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Toronto - Gourmet Markets for a trip to Centre Island

Toronto - Gourmet Markets for a trip to Centre Island

Aug 23rd, 2003, 05:36 AM
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Toronto - Gourmet Markets for a trip to Centre Island

Only 7 more days until we begin our driving journey which will take us to Toronto. As I have asked numerous questions before, I have a couple of more
We are planning to pack a lunch and travel over to Centre Island. I was thinking of doing this on Monday(Labor Day). We are staying at the Sheraton Centre, are there any good gourment type supermarkets offering everything under one roof, close to our hotel?? We could always change the day depening on weather and if stores might be closed because of the holiday??
Sometimes we take a tour just as a way to get to know the area. Any city tours that stand out?? I saw this hippo tour where the vehicle takes you into the water thought that might be worth a shot. Just trying to do what we can to help out Toronto!! And even though we live in NJ and took part in the "big black out" I don't hold anything against anyone.. Can't wait to see your wonderful city!!!
ezmark is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2003, 06:32 AM
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Labour Day may be a problem. Most stores close that day.

However, the Eaton Centre is considered a tourist attraction, and generally is open on major holidays, but it may not open until noon, which is another problem.

For excellent picnic food, assuming the stores are open ...

Take the escalator from thelobby and continue straight out the door, and through the tunnel, walking about half a block, into the basement of The Bay department store. You are now in its food sales area, and can find lots of things for a picnic, including cold cuts, sandwiches, cheeses, canday, and much more.

Or, keep walking more or less straight ahead to the far end of The Bay, and turn left, looking for a tunnel / passageway to the Toronto subway. Walk through this and out the other side, into the basement of The Eaton Centre.

Ahead, slightly to your right, past the bottom of the esclators you can see, is Le Marche, a gourmet takeout food store with a range of pizza that is good cold, more sandwiches, many varieites of salads, excellent breads and buns, and more.

You'll find all you need for a picnic here.

If you want to go to more effort, abuy the stuff to make your own sandwiches, on Saturday you could go to St. lawrence Market, at the corner of Front St. East and Jarvis and buy whatyou want. There's a liquor store next to the market, and a giant Dominion supermarket across the street, too. These are perhaps a 20 minute walk from the hotel.

If I was talking a city tour, I'd take the Grey Line double decker bus with on and off privleges at multiple stops. and then I'd pick one of the tour boats to have a harbor tour, but might skip the harbor tour if I'd already been to Toronto island on the regular ferry boat.

BAK is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2003, 09:17 AM
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Exactly what Bak said.
Marche or St. Lawrence Market.
Certain places in T.O are open during this holiday because it is such a huge tourist weekend for us. Usually the hours are limited. Sunday stores are open from 12-5 p.m. Most stores have a notice on the window if they are going to be closed on Monday.
The double decker bus looks like fun and drives around the city. If you have time stop by the new Distillery District for a walk around or meal.
Have a great trip.
Nikj is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2003, 11:22 AM
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Thank you BAK, as informative as always And thank you Niki as well. Even though I don't like too, I will play it by ear and see how the weather is and what is open on Monday. I do love the idea of the double decker bus hop on hop off and plan on doing that as well!! I have checked them out and while Grayline offers one there is another offered by Shop.Dine.Tour Toronto they seem to both offer a two day ticket, any difference between them that I am unaware of??
ezmark is offline  
Aug 23rd, 2003, 06:00 PM
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To the best of my knowledge, there are three sets of Double Decker busers in Toronto.

Grey Line are red, polished, neat and tidy, and there are several in the fleet.

Shop dine, I think, have a nice yellow bus, again neat and tidy and shiny. I'm not sure there are as many buses, so there may be a longer wait between jump offs and jump ons.

And there's at lest one unpolished red double decker bus, which cots less. I don't know, however, how the routes compare.

More on picnics: you can, of course, buy your picnic food on Sunday, store it in your room in a picnioc cooler with free ice courtesy of the Sheraton, and then take this with you on Monday.

Sunday, about half an hour before closing, Marche in the Eaton Centre deeply discounts all the prepared foods. I discovered this one afternoon as i was leaving the building; $2.49 bread for $1, buns usually 89 cents were two for a buck, sandwiches half price, pizza fifty cents a slice.

To get to Toronto Island from the hotel, you can grab a cab to the ferry docks (probably cheapest if there are four of you) or walk to Queen and Yonge, or Queen and University (same difference) and take the subway to Union Station subway stop. From there, look for the tunnel to the harborfront street car. Get off at the first stop, and you'll be at the ferry docks.

BAK is offline  
Aug 24th, 2003, 10:09 AM
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Thanks again BAK. One other question, we will be staying over one night in Buffalo, NY and crossing over to Ontario on Sunday morning. Do you know of any websites to check border crossings as well as specific bridge crossings we should use or stay away from?? As we enter Niagara we plan on making a quick stop and see the Butterfly Conservatory and maybe take a helicopter ride over the falls, before heading to Toronto.
ezmark is offline  
Aug 24th, 2003, 12:17 PM
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A word of caution about the Butterfly Conservatory. The last time I was there, tickets were offered for a specific admission time. They only let a certain number of people in at a time, and we had to wait about an hour before we were allowed in because it was so busy. It's wonderful there - definitely worth seeing - but if it's busy, the "quick stop" may not be quite as quick as you hope.
Meesthare is offline  
Aug 24th, 2003, 02:19 PM
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If I was spending my money in Niagara Falls, I'd spend it on the Maid of the Mist boat to the bottom of the falls, rather than the helicopter ride.
And if I had helpcopter money left over, I'd take the helicopter in Toronto.

The Maid of the Mist brings you close to the power and force of the falls; the helicopter takes youhundreds of feet above it.

If you are early enough in the morning, there will probably be no wait at the the butterflies; later in the day gives people from Toronto time to get there, and the crowds build.


BAK is offline  
Aug 25th, 2003, 06:29 PM
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I would consider buying your food at Queen's Quay Terminal(Queen's Quay & York) or Loblaw's (Queen's Quay and Jarvis) before catching a ferry. Last week-end we caught the ferry to the Island but we prefer Ward's Island which is connected to Centre Island but has interesting streets of homes, a sandy beach, a boardwalk that stretches across both islands, and a restaurant called The Rectory. We walked over to Centre Island and took the ferry back from there but it was so much more crowded.
bonlou30 is offline  
Aug 26th, 2003, 07:29 AM
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Marche is the Eaton Centre (different from le March in BCE Place, which is a sit-down restaurant) ipens at noon on both Sunday and Monday of labour Day weekend.

The problem with buying your food at Loblaws or at Queen's Quay Terminal is that both are longish walks from the ferry terminal, one east (Loblaws) and one west (QQTerminal)

You are better off doing your shopping on the day before.

BAK is offline  
Aug 26th, 2003, 10:04 AM
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Thanks BAK,

Let me see if I have this right. Marche in the Eaton Center is just a gourmet shop where as Le Marche is the restaurant where you go from station to station for your meals?
ezmark is offline  
Aug 26th, 2003, 11:45 AM
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The Marche in the Eaton Centre doesn't have tables - it's more of a food court kind of place where you pick up your meal (from the various stations), pay your bill and find a table outside in the general food court seating area. In BCE Place, there are tables in the restaurant itself where you sit after you go through the stations to pick up your food. After you've eaten, you pay the bill as you exit.
SusanInToronto is offline  
Aug 26th, 2003, 02:19 PM
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Border wait times can be seen at www.peacebridge.com/webcam.php
conquistador is offline  
Aug 26th, 2003, 05:11 PM
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Susan has it right, plus ...

At the Eaton Centre, there seems to be a wider range of "take-out" foods that come in plastic boxes that you can carry away easily. There's plastic knives and forks and little packages of salt and pepper. Generally, more "portable" food.

I would guess that Eaton Centre is cheaper, too, because you are not paying for the nicer surroundings at BCE Place, but are instead in a shopping center food court. The people at the next table may be eating a Big Mac from the McDonald's next door.

BAK is offline  
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