekends, and fun activities. Here are a few of our favourite must do’s in August in Toronto that you won’t want to miss!

1. Taste of the Danforth
Over a million visitors flock to Toronto’s Greektown every year to sample some of the best Greek food in the city at discounted prices. There’s plenty to do with tons of performances, yoga demonstrations, and concerts. August 8-10, 2014

Must do's in August in Toronto

Rogers Cup

2. Rogers Cup
Noted as one of the best tennis tournaments in the world, watch the drama of this fast paced game, which features 44 of the best players in the world, including Rafael Nadal and Canada’s own Milos Raonic. Better than watching it from your furnished apartment in Toronto! August 2-10, 2014

3. FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup Canada
Riding off the high of the World Cup Tournament in Brazil this year, the sport’s organization, FIFA has organized a cup for the world’s best female teams under 20 across Canada. You can watch particular matches in Toronto like Costa Rica vs New Zealand and Canada vs Ghana at the National Soccer Stadium. August 5-24, 2014

Must do's in August in Toronto

Toronto Islands

4. Toronto Islands
One of Toronto’s top attractions just a short ferry ride away from downtown Toronto, the Toronto Islands are a series of connecting islands spanning over 5 km. The ferry isn’t the only way to get there. You can take a water taxi, canoe and kayak from one of the rental places at Harbourfront. Centre Island is a popular island and features Centreville Amusement Park for the kids. If you’re more adventurous, head over to Hanlan’s Point, Toronto’s only nude beach. Pack your picnic, rent a bike, and capture some of the best skyline views of the city.

Must do's in August in Toronto

Toronto Blue Jays

5. Watch a Blue Jays Game
Baseball games were made for summer, especially at home games when the dome is open at the Rogers Centre. Whether you’re up close or in the nosebleeds, there’s nothing like the excitement of a Jays game. Regular games range from $11 up to $75; and premium games (weekends and pending on team) range from $14 to $210 (“in-the-action” seats behind the home plate).
Home games are listed here: http://www.seetorontonow.com/listings/toronto-blue-jays-baseball-club/
Stop by the Steamwhistle Brewery afterwards for some fresh, Torontonian brew.

6. Kensington Market
Every last Sunday of the month, the streets of the eclectic Kensington Market close down to traffic and open up to the public to roam free amongst the music and various activities happening in the area. Grab a seat on one of the coveted patios for some of the best people watching in the city. August 31, 2014

7. Roundhouse Craft Beer Festival
Lager lovers will revel in this festival at the headquarters of the Steamwhistle Brewery (across from the Roger’s Centre) which is only a few minutes away from your furnished apartment in Toronto. This festival showcases craft beers specifically from Ontario, such as Great Lakes Brewery, Flying Monkeys, and Left Field. There will also be a multitude of food trucks from the popular Gorilla Cheese to Fidel Gastro’s to whet your appetite. August 9-10, noon until 7pm

Must do's in August in Toronto

Sail In Cinema

8. Free Movies in Interesting Places
Every summer, some of Toronto’s biggest public spaces open up to the public for free movie viewings. Our picks: the Sail-in Cinema at Sugar Beach, where you could dock your boat or watch classics like Jaws, Jurassic Park, and E.T. (August 14, 15, 16); Yonge and Dundas Square across from the Eaton Centre hosts movies every Tuesday at dusk in the summer; and Riverdale Park East for The Wizard of Oz on August 17. The Harbourfront Centre is also showcasing contemporary box office hits at their West Jet Stage on August 13, 20, and 27.

9. Pan American Food Festival
Come celebrate the diversity of the Americas and the Caribbean at Daniel’s Spectrum in Regent Park, where chefs cook the cuisine of a showcased country (Peru, this year). Some of the best Latin American yet Toronto based chefs will be in attendance, including Rossy Earle and Steve Gonzalez. There will also be performances, salsa and bachata dance workshops, and activities for the kids, including a youth World Cup! August 8-10, 2014

Must do's in August in Toronto

Fine Dining

10. Eat!
New, haute restaurants open almost every August just in time for the Toronto Film Festival in September. Now is your time to savour every bite at some of the hottest places where the stars will be. Noted openings include: Cluny, Montecito, Pai, and Rush Lane (for cocktails and bar snacks).
One of the biggest food parties of the summer is Tres, from famous taqueria, La Carnita. They celebrate their third anniversary with a big block party on August 23 around College and Bathurst. Check their Twitter and Instagram feeds for more details. https://twitter.com/la_carnita

 

Business Travel, Family Vacations in Toronto, Lifestyle talk, Relocation, Toronto Family Travel, Uncategorized

The Top 5 Essentials to Keep in Your Suitcase

July 10, 2014

Essentials to Keep in Your SuitcaseEven if travel isn’t a regular part of your schedule, it pays to have certain items in your suitcase at all times. Having some key essentials to keep in your suitcase will not only help make your travel preparations easier, but it will also reduce your chances of forgetting something when you’re in a rush.  Read our list of essential items to store in your suitcase so you’re always ready to hit the road when you need to.

  1. First Aid Kit EssentialsWellness kit – While you’re likely to keep your prescriptions close at hand, putting together a health kit that you can stash in your suitcase is always a good idea. Pick up small sizes of antacid, band aids, antiseptic ointment, throat lozenges, anti-fungal medication and decongestant will save you the hassle of trying to find an open drug store in a city you’ve just arrived to.
  2. Toiletries – Keeping travel-sized versions of your favourite personal care items such as shampoo, conditioner, deodorant and shaving cream packed in your suitcase is one less thing you have to worry about, should you need to travel at a moment’s notice. Be sure to check your supply of toiletries when you return from your trip so that you’re stocked up for the next time you travel.
  3. Electronic cords and chargers – From your laptop to your smart phone, there’s nothing worse than having the battery life of your electronic device end abruptly. Keeping an extra set of cords and charging devices in your suitcase is a quick and easy solution that ensures neither you (nor a colleague) find yourself without power.
  4. Travel clock – Sure your smart phone can double as an alarm, but having a backup doesn’t hurt either. Let’s face it, when you’re in a new location, you’re out of your regular routine and you might need a little extra help waking up. Have the alarm on your smart phone set for your desired wake time and then use your travel clock as a backup that’s set for five minutes later. This ensures you’ll never sleep through your alarm.
  5. Rain check – When the weather forecast predicts sunny skies, rain isn’t something you think about. But, keeping a small-sized umbrella and folded rain poncho in your suitcase at all times is a terrific way to avoid being stuck in the rain.

Whether you’re in town for vacation, or enjoying a short term rental on a business trip, we highly recommend packing these five essential items to ensure you’re prepared anywhere you go!