The ultimate hotel guide to Toronto – National Geographic UK

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As Canada’s largest city establishes itself as a film and tech hub, new hotels are moving in at pace and old ones are usually upping their game.

A classic view of the particular Toronto skyline.

Published 5 Oct 2022, 06: 15 BST

Canada’s biggest city has long had plenty to thrill visitors: world-class museums, international restaurants and golden beaches. Its accommodation, by contrast, hasn’t always managed to keep up — but things are changing. As Toronto determines itself as a film and technology hub, brand new hotels are usually moving inside at speed and old ones are upping their own game. Hotels typically reflect their locale, from the historic Annex neighbourhood to the lively Entertainment District and hip Trinity-Bellwoods. For luxury brands, the Financial District and upmarket Yorkville are your go-tos, while bohemian-cool stays abound in trendy Queen West. Many of Toronto’s best hotels are within the central core, but if you base yourself further out, be sure you’re on a subway or streetcar line; bargain remains can quickly become otherwise in case you have hefty taxi fares in order to contend with.

Best for aesthetes
1 Hotel Toronto
When American brand one Hotels launched its first Canadian outpost off King Street West in 2021, it did so with proper Canadian flair. Furniture was styled from local fallen trees; restaurant plates were garnished with herbs through the on-site garden; plus glacier-carved Ontario stone was hauled in to create the spectacular lobby feature. Native plants had been installed within bedrooms and public spaces, too — all by a dedicated in-house gardening team. The sustainable angle extends to the light-and-bright rooms, along with reusable chalkboards replacing traditional notepads plus carafes of filtered tap water standing in for plastic bottles. The other big selling point, beside the ethics? The suntrap rooftop pool, one of the particular few open-air pools in the city.   From CA$529 (£334).

Best for the jet set
Fairmont Royal York :   Locations don’t get more convenient than the Fairmont Royal York, the 1929 chateau-inspired hotel just steps from central Union Station. Not that you are here to escape Toronto, of course; this glam old pile has it all with its sultry martini bar, skylight-topped indoor pool and decadent weekend afternoon teas. Book 1 of the particular newly refurbished rooms — it’s a few dollars extra, yet worth it for the fresh, steely blue aesthetic — and request the view overlooking the CN Tower, so you can wake  upward to Canada’s most famous landmark. Keep your eyes peeled for that A-list clientele; the hotel has hosted many notable guests in the past, including the Queen.
Rooms: From CA$559 (£353).  

Private dining room at Fairmont Regal York.

Photograph simply by Brandon Barré Photography

Best with regard to glamour pusses
Park Hyatt Toronto :   After four years of renovations, one of Toronto’s most storied hotels reopened quietly in autumn 2021 — plus it’s a real looker. Swathes associated with marble, sleek dark woods and the calming colour palette make for a high-spec space that’s equal parts luxurious and crowd-pleasing. The location, within the smart Yorkville neighborhood, makes it the prime pick for culture vultures visiting the adjacent Royal Ontario Museum, or even for shoppers — Louis Vuitton, Gucci and Dior are a minute away. Don’t miss the lobby restaurant Joni for prawn crudo with clementine and black lime, while the moodily lit, intimate Writers Room Bar, frequented pre-refurb by authors like Margaret Atwood, is a destination in its own right.
Areas: From CA$675 (£427).

Best for socialites
Bisha :   Partly styled by Lenny Kravitz’s design company, this Entertainment District hotel thrums with music industry cool. Room decor is bold and feels made for after-hours partying, along with dark, lacquered surfaces,  
velvet sofas plus bar carts stocked with spirits — not to mention the particular love-it-or-hate-it art, including a single print that instructs you to ‘leave your clothes at home’. In contrast, the 44th floor Kost restaurant, looking over the pool, channels LA vibes along with its sun-drenched tables and tropical foliage. Join the cool crowd for smoked short rib with guajillo glaze, washed down with frosty margaritas.  
Rooms: From CA$560 (£434).  

The Bisha Suite in Bisha

Photograph simply by Bisha Hotel

Perfect for design gurus
The particular Drake Resort :   This pad on Queen Street Western quickly became a hub for the particular area’s culture, arts plus live songs scene when it opened in 2004. A shiny new extension, opened inside 2021, has more than doubled its room count in order to 51, whilst maintaining the brand’s signature aesthetic of mid-century-modern furniture, bold contemporary prints and quirky Canadiana. (If you like what a person see, check out their particular lifestyle plus home accessories kit from The Drake General Store. ) The Drake Underground, the locally loved performance area, will have got you partying until late, while weekend break brunches served until 4pm mean you can recover over fried chicken and waffles.
Areas: From CA$360 (£228).

Great for bargain-hunters
The Rex :   Central Toronto stays don’t usually come cheap  — unless you’re staying from The Rex. A stalwart music venue at the edge of the particular Entertainment Area, its worn-in bar fills nightly along with some associated with Canada’s best brass, strings and vocal talent performing jazz plus blues. There are hotel rooms on the upper floor, where a bed for the night costs sub-£100. Decor is no-frills, space will be tight and there’s no lift, but in turn you obtain built-in nightlife and a first-rate location by big-hitting sights such as the Art Gallery of Ontario plus CN Tower. You’re not short associated with local eating options  either, but if you are staying put, the cafe serves a classic Canadian poutine.
Rooms: From CA$115 (£73).

Best for indie spirits
The Annex Hotel :   Named after the leafy residential district this calls home, The Annex is about two things: style and simplicity. They’ve done away with the usual hotel admin, letting you examine in online and see yourself to a white-washed room — simply text if something’s required. Larger bedrooms, with natural forest and minimalist decor, have an almost the Japanese aesthetic. Downstairs, the particular bar serves orange wine, local beers and mezcal cocktails. Restaurant Aunty Lucy’s, inspired simply by owner Chieff Bosompra’s Ghanian roots, offers smash burgers with deep-fried plantain, gooey jalapeno havarti cheese plus zingy secret sauce.
Areas: From CA$260 (£164), B& B.

Bi-Level Suite with Park Hyatt Toronto.

Photograph by Park Hyatt Toronto

Best regarding cool cats
Gladstone House :   Toronto’s oldest continually operating resort, perched majestically on a Queen Street Western world corner since 1889, remains one of its most enticing. It’s not just the refurbed Melody Bar, using its historic murals and raucous drag brunches, that create this such a destination, nor is it the areas, combining original brick along with one-off, purchasable pieces simply by Toronto artists. This hotel has plenty to keep guests busy, too, with its on-site artist studio, yoga space and open-plan lounge areas. Book one of the spacious, coveted corner suites, before heading out to explore the artisan bakeries and CBD stores of nearby Ossington Avenue.
Rooms: Through CA$265 (£168).

Perfect for peace-seekers
The particular Anndore House :   The rambling north-south artery of Yonge Street, along with its fast-food chains plus condos, isn’t exactly known for serenity. But step into The Anndore, a high-rise hotel perched above the rush, and you’ll find a peaceful escape. Industrial-edgy rooms with exposed brick and subway-tiled bathrooms give the hotel a distinctly urban feel, plus small touches like vinyl players and button-back chairs lend the lived-in, home-from-home vibe. Download the dedicated hotel app to act as your key card plus control your own room’s lights and TV, then discover nearby Bloor Street, home to Canadian stores this kind of as Roots and Holt Renfrew.  
Rooms: From CA$250 (£158).

Indoor swimming pool at The Westin Harbour Castle.

Photograph by Gillian Jackson

Best for families
The particular Westin  Harbour Castle :   Aside from its enviable waterfront area — the particular ferry launch point for your parks and beaches from the Toronto Islands — family members love The Westin intended for the perks it offers young travellers. You will find outdoor tennis courts, bountiful breakfast buffets, an indoor pool and a kids’ club, too. And yet, for all the child-friendly focus, the resort doesn’t compromise on style. Leather headboards, cappuccino hues and crisp white bedding give bedrooms a grown-up feel. Consider booking two interconnecting rooms — they’re a good option for larger families or those with teens after their own room.
Rooms: From CA$213 (£135).  

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