With warm weather just around the corner, Toronto is itching for locals and visitors to come out of hibernation to make the most of the climbing temperatures. From film festivals to secluded spa treatments, here are a handful of exciting events and experiences taking place this spring in the city.
Contemporary Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama’s internationally lauded “Infinity Mirrors” exhibition is on display in Toronto until May 27 at the Art Gallery of Ontario. The show, along with 90 other works by Kusama, features six immersive rooms. The landscapes challenge you to “experience infinity” in multi-reflective installations that promise to leave you mesmerized. These otherworldly works also make great backdrops for one-of-a-kind Instagrammable selfies.
Turn your art-fueled adventure into a weekend escape for two with a stay at Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Shangri-La Hotel, Toronto just a couple blocks away from the gallery. The stylish property’s Romanic Getaway in Toronto package pulls out all the stops with chocolate and champagne upon arrival, breakfast for two at Bosk, a $100 spa credit and the ultimate personal shopping experience at Saks Fifth Avenue.
Get a Global Perspective
Experience North America’s largest documentary film festival during Hot Docs, an 11-day celebration of all things film. From April 26 to May 6, the city will be overrun with panels, workshops and screenings of more than 200 cutting-edge documentaries from Canada and around the globe.
Among the highly anticipated showings will be the annual “Made In” program that will present works from Mexican filmmakers this year. Another special production will be “The Changing Face of Europe.” In a first-time collaboration with European Film Promotion, this brand-new series will showcase 10 documentaries from rising filmmakers across the continent, each highlighting issues affecting Europe today.
Indulge in a Secluded Spa Retreat
After a long day of traversing the city, rest your head in sumptuous style at The Adelaide Hotel, Toronto, a property that’s situated in the heart of downtown. Enjoy all that the upscale address has to offer right now with the extra-exclusive Midnight at the Spa experience. When you book this ultra-luxe offering, you and your special someone will enjoy complete privacy in the 15,000-square-foot, two-story spa for an entire evening, when it will be off-limits to everyone but you.
The pampering begins with a two-hour couples retreat: an invigorating exfoliation followed by a 90-minute side-by-side massage with hot stones for deep muscle relaxation. Then, partake in a candlelit midnight swim overlooking Toronto’s skyline from the spa’s infinity-edge saltwater pool. Decadent bites, custom music and floating rose petals help complete the amorous evening.
Enjoy the Flavors of Peru
Opened at the end of February, Mira honors the bold and vibrant flavors of Peruvian cuisine. Located on Wellington Street in the trendy King West neighborhood, the restaurant is the brainchild of Iconink, the same team behind some of Toronto’s other popular international eateries, including Eastern Mediterranean restaurant Byblos and Spanish-themed Patria.
With a quirky entrance marked by a neon llama, this stylish spot features Latin American-style shareable plates, such as Andean popcorn, tuna ceviche and Peruvian street-style antichuchos (barbecue skewers) with a vibrant, colorful atmosphere to match. Cozy up to the bar to try a few Pisco cocktails — you can’t go wrong with the traditional sour variation – because one, after all, is never enough.
A highlight of springtime in Toronto, cherry blossom season provides an excellent excuse to hit the city’s green spaces. Over in the West End, High Park is a favorite spot for locals to take in the beautiful blooms, which usually reach their peak from late April to early May.
Like in Japan, the hanami — the tradition of celebrating spring and its subsequent blooms — will see city-dwellers and visitors alike enjoying a picnic and the rising temperatures under the pink-hued trees.