Tour Toronto like a True Local Thanks to Expert Concierge Orson
Local expert Orson Tsoi of Park Hyatt Toronto has great pride in his home of Toronto, which is one of the world’s most diverse by percentage of non-native-born residents. Lucky for us, Orson knows the best Toronto city treasures to check out.
Depending on the time of year, you can experience a variety of classic Toronto festivals and exhibits. The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), Canada’s largest museum of world culture and natural history, is a must-see Toronto attraction as one of the largest museums in North America (and attracts over one million visitors every year!). No trip to Toronto would be complete without stopping at the Hockey Hall of Fame, featuring the iconic Stanley Cup. But, for those that care more about shoes than sports, Orson recommends visiting the Bata Shoe Museum in downtown Toronto, which collects, researches, preserves and exhibits footwear from around the world.
A great way to soak in Toronto’s local culture is to take a stroll through the city’s diverse array of public spaces and neighborhoods. One of Orson’s favorite places to visit is St. Lawrence Market, which is known for having some of the best food spots in town and great Sunday Antique Markets. Harbour Front’s Toronto Music Garden is a unique park filled with the spirit of music, dance and artistic performances for people of all ages to enjoy. Orson also recommends exploring the Historic Distillery District, a perfect place to spend an afternoon shopping, people watching, dining at award-winning restaurants, or visiting the SOMA Chocolate factory. Another great place to shop and dine is Bloor Street, otherwise known as “Mink Mile,” which is known for having high fashion, luxury retail shops and several historic sites.
Don’t forget the food! Any first time visitor should try the Canadian signature dish of poutine. This is usually made with French fries, covered in brown gravy and cheese curds, and served in most local restaurants and bars. Can you say yum? Canoe restaurant and bar is a local favorite and offers one of the best views of the city, as it sits atop the TD Bank Tower. Jacques Bistro du Parc has some of the best French cuisine in town, while Mengrai Thai serves up some authentic gourmet northern Thai cuisine. If you’re looking for a trendier scene, Orson recommends Weslodge or Buca, both located in the heart of downtown Toronto. Otherwise check out Brassaii nightclub and lounge for a fun night on the town.
And, before you leave Toronto, make sure you walk the edge of the CN Tower, the tallest free-standing structure in the Western Hemisphere and a signature icon of Toronto’s skyline.
Thanks to expert concierge Orson, now you can explore the Toronto streets and skyline feeling like a true Canadian local! Make sure to say hello and grab a drink at Park Hyatt Toronto’s rooftop lounge while you’re in town.