One of my New Year’s resolutions was to go on more date nights. So when Expedia.ca asked me if I was interested in a Toronto Staycation – it turned out to be the perfect opportunity for a lovely weekend with hubby!
|hat / coat / sweater (similar) / boots / bag (large)|
After dropping the kids off at my parents on Friday night, we drove to the Delta Toronto Hotel. We’re frequently in the downtown area – either for work or errands, but this time we were here as tourists – and looked forward to exploring new places.
On Saturday morning, we began the day with breakfast in bed (the perfect start to ANY staycation)! Our room was on the 35th floor and we enjoyed our view of the Toronto Harbourfront.
We layered up in warm clothes and walked over to the St Lawrence Market. The St Lawrence Market has been around since the 19th century and used to be a social hub- with cattle auctions, farmers’ markets, government offices and even a jail! It still houses food stalls and restaurants – and was recently voted one of the world’s best food markets by National Geographic.
What to Eat at St Lawrence Market: With so many choices – it was hard to choose a place for lunch – so I turned to my Instagram friends for recommendations. The most popular dishes include Portuguese Chicken from Churrasco, Veal Parmigiano from Mustachio, and Peameal Sandwiches from Carousel Bakery. We opted for seafood at Buster’s Sea Cove – I ordered the Fried Smelt and Chips while hubby had the Halibut Sandwich. Everything was so fresh and tasty – we’ll definitely be going back!
After our lunch, we walked over to another historic site – the Distillery District. It was built in the 1830s and contained a milling business and whiskey distillery. While the distillery closed in the 1990s, the location was later restored and transformed into a pedestrian-only village featuring restaurants and shops housed in Victorian-era buildings.
We stopped for hot drinks at the Sweet Escape Patisserie (they make the creamiest Almond Milk Cappuccinos!) and explored the pretty buildings. Of course we had to take pictures at the Love Installation – Toronto’s version of the Pont des Arts, where people can clip on “love locks” to commemorate their love.
By the time we walked back to the hotel after a day of exploring, our legs were aching! We headed down to the 4th floor pool, where hubby swam laps while I relaxed in the hot tub.
Post-swim we headed to our favorite Italian restaurant – Terroni. We didn’t have reservations so we waited a LONG time for a table – but I have no regrets because their gnocchi is perfection – yum!
The king bed in our room was SO comfortable that we slept in as long as we could on Sunday morning – luckily check out time was at noon.
Sunday was a rainy day so we decided to stay indoors as much as possible. We stopped by Sushi Time for a quick lunch (I had Salmon Sashimi over a bowl of rice) and then parked next to the Art Gallery of Ontario.
Hubby tried to get out of going to the Gallery (“maybe we should drive home before it starts to snow!”) but I convinced him that this was a rare opportunity to leisurely explore the exhibits sans kids. We ended up having a really fun time – we especially enjoyed the Group of Seven collection, which focused on Canadian landscapes. Hubby was convinced that the Lawren Harris paintings looked like soft-serve ice cream – do you see the resemblance?
Our mini-date weekend was SO much fun. It’s good to be a tourist in your own city – especially when your city has been picked by the New York Times as one of 2016’s top travel destinations! We loved exploring new areas in Toronto – and we felt so refreshed after our staycation. It had all the benefits of a holiday without the travel time or the packing stress – I’d definitely recommend it!
What’s your favorite place to visit in Toronto? I’d also love to hear your restaurant recommendations!