The best places to stay in four price ranges: budget ($), moderate ($$), expensive ($$$), and luxury ($$$$)


Bond Place Hotel
“If centrality at the best price is what you seek, this hotel is the ticket.”—Viviane Kertesz, managing editor, Where Toronto magazine. A three-minute walk from the Toronto Eaton Centre; 287 rooms are clean and functional (albeit wanting in style); minutes from the entertainment and big-box shopping district. 65 Dundas Street E; tel. +1 416 362 6061.


The Drake Hotel
“The ultimate hipster hotel. Rooms in the front can get noisy, request a room in the back.”—Arjun Basu, former editor in chief, enRoute Magazine. Nineteen bohemian-chic rooms (dubbed “crashpads”) range from the snug and darling (150 square feet, 14 square meters) to the swank and condo-size (385 square feet, 36 square meters); all are artfully prettied with vintage furniture and paintings from local artists; some feature hardwood floors and exposed brick walls. 1150 Queen Street W; tel. +1 416 531 5042.

The Gladstone
This Victorian centegenarian is the city’s oldest continuously operating hotel; offers instant-submersion into the city’s avant-garde art world. Each of the hotel’s 37 rooms is decorated by a local artist and is a mini-masterwork in itself. Located in fashionable Queen West West; surrounded by indie galleries. 1214 Queen Street W; tel. +1 416 531 4635.

Strathcona Hotel
A 194-room hotel, smack in the city’s financial heart, and steps from the theater district; modern, clean rooms at wallet-sparing rates; a find for the frugal business traveler. 60 York Street; +1 416 363 3321.

Westin Harbour Castle
“You can enjoy panoramic views of Lake Ontario, the Toronto Islands and the urban skyline from your room.”—Viviane Kertesz. Outdoor tennis courts; state-of-the-art gym; 977 rooms; stone’s throw from Harbourfront. One Harbour Square; tel. +1 416 869 1600.


Hotel Le Germain
As decadent as it is discreet, this chic downtown hotel’s 122 sleek rooms are washed in blood-pressure mellowing neutrals; flat screens, Bose stereos, and impossibly comfy duvet-dollop beds; sun-soaked rooftop terrace; cozy, book-lined lounge (with fireplace and cappuccino bar) perfect for wintertime hibernating. 30 Mercer Street; tel. +1 416 345 9500.

InterContinental Toronto Centre
“This hotel is a modernist haven and luxurious rooms proffer great views.”— Viviane Kertesz. Minutes from both the entertainment and financial districts; 586 rooms; Azure restaurant and bar serves haute-contemporary cuisine and boasts a formidable wine list. 225 Front Street W; tel. +1 416 597 1400.

Cosmopolitan Toronto Hotel and Spa
“It’s a sleek feng shui–friendly hotel; trendy on-site Eight is the place to dine on trans-Asian fare and sip exotic cocktails.”—Viviane Kertesz. Ninety-five suites and two penthouses are divined as mini Zen dens; floor-to-ceiling windows and gemstone fountains. Eight Colborne Street; tel. +1 416 350 2000.

Le Meridien King Edward Hotel
Built in 1903; stalwart (and carefully renovated) property with old-fashioned majesty to befit its moniker; grandiose columned lobby and wood-paneled, tenderly lit bar washed in old-boys’ shades of cigar and brandy; high-tea service in the Victoria Café; plum location steps from the financial and theater districts; 298 rooms. 37 King Street E; tel. +1 416 863 9700.

Fairmont Royal York Hotel
Built by Canadian Pacific railway, the 1,365-room hotel—across from Union Station—is undoubtably the city’s grandest dame. Guest rooms (if a tad fusty) boast a traditional, old-world vibe (reds, golds, and greens dominate). A soaring marble-and-travertine lobby is a romantic throwback to the hotel’s 1929 heyday. 100 Front Street W; tel. +1 416 368 2511.


Four Seasons Hotel
“The mainstay for the glitterati—it’s not uncommon to see paparazzi crowding the entranceway—especially come the Toronto International Film Festival.”—Viviane Kertesz. The 380 guest rooms (including 150 suites) cosset guests with bay windows, marble-tiled bathrooms; ideally perched in the heart of Yorkville’s high-gloss shops, galleries, and tree-hemmed streets. 21 Avenue Road; tel. +1 416 964 0411,

Hazelton Hotel
The sexiest (and most debt-inducing) property in town; the brand-new Yorkville hotel claims to be the city’s only five-star property, featuring 77 suites that are plush and swank; walls in the grand entrée are paneled in cowhide and inlaid with mother-of-pearl; on-site restaurant, One, is helmed by local celebrity chef Mark McEwan. 118 Yorkville Avenue; tel. +1 416 963 6300, 866 473 6301.

SoHo Metropolitan Hotel
Luxe, modernist, and close to the Rogers Centre, rock stars have been known to stay here. Guest rooms gussied with Frette linens, marble-clad bathrooms and floor-to-ceiling throw-open windows. On-site Senses Restaurant and Bar is a treat. 318 Wellington Street W; tel. 866 764 6638.

Windsor Arms Hotel
Building dates back to 1927; imperious and intimate property with 28 cushy mahogany-accented suites; steps away from Toronto’s fashionable Mink Mile; famous Tea Room serves the city’s best high tea; the Courtyard Café, with all the grandeur of a jazz-age ballroom, looks like it’s slipped off the page of a Fitzgerald novel. 18 St. Thomas Street; tel. +1 416 971 9666.


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