/ The Toronto Guide
Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 21, 2008 at 4:15 pm

So You Think You Can Dance Canada

So You Think You Can Dance Canada is taped in Toronto and CTV is now accepting ticket requests. In the past the only option for audience wannabes was to line up outside Showline Harbourside Studios on Lakeshore Blvd. with fingers crossed.

Now you can fill out a request form and an audience coordinator will call you back. Of course, if you don’t receive a call, the rush line is still an option.

Next Wednesday November 26, the guest judge will be Sean Cheesman, whose name you probably don’t know, but whose work you’ve seen. The Canuck choreographer has worked with of the most powerful and influential female entertainers in the world including Tina Turner, Cher, Britney Spears, Queen Latifah, Prince and Michael Jackson. So start filling out forms or preparing to bundle up for the rush line now. (View a full list of taping dates)

If you love the show but don’t want to wait in suspense or stand in the cold, tickets go on sale for the So You Think You Can Dance Canada Top 10 Tour tomorrow. Toronto tickets to the February 13 show go on sale on Sunday. Visit Ticketmaster for more info.

More information on PlanetEye: Showline Harbourside Studios

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Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 19, 2008 at 10:15 am

Sweet Dreams

It may sound crazy but I’m not a big dessert eater. It’s not that I don’t like sweets, but usually when I’m out for dinner I eat enough that I’m too full for cake. Going out for the sole purpose of eating cake and ice cream and skipping dinner all together is a nice alternative though.

These are my top 3 dessert places:

Caffé Demetré is a popular cafe devoted to dessert and its popularity would be fabulous if the people in this city could learn to pronounce it correctly! If you hear people talking about “Dimitri’s,” they’re actually talking about Demetré. I have no idea how this started but it annoys me to no end.
Anyway, the menu features sundaes, 18 kinds of ice cream, Belgian waffles, specialty coffees, banana splits, cakes, pies and all the hot fudge and whipped cream you could ask for.

7 West serves lunch, dinner and drinks as well as delicious dessert. It’s a hotspot for university students on weekends but show up on weekday evenings for a somewhat quiet treat. They have an ever-changing selection of sinful desserts, cakes and cheesecake.

Finally, my favourite place to grab a giant ice cream cone, sundae or fro-yo (with a pile of whipped cream and fruit on top) is Dutch Dreams. Near where I grew up, my family and I used to go on summer evenings and join the long line of sweet teeth. My sister had a birthday party in the very small seating area one year and the already hyped up kids were served an ice cream cake composed of about 30 scoops plus marshmallow and sugary treats.

Besides the ice cream bar, Dutch Dreams lives up to its name by offering a selection of Dutch confections you can’t find anywhere else.

Now that you’ve read about my favourite places to indulge, plan to skip dinner and head straight for dessert.

More information on PlanetEye: 7 West Cafe, Dutch Dreams, Caffe Demetre, Cafe Demetres, Cafe Demetre

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Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 17, 2008 at 8:30 pm

City Cinemas

New to the city and hoping to catch a flick? Like any major metropolis, Toronto is full of cineplexes of different sizes and types.

More information on PlanetEye: AMC Toronto, Rainbow Cinemas, Varsity Theatres and VIP, Scotiabank Theatre, Canada Square

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Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 14, 2008 at 5:45 pm

The Santa Claus Parade!

This festive presentation of music, sparkling floats, dancing clowns, spritely elves and of course, Santa Claus, has been taking place since 1905. Toronto’s parade is one of the oldest and largest in the world with more than 24 floats, 1,500 volunteers and more than half a million spectators. So if you’re going to be in the city this weekend, you must try to catch the parade!

It starts at the corner of Bloor and Christie, runs along Bloor to Avenue, proceeds south on Avenue, around Queen’s Park to University, across Queen Street to Yonge Street, then continues East on Front Street to Church where the floats and big man himself retire for the year. The best way to get to the parade route is by subway and you have many stops to choose from: Christie, Bathurst, Spadina, St. George, Museum, St. Patrick, Osgoode, Queen and King stations are all options.

The parade begins at 12:30 but arrive as early as possible to get a good view. Bring a blanket or chairs and some hot chocolate and snacks to keep energy and spirits high!

For more information and a route map, visit the official parade site.


Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 14, 2008 at 9:30 am

A La Carte and Other Eats at the Airport

Totally an anomaly at Toronto Pearson International, Mahogany Bar and Grill is not a cafeteria! It isn’t technically an airport restaurant because it belongs to the Sheraton Gateway Hotel in Toronto International Airport, but it is actually part of the airport, located in Terminal 3. The hotel is connected to the terminal by a skywalk and now offers transportation via “Automated People Mover” (an automated train) to Terminal 1. And you don’t have to be a hotel guest to enjoy Sheraton-quality a-la-carte food and service.

Of course, the hotel sounds pretty tempting too — especially if you’re catching an early-morning flight. You can check your flight time, check in and print your own boarding pass in the lobby. No waiting around with the rest of the airport riff-raff!


If you don’t have time to trek to Terminal 3 and locate the Sheraton, that means that you’re lucky enough to be flying out of beautiful new Terminal 1! All that light and minimal, sleek white decor reminds me of Charles de Gaulle in Paris – a huge sophisticated step for Toronto.


But I digress, if you’re a caffeine freak, you can still grab your favourite brand name java. There are three Tim Hortons: all post-security on level 2. Two are in International gates (at Hammerhead F and Pier F) and one is domestic (at node E).


If you like your coffee a little chicer, there are two Starbucks. Both are post-security, International (Hammerhead F and Node F).


Speaking of chic, check out the Yorkville Juice Gallery, (level 3, pre-security, main processor) named after Toronto’s high-end restaurant and shopping neighbourhood. Find famous chef Wolfgang Puck’s Marketplace nearby.


If you’re a fan of family restaurants, be sure to eat at one of Casey’s locations: Casey’s On Stage (Level 2, Post-Security, Domestic, Pier E) and Via Della Bici by Casey’s (Level 2, Post-Security, International, Hammerhead F).


But back to Terminal 3. If you’re there, it’s not the end of the world. You can enjoy food you know (or at least well-known Canadian chains) without worry. There’s a Swiss Chalet on the Departures Level Pre-Security and a Yogen Fruz and Pizza Pizza in the pre-security food court.


Or try Pumpernickels on the departure level in the public concourse or Fridays American Bar post-security, Pier B.


There’s post-security coffee in Terminal 3 as well. Starbucks is Post-Security, Pier C while Tim Hortons is in both International and Transborder, Post-Security, Pier B and Mod H.

For maps or full lists of Airport restaurants, shop and services, visit the official airport website.

More information on PlanetEye: Sheraton Gateway Hotel in Toronto International Airport

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Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 10, 2008 at 2:45 pm

Lest We Forget

Tomorrow is Remembrance Day and every year I spend my moment of silence thinking about my late grandfather, Stuart Grant, an avid golfer and highly decorated navigator who flew a Halifax Mark 7 Bomber over Germany during WWII. So today, I’d like to share a bit of his story with you (as written in the Burlington Post, Remembrance Day, 1997):


"Between 1942 and 1945, Grant flew a total of 31 night missions over Germany for the 26th Squadron of the Royal Canadain Air Force. He recalls it was never easy. ‘Every night we would have nine aircraft and only six or seven would come back,’ Grant said. Even given his tremendous skill as a navigator, he figures he was lucky to come home alive in one piece, especially after that many missions."


Make your own moment of silence special by attending one of the city’s most interesting services taking place at Fort York National Historic Site/
Strachan Avenue Military Cemetery. Fort York marks the spot where the British first founded Toronto in 1793 and was the battleground for the violent climax of the battle of York during the War of 1812.


For a full list of Remembrance Ceremony in the city, see the list of official city services here.


More information on PlanetEye: Historic Fort York

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Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 10, 2008 at 9:15 am

Free Admission to the AGO!

The word “free” is always enticing — especially when you’re traveling. The lovely part about this free opportunity is that this weekend marks the Art Gallery of Ontario’s grand re-opening, so not only will you be seeing art for free, you’ll be taking part in a historic event!

Be one of the first to witness architect and Toronto native Frank Gehry’s AGO transformation and take part in the activities taking place outside:
• Have your portrait drawn by a local artist
• Record a video at the My AGO Video Booth
• Contribute your artistic vision to a giant communal canvas
• Enjoy free refreshments

If you’re there at 4:00 pm on Friday November 14, you’ll catch the “special surprise,” which the AGO promises will be a memorable way to celebrate the event.

AGO Public Opening Hours:

Friday November 14: 4:00pm – midnight

Saturday November 15: 10:00am – midnight

Sunday November 16: 10:00 am – 5:30 pm 

More information on PlanetEye: Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO)

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Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 7, 2008 at 9:45 am

Leslieville’s Best Coffee

Despite Dark Horse Espresso Bar’s fairly dark, raw atmosphere, it’s a totally refreshing alternative to the big box choices we’re bombarded with. The space, which features tin ceiling tiles and natural wood is quite roomy while feeling cozy. Owners Deanna Zunde and Ed Lynds both play barista, serving up espressos, americanos and organic tea and hot chocolate as well as a selection of sweets and treats.

Next time you’re in the neighbourhood, make a point of stopping in to pick up a warm drink and take a seat at the big communal table. Even if you don’t make a new friend, you’ll at least have fallen in love with a new coffee spot.

More information on PlanetEye: Dark Horse Espresso Bar

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Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 5, 2008 at 12:45 pm

Shopping News!

This just in: Everyone’s favourite US shopping destination (because, really what store hasn’t already migrated North) Anthropologie will be moving to Toronto in the new year!

I know this isn’t of much use to those visiting the city right now, but this is exciting news that I just had to share. Luckily, the store now ships to us Canucks so even if you’re not around for the store opening, you can still get your hands on its wares.

The new Canadian flagship will live in the city’s chi-chi Yorkville neighbourhood (at 100 Yorkville to be exact) in a two-level 12,000 square foot space. Like its parent company and store, Urban Outfitters (which already has stores in Toronto), Anthropologies sells both clothing and home decor. If you’re itching for the Anthropologie aesthetic, save some money and visit Urban instead. It’s cheaper and already here!


Toronto — By thetorontoguide on November 3, 2008 at 12:30 pm

Date Night Made Cheaper

Not to sound unromantic but we’re all feeling the effects of the recession and you can’t stay in every friday night, no matter how cozy your couch is. Montana Restaurant, conveniently located across the street from the Scotiabank Theatre on Richmond Street, has a special dinner and a movie deal that will make dating or even hanging out with friends a little easier on the wallet.

Oder off their special Dinner and a Movie menu and get an entree and Cineplex Odeon gift certificate for $19.95 plus tax. Order a glass of BV Coastal wine and pay $24.95. The Fire Roasted Vegetable Pizza is yummy and the Big Smoke Chicken Salad (with avocado, charred corn and a lime & herb vinagrette) sounds delish.

More information on PlanetEye: Montana Bar & Grill

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