Toronto, Ontario -
24-Hour Toronto (Well, Almost!)
While Toronto may not yet be Manhattan in terms of after-hours places, it has come a long way since its "Toronto the Good" image decades ago, when 11 p.m. downtown was considered a late night. There are now places to eat, dance, and find essential services either 24/7, or at least until 3 a.m or later. We’ll discuss places in areas at or near a subway or all-night bus route.
Food, Glorious Food
The Golden Wheat Bakery at 652 College (at Grace Street: an area of late night clubs, cafés, and restos) is 24/7, while for gourmet-pizza, head for Amato Pizza at 534 Queen St. West (to 4 a.m. nightly).
The Sunset Grill in the Beaches (all-night streetcar from downtown) at 2006 Queen East has a weeknight 4 a.m. and weekend 5 a.m. closing time. It is most famous for a very reasonable all-day breakfast. Fran’s is the 24-hour Toronto mainstay that you could even take your Granny to. Locations are at Yonge and College, Yonge and Eglinton, and Yonge and St. Clair. The latter is the original Fran’s circa 1940 (updated but still "homey" nostalgic food and ambience).
For Chinese and Vietnamese food, the blocks on Spadina between College and Dundas (the "300 block" especially) in the downtown core offer many eating opportunities until 5 a.m. for post-club noshing. Bars and restaurants on the Danforth go until at least 2 a.m. weeknights and at least until 4 a.m. weekends.
For a taste of Jewish Montreal, try Mel’s Montreal Delicatessen (24/7) at 440 Bloor West in the Annex neighbourhood – and forget about the cholesterol levels! Coffee Time doughnuts seem to be everywhere (Toronto may be the doughnut capital of North America) for a java-fix all night long.
Yonge and Charles Street (S. of Bloor) has the trendy 24-hour 7 West Café, where deep-fried is a no-no. Rabba Fine Foods at 37 Charles West and two other locations in the downtown core have all-night grocery shopping. There is also a large Dominion 24-hour supermarket (weekdays only, M-F) at 425 Bloor West.
Exercise at 3 A.M.
After all that eating, you may feel the need to tone those muscles. Drop by World Gym at 675 Yonge (Yonge and Charles again!) and open all night. For less sweating, shoot some pool at Central Billards at 468 Queen Street (24hours) or The Billiards Academy at 485 Danforth (at least until 2 a.m. weeknights and all night weekends).
You can dance the night away at places like Industry, 901 King West; El Convento Rico (Latino atmosphere), 750 College Street; or The Matador, 466 Dovercourt cowboy: it opens from 1:30 to 5:30 a.m. The TTC subway stops at about 2 a.m., but there are all-night busses on some routes; check beforehand or get a cab.
Computer-Deprived at 2 A.M.
Check out Kinko’s 24-hour photocopying, rent a Mac or IBM terminal, print photo-discs, etc. (cheaper rates after-hours) There are always knowledgeable and pleasant staff to assist you, at the locations at 505 University, 2430 Yonge and 459 Bloor West, all central and near a subway stop.
Feeling Punky After-Hours?
If not a true emergency but you need to see a doctor, try Walk-In Docs at 809 Bloor W. (to 10:30 p.m.) – bring your Health Card from another Canadian Province (except Quebec) and there will be no charge; otherwise a nominal C$30 fee for tourists from elsewhere. If too sick to go out, there is even a Medvisit Doctors Housecall Service (telephone 631 3000), and you may call until midnight. There is a fee for this service for all; inquire when calling. Shoppers Drug Mart has one pharmacy open all night in the downtown hotel area at Lucliff Place, 700 Bay Street, for middle of the night medications.
Some LCBO (government-operated liquor-wine stores) are open to 10 or 11 p.m. now, and some movie theatres have midnight showings of the most popular flicks. Check Eye or Now magazines for listings.