The world is full of grand hotels, and Toronto seems to have more than its fair share. This is the financial centre of Canada, after all, so travelers can expect to find plenty of properties offering top notch services for business travelers. These business class hotels offer standardized levels of exceptional quality and service as well as a full range of the expected amenities.
But for travelers who want to experience a little more in the way of hospitality, design, and delight, there are also the many wonderful boutique hotels that dot the city like sparkling gems. And for travelers who really wish to venture into the heartbeat of Toronto, there are lots of beautifully furnished apartments to explore all around the city.
How do you know which is better for you?
Here’s your mini-guide for where to stay in Toronto. It’s presented in the form of questions, so get ready to think about your traveling preferences and needs. By the time you’ve read this, you’ll have a fairly good idea of which option will enable the perfect visit to Toronto for you.
Is this your first time to Toronto?
If so, you might want to stick with a hotel, where you can take advantage of the services and amenities. Unless you thrive on feeling overwhelmed in a big, strange new city, you’ll appreciate the help a front desk can offer.
Plus, if your English isn’t up to par, most hotels — even the boutique hotels that dot Toronto — will have staff who can probably help you out with directions. In general, it’s nice to have someone there who can put you at ease when you’re exploring Toronto for the first time.
If you’d like the best of both worlds, however, Mary-Am Suites offers short-term furnished apartments with a 24/7 real person guest service. Enjoy a unique setting with the convenience of knowing there’s always someone there to help you navigate the city, manage any issues you might have, or find a great place to eat.
Are you ‘fussy’ or ‘particular’ about where you stay?
If a faded rug or an ugly plate offends your sensibilities while traveling, then perhaps your trip will go smoother if you stay in hotels rather than furnished apartments. One person’s idea of a “fully equipped kitchen” may not include an espresso machine, while another couldn’t imagine living without one.
In furnished apartments, you run the risk of running into different expectations and varying interpretations of what’s essential for a good stay. If you need life orchestrated to perfection, apartment stays may not be for you.
Do you have any special needs?
If you have mobility issues, a bad back, allergies, or any other condition which requires special attention, then you are better off in a hotel. When something goes wrong in an apartment, help is typically more than a few moments away.
At a hotel, on the other hand, staff will be there to ensure all your needs are met, and if they’re not, they’ll work diligently to make things right.
Are you staying for more than three or four days?
If so, you’ll want to consider a furnished apartment. There’s the possibility of cost savings, but that’s only the beginning.
If your intention is to dig in deep and live like a local, then a furnished apartment offers you an insider’s perspective of Toronto. Your temporary neighbors are likely to be real residents of the city, and your immediate surroundings might be less packed with other tourists, although it depends on your neighborhood.
If you’d like to experience Toronto like the natives do, but still want to stay in the heart of the action and the best neighborhoods, try Mary-am Suites, where you can live locally but explore like a tourist.
Are you traveling with a group?
For large groups, you may assume it’s better to find a large apartment in Toronto, but that’s not necessarily your best option. If your goal is to stay near Toronto’s downtown core, then it may be difficult to find an apartment large enough to accommodate everyone in your party. Booking multiple rooms in a hotel will allow you room to stretch out as well as the possibility of negotiating a discount, especially if your party consists of eight or more people.
Finally, if you’re traveling with a large group or if you prefer the convenience of a full staff at your fingertips, try Mary-am Hotel North York. The 24-hour concierge is your tourist resource centre and there’s free on-site parking plus free Wi-Fi. It’s just a short drive from downtown, located in Toronto’s beautiful Willowdale neighborhood. Come for a visit — we’d love to have you!