Toronto for a few days

Jun 10th, 2010, 06:57 PM
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Toronto for a few days

Spent the last 4 days in TO. Arrived via Porter Airline - excellent location to downtown TO and the service is great! Actually walked to our hotel - Westin Harbour Castle - maybe not for everyone but I love to walk and it was an extremely nice day. Checking in to the Westin I mentioned we were on our 25th anniversary and got upgraded to a lake-view room - breathtaking! On the contrary to some reports, I would highly recommend the Westin and would stay there again. The close proximity to the harbour as well as other great spots to dine and shop, was excellent.

Day 1 - arrived at 10:30 am and had no problem with an early check-in at the Westin. We had lunch at the Watermark on the harbour. Great food and good service. Bought tickets on the Greyhound double decker bus. The best value in town. Good for the whole time we were in TO - hop on and hop off - plus a harbour water tour. That night, went up to Yorkville and dined at Morton's. Excellent steak and service.

Day 2 - Decided to do the full bus tour around town. Got off at China Town/Kensington Market. Has been ages since we were there, Kensington Market has changed quite a bit - not as much of a market as I remember. Ate at the Waterfall (indian food). One of the best meals we had in TO and priced well. That evening we did a restaurant close to Rogers Centre (Bataldis?) - not great food but the server Devon made up for it. Went to the Rogers Center for a concert. Great spot to see music but a beer is $10.50 a glass.

Day 3 - Decided to do breakfast at the Harbour Centre. It was a chain restaurant that does panini's, etc. For less than $5 each, we had a huge breakfast including coffee. Great food. Since it was pouring rain, decided to take the bus and hop off at Kensington Market. We then proceeded to the DIstillary, big disappointment, but it may have been the rain. Next stop off the bus was the Eaton Centre where we managed to spend the rest of the day and in the surrounding area. Ate lunch at the 3 Brewers. Wrong choice - both food and service. Would not recommend it at all. That night we stopped at the Loose Moose on Front St. Best barkeeps I have seen in awhile! Good specials between 4 and 7 pm. Had dinner at the Watermark - great rib special on Wednesday night. Lobster club was delicious!

Day 4 - Went back to the Lawrence St. market for breakfast. Paddington's has a pea-meal sandwich to die for. Big enough for two to share - get it with hot peppers, onions and honey mustard. Also used our coupon for the boat ride that comes with the Doubledecker bus special. Great way to see the TO skyline and also another quieter side of TO. Toured the underground shopping district and also had lunch at the Loose Moose. For $10 you get a huge lunch - choice of soup/salad, sandwich and it includes fries. The creamy mushroom soup was really good. Departed TO using Porter. They have their own lounge - complimentary bottled water, tea/coffee, soft drinks, juice and snacks plus a bank of computers and a lovely lounge overlooking the water. Definitely will use Porter again to travel with.
Tanya is offline  
Jun 11th, 2010, 05:17 AM
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Happy 25th Anniversary Tanya!!

Thanks for your Toronto trip report. Very helpful. Sounds as if you had a great time! Did you fly Halifax/Toronto on Porter?
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Jun 11th, 2010, 05:56 AM
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Can you tell us more about breakfast at the Harbour Centre for under $5?

I want to go.

BAK is offline  
Jun 11th, 2010, 06:34 AM
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Hi Tanya

Thanks for the trip report! I too was underwhelmed by the Distillery District, but am hoping that was since it was a chilly March day when I went. That boat ride sounds enjoyable and what fun to be able to WALK from the airport to your hotel!

Best wishes, Daniel
Daniel_Williams is offline  
Jun 11th, 2010, 07:40 AM
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Cafe Supreme in the Queen's Quay on the Harbour. It is a chain (I think) but two breakfast sandwiches (one a panini and the other a tortilla with egg whites, spinach, peppers and cheese) plus two coffee for $10.

On recommendations from business associates, we decided on Porter because it goes right into the heart of the city. What a pleasure not to have to get a shuttle or taxi into the city. When we departed, we leisurely strolled along the waterfront from our hotel to the airport - we were told to be there approximately 30 minutes before departure. No traffic jams, no out of control taxi drivers On both flights we were served "snacks". Breakfast was a muffin and yogurt (Hfx/Ottawa) and the next leg (Ottawa/Toronto) nuts or granola bars. Their departure lounge in Toronto is very comfortable. A large bank of computers, complimentary newspapers, soft drinks, tea/coffee and snacks. On our way home served two different kinds of sandwiches, chocolates and cookies. Wine/beer complimentary. The service is exceptional, the staff extremely friendly and during our brief stopover in Ottawa, my husband chatted with the pilot and co-pilot. Oh yes, they also have a complimentary shuttle to the Fairmont (Royal York).
Tanya is offline  
Jun 11th, 2010, 11:06 AM
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Porter is a wonderful experience, isn't it? Just like the good old days of flying when the customer was appreciated. And I love not having to deal with Pearson.

The Distillery District is great when there's a festival or special event there but otherwise, I don't find it very interesting.
goddesstogo is offline  
Jun 11th, 2010, 08:15 PM
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Tanya, curious as to why you did not go Toronto/Halifax direct.
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Jun 11th, 2010, 08:30 PM
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Because Porter does not fly direct Toronto/Halifax!
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Jun 12th, 2010, 12:08 AM
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Porter does fly Toronto/Halifax direct. It does not fly Toronto/Halifax non-stop. (The flight stops in Ottawa as Tanya mentioned).

These are standard airline terms but are often confused and can lead to unpleasant surprises (eg. a direct flight with three stops en route) for those who are not aware of the difference.
laverendrye is offline  
Jun 12th, 2010, 07:22 AM
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I meant non-stop.
OceanBreeze1 is offline  
Jun 13th, 2010, 08:31 AM
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My decision to book Porter was simple - it took me right into downtown TO. Didn't have to taxi during peak hours or leave the downtown core 2 hours early. We left our hotel around 3:00 pm, strolled the waterfront for about a half-hour towards the airport and then checked in around 3:45. With Porter, you have to check in at Toronto City Centre 30 minutes prior to your flight. The stopover in Ottawa, while an inconvenience, is made up by the service and the easy accessability to the downtown TO core. Really, the 30 minute stopover isn't bad and much more pleasant than sitting in a traffic jam on the 401.
Tanya is offline  
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