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832 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1V3, Canada
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If you only have one Italian restaurant to visit in Toronto, this is the one. Yes, Buca is good too, but Campagnolo treats you like famiglia. There is a reason the restaurant was voted on En Route's top ten restaurants of 2011. Everything on the...
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115 Danforth Ave #302, Toronto, ON M4K 1N2, Canada
June is one of the best months to be in Toronto and this year, you're definitely going to want to stick around June 10-17 for one of the best music festivals in North America. Toronto's version of SXSW has turned into NXNE or North by Northeast,...
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74 Lippincott St, Toronto, ON M5S 2P1, Canada
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You'll always find a lineup outside of Aunties and Uncles tucked away on charming Lippincott Street, a block east of Bathurst and College. The reason? It's one of the best value brunches in town. From the hearty challah with housemade jam, to its...
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1320 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6K 1L4, Canada
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This intimate restaurant has quickly become one of my new favorites. It has all of the marks of an amazing experience: attentive, knowledgeable and friendly staff; simple, yet flavorful dishes; boozy libations and a gorgeous atmosphere (including...
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In the heat of the summer there is only thing to do: pack a lunch, grab some beers, hop on a bike, ride the ferry, and get yourself over to the islands. It doesn't really matter which ferry you chose (well, don't head to the airport) because the...
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790 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G3, Canada
Rock Lobster hasn't been a proper restaurant for long. This Ossington eatery got its start at the Toronto Underground Market, a monthly event which allows non-pros with a flair for food to show off their chops to masses of hungered folks. When...
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405 Roncesvalles Ave, Toronto, ON M6R 2N1, Canada
Roncesvalles is definitely a neighborhood worth visiting, and this gift boutique is a great excuse to do so. It's only been open for a year but has plenty of loyal followers and lots of fun finds ranging from baby gear to napkins with faux wine...
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69 Kensington Ave, Toronto, ON M5T 2K2, Canada
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Seven Lives is a relatively new addition to the city's taco scene, which has been dominated by Grand Electric and La Carnita. Formerly tucked into a food court, this Kensington eatery has branched out into a home of its own thanks to the buzz...
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1078 West Queen Street, Toronto, ON M6J 1H8, Canada
this longstanding little locals spot is one I've been to before and forgot about some time ago. Don't know why. Rediscovered it again this past week and still love the vibe and the unique drink they specialize in. I promise to not be a stranger. A...
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1301 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M4L 1C2, Canada
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When champion oyster shucker Patrick McMurray of Starfish opened this authentic Irish pub on the edges of Leslieville, the area suddenly got a little more interesting. Locals could enjoy the craic without crossing the Bloor Viaduct. Even more...
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730 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M4M 1H2, Canada
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Founded by Canadian Celebrity Chef Lynn Crawford of Food Network Canada's Restaurant Makeover and Pitchin' In, Ruby Watchco is her farm to table labour of love. For $49, you get a four course meal: an appetizer, main course, cheese amuse bouche...
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1349 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6K 1M1, Canada
At this most hipster of hipster espresso bars, Portland meets Toronto. And it is good. Don't let the hipster vibe deter you—the 'spro is solid, tunes are fine, and the baristas will even crack a smile (occasionally). They also bake their own...
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64 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Y7, Canada
I don't know of many places where you can grab a coffee, read a magazine, pull a pint, flip a tractor tire, swing a sledgehammer, and finish off with an organic wheatgrass and kale smoothie, but then I don't know many other places like the...
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980 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M4M 1K1, Canada
This is a straight up wine bar with minimalist decor in an old automotive shop but the food needs to be mentioned. The raves about the cripsy fried chicken tails are also en point. They are the perfect bar snack, especially if you like salt. the...
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235 Queens Quay W, Toronto, ON M5J 2G8, Canada
This 10-acre cultural "facility" located on the shore of the mighty Lake Ontario is especially popular on summer weekends, but I enjoy it just as much in the winter. A lakefront outdoor Skating Rink (free) brings in the kids (curated DJ Skate...
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32 Tank House Lane, Toronto, ON M5A 3C4, Canada
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On one of those (far too many for my taste) freezing days, nothing warms me up more than a cup of hot and spicy Mayan chocolate. Delicious! I also would suggest the Bicerin (pictured above) when they happen to have it on their menu. Heaven!
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1575 Lake Shore Blvd W, Toronto, ON M6K 3C1, Canada
Do you love the tagline ("What creams are made of"), or do you love it? Ashley Jacot De Boinod—former pastry chef at Buca—has taken her doughnut creations to new heights. Tim Horton's tim bits these are not. If you want peanut butter, bacon, and...
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946 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M4M 1J7, Canada
Located in Leslieville in the East End, Swirl is in a small, converted apartment above a dog store in Leslieville. I love the decor here, from the tables made from doors or antique sewing machine bases to the artwork by local artists FAME. It's a...
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780 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G2, Canada
If you want to indulge on decadent desserts, this is definitely your place. From the cotton candy macarons to my favourite, the salted caramel tart, the desserts here are simply divine. This is also the perfect place to get a gift for the foodie:...
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2104 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6R 1W9, Canada
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From their site: Magic Pony is dedicated to the exhibition and promotion of the best in young contemporary art. They operate as a studio, gallery and retail environment, combining elements of art, design and popular culture to create an unique...
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1212 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1X5, Canada
This is a bartender's bar, where you'll find many of those Toronto industry folks during their free time. The drinks are strong, the cocktails are delicious, and you're bound to bump into someone you know. If you want good trouble, it's likely to...
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24 Carlaw Ave #2, Toronto, ON M4M 2R7, Canada
There are a lot of great food trucks in the city but for me, this one trumps them all in terms of a complete experience. From the fun music they play (a wee bit too loud) so you can dance while you wait for your lunch to the food quality, this...
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928 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1W3, Canada
Cocktail Bar's Manhattan has been voted Hogtown's number one libation many a time. The booze-heavy tipple blends house-made bitters, Alberta Springs 10-year rye whiskey and the kicker, Carpano Antica Formula vermouth. Two dried cherries––bathed in...
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2959 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P 1Z2, Canada
It's worth the trip to browse at Mjölk, a den of Scandinavian and Japanese goods—and a wonderland for design geeks. The shop gets bonus points for its location in the up-and-coming Junction neighborhood and its two friendly owners whose lives...
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50 Gladstone Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 3K6, Canada
INDEXG is not your parents (or grandparents) B&B. 5 sparse yet "themed" rooms allow you to stay in what actually functions as an art gallery ( http://indexg.com/ ). Clean, crisp, affordable and located on the border between 2 of Toronto's hottest...
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Grange Park, Toronto, ON, Canada
Toronto is little bit obsessed with tacos right now, with full service, hyper designer or hipster restaurants opening every month. Proving that sometimes simple is best, SEVEN LIVES is basically a "barely there" food stall in the middle of...
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Grange Park, Toronto, ON, Canada
It doesn't get more laid back and cool than this new drinking spot from a group of Toronto bar veterans. Taking over a cheesy, 'skeezy' bar in Kensington Market, the light renovation here kept the charm and dropped the cheese. This is the place to...
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hidden enough that you need to know, tight enough to almost be a private party for you and your friends and delicious enough to make you want to come back. Not sure how to best describe this place but as a local Toronto (416 is the local telephone...
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35 Bathurst St, Toronto, ON M5V 2P2, Canada
These guys know coffee and they do it right. The space is Scandinavian minimalist minus the ginormous mural of a hammer-wielding Thor. In addition to your espresso, there's a number of paninis and delightful desserts that change on a regular...
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790 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G3, Canada
The moment the snow melts, young Torontonians begin their annual spring migration to Trinity Bellwoods Park. The hippest park in town, Bellwoods stretches from the shopper’s paradise of Queen West up to central Dundas Street. On a...
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63 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Z2, Canada
Arranged by era, I Miss You Vintage is a well organized, easy-to-shop treasure trove of great pieces. If you want high-end vintage, this is the place to get it. They recently added an extension for bags and accessories. There are some true finds...
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1214 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1J6, Canada
Stay in one of the 37 artist-designed rooms at the Gladstone, Toronto's longest-running hotel, and you'll be feeling the design vibe by morning. The Snapshot room incorporates vibrant images of Toronto's High Park and gives a treehouse feeling to...
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50 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M4W 3L8, Canada
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A highlight of the winter season is to see the dressed-up windows at two of major department stores during the holiday season. At The Bay, you'll usually be able to hear music from the windows. It's quite a spectacle and brings joy to so many...
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107 King St E, Toronto, ON M5C 1G6, Canada
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There are four different streams of tapas menus you can get with a variety of options under each menu. It’s not cheap. If you are doing a business dinner, this should be on the list! But also great for a date. A few of the standouts for me were:...
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479 Broadview Ave, Toronto, ON M4K 2N4, Canada
It's one of the most beautifully decorated places in the city. It's away from the tourist fray in the East End, but if you're lucky to have your cuppa here, you'll be rewarded with a sweeping view of the skyline from Riverdale Park. This is a...
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825 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1V4, Canada
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A testament to any restaurant, no matter how big or small, is the ability to transform your senses. And when you’re eating their food to not make any sense. This is how I always feel after I eat at Porchetta. I’m literally sitting there—there’s...
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223 Augusta Ave, Toronto, ON M5T 2L4, Canada
The only official business happening here is drinking. Located in the heart of Kensington Market, this patio is the best place (next to coffee shop Casa Acoreana) to perch and people watch. With its laid-back and casual vibe, you're guaranteed to...
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69 Nassau St, Toronto, ON M5T 1M7, Canada
Located off the main drag of Kensington Market, Ronnie's is your typical dive bar. It's dirty, dilapidated and there's not many options for beer. The word "cocktail" does not exist here. Yet this place draws the locals in droves. The best part?...
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11 Dockside Dr, Toronto, ON M5A 1B6, Canada
Squint your eyes and Sugar Beach looks like a David Hockney painting come to life: a cobalt-blue sky above and pale yellow sands below, lined by even rows of pastel-pink umbrellas. It's an Instagrammer's dream. But look around and you'll...
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93 Front St E, Toronto, ON M5E 1C3, Canada
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Toronto's St. Lawrence Market is crammed with 120 vendors, butcher counters, bakeries, ethnic eateries, and seafood shops. But there's one reason why most people come here: the peameal bacon sandwich, which is dished up at the Carousel Bakery....
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14 Kensington Ave, Toronto, ON M5T 2J7, Canada
If you ask any fashion editor or blogger what the best vintage shop is in Toronto, chances are they're going to tell you that it's Courage My Love in Kensington Market. It's hard not to miss this shop, which has been in business since 1975. If you...
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279 Augusta Av, Toronto, ON M5T 2M1, Canada
Model Citizen is the bee's knees! For both men and women, there are some really cool clothes here with many Canadian designers. Plus, it's located right in the heart of Kensington Market. Perfect if you're on a weekend stroll. I'm quite fond of...
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1151 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1J3, Canada
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The famed Drake Hotel's motto is that they are a "hotbed of culture." This extends to their General Store but the items in here are anything but general. There's lots of curiosities here like those fun scratch maps, New York vs. Paris postcard...
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11 Charlotte St, Toronto, ON M5V 2H5, Canada
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Nothing compares to this place in the world of Thai cuisine in Toronto (though if you want a wee bit of a cheaper eat, Salad King is a good bet). From their street style pad thai, Sam Roas, pictured above, to their succulent Khao Soi, you feel...
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243 X Queens Quay W, Toronto, ON M5J 2G8, Canada
List this under "very cool installations." The best part about the "wavedeck" is that you can slide on it (because you know you want to). It's a great, interactive gathering place at water's edge, and it plays on that theme in a whimsical way.
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357 College St, Toronto, ON M5T 1S5, Canada
Known as the greenest hostel in North America, it's also one of the most unique hostel stays I've had. Planet Traveler is a smorgasboard of everything a traveler would want in an accommodation: -comfortable and roomy beds -clean rooms with plenty...
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36 Milford Ave, North York, ON M6M 2V8, Canada
The Junction has its fair share of furniture shops but one of my favourites is Metropolis Living. Owned by siblings and veteran vintage collectors Phil Freire and Maggie Gattesco, the store feels like a museum of cool props. I'm a big fan of the...
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From the outside, the Royal Ontario Museum appears to have been struck by a mineral formation from outer space. When the original building was overhauled by starchitect Daniel Libeskind, many locals were dismayed by the new...
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550 Wellington St W, Toronto, ON M5V 2V4, Canada
The Thompson Toronto’s rooftop lounge and pool both offer a broad view of the skyline and Lake Ontario. The lobby welcomes with modern furnishings. The Counter, a 24-hour diner, serves poutine, the Canadian greasy-spoon favorite made of French...
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178 Victoria St, Toronto, ON M5B 1T7, Canada
Massey Hall is one of Canada’s most important concert halls. A veritable encyclopedia of musical talent has played here, including Enrico Caruso, Ella Fitzgerald, Bob Dylan, Pete Seeger, Igor Stravinsky, Patti Smith, Lou Reed,...
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1132 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1X2, Canada
If you ask someone in Toronto where to get great poutine in Toronto, there's going to be a debate. It doesn't matter if it originated in Quebec, Torontonians love their cheese curd, gravy and fries mash-up. So where to go? Some will say Smoke's...
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301 Front St W, Toronto, ON M5V 2T6, Canada
Since it was built back in 1976, the CN Tower has topped the must-visit list of most Toronto tourists. Until recently, a visit was pretty standard; hop in elevator, shoot up to the observation deck, and ogle the city from a hawk’s...
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60 Kensington Ave, Toronto, ON M5T 2K2, Canada
Cold Tea, located in a hidden spot through Kensington Mall (or through an alley off Augusta Avenue) is everybody's little secret. You're greeted by a dim sum cart when you pass the red light leading through the mall. Ripped, printed green...
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392 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M5V 2A9, Canada
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Former Toronto food truck superstar, Banh Mi Boys, opened up a shop at the buzzy intersection of Queen and Spadina (ironically, it's beside a McDonald's). In addition to their popular banh mi sandwiches and steam bao is one unusual dish: Kimchi...
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Tempt fate at the Monkey Paw’s Book-O-Matic machine, where for the price of a toonie you’ll be delivered an archaic tome in the vein of Elementary Arabic, Vol. 3. I’ll let you know how my studying gets on. The Monkey’s Paw...
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60 Yorkville Ave, Toronto, ON M4W 0A4, Canada
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This location is now the new flagship hotel for the brand. Local design firm Yabu Pushelberg aimed for surprises around every corner with the design of the hotel. From the 50 foot fenced ceilings (the fence pattern is also replicated in its...
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Kensington Ave, Toronto, ON M5T 2K2, Canada
A trip to Toronto without a visit to Kensington Market doesn’t make any sense. Despite its diminutive size, this neighborhood packs plenty of activity within its boundaries. Arrive hungry: Restaurants and cafés dish out bites...
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501 College St, Toronto, ON M6G 1A5, Canada
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This is not only a great restaurant but a great story. Three friends tested an experiment in advertising by selling tacos out of their advertising agency downtown. Since they were prohibited to sell food without selling a product, they...
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928 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1W3, Canada
The Black Hoof gets a lot of press and for good reason. Their food and concept is different and simply one of the best. From the tongue on brioche, the bone marrow with chimichurri and foie gras with nutella on banana bread (yup...you heard that...
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390 Keele St, Toronto, ON M6P 2K8, Canada
In the Junction, an emerging design neighborhood, Russet & Empire specializes in cheeky riffs on old-school Canadian icons. Porcelain cups from Toronto designer Rob Southcott (shown) stack to form a totem pole, while National Design Collective...
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317 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M5T 1G4, Canada
Frank Gehry was born inToronto, but his dramatic 2008renovation and expansion ofthis Beaux-Arts museum washis first Canadian commission.He first discovered art on childhood visits to its vast collection,which spans the world. Now themuseum...
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883 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1G5, Canada
Co-owned by my former Canadian Literature professor at University of Toronto, Joanne Saul, Type is the bookstore she has always dreamed of opening. You can't help but be charmed by this 'little bookstore that could' when you walk in; it's...
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188 Strachan Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2S9, Canada
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Bicyclette is on my Top 3 list of boutiques in Toronto. Located in the hipsterdome that is the neighbourhood of West Queen West, Bicyclette was made for Betties who wear pretty dresses and ride bikes. As the store site states, Bicyclette is a...
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744 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON M6J 1E9, Canada
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Keen to find Canadian fashion? Look no further than Coal Miner’s Daughter, a mini chain of boutiques that carries a trove of clothing and accessories, mostly from Canadian designers. Walk out with a vintage-style frock from...
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30 Mercer St, Toronto, ON M5V 1H3, Canada
but gets all the basics we need just right. Crisp sheets, ultra comfortable beds, excellent yet not fawning service and a nice breakfast spread (included with your stay) not to mention free WiFi, makes this the place I book all my friends who...
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208 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M5S 1T8, Canada
Perched across the street from the ROM (or the Royal Ontario Museum, to be official), Museum Tavern is a great spot to rest weary gams. The nostalgic brasserie is outfitted with a copper ceiling and tufted stools by the bar. Undoubtedly, these...
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1022 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M4M 1K4, Canada
The word "detox" is not usually in my vocabulary but when I need to take a break from the caloric-inducing meals from my travels, my preferred place is Belmonte Raw, located in the heart of Leslieville. Not only do they offer a variety of cleanses...