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Leave a Love Lock in Toronto’s Historic Distillery District

Sweethearts can leave a love lock at the Love Installation in the Distillery District.

Sweethearts can leave a love lock at the Love Installation in the Distillery District.

In Paris, couples can secure their eternal devotion with a love lock on the Pont des Arts bridge. In Dublin it’s the Ha’penny Bridge, in Florence it’s the Ponte Vecchio and in Korea it’s the N Seoul Tower. Where can mad-for-you couples leave their mark in Toronto? A special Love Installation at the Distillery District is catching the hearts of lovebirds, encouraging those newly in love, recently engaged, just married or celebrating decades of couplehood to affix their affection. Conceived by one of the pedestrian-friendly district’s developers, Mathew Rosenblatt, the 30-foot-long by eight-foot-high fixture is made of steel and reclaimed lumber. A sign encourages visitors to initial their lock, attach it, kiss (each other, of course) and then throw away the key. Social media-friendly patrons can also share their token with the hashtag #DistilleryLove. (And since it’s a freestanding piece, the weight of all those locks won’t pose any structural concerns, unlike with the bridge in Paris.) —Linda Luong

Rumour Has It: Fleetwood Mac in Ottawa

The classic lineup, including keyboardist Christine McVie, brings its On With the Show Tour to the capital.

The classic lineup, including keyboardist Christine McVie, brings its On With the Show Tour to the capital.

OCT. 26 An often tempestuous band, Fleetwood Mac has had no shortage of disputes amongst its members over the years. But it looks as if they’ve kissed, made up, and finally put the past behind them. After a 16-year hiatus, former keyboardist Christine McVie has reunited the group for its On With the Show tour. She is joined by bandmates Stevie Nicks, Lindsey Buckingham, Mick Fleetwood, and John McVie. —Amy Allen
•Canadian Tire Centre, 1000 Palladium Dr., 613-599-0100. canadiantirecentre.com

Weekend Roundup: October 24 to 26


Art Toronto draws galleries, curators and collectors from around the globe.

Art Toronto draws galleries, curators and collectors from around the globe.

Friday, October 24

Get a good look at local and global contemporary art trends at Art Toronto, an art fair that draws curators and collectors from across the city and around the world. You’ll find paintings, sculptures and installations from emerging and established artists, as well as the “Next” showcase featuring new galleries that offer works priced at $10,000 or less. October 24 to 27, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, 255 Front St. W. Visit arttoronto.ca for more information.

Irish songstress Sinead O’Connor brings her distinctive sound to Massey Hall as she promotes her 10th album, I’m Not Bossy, I’m the Boss. 8 p.m. Tickets are $49.50 to $79.50; visit masseyhall.com for more information and to purchase.

Bargain hunters and fashionistas will want to check out Catwalk 2 Closet, the largest designer sample and end-of-season sale held in Toronto. Score men’s and ladies’ outerwear, apparel, footwear and accessories from 100 brands with discounts ranging from 50 to 80 per cent off. Friday and Saturday 10 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Direct Energy Centre, Heritage Court, 100 Princes’ Blvd. Visit catwalk2closet.com for more information.

Toronto Zombie Walk and Halloween Parade. Photo by Mike Kocza.

Toronto Zombie Walk and Halloween Parade. Photo by Mike Kocza.

Saturday, October 25

Calling all boys and ghouls! Channel your inner undead spirit this Saturday at the annual Toronto Zombie Walk and Halloween Parade, which winds through the downtown core. Even if you’re not feeling the urge to don a scary costume, the people watching is always a riot. The parade starts at 3 p.m. at Nathan Phillips Square (100 Queen St. W.); visit torontozombiewalk.ca for more details.

The chance to see a medley of musicians and proceeds going to a good cause sounds good to us. Feist, Billy Talent, Barenaked Ladies, Sarah Harmer, Hayden, Jason Collett, Lou Canon and more will take the stage at Massey Hall for the first annual Dream Serenade Benefit Concert in support of programs for children with special needs. This year, the concert will support The Beverley Street School and a family relief fund for caregivers. All ages. Tickets are $50 to $200; visit masseyhall.com to purchase.

The 35th annual International Festival of Authors is in town October 23 to November 2, and Saturday boasts a lineup packed with readings. Acclaimed Norwegian author Karl Ove Knausgaard discusses his latest book with Canadian author Sheila Heti on Saturday evening. Earlier in the afternoon, a number of authors read from their latest works, including David Bezmozgis, Elyse Friedman, C.C. Humphreys, Shelly Oria, John Boyne, Matthew Thomas, Tim Winton, Ted Baris, Robert Glancy and more. Tickets for each event are $18; visit ifoa.org for further details and to purchase.

Dum Dum Girls.

The Dum Dum Girls play Lee’s Palace Sunday.

Sunday, October 26

The Dum Dum Girls bring their increasingly polished post-punk sound to Lee’s Palace, with Ex Cops and BB Guns opening. Doors 8 p.m. Tickets are $21.50; visit collectiveconcerts.com for more information and to purchase.

Craft beer fans who haven’t purchased tickets for Cask Days (now sold out) can still sample some of the offerings on Sunday at the Evergreen Brick Works. “Last Call for the Cask” will feature any leftover beers from noon to 6 p.m. or while supplies last. Admission is $5 plus $5 for a festival glass for sampling; visit caskdays.com for more information.

Score vintage fashions at the Wychwood Vintage Clothing Show, where 30-plus vendors from Ontario and Quebec will be selling a range of goods, from clothing, jewellery and accessories to old textiles, linens, fabrics and quilts. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. ArtScape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie St. Admission is $8 at the door; children 12 and under are free.

Feed Your Hunger for Pan-Asian Fare

Patois, Toronto. Photo by Barb Simkova for Tara McMullen Photography.

Sharing plates at Patois. Photo by Barb Simkova for Tara McMullen Photography.

If this month’s Hot Dining eateries aren’t enough to sate your appetite for Far East fare, the city’s recent Asian infusion is even more substantial. Pai represents yet another buzz-worthy boîte from Nuit and Jeff Regular, Toronto’s reigning Thai food champions, where chef Nuit serves up her signature offerings (khao soi, Massaman curry) plus other Northern Thai–style dishes. The culinary journey continues at Lucky Red (318 Spadina Ave., 416-792-8628), a bao bar from the owners of Banh Mi Boys that boasts steamed- or baked-bun sandwiches filled with pork belly, panko-crusted tofu, fried chicken and other trendy ingredients. Or indulge in some unexpected island hopping at Patois, which sees pedigreed chef Craig Wong present plates that draw on both Chinese and Jamaican flavours.
—Craig Moy

HOTEL INSIDER: Prince of Wales


The Prince of Wales Hotel

From the horse-drawn carriages parked in front to the bellhop attired in a red jacket, it’s clear that guests staying at the Prince of Wales hotel are treated like royalty. Named for King George V and Queen Mary, who were guests here in 1901, this property is owned by Vintage Hotels, whose other holdings include Queen’s Landing, Pillar and Post and the Millcroft Inn & Spa among others. This establishment in picturesque Niagara-on-the-Lake is the crown jewel however, meticulously decorated with Victorian-era furnishings but with modern conveniences like LCD TVs, Bose Wave music systems and Keurig coffee machines.

Rich dark woods, ornate wallpaper and mouldings, wood-carved and embellished sofas and chairs upholstered in rich fabrics and embroidery nod to the historic charm here. (Be sure to take note of the beautiful stained glass scene in the lobby.) Cosy seating arrangements and fireplaces are inviting spots for quiet conversations and solitude.

Choose from a range of accommodations whether it’s for a romantic getaway, a mother/daughter bonding weekend, business retreat or even for a wedding party. Book The Royal Suite for the ultimate experience, which has a four-poster canopied King-sized bed, a walk out balcony, a separate seating area, fireplace and a pampering bathroom with a jetted tub.

110, including pet-friendly rooms
Price Rates vary by season and are dependent on the day of the week. May to October $290 to $640 per night; November to April $220 to $540 per night.
Conference Facilities Seven meeting rooms that can accommodate groups of up to 90 people.

Named by Spas of America as one of Canada’s Top 50 Spas in 2013, the Secret Garden Spa is an ideal spot for pampering. Choose from individual treatments like manicures, pedicures, facials, body wraps and massages, or day packages, and treatments for couples and mothers and daughters, which exclusively uses the Babor line of face and body products. Choose from signature treatments that are inspired by tea such as the Beau-teas facial or body wrap, or the green tea pedicure. Spa guests are can also relax in the salt water pool.

Three restaurants—Escabèche, Churchill Lounge and the Drawing Room—means that guests can enjoy an assortment of dining experiences right on the premises. Upscale Escabèche is a beautiful restaurant with panoramic views of Simcoe Park. Executive chef Chris Smythe utilizes fresh, local ingredients for a seasonal menu inspired by French cuisine, while chef sommelier Fred Gamula—who has been with the Prince of Wales for more than 20 years—can provide expert pairings from the wine cellar, which has more than 8,000 bottles representing Niagara wineries, but also France, Australia, Italy and California.

Churchill Lounge is a more casual spot for tucking into pub-style fare in a library-inspired space with bookcases and leather wingback chairs.

Of local renown is the afternoon tea service in the hotel’s Drawing Room. A cheery space in an elegant palate of crimson and ivory, guests can indulge in this midday treat served daily from noon to 6 p.m. Sip a variety of teas from beautiful fine bone china cups and saucers, while nibbling on housemade scones with strawberry jam, Devonshire cream and butter, pastries, cookies, finger sandwiches or a selection of cheeses.

6 Picton St. Niagara-on-the-Lake, 1-888-669-5566; vintage-hotels.com/princeofwales/.

Pizza With Flair: ZaZaZa

Explore Local and Global Art Trends at Art Toronto

Ottawa Weekend Calendar for Oct. 24 to 26

Get the Party Started: Toronto’s Nightlife Boasts Something for Everyone

Celebrate Craft Beer in a Very Big Way at Cask Days

Ottawa International Writers Festival: What to Do and Who to See

Score Deep Discounts on Fashions at Catwalk 2 Closet