Family Vacation to Toronto with a Teen by Robin Gorman Newman

This was the summer of extreme humidity and rain in New York, so we were anxious to go on vacation, with the hope that weather might more comfortable elsewhere.  Toronto did not disappoint on that level and in general.

(Lobby – partial view)

We began our vacation in Niagara Falls and then Niagara on the Lake, and drove to Toronto for the last leg of our road trip.  We had originally planned to stay just two nights, but we were so taken with Hotel X Toronto that we extended another night.  And, had we not had reason to return to NY when we did, we might have opted for still another night.

Hotel X Toronto is truly a destination.  It is a class act hotel in the midst of a busy city and one that was hard to leave, even to go exploring the town.  It truly felt like a modern resort featuring impressive amenities, with more to come, as the hotel is just five months old.  Photos truly don’t do it justice.

As their website states….

  • Spectacular views from virtually every room.
  • Stunning Rooftop Swimming Pool
  • Toronto’s Only Tri-Level Rooftop SkyBar
  • Kandy Gallery by Neil Dankoff
  • 250 Seat Cinema and 56 Seat Screening Room – truly impressive!
  • 4 Indoor Tennis Courts & 9 Squash Courts
  • Cutting edge fitness technology from TechnoGym – also truly impressive!!
  • Dedicated Studios for Pilates, Spinning, & Yoga
  • Free Wi-Fi and In-Room Bottled Water
  • Free Transportation to Union Station & Billy Bishop
  • No Resort Fees
  • Family Friendly- Play Centre
  • Pet-Friendly and Eco-Friendly
  • Library, Business Center, Departure Lounge, ATM
  • Additional Restaurants and Spa – Coming Soon!

(Library Lounge – partial view)

We stayed in a King suite on a high floor and had access to the Library Lounge.  Not only is the lounge a lovely place to read and relax, but we enjoyed complimentary breakfast there each morning, and they also serve wine ‘n cheese nightly.

(Part of our Suite)

Our room was modern and spacious with large windows and a city view, high end toiletries, and the bed was very cushy and luxurious.  It was perfect for a family of three with a teen, as my son had his own area with a pullout sofa bed and television.

The rooftop pool was an amazing respite.  It offered outstanding city views and comfortable seating, and food

(Rooftop Pool)

service was available.  One of the mornings, a rehearsal was underway for an air show at CNE, and we had a jaw-dropping experience watching the planes literally soar by the hotel…..My son had a photo opp feast.

There are many beautiful open ‘n airy common spaces at the hotel to relax, and it’s a great venue for parties and other events.  During our stay, they even mentioned their involvement with the prestigious Toronto Film Festival.

Hotel X Toronto is easy walking distance to CNE, and this was our first stop in Toronto.  There was so much to see and do there, we almost didn’t know where to start.

According to their website….The Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) is Canada’s largest community event.

Founded in 1879 as the Toronto Industrial Exhibition, the CNE has enjoyed a distinguished history as a showcase of the nation.  People came to experience the latest innovations in technology and commercial products, to enjoy the popular entertainers of the time, and to engage in a collective community celebration.

Taking place over the 18 days leading up to and including Labour Day, highlights of the popular annual indoor/outdoor CNE include:

  • Entertainment
  • Concerts
  • The Farm
  • Food
  • Shopping
  • Rides
  • Games
  • Kids’ World (a green space featuring attractions designed for children 10 & under)
  • Exhibits
  • Park Entertainers & interactive experiences
  • A three-day Air Show

All attractions and shows are free with admission to the CNE.  You could spend hours and days here!  Since our time was limited, we tried to focus and took in the International Pavilion, the Arts, Crafts & Hobbies Pavilion, and visited the Canadian Armed Forces Interactive Area and the Fire & Paramedics exhibit.

Aside from CNE, courtesy of Tourism Toronto, we were offered Attractions Passports, which allows for complimentary visits to many of the top Toronto sights including the Bata Shoe Museum, Casa Loma, Hockey Hall of Fame, Ripley’s Aquarium of  Toronto, etc.

One of our highlights was visiting CN Tower.  We rode up in the rapid fire elevator where we had truly stunning views of the city, and we elected to dine at 360 Restaurant.  While the food was not the most memorable, I must confess, and it’s pricey, it was worth it for the views, particularly at sunset.

From their website….Rocket 58 seconds in one of six glass-fronted elevators to the LookOut Level located at 346m / 1,136 feet with breathtaking views.

From the LookOut level you experience an eye-opening, mind-blowing new perspective on the most spectacular views in Toronto with floor-to-ceiling panoramic Window Walls and an all new Glass Floor, installed directly above the original, one level below.

I can tell you that it lived up to it’s description!

Aside from CNE and CN Tower, my son, Captain of the Jr. Firefighters in our town, had a great time visiting one of the Toronto firehouses, which we


endeavor to do on all our trips.  And, we enjoyed exploring various neighborhoods including Chinatown……Queen Street West (a cross between Soho and the West Village in NYC) being our favorite shopping area….and the quaint St. Lawrence Market being a cool destination for food items.

If visiting cities is your vacation of choice, Toronto is a good one to put on your list, and I cannot recommend enough a stay at the sleek and welcoming Hotel X Toronto.  We hope to visit again one day, and Hotel X Toronto would be our personal pick!






Note: Hotel X Toronto graciously hosted us for one night, press visits were arranged to CNE and CN Tower, and we were provided Attractions Passes from Tourism Toronto …but all opinions are our own.