Mementos from Toronto

Where I stayed, what I did, where I ate and.. would I recommend it?


I recently took my mom down to Toronto for a week to celebrate her birthday and have a little vacation before fashion month; the last time I was in Toronto was during a winter storm in 2014 (see here) and I was so excited to be going during the summer so I could actually see Toronto outside of my hotel room.

I ended up getting a long list of recommendations from you guys on Instagram (a lot of it was food) so I put that list to work and now I can pass along the best of the best.


WHERE WE STAYED

  • Le Germain Hotel.
    • Would I recommend it? For the price, you get an amazing room with gorgeous modern design, access to a very elaborate complimentary breakfast spread, a personal Nespresso machine that gets stocked daily and the best door service you’ll ever experience. I never noticed how much I appreciated doormen until I stayed at Le Germain Hotel; they would see you coming from a mile away and be ready with a smile; I can’t rave about the service enough.

WHAT WE DID

  • Casa Loma.
    • Would I recommend it? It’s a self-guided audio tour through the castle, in each of the rooms, into the underground passage the servants used to use, the garages and the gardens. If you’re into history and following the story of a man, wife and mistress from the early 1900s, then it’s very interesting! I really enjoyed it.
  • The Distillery District.
    • Would I recommend it? I was more interested in the Distillery District once I learned the history of it. The buildings are all refurbished factories with a lot of the original parts still intact. Great restaurants, outdoor art, galleries and live entertainment! A relaxing and fun place to spend an evening.
  • Cineplex at Dundas Square.
    • Would I recommend it? Two birds with one stone. I probably wouldn’t have visited Dundas Square if I didn’t have a reason to, and catching a movie is a great reason!

WHERE WE ATE

  • High Tea at Windsor Arms.
    • Would I recommend it? Yes! Exceptional service with gluten-free options, a ‘heritage’ interior and the menu is extremely filling, I recommend the Tibetan Tiger tea!
  • Taco 101.
    • Would I recommend it? By the end of the meal, my mom and I were both so happy we walked into this little hole in the wall. The guys working in the back were so cheerful and funny, the tacos were amazing and the only seating is in an open window with a perfect view for people-watching. It’s near Dundas Square so it makes a great spot for lunch or dinner before your Cineplex movie.
  • La Palma.
    • Would I recommend it? One of the biggest surprises this trip, was the menu at La Palma; they combined some unexpected ingredients to make some seriously delicious dishes (cauliflower and grapes?! So good!) The interior played a bit part in the experience as well, everything was white and airy, plu the bathroom was pink and amazing. We sat in this little nook at the bar and it was like our own private dining experience.
  • Portland Variety.
    • Would I recommend it? We went for brunch and it was the first time I ever had avocado toast, believe it or not, and it was actually amazing. I understand the hype now. My toast came with a side of eggs and the entire combo was really, really yummy. If you go, the patio is on point for people watching and it’s also a really nice neighbourhood to explore.
  • Buca.
    • Would I recommend it? I read a few reviews prior that referred to it as the best Italian in Toronto and I’m convinced. The meat and cheese plates were very rich (and they have alternative cheese options!) and the waiter recommended a wine pairing to go with my pasta that was divine. Fun fact: they change their menu every single day so they’re constantly giving you the chance to try something fresh!