The Toronto International Film Festival“”simply known as TIFF””is the city’s yearly retreat into all things Hollywood. During the 11-day foray into the latest and greatest in the world of film, Toronto teems with celebrities strutting down red carpets, directors and industry mavens hosting elaborate parties and ever-enthusiastic film lovers who descend upon Canada’s largest city for this incredibly influential festival. Here, we give you a leg-up on other TIFF-goers as we highlight some of the best locales to stay, eat and party like an A-Lister at the Toronto International Film Festival 2014.
Where to Stay
The Hazelton Hotel is Toronto’s original five-star hotel. Set in the heart of Yorkville, one of the city’s swankiest neighbourhoods, the hotel remains one of the strongest hubs for celebrities and glitterati during TIFF. The Hazelton is known for their elite round-the-clock concierge service during the festival, filling such extravagant requests as sourcing a helicopter for a tour around Niagara Falls to flying in smoked meat from Montreal. Of course, with rooms reaching $1,000 per night””and the rich and famous generously tipping throughout their stay””the hotel is more than happy to oblige.
If you want to sleep within walking distance of the TIFF Bell Lightbox, the festival’s epicentre, then the still-shiny-and-new-looking Ritz-Carlton is a great bet. Aside from plush and lavish rooms, you’ll find the ultimate place for relaxation in their 23,000 sq. ft. spa and fitness centre. Or, for a spot that majors in late night parties, the Shangri-La knows how to treat you right with a personalised butler service, perfect for their countless A-list clientele.
Where to Eat
Take the nearly hidden walkway from Shangri-La to SoHo House for a celeb-like discreet entrance into this members-only joint. The Sunday brunch is the place to be the morning after, with its elevated morning mainstays; but you’ll want to find a way into one of their TIFF parties to nibble on whatever that waitress in black is carrying and to spy stars sipping on outrageous cocktails.
Café Boulud, created by celebrated Chef Daniel Boulud inside the luxurious Four Seasons, places French cuisine front and centre””the perfect excuse to people-watch during your meal. Or stay within the TIFF Bell Lightbox to dine at either Luma or O&B Canteen. The former is on the posh end, a haunt for celeb-worthy cocktail parties; the latter is a nice spot for a quick bite in between screenings.
Where to Drink and Party
Adelaide Hall is this year’s home of the Festival Music House“”a music showcase within Toronto International Film Festival 2014. Rub elbows with film industry execs and celebrities as they take in the sounds of such Canadian bands as The New Pornographers, Lowell and A Tribe Called Red.
Head just a little west to find yourself at Bellwoods Brewery, an award-winning brewery that happens to find itself in a hip corner of town. You may bump into some A-listers passing through the area, but mainly it’s a perfect location to relax from all the party and film hopping.
Or if you want to keep things going, The Spoke Club is a good bet. The club’s rooftop patio is always a big hit, with lots of recognisable faces throwing down on the dance floor. And don’t forget to head to King Street during the first four days of TIFF for the first ever Festival Street””a pedestrian-friendly zone where you can mix and mingle between screenings.
Header image: Toronto city streets neon signs lit up at night © Photo.com/Thinkstock
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Will you be attending Toronto International Film Festival 2014? Where are your favourite places to live it up like an A-Lister? Let us know in the comments section below?
Written by Travis Persaud