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David Byrne's multiculti colour guard comes to Luminato

Trailblazing artist David Byrne is bringing his “Contemporary Color” exhibition to Toronto’s Luminato next week. But first, the New York Times reports on the backstory behind the project. 

The Times writes:
The synchronized manipulation of flags, rifles and sabers in a kind of dance routine — the practice called color guard — is known as a complement to marching bands in football halftime shows and parades at high schools and colleges. But after football season, color guard continues through the winter, indoors, performed to a range of recorded music, in organized circuits of judged competitions. Several hundred teams compete over three days at the championships in Dayton, the pinnacle of what organizers call “the Sport of the Arts.”

For Contemporary Color, the “arena spectacle” combines colour guard teams with live music by artists of Mr. Byrne’s choosing. And it’s a solid lineup: St. Vincent, Ad-Rock of the Beastie Boys, Kelis, Nelly Furtado and Devonté Hynes are all on board, each matched with a colour guard team. 

Read the full story here
Source: New York Times

Parapan Am Games set to "leave a legacy"

Chefs de Mission from 27 National Paralympic Committees were in Toronto last week for a final meeting in anticipation of August's Parapan Am Games. As the event's Chief Executive Officer of TO2015, Saäd Rafi, told the German-based International Paralympic Committee, the games are poised to "leave a legacy in the Americas." 

The Toronto-hosted Games are set to be history-making, thanks to a few key additions. Among these: a National Paralympic Committee support grant developed to help cover travel costs to and from the Games, and a Parapan American Development Programme to build capacity in sport management, coaching, and developing the capacity of physically and visually impaired  athletes. 

“We continue to be impressed by the preparations for the TORONTO 2015 Parapan Am Games and the efforts by Canada to create a real legacy from these Games that benefits the entire region of the Americas,” said American Paralympic Committee President Jose Luis Campo.

Among the 15 sports included in the Games will be archery, judo, powerlifiting, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair rugby and sitting volleyball.

Source: International Paralympic Committee

Lonely Planet names Toronto one of its top 10 cities for 2015

Travel guide gurus Lonely Planet have anointed Toronto among the world's Top 10 Cities to visit in 2015.

"Two North American metropolises on the well-beaten path bracket Lonely Planet's Top 10 Cities list for 2015, one of an annual variety of best-of and trend-spotting rankings announced this week by the travel publisher, which also compiled them into the Best in 2015 book and travel planner," reports the San Francisco Gate.
Toronto comes in at number 10 as Canada's answer to New York City, a "multicultural megalopolis" as described in Lonely Planet's ranking, which also gives a nod to the city's restaurant scene, shopping options, and attractions like the Toronto Islands. But the projected tourism spike and infrastructure advancements associated with July's Pan American Games certainly lend the city additional lustre. 

Lonely Planet writes: "A bunch of public works projects have advanced in preparation for the C $1.5billion international multisport games, including the long-anticipated Union Pearson Express train, which will whizz passengers from the airport to downtown in 25 minutes, making it easier than ever to sink one's teeth into the culinary and cultural delights of Toronto's diverse enclaves."

And there you have it. 
Read the full story here.
Source: SFGate; Lonely Planet.

Scenes from a post-apocalyptic Toronto

It turns out that a post-apocalyptic Toronto might just be a beautiful thing to behold. At least, it would be through the eyes of sci-fi author Jim Munroe.

The writer has teamed up with artists Matthew Borrett, Terry Lau and Sanford Kong to create images of a gorgeously grim future Toronto, which will be featured in a calendar given out to contributors to Munroe's latest crowdfunded story series. The resulting vignettes are both haunting and surreal: A collapsed CN Tower puffs black smoke over the Gardiner Expressway in one, while vinelike spider legs wind around downtown cityscapes in others.

io9 reports:

"Those of you familiar with Munroe's work may recognize a lot of these scenes from his last film, Ghostswith Shit Jobs,which features a segment about what happens to Toronto after the cityis invaded by giant spiders and its local internet cloud goes into foreclosure."

Giant spiders might be less-than-ideal, but even as an imagined dystopia, Toronto manages to look world-class. 

Read the full story here. 
Source: io9.

Toronto named world's most resilient city

Toronto has been named the best city for real estate investment because of its ability to "bounce back from an adverse event," according to a new report issued by the London-based Grosvenor.
Resilient cities are defined by their abilities to "thrive as centres of human habitation, production and cultural development, despite the challenges posed by climate change, population growth and globalization." Resilience, the report says, urgently needs to be rethought due to the pressures placed on cities by economic and population growth.
The report ranked the top 50 cities internationally according to their vulnerabilities (climate, environment, resources, infrastructure, and community), as well as their "adaptive capacity" (governance, institutions, technical and learning, planning systems, and funding structures). 
Toronto came out on top, followed by two other Canadian cities: Vancouver and Calgary. "Canadian cities have a strong combination of low vulnerability and high adaptive capacity. There is a high level of resource availability, and Canadian cities are well governed and well planned," the report says. 
Although Toronto received top rankings, it was not issued a case study as other cities, including Vancouver and New York City, were. "Toronto is no stranger to the importance of resiliency, having endured natural disasters such as the 1998 ice storm and even Hurricane Hazel, in 1954," Richard Barkham, Grosvenor’s Group research director, instead said in a press release.
"The investment of city leaders in infrastructure and its commitment to upgrading it over the decades has put Toronto at the top of Grosvenor’s list of the world’s most resilient cities. Canada, as a whole, is doing exceptionally well in developing resiliency."
Read the full report here
Original Source: Grosvenor

Parks and Blue Jays reasons to visit Toronto

The latest tour guide we've come across advocating Toronto mentions some fresh reasons tourists should visit the city. The National, a publication based out of Abu Dhabi, notes that Toronto "regularly appears near the top of global indexes for livable and competitive cities" and mentions how we ranked eight "out of 20 entrepreneurial hotspots worldwide, according to Startup Genome's Startup Ecosystems Report 2012."
The National mentions traditional attractions such as the Toronto International Film Fest, but what caught our eye was its attention to details and emphasis on nature and culture. 
"This week is Canada’s National Forestry Week so go for a stroll," the article says. "Rouge Park has nature, farms and trails. Set to become Canada’s first national urban park, Rouge Park lies within an hour’s drive for 7 million people. Alternatively visit the Hockey Hall of Fame (hockey and lacrosse are the national sports of Canada) and follow that up with a visit to Tim Hortons, a coffee and doughnut chain founded by a Toronto Maple Leaf hockey player of the same name."
It also draws attention to our key industries. "The region is the No 3 financial services centre in North America, after New York and Chicago. The World Economic Forum has ranked Canada's banking system as the most sound in the world, six years in a row. The food and beverage industry also does well with the sector having $17 billion of sales in 2010. Designers, retailers and cost-efficient manufacturers in Toronto’s fast-moving fashion hub have helped increase Canadian apparel exports to the US more than fivefold since 1994."
Now, how about a game of ball? "Baseball fans might be interested to know that the Toronto Blue Jays are the only team in Major League Baseball to be located outside the United States. The Blue Jays won the World Series twice in their history - again the only team outside the US to do so."??

Read the full guide here
Original source: The National

Toronto's new Trump hotel recognized for glitz, glam and... restraint

The Toronto Trump Hotel opens its doors this week, further strengthening Toronto's reputation as hotspot for international luxury travel. Located at Bay and Adelaide, the new tower—which stands 65 storeys tall and is topped by an articulated spire—is now Canada’s second tallest structure.
"A three-dimensional cherry blossom branch is mounted behind the reception desk on LED-lit black glass. Rendering courtesy Norm Li AG&I Inc."
"While Trump's signature grandiose style may mark the exterior of the tower, its interior is purposefully restrained (though you'll still find plenty of glitz and glam in the sophisticated hotel's public spaces). Local Toronto design firm II by IV incorporated a 'champagne and caviar' color scheme throughout the hotel and its 18,000 square foot 31st-floor skyline spa (opening soon). Your first glimpse of the design style will be in the street-level lobby, where white semi-precious onyx wall panels imported from Milan add drama, as do the laser-cut gray granite inlays on the floor and the dramatic, smoky beveled mirror hovering overhead. Light boxes displaying diamond necklaces and other jewels accent the space, and a can't-miss-it three-dimensional crystal cherry blossom branch mounted on LED-lit black glass behind the reception desk."
read full story here
original source Forbes

The Daily Mail on visiting Toronto

The Daily Mail writes on the many reasons a visit to Toronto is worth the transatlantic flight. Toronto is lauded for, among other things, its exciting attractions, its chic neighbourhoods and its vibrant film industry. 

"Much like New York, wherever I wander in Toronto I get a strange sense of familiarity thanks to its Hollywood connections. In the Distillery District—a 13-acre enclave on Toronto's shoreline full of design boutiques, artist studios, bistros and cafés—the Victorian industrial architecture provided the backdrop for X-Men, Chicago and Cinderella Man."
"Richard Fiennes-Clinton is your man if you want to find out a bit more about the history of these areas. His Muddy York Walking Tours take me on a meander through the most interesting areas of the city and there is little Richard doesn’t know about his hometown."
"Along with the Distillery District he introduces me to the eclectic vintage shops and well-stocked food stores of the bustling Kensington Market, along with the equally lively Chinatown, and treats me to the view from the staircase in the stunning Art Gallery of Ontario, which he has nicknamed 'the poor man's CN Tower.'"

read full story here
original source Daily Mail 

The Huffington Post on TIFF & Toronto

The Huffington Post writes on why TIFF is "the best film festival in the world" and why "lively" Toronto is the perfect host city. Toronto is lauded for, among other things, its cultural diversity, fine dining and exciting tourist attractions.  
"Anyone connected to the film industry will tell you that the Toronto International Film Festival is the best film festival in the world. What they fail to mention is that it's also the perfect attraction for a lively vacation."
"TIFF leads the pack for three key reasons. First, selection: Their programmers present the world's best films. Second, timing: Distribution companies release Oscar-caliber films in the fall for awards consideration. Third, location: The 36-year-old, public-friendly festival infuses the entire multicultural city with verve for 10 exciting days every September. If you love urban meccas, lively tourist sites, fine dining and top-notch movies, too, TIFF gives you a good reason to visit Toronto."
read full story here
original source Huffington Post

TIFF wraps up to rave reviews

After 11 days and 260 film screenings, TIFF 2011 has officially come to close. The Washington Post praises TIFF programmers for the exciting variety of movies on offer, describing the fest as a "balanced, healthy cinematic ecosystem."

"What's more, with some of the festival's smallest independent productions having been acquired by studios in recent days, audiences can be assured that, even as multibillion-dollar spectacles and comic-book franchises threaten to gobble up the smaller fry, a diverse, harmonious cinematic habitat still has a chance of surviving."

"So, at this year's TIFF, audiences could rousingly applaud the funny, touching mainstream comedy The Descendants—the festival's first bona fide home run, featuring a by-turns hilarious and heartbreaking performance by Clooney—then a few days later see Shame, Steve McQueen's stark, disquietingly graphic portrait of a man grappling with sex addiction."

"But even though the market heated up somewhat, the heart and soul of TIFF beat on the streets of downtown Toronto, where thousands of cinetourists make their annual pilgrimage, seeing up to four or even five movies a day, emerging only to cadge a hurried meal before plunging again into the dark. This is a world blithely oblivious to wheeling and dealing that occur in such elegant precincts as the Fairmont Royal York or InterContinental hotels, where the swells congregated this year. Instead, festival-goers—who could be heard coining the term "TIFF-ing" for their cine-obsessed pastime—shuttle from queue to queue, comparing notes with their fellow enthusiasts over well-thumbed programs, circling and crossing out titles with the ruthlessness of seasoned racetrack sharpies."

read full story here
original source Washington Post

LA Times: What to do in Toronto when not at a movie screening

With TIFF back for its 36th year, the LA Times writes on the best Toronto hotspots "to eat, drink and be seen." Toronto's high-end hotels, world-renowned restaurants and array of premium coffee shops are among the many Toronto highlights the Times recommends to its readers.

"Toronto tends to be blasé about its stars—Rachel McAdams' regular vintage-shopping jaunts in the city's popular Kensington Market attract about as much attention as anyone else's—but whatever see-and-be-seen attitude the city does hold surges to a fever pitch during the annual International Film Festival. This year marks the 36th edition of TIFF, and whether you're looking to rub elbows with Clooney & Co. or want to duck away from the hubbub for low-key cocktails and charcuterie, the following list offers some of the best that Toronto has to offer."

read full story here
original source LA Times

Evolution of the Entertainment District

The Toronto Star's Christopher Hume writes on the legacy of the Bell Lightbox, the 2-year old TIFF headquarters that's transforming Toronto's downtown.

"There’s no need to shed any tears for Yorkville just yet. Though it lost much of the film festival when TIFF moved downtown last year, it can still count on the enduring power of vanity to keep its wheels turning. And if the ’70s ever become fashionable again, the old Village will be the place to be."

"Meanwhile, down at King and John, the Bell Lightbox, TIFF’s elegant new funhouse, continues to change the face of the downtown neighbourhood. It’s not that Yorkville — or at least, the larger Yorkville area, including the Royal Ontario and Gardiner museums and the Royal Conservatory — is any less a cultural hub, but some of that energy has shifted south."

"The city also provides a study in the domino effect, how one change leads inexorably to another. TIFF is a catalyst as well as a result. And as the area draws ever closer to critical mass, it becomes a self-sustaining mix of culture, entertainment, commercial, corporate and domestic forces."

"That’s why the neighbourhood is no longer simply an Entertainment District, a Financial District or any other such designated enclave. It now incorporates elements of both. In that sense, it belongs to everyone."

read full story here
original source Toronto Star

Toronto Aquarium breaks ground

Toronto's newest tourist attraction, an $130-million aquarium to be constructed at the base of the CN Tower, officially broke ground on August 17th. Blog TO hosts renderings of the ambitious project (expected to be completed by 2013) that will feature a 96-metre-long moving walkway through a "shark lagoon" and will be able to accommodate as many as 13,500 sea creatures.

check out renderings here
original source Blog TO

Folks are lining up to walk hands-free on a tower's edge in Toronto

Edgewalk, the CN Tower's newest extreme attraction, hasn't even opened yet and is already selling out in Toronto and garnering attention internationally. USA Today writes on the attraction that, for $175, lets thrill-seekers walk the outside circumference of the CN Tower's main pod, 168ft above the ground.

"Starting this week, you can buy tickets for "EdgeWalk at the CN Tower" in Toronto. Billed as the first attraction of its kind in North America and the highest full circle hands-free walk, EdgeWalk takes place atop the tower, which is one of the taller ones in the world. That's 116 stories up with no guardrails, gulp."

"Participants are, of course, tethered while they walk and gawk at the city below. The experience opens Aug. 1 in celebration of the CN Tower's 35th anniversary. A reservationist told me it will stop for the year in late fall, when the weather gets dicier."

read full story here
original source USA Today

New CN Tower attraction offers a walk on the outside

The CN Tower has announced the launch of EdgeWalk, its newest attraction that lets visitors walk hands-free along the outside of the tower's main pod - 116-storeys-up. Opening August 1, EdgeWalk participants will get a magnificent panoramic view of the city while attached to an overhead harness and guided, by trained guides, around the 150 meter platform.

"Trained guides will encourage visitors to push their personal limits, allowing those who dare to lean back over Toronto, with nothing but air beneath them," said a news release."

"During our 35th anniversary year we are excited to introduce visitors to the most exciting attraction in our history," said Jack Robinson, chief operating officer of Canada Lands Company, which owns the tower."

"Still under construction, the steel grated platform will be supported by 36 arms linked to separate rails for the tour guide and group of walkers. The support arms can be seen as a series of rods protruding from the roof of the 360 Restaurant.The walk will cost $175, which includes a video of the experience, taken by the guide. Tickets go on sale June 1. The attraction will be offered until October this year and reopen in May 2012."

read full story here
original source Toronto Star
28 Entertainment District Articles | Page: | Show All
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