Toronto skyline with boats sailing on water

Toronto 101

Where to eat, shop, drink and Drake. 101 city insiders reveal their favourite things to do in the six.

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SHOPPING AND WELLNESS

#Toronto101: Insiders reveal their favourite things to do in the city

Jennifer Carter

CEO, Hermès Canada

I like to browse Archives, a boutique adjacent to the Four Seasons hotel, for accessories and home decor. The shop has a great selection of eyewear – I got a pair of Marni sunglasses there. And I love Buca Osteria & Bar around the corner. The pizzas there are excellent.

Archives
1275 Bay St., 416-922-22229, archivesltd.com

Buca Osteria & Bar
53, Scollard St., 416-962-2822, buca.ca

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Archives Boutique well lit interior
Measha Brueggergosman illustration

Measha Brueggergosman

Opera Singer

Everything Magpie makes is a work of art as well as a piece of clothing: very edgy with a lot of leather and repurposed fabrics. Co-owner and designer Cathy Robinson has been designing my performance wardrobe for a few years now. She also created looks for Prince on his last couple of tours.

Magpie
702 Queen St. W. 416-536-6158, magpietoronto.com

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Martina Sorbara

Musician

I go to Body Blitz Spa, a women-only bathhouse that has a circuit of pools, a sauna and a steam room – I'm addicted to the cold plunge pool. You can order a smoothie and relax in a chaise, and you can get a massage, scrub or mud treatment.

Body Blitz Spa
497 King St. E. and 471 Adelaide St. W., 416-364-2626, bodyblitzspa.com

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Blitz Spa Interior Pool in Toronto

Meghan Markle

Actress

The cold laser treatment for the face with Lorinda Zimmerman at W SkinCare is the absolute best. This pick-me-up for your skin uses non-ablative cold lasers, so it's non-invasive. So many people in my industry go to her, especially before a red carpet. Zimmerman also does pop-ups in L.A. during awards season.

W SkinCare
67 Portland St., second floor, 416-599-2711, wskincare.ca

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Sam James

Café owner

There are great vintage stores along Queen West in Parkdale, including In Vintage We Trust. The place has 1980s and '90s memorabilia, hip-hop-era fashion and the best classic sportswear in the city. There are also cool varsity jackets and a huge selection of Levi's. I picked up a great Polo hat there the other day.

In Vintage We Trust
1580 Queen St. W., 416-781-0395, invintagewetrust.com

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Andrea Lenczner and Christie Smythe

Co-designers, Smythe

The Kara Scalp Detox Salon specializes in scalp health. Sign up for a divine one-hour exfoliation that uses a tonic of vitamins and minerals to improve circulation and optimize hair growth.

Kara Scalp Detox Salon
186 Davenport Rd., 416-887-1345, karascalp.com

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Profile pic Tanya Taylor

Tanya Taylor

Fashion Designer (New York)

The Cat's Meow is my go-to for high-end women's vintage. It's got great bags and jewellery and an amazing selection of dresses. My husband got me a Chanel dress with ice cream cones on it from the 2004 Cruise collection. I've also found vintage Prada, Dior, Louis Vuitton and even Ceil Chapman, which is rare.

The Cat's Meow
180 Avenue Rd., 647-435-5875, thecatsmeow.com

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Joe Mimran

Fashionisto

I opened Club Monaco on Queen West in 1985, so I have seen that retail strip evolve and modernize. One of my favourite spots for menswear is Nomad, perfect for classic wardrobe staples. Dutil Denim has an excellent selection in dozens of washes and cuts. And Spectacle is fantastic for eyewear. Even if you're not buying, it's a lot of fun to browse.

Dutil Denim
704 Queen St. W., 647-352-256, dutildenim.com

Nomad
819 Queen St. W., 416-682-1107, nomadshop.net

Spectacle
752 Queen St. W., 416-603-0123, spectaclelovesyou.com

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Illustration of Joe Mimran

Leah McLaren

Journalist (London, UK)

On my last visit, I bought a couple of long sweaters from Corbo Studio. For shopping, I also like Jonathan + Olivia.

Corbo Studio
162 Cumberland St., 416-699-8784, corbostudio.com

Jonathan + Olivia
49 Ossington Ave., 416-849-5956, jonathanandolivia.com

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Claudia Dey and Heidi Sopinka

Co-designers, Horses Atelier

Penny Arcade Vintage is like Stevie Nicks and Ralph Lauren's love child. We've found all sorts of budget treasures there: leather boots, concert T-shirts, designer dresses.

Penny Arcade Vintage
1177 Dundas St. W., 647-346-1386, pennyarcadevintage.com

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Suzanne Boyd

Editor, Zoomer Magazine

For a fantastic blowout, Marcello at Twist & Company is the guy. He can handle all types of hair and knows how to do the sexed-up look for a big night out. For guys, he'll do natural cuts, and if you're going grey, he'll hand-paint colour to match your hair.

Twist & Company
106 Hazelton Ave., 416-925-8383

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Jeffrey Remedios

President, Universal Music Canada

If there's such a thing as a uniform for the creative worker, you can find it at Uncle Otis. The stock is a well-curated blend from smart, contemporary and independent designers like Wings + Horns and Creep. I got a pair of brown gloves from a Swedish designer, Hestra, that I literally wear every day in the winter.

Uncle Otis
26 Bellair St., 416-920-2281, uncleotis.com

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Illustration of Sarah Richardson

Sarah Richardson

Designer

Cynthia Findlay Antiques is the city's one-stop shop for fine antique decorative arts. Whatever your era, Cynthia's got it – from art deco hall stands and Victorian dessert services to 19th-century French opera glasses.

Cynthia Findlay Antiques
284 King St. W., 416-260-9057, cynthiafindlay.com

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Kamal Al-Solaylee

Author and Professor

My go-to furniture and home accessories store is Absolutely in Summerhill. It's actually two stores a few blocks from each other, and is perfect for mid-century collectibles, including quality vintage or refurbished items. Those with a more classical taste, especially for French period furniture, can't go wrong with Braem & Minnetti.

Absolutely
1132 Yonge St. and 1236 Yonge St. 416-324-8351, absolutelyinc.com

Braem & Minnetti
1262 Yonge St., 416-923-7437

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Erin Green

Managing Director, Etsy Canada

Souvenir carries goods by Canadian designers like Mikaroc and Mercury Bureau, along with finds from the shop owners' travels, and offers workshops (how to make flower crowns, weaving basics, etc.). This fall, look for Souvenir's concept shop Youth, featuring childhood-inspired work.

Souvenir
1232 College St., souvenir-studios.com

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Souvenir Boutique interior in Toronto

ARTS AND RECREATION

#Toronto101: Insiders reveal their favourite things to do in the city

Ilse Treurnicht

CEO MaRS Discovery District

Toronto's ravines are a magical way to get to know the city. If you have a few hours, wander through the paths around Moore Park Ravine and Evergreen Brick Works, a former quarry converted into a public park. On weekends, the Brick Works often hosts a farmers' market as well as food and art festivals.

Evergreen Brick Works
550 Bayview Ave., 416-596-7670, evergreen.ca

Moore Park Ravine
via 205 Moore Ave. or Mount Pleasant Cemetery

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Dre Ilse Treurnicht

Susan Langdon

Executive Director, Toronto Fashion Incubator

On Friday nights, the Royal Ontario Museum puts on "Friday Night Live" parties featuring bands and DJs. There are cocktails and dancing, and people get dressed up. It's a great way to see one of Toronto's most venerable cultural institutions in a different light.

Royal Ontario Museum
100 Queen's Park, 416-586-8000, rom.on.ca

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Susan Langdon

AA Bronson

Artist and Curator (Berlin)

The last time I was home, I went to the Aga Khan Museum, one of the city's greatest cultural experiences. It has an outstanding collection of Islamic artwork and heritage, some of which dates back to the 8th century.

Aga Khan Museum
77 Wynford Dr., 416-646-4677, agakhanmuseum.org

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Neil Pasricha

Neil Pasricha

Author

Download the Jane Jacobs Audio Walking Tour from the City of Toronto website, and listen to the world's foremost urban expert explain our city. The walk takes you through the Annex and passes by the renovated former rooming house where Jacobs lived for 37 years.

Jane Jacobs Audio Walking Tour
starts at Spadina Subway station, 416-642-5779, download here

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Jess Allen

TV Personality, The Social

The Royal Conservatory of Music's Koerner Hall feels like an old European concert hall, but one lined with ribbons of undulating wood (it was designed by Canadian architect Marianne McKenna). I've always managed to get cheap seats in the balcony overlooking the stage and am never disappointed in the view or, more importantly, the acoustics.

Koerner Hall
273 Bloor St. W., 416-408-0208performance.rcmusic.ca, performance.rcmusic.ca

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Jurgita Dronina

Principal Ballerina, National Ballet of Canada

Trinity Bellwoods Park has plenty of pop-up art fairs and concerts. You can just chill out, have a picnic or play tennis. The playground and open space are perfect for kids, plus there are boutiques, restaurants and cafés, and art and vintage stores to explore in the neighbourhood.

Trinity Bellwoods Park
790 Queen St. W., 416-338-4386, trinitybellwoods.ca

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Andrew Pyper

Author

People hang out at Type Books the way they would at a bar for happy hour. I can spend hours checking out the curated books on the tables (cool literary, with a smattering of pop), the hard-to-get magazines on the wall racks (excellent food porn) and the sweet, sunny backroom where the kids' books are. A little farther west you'll find plenty of restaurants and bars to sit down in and inspect your new reading material. I return to Foxley with the greatest frequency, as the food is always delicious and reasonably priced.

Foxley
207 Ossington Ave., 416-534-8520

Type Books
883 Queen St. W. and 427 Spadina Rd., 416-487-8973, typebooks.ca

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Evanka Osmak

Sports Anchor

The Toronto Islands are the place to escape the city without leaving it. I usually pack a lunch and bring my bike on the ferry over. There are a bunch of trails and beaches, including the famous clothing-optional beach at Hanlan's Point (though I'm more of a bathing-suit person).

The Toronto Islands
via the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal, 9 Queens Quay W., 416-392-2489, website

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André Alexis

Author

Housed in a renovated 1920s industrial building, The Power Plant is an art gallery that surprises. I've been going there for 30 years and there's always something new and exciting. Opening next month is Faux Guide, a collection of works by multimedia artist Yto Barrada that explores the Moroccan fossil and mineral trade.

The Power Plant
231 Queens Quay W., 416-973-4949, thepowerplant.org

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Matt Galloway

CBC host

It's a hike, but the Scarborough Bluffs are a must. They're made up of packed clay, a remnant of Lake Iroquois. Up top you get extraordinary views of the shoreline, and down below there are beaches and bike trails. You see families from so many different cultures barbecuing and swimming.

Scarborough Bluffs
via Bluffers Park, 1 Brimley Rd. S., website

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Matt Galloway

Robert Carsen

Conductor, Opéra national de Paris (Paris)

Everyone knows about the Royal Ontario Museum, but the Bata Shoe Museum is also excellent. The architecture is reminiscent of a shoe box. It holds the world's largest collection devoted to footwear, like a pair of 16th-century Venetian velvet-covered platform chopines, and shoes from Queen Victoria, Elvis Presley, John Lennon and Elton John.

Bata Shoe Museum
327 Bloor St. W., 416-979-7799, batashoemuseum.ca

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Mike Holmes

Celebrity Contractor

When the weather's great, there's nothing like being on the lake. Mariposa Cruises offers harbour tours with great city views, plus it's a party. Toronto has some of the best bars and restaurants in the world. One of my favourite spots for a drink and a good meal is Rodney's Oyster House.

Mariposa Cruises
207 Queens Quay W., 416-203-0178, mariposacruises.com

Rodney's Oyster House
469 King St. W., 416-363-8195, rodneysoysterhouse.com

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Will Fleissig

Urban Planner

I love taking my kids to Corktown Common. It's a park in the West Don Lands area, constructed as the Athletes' Village for the 2015 Pan Am and Parapan Am Games. It's an "insta-neighbourhood," which is pretty unusual, not just in Toronto but in the world. The park is a community space with marsh, a water play area and slides built right into the terrain. A couple of minutes away is Underpass Park, where you can see skateboarders and some really cool installation art.

Corktown Common
155 Bayview Ave., 416-392-2489, website

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Matty Matheson

Chef and Vice star

Faith/Void is an underground, independent music, comics and art store with a huge selection of punk, hardcore and experimental records, and the owner, Ryan, is super approachable and knowledgeable. The last time I was there, I grabbed albums by Death Side and Blood Pressure. The space has these black wall dividers; sometimes they're moved to the side and the whole place becomes a live music venue where the kids have fun and the bands smash and slam. It's the best.

Faith/Void
894 College St., basement, faithvoidshop.com

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FOOD, DRINK AND FUN

#Toronto101: Insiders reveal their favourite things to do in the city

Jenny Bird

Jewelry Designer

I love a great tequila bar, and El Rey Mezcal Bar is perfect for a night out with friends. The bright colours make it feel like you've been transported to Mexico, and the Bats and the Bees cocktail, with honey and ginger, is delish. It's always fun to people-watch from the patio.

El Rey Mezcal Bar
2A Kensington Ave., elreybar.com

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Brad Lamb

Real Estate Developer

I love Bymark, in the heart of the Financial District. I am a fervent city guy and I just love being ensconced in the centre of our city's high-rise district. The steaks are unbelievably good, and I recommend the mixed-berry martini.

Bymark
66 Wellington St., 416 777-1144, bymark.mcewangroup.ca

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Dr. Danielle Martin

VP, Women's College Hospital

Bang Bang Ice Cream sandwiches are worth the wait, which can sometimes be up to an hour. The delicious homemade cookies are paired with your choice of flavours, ranging from classics with a twist (burnt toffee) to downright interesting (avocado). My favourite is the ginger cookie with cinnamon ice cream.

Bang Bang Ice Cream
93 Ossington Ave., 647-348-1900, bangbangicecream.com

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Russell Peters

Comedian (Los Angeles)

I always stop in at Pat's Homestyle Jamaican Restaurant. Pat is an animated guy and he makes a damn good oxtail soup. Plus the place is open late – until 4 a.m. on weekends.

Pat's Homestyle Jamaican Restaurant
558 Queen St. W., 416-304-0767

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Russell Peters Profile Pic

Cailli and Sam Beckerman

Fashion bloggers

For a fun night out, visit Bar+ Karaoke. There are private rooms, so it's just you and your friends. We bring wigs and turn it into a wigaroke night. Our go-to jam is "Gangsta's Paradise."

Bar+ Karaoke
360 Yonge St., 416-340-7154, bar-plus.com

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Afrim Pristine

Maître fromager, Cheese Boutique

My favourite picnic spot is at the end of the Humber Bay trail along the waterfront. Pick up a snack at the Humber Bay Shores Farmers' Market (on Saturdays until October 15), or a hazelnut gelato at Eden Trattoria, and then head to the beach for the best view of the city.

Humber Bay Shores Farmers' Market
2225 Lake Shore Blvd. W. Eden Trattoria, 58 Marine Parade Dr., 416-255-5588, edentrattoria.com

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Josh Basseches

CEO, The Royal Ontario Museum

One of my first great meals was at Lai Wah Heen. I was a little skeptical when a colleague told me it was on the third floor of the DoubleTree Hotel, but I definitely learned my lesson. It serves some of the best dim sum outside of Asia.

Lai Wah Heen
108 Chestnut St., 416-977-9899, laiwahheen.com

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Dr. Pamela Goodwin

Director, Mount Sinai Hospital's Marvelle Koffler Breast Centre

The Roof Lounge at the Park Hyatt is fantastic for drinks. It's also great for views of the entire Financial District, the lake and the CN Tower. There's a sharing menu, an extensive wine list and a great martini selection. Try the Toronto #2, made with Collingwood rye and Angostura bitters.

Roof Lounge
4 Avenue Rd., 416-924-5471, toronto.park.hyatt.com

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Kate Chomyshyn

Chef, El Rey

I am a huge beer person, so I love the bright, friendly microbrewery Burdock, which has a full menu and live music. The beer list rotates, so there's always something new to try; my current pick is the American Session Ale, which is light yet hoppy.

Burdock
1184 Bloor St. W., 416-546-4033, burdockto.com

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Scott McGillivray

Host, Income Property

My friends and I will often go to the Ping-Pong bar Spin for a fun night. It's great because Ping-Pong is one of those games that everyone can get in on. The place serves drinks and plays top-40 music, which, I'm embarrassed to admit, is my thing. Reserve a table in advance.

Spin
461 King St. W., 416-599-7746, toronto.wearespin.com

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Ainsley Kerr

Socialite

My girlfriends and I go to the bottomless-mimosa brunch at the The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto when we want to celebrate. The spread includes all of the regular breakfast foods plus lob-ster, crab and sushi. There's an entire room of desserts, a cheese cave and, it's worth repeating, all-you-can-drink mimosas!

The Ritz-Carlton
Toronto,181 Wellington St. W., 416-585-2500, ritzcarlton.com

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Patrick Patterson

Toronto Raptors

As an athlete I eat healthy, but when I'm giving myself a treat, I'm a big burger guy. During my first week in Toronto I tried the burgers at Parts & Labour and Hero Burger. They were good, but my favourite by far was the Vatican City – two cheeseburger patties between two grilled-cheese buns – at The Burger's Priest.

The Burger's Priest
Various locations, theburgerspriest.com

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Farah Mohamed

CEO, G(irls)20

I holidayed in Greece and fell in love with the cuisine. Mamakas Taverna, which serves up lamb chops, cured swordfish and roasted eggplant, is like being in a nice restaurant in Santorini; it's clean, bright and bustling. The last time I was there was with my old boss, the former deputy prime minister of Canada.

Mamakas Taverna
80 Ossington Ave., 416-519-5996, mamakas.ca

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Michael Wekerle

Entrepreneur

The Hideout is a dive bar with amazing rock music. Different bands play different nights, but if you see Clifton David Broadbridge onstage, you know you're in for a treat. He plays the classic cover-band hits and can sound like anyone from Jimi Hendrix to Led Zeppelin.

The Hideout
484 Queen St. W., 647-438-7664, thehideouttoronto.com

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Emily Haines

Musician

I love spending time in High Park. In the winter, the frozen Grenadier Pond is great for skating. There's a sign that says no skating, but everyone ignores it– I guess you don't come between a Canadian and their ice. There's a little spot called The Grenadier nearby that serves a great classic breakfast, like bacon and eggs.

High Park
1873 Bloor St. W., 416-338-0338, highparktoronto.com

The Grenadier
200 Parkside Dr., 416-769-9870, grenadiercafe.com

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Jordan Rainhard

Beer Baron

You could spend hours browsing the hundreds of kinds of cheese at the Cheese Boutique. There's even a cave for aging cheese, and if the place is not too busy, you can enter with one of the staff members for a tour. Plus, they're always giving out samples of cheese and all sorts of other products.

Cheese Boutique
45 Ripley Ave., 416-762-6292, cheeseboutique.com

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Bruce Kuwabara

Architect

One of my favourite things to do is go to Actinolite for a special night out. It's got a fantastic tasting menu. I particularly like the halibut with cucumber, spinach and spruce tips. Afterwards, head south along Ossington – there are plenty of bars to visit for a nightcap.

Actinolite
971 Ossington Ave., 416-962-8943, actinoliterestaurant.com

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Caitlin Cronenberg

Photographer

Every dinner I've had at Bar Isabel has been perfect. I love the ceviche more than life itself, but my favourite thing on the menu is the Basque cake, which is always available.

Bar Isabel
797 College St., 416-532-2222, barisabel.com

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Norm Kelly

City Councilor and Six Dad

Yorkville has become a lot more upscale over the years, but it still has that village-within-a-city feel. Spend an afternoon here – the neighbourhood has shopping, galleries and cafés. For dinner, I'll head to Cibo Wine Bar, a contemporary Italian restaurant that serves classic dishes and has an extensive wine list. Order the pappardelle with lamb ragù.

Cibo Wine Bar
133 Yorkville Ave., 416-925-2143, cibowinebar.com

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Alx Veliz

Musician

The brunch at The Stockyards is the best. Fried chicken and waffles has become popular over the last few years, and a lot of places in Toronto do it, but this one – with a chili maple molasses citrus glaze – takes the prize. Look no further.

The Stockyards
699 St. Clair Ave. W., 416-658-9666, thestockyards.ca

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Brendan Fallis

DJ (New York)

I meet friends on the rooftop patio of Terroni in Rosedale, a neighbourhood spot with a great view of the downtown skyline. My go-to is a Smendozzata pizza (gorgonzola, red onion and housemade sausage) and a nice white wine, like Coda di Volpe from Fattoria La Rivolta.

Terroni
1095 Yonge St., 416-925-4020, terroni.com

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Jen Agg

Restaurateur

Every year I revisit touchstones of my youth. Teenage me was all about tearing up the floor at the Dance Cave, where they played the Pixies and the Jesus and Mary Chain. After, my friends and I would head to Sneaky Dee's for Tex-Mex. Now that I can afford not having to share, I always get a veggie nacho platter – and finish it all!

The Dance Cave
529 Bloor St. W. (above Lee's Palace), leespalace.com

Sneaky Dee's
431 College St., 416-603-3090, sneaky-dees.com

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James Hinchcliffe

Race Car Driver

I like Chill Ice House. Up front, it's an ice bar with elaborate ice sculptures. The temperature is set to -5ºC, so you get a parka and gloves when you go in. Shots are poured into ice glasses placed on a ski, so five people stand side by side, drinking together. In the back you'll find a speakeasy with a piano player on the weekends and live comedy on the first Tuesday of the month. I love standup, so that's a lot of fun.

Chill Ice House
82 Bathurst St., 416-901-3330, chillicehouse.com

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Drake

#Toronto101: Insiders reveal their favourite things to do in the city

The Drake Lover's Guide to The Six

The rapper has never been shy about dropping hometown love in his lyrics. Here, some of Drizzy's go-to destinations in Toronto.

The song: "Used To" (feat. L'il Wayne)

T.O. Connection: A shout-out to his number-one Toronto crash pad, "the Hazy."

The "Hazy" is the Hazelton Hotel in Yorkville, a star crash pad known for its posh penthouse and the hotel restaurant One, where the corner patio offers the perfect perch for sipping cocktails (try the Sour One, made with Olmeca tequila, egg white and red wine) while scoping for celebrities.

Hazelton Hotel
118 Yorkville Ave., 416-963-6300, thehazeltonhotel.com

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The song: "Pound Cake" (feat. Jay Z)

T.O. Connection: His go-to neighbourhood haunt, Sotto Sotto.

Two years ago, the original Sotto Sotto (a magnet for famous folk, from Ben Affleck to Bruce Willis) burned down over the Christmas holidays. Drake posted the sad news to his Instagram account with the caption "my second home." The relaxed Italian trattoria has since reopened two doors north, with the same intimate vibe and impeccable service.

Sotto Sotto
120 Avenue Rd., 416-962-0011, toronto.wearespin.com

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The song: "Scheming Up" (O'Brien feat. Drake)

T.O. Connection: Where he goes to chill.

Habibiz was Drake's go-to place for hookah smoking, but that all came to an end last year when Toronto City Council voted to ban the practice. Now it's a café that does casual classics like poutine and shawarma. Because of its location in the 'burbs, it's more of a destination for diehard Drake fans on a pilgrimage.

Habibiz
1939 Kennedy Rd., 647-268-4342, habibizcafe.com

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The song: "Crew Love" (feat. The Weeknd)

T.O. Connection: The love for his local O.V.O. bros.

O.V.O. stands for October's Very Own, the name of Drake's crew, his annual late-summer concert festival and his line of streetwear. The dedicated O.V.O. Boutique offers owl-emblazoned hoodies and hats, cinched track pants and other hip-hop wardrobe staples.

O.V.O. Boutique
899 Dundas St. W., 716-465-8533, ca.octobersveryown.com

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The song: "30 For 30 Freestyle" (feat. Future)

T.O. Connection: A nod to his favourite seared scallops (served well done).

The chef behind the praiseworthy molluscs is Susur Lee, Iron Chef winner and culinary empire builder behind four Toronto restaurants. Three of them – Lee, Luckee and Bent – serve scallops, but only Fring's has His Drizzness as a co-investor. (Word is, "Fring" is his nickname for Rihanna.)

Bent
777 Dundas St. W., 647-352-0092, bentrestaurant.com

Fring's
455 King St. W., 416-979-9696, fringsrestaurant.com

Lee
601 King St. W., 416-504-7867, susur.com/lee

Luckee
328 Wellington St. W., 416-935-0400, luckeerestaurant.com

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Sports

#Toronto101: Insiders reveal their favourite things to do in the city

Illustration of Tyrone Edwards and a Cocktail

Good Sports

The city's biggest sports fans on getting the most out of the big game

Tyrone Edwards

Much and E! Host
Toronto Raptors games attended last season: 15

How to spot superstars at a Raptors game: If you can't get past the velvet rope at Drake's members-only Sher Club inside the Air Canada Centre, another place where the players like to go to celebrate after a game is Queen St. Warehouse. It's an upscale dive bar, meaning it's got that relaxed party atmosphere, but with great wings, potato skins and drinks, like the Warehouse Margarita.

Queen St. Warehouse
232 Queen St. W., 647-344-7326

Sher Club within the Air Canada Centre
50 Bay St., 416-815-5622 Website

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Illustration of Andi Petrillo and restaurant

Andi Petrillo

Sports Anchor
Toronto Maple Leafs games attended last season: 30

How to make the game an immersive experience: The Hockey Hall of Fame is a five-minute walk from the Leafs' arena. It has a new exhibit called The Changing Face of Hockey – Diversity in Our Game. The Real Sports Bar & Grill is a fun place to grab a bite before the match (try the southern fried cauliflower). As you head to your seats at the Air Canada Centre, stop at Gate 5 to watch the Leafs TV live broadcast before the puck drops. If they win, celebrate at Wayne Gretzky's Toronto, which has a great patio and a massive collection of memorabilia.

Air Canada Centre
50 Bay St., 416-815-5500 theaircanadacentre.com

Hockey Hall of Fame
30 Yonge St., 416-360-7765 hhof.com

Real Sports Bar & Grill
15 York St. 416-815-7325 realsports.ca

Wayne Gretzky's Toronto
99 Blue Jays Way, 416-348-0099 gretzkys.com

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Soccer ball illustration

Phil Tobin

President of the Red Patch Boys TFC Fan Club
Toronto FC games attended this season: all ("I missed one game in 2007, and one game in 2008.")

How to experience soccer fandemonium: For last-minute tickets, try Shoeless Joe's Sports Grill. A lot of the hardcore fans gather at this bar, which is like a shrine to the team. At the game, the south section of BMO Field is where you get the real, rowdy fan experience, and since it's behind the goal, it also has the cheapest seats. No need for official gear, but wear red to get into the spirit. Be prepared to stand and cheer for the full game, and don't worry if you don't know the songs – someone will teach you.

BMO Field
170 Princes' Blvd., 416-815-5982 bmofield.com

Shoeless Joe's Sports Grill
1189 King St West., 905-720-3200 shoelessjoes.ca

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Baseball illustration

Cabbie Richards

Host, Sportscentre
Games attended this season: 6

How to eat and drink like a gourmand at a Jays game: At the Rogers Centre, the Muddy York Market (section 109) is the place to get food beyond your typical ballpark dog or pizza slice: There's jerk-chicken poutine and nachos. If you're not into beer, sneak away to Bacardi at the Park (section 233) for cocktails and coolers. It's right behind third base, and the first-come-first-served stools offer an excellent view of the game – it's a great way to upgrade from your nosebleed seats.

Rogers Centre
1 Blue Jays Way, 416-341-3000 rogerscentre.com

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INSTAGRAM

#Toronto101: Insiders reveal their favourite things to do in the city

Hot Shots

Toronto's Instagrammers share their views of the city.

Edward Row

@edwardrow

The view: The Allan Gardens Conservatory is this lush and surreal indoor botanical garden right in the middle of downtown.

How to: This is the main conservatory, the Palm House. It's a naturally photogenic space, but there's so much to explorehere – look around and see what appeals to you.

Allen Gardens
19 Horticultural Ave., 416-392-7288 website

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John Cass

@Normster

The view: Chinatown is such a vibrant and busy spot that nobody really cares if you take their photo. Shoot as much as you want and go for dumplings.

How to: Think before you shoot. Balance colourful areas in the frame with darker ones. The eye should know where to focus.

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Janine Maral

@janinemaral

The view: What I love about Sugar Beach is the beach view, and then you turn and get the urban skyline. The pink umbrellas are a cute touch, too.

How to: If you want to get the umbrellas and the skyline, shoot from a low angle. Then enhance the saturation to bump up the pink even more.

Sugar Beach
11 Dockside Dr., 416-338-4386 website

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Adeyemi Adegbesan

@soteeoh

The view: Toronto has great graffiti, with new work often popping up on Ossington between Dundas and Queen.

How to: When shooting graffiti, I like to wait for a pedestrian in a cool outfit to walk into the shot, or maybe a great-looking car, so your photo is different from others.

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Yasin Osman

@yescene

The view: The Flatiron Building (the Gooderham Building) is a classic piece of Toronto architecture with real history. There are cool new buildings in the city, but I like to capture the older ones.

The view: The easiest way to capture a tall building completely is to shoot vertically. You can get closer for a more detailed shot.

Gooderham Building
9 Wellington St. E., 416-392-1975

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Taku Kumabe

@smaku

How to: The 3D Toronto sign was installed outside Toronto City Hall for the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games last year and it's already become a landmark.

How to: Shoot on a grey, overcast day to create contrast. I shot this from behind a glass partition to add the blurry raindrops.

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NEIGHBOURHOODS

#Toronto101: Insiders reveal their favourite things to do in the city

Neighbourhood Guides

How to get the most out of 5 Toronto neighbourhoods, from Bloordale to the Distillery District

Tina Rasmussen

Artistic Director

Relax on a stroll through Cabbagetown, which has North America's largest collection of Victorian homes. The Irish settled here and grew cabbages when they came after the Great Famine. Don't miss Riverdale Farm, or Necropolis Cemetery with its neo-gothic headstones that give you a real sense of Toronto's age.

Riverdale Farm 201
Winchester St., 416-392-6794, website

Necropolis Cemetery
200 Winchester St., 416-923-7911, mountpleasantgroup.com

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Bloordale

Gallery-hopping with nightlife impresario Richard Lambert
  • 01The Clint Roenisch Gallery, which was on Queen for 10 years, represents established and up-and-coming talent like Harold Klunder and Marvin Luvualu Antonio. Clint's opening parties are not to be missed. They go late and are perfect for spotting the city's art and fashion influencers.

    Clint Roenisch Gallery
    190 St. Helens Ave., 416-516-8593, clintroenisch.com

  • 02The Daniel Faria Gallery (188 St. Helens Ave.) is right next door. Daniel is the Canadian rep for Douglas Coupland, whose work is often on display there; this fall there's a new show examining Coupland's colour theory.

    Daniel Faria Gallery
    188 St. Helens Ave., 416-538-1880, danielfariagallery.com

  • 03The artist-run Mercer Union is dedicated to the advancement of contemporary art. It features experimental work, including audio and video installations.

    Mercer Union
    1286 Bloor St. W., 416-536-1519, mercerunion.org

  • map iconBonusRefuel at the Four Seven, a casual snack bar that specializes in shared plates and Ontario ciders.

    Four Seven
    1211 Bloor St. W., 647-348-4500

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Dundas West

Wine tasting with Sara d'Amato, president of the Canadian Association of Professional Sommeliers – Ontario chapter
  • 01At Bricco, the wine list has an Italian focus. Order a thematic flight according to grape or region if you want to try different options. This is also the place to have a full meal; the gnocchi is outstanding.

    Bricco
    3047 Dundas St. W., 416-901-4536, briccowinebar.com

  • 02Midfield Wine Bar & Tavern is more of a bar where you can have just a glass of wine if that's all you want (though there's also charcuterie). The menu is nicely curated and the staff asks the right ques-tions so that you get a wine that is exactly to your liking.

    Midfield Wine Bar & Tavern
    1434 Dundas St. W., 647-345-7005

  • 03The relaxed Archive Wine Bar is the underground hip hangout for sommeliers, with a big selection of Ontario wines and a charcuterie menu.

    Archive Wine Bar
    909 Dundas St. W., 647-748-0909, archive909.com

  • map iconBonusTake a break from grapes at the Indie Alehouse, which pours a dozen independent brews.

    Indie Alehouse
    2876 Dundas St. W., 416-760-9691, indiealehouse.com

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Distillery District

Shopping with fashion maven Jeanne Beker
  • 01The Distillery District has wonderful restaurants and galleries, and it's a beautiful place to walk around. But it's also a great shopping destination. Blackbird Vintage Finds is half vintage and half new and sells homewares, some clothing and other treasures, like cute stuffed mice, bracelets made of typewriter keys and candles that remind me of my childhood.

    Blackbird Vintage Finds
    11 Trinity St., 416-681-0558, blackbirdvintage.com

  • 02Distill Gallery is also a mix of clothing and jewellery and what you would call objets by local designers and craftspeople, including old Toronto company logos and silk prints depicting the subway system.

    Distill Gallery
    24 Tank House Lane, 416-304-0033, distillgallery.com

  • 03And a visit to the John Fluevog shoe store is so much fun – it's like a gallery for John's amazing pieces. His shoes are Brooks Brothers meets Dr. Seuss.

    John Fluevog
    4 Trinity St., 416-583-1970, fluevog.com

  • map iconBonusRecharge with a latte from Balzac's Coffee Roasters.

    Balzac's Coffee Roasters
    1 Trinity St., 416-207-1709, balzacs.com

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The Financial District

Dining out with Michele Romanow from Dragons' Den
  • 01Pizzeria Libretto is my choice for the city's best pizza. It's been in the west end, on Ossington, for many years, and I was so excited when a downtown location opened a couple of years ago. I tend to stick with the margherita – why mess with a good thing?

    Pizzeria Libretto
    155 University Ave., 416-551-0433, pizzerialibretto.com

  • 02Another place I love is John & Sons Oyster House, where I basically eat as many oysters as I possibly can.

    John & Sons Oyster House
    56 Temperance St., 416-703-5111, johnandsonsoysterhouse.com

  • 03Richmond Station is a bustling after-work restaurant, with a mix of finance people and hipsters. You definitely see fewer ties than at your typical Bay Street spot. The lobster capellini is delicious (the chef, Carl Heinrich, is a Top Chef Canada winner), and there are unique cocktails like the El Diablo, with tequila, ginger beer and lime.

    Richmond Station
    1 Richmond St. W., 647-748-1444, richmondstation.ca

  • map iconBonusRelax with a deep-tissue massage at Hammam Spa.

    Hammam Spa
    602 King St. W., 416-366-4772, hammamspa.ca

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King West

Clubbing with the "Queen of King Street," fashion blogger Jay Strut
  • 01Lavelle is a new rooftop patio that's probably the most glamorous the city has ever seen, with multiple infinity pools, amazing cocktails (I love Le Grand Fizz) and some seriously beautiful people-watching.

    Lavelle
    King St. W., 647-347-9353, chezlavelle.com

  • 02Candyland takes a page from The Great Gatsby and the Prohibition era. There are burlesque shows several nights a week, but it's also a nightclub that plays top-40 music. I have busted a few moves on its dance floor.

    Candyland
    619 King St. W., 647-347-6400, thecandyland.ca

  • 03If you're looking for the anti-nightclub nightclub, the Addisons Residence is designed to look like somebody's house. There is an actual kitchen, where the main bar is, plus a living room and a back garden, and the DJs often play old-school music. It feels like you're at a house party.

    Addison Residence
    456 Wellington St. W., 416-260-9393, theaddisonsto.com

  • 04One block west is Wildflower. Located in the basement of the Thompson hotel, it plays house music and hip hop and often brings in cool DJs like Eric the Tutor and DJ Drama.

    Wildflower
    550 Wellington St. W., 647-778-8462, lovesusnot.com

  • map iconBonusGrab a post-party snack at the 24-hour Thompson Diner at the Thompson hotel. It serves comfort-food classics like mac 'n' cheese.

    Thompson Diner
    550 Wellington St. W., 416-601-3533, thompsondiner.com

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