The Best Hotels in Toronto
The best hotels in Toronto are a mixed bunch, ranging from arty boutique hotels to slick suite spaces in the Financial District to local outposts of international chains. They have one thing in common, though - every one of them is downtown, with none more than a few steps north of Bloor Street.
The dozen Toronto hotels here were voted by readers of this site, who obviously don't mind a bit of luxury, though with West Queen West's two signature hotels topping the list, it's clear they prefer a bit of personality to go with their clean towels and turn-down service.
Here are the 12 best hotels in Toronto.
With just 19 rooms, the Drake isn’t aiming to go head to head with the Sheraton or the Delta Chelsea, but this former fleabag-turned-destination has plenty of personality to make up for what it lacks in size. Of course, getting a room here is always dicey, but management does offer a “Get a Room” discount for locals having too much fun in the bar, cafe, restaurant or club downstairs to bother with the journey home - provided there’s a vacancy. More »
This red brick and sandstone landmark began life in 1889 as a hotel for traveling salesmen and maiden aunts, but had turned into a glorified rooming house by the end of its first century. There was a protracted tussle over ownership before it re-launched four years ago with 37 completely unique rooms, decorated in themes ranging from minimal cool to baroque brothel chinoiserie. The soaps and bath amenities are hand-made and local, the WiFi is free, and the view from the tower suite is the best in the west end. More »
With its ski chalet-meets-Bond villain lobby, this Quebec boutique chain’s Toronto branch has euro style to match its luxury, and a chauffeur service to boot. Partnered with Porter, it provides guests the luxury of a Toronto stay without ever glimpsing Pearson International. More »
As the song goes, “there’s a small hotel” - or rather there was. 10 years ago, the venerable Windsor Arms hotel was closed and completely demolished, and a perfect replica built in its place, albeit with a condo tower sprouting from its roof. This all-suite hotel has a subdued, discreet vibe - it’s the kind of place where you get the feeling that the staff will overlook your peccadilloes, as long as you got about them quietly. Rooms run from $295 to a $2000. More »
This theatre district’s luxury hotel opened six years ago with Sen5es flagship restaurant in its lobby and room rates that push the high end of the scale. The cheapest room, at $250, is called Deluxe, while big spenders can go for the 2 bedroom, 3-level penthouse suite for a whopping $5,250 a night. More »
The Hazelton opened two years ago during the hurly-burly of the film festival, which turned its Mark McEwan restaurant into a hot spot overnight, and filled its stygian hallways and spacious rooms with celebrities. The low end room can be had for $425, while big spenders will want the Bellair Suite - 1,850 square feet with a dressing area and 2 balconies. More »
Blink and you’ll miss the entrance to the Zen-themed Cosmopolitan, the hotel and spa just behind the King Eddy on Colborne Lane. What this sliver of a hotel skips on public spaces it makes up for in amenities. Rooms start at an affordable $199, but the high end - at $3,500 a night - gets you the Designer Suite, with its wraparound views and soaring 2-story living room. More »
When it was still called the Park Plaza, this beloved 1930s vintage hotel seemed like it would have fit just as well on New York’s Upper East Side, though the proximity to the ROM and U of T wasn’t too shabby. Even if you never stay there, you probably know about its rooftop bar, and if you don’t, you should. Re-named, renovated and re-designed, the Manhattan vibe is maintained with the Alqonquin Suite - 2,500 square feet with 3 living rooms, bar and kitchen for $5,000 a night. Tighter wallets can book ahead for a weekend rate at just $199 a night for a regular room, with the second night half price. More »
Yorkville’s Four Seasons has been a standard destination for Hollywood types both during and after the film festival for years, and has a reputation for being able to cater to their whims and peculiarities. Rooms start at $365 a night, and blossom to $3,900 for the Presidential Suite, with its own business centre and flat-screen TVs in the bathrooms. It’s been a Yorkville landmark for years, but you’d better enjoy the 70s-vintage chic now before it decamps to its new location on the other side of Bay Street in 2011. More »
Often overshadowed by its neighbours to the east, the Intercontinental packs itself to the rafters during the film festival, but keeps a pretty low profile for the rest of the year. A recent revamp and a conscientious manager means that “Toronto’s first boutique hotel” still gets the details right, with high-quality bed linens and an attentive concierge. More »
Named after the nearby movie-house-turned-theatre (which is now, in turn, known as the Canon Theatre - confused yet?), this 45-storey hotel strives for luxury and affordability. Rooms start at $199 but top out at just $700, and thanks to its serendipitous location almost every one has a decent view. More »
You’ll get a master of the universe feeling of grandeur with a room in this long, tall sliver of a hotel tower sprouting out of the former headquarters of the Toronto Dominion bank - a forest of business district office towers as far as the eye can see. It’s surprisingly affordable, too - the standard rack rate is $350, but judicious shopping will get you a room for as little as $189, and the top-floor suite, with the grandest view of all, is just $450 a night, but you can also get that with a trip to the rooftop fitness centre and pool. Failing that, get your company to hold their Christmas party there - partiers get a special room rate if they don’t want to drive home, with a portion going to MADD. More »