Toronto: The Anndore House
Toronto’s new Instagram-friendly hotel for the modern, mid-range traveller began life as executive apartments in 1955 before becoming a Comfort Inn. After a total reno, this 113-room “house” is now a home-away-from-home for business creatives and a gathering spot for the local condo crowd.
Vibe: Chic public areas of the Anndore are dark and sexy with a whiff of retro—a nod to the past with a modern touch. A kitchen island-style front desk expresses a casual character. Earthy greens, eggplant and garnet are matched with dark wood and subdued lighting. Gold accents on flooring, skylights and furniture add a glam touch. Gold-framed art hung salon-style carries on into the paneled and velvet-forward lobby bar and the gorgeous restaurant beyond, which are linked by dazzlingly lit open shelving filled with white crockery.
Rooms: Anndore rooms sport a retro, industrial loft style, spartan but not sterile, relatively frill-free yet cozy. Brick walls, exposed electrical and wall coverings that mimic the look of concrete are warmed up by white wooden window shutters, a leather club chair and a patterned rug. A banker’s desk lamp and a Crosley record player punctuate the blond wood cabinetry, along with a small selection of vinyl records. (Neil Diamond! Glenn Campbell!) A bright, white-tiled bathroom carries through the industrial theme with stand-out gold faucets, black cage lights and hexagonal floor tiling. Labelled light panels are a godsend.
F&B: The 145-seat Constantine Toronto restaurant draws a crowd from all over town, lured by admired chef Craig Hardy’s clever mix of Italian and Middle Eastern fare. The huge open kitchen is on full display, practically in the middle of the room, anchored by a wood-fire grill and pizza oven. Expect things like pumpkin kibbeh stuffed with feta, grilled halloumi on Italian fritters, lamb sausage pizza and duck kofte, along with gorgeous hand-made pastas and sumptuous meats. The 50-seat bar mixes smart cocktails and serves shareable menu items. Out on the street, the Scarlet Door Café does the hotel’s grab-and-go duty.
Extras: Guests can use the hotel app to check in, open their door, control the lights and temperature, order room service and watch TV. The app also acts as a concierge service, offering tips on living like a local, listing weekly events, restaurant recommendations and guidebook must-dos. Gym-goers are given a complementary pass to Hone Fitness behind the hotel. Crows Nest Barbershop opened its fifth Canadian location in the Anndore’s storefront to keep the gentlemen tidy.
Off-Site: Conveniently located on a quiet street one block away from the crossroads of the city’s subway system at Yonge and Bloor, The Anndore House is a five-minute walk from Bloor Street’s luxury shopping, the upscale Yorkville area and the LGBTQ neighbourhood. The Royal Ontario Museum is a 10-minute walk east. Downtown shopping is 10 minutes away by subway and the Financial District is a 15-minute taxi ride.