One of my favourite events of the year, Doors Open Toronto was held this past weekend. Over 150 buildings around the city opened their doors to the public, a chance to see inside places otherwise off limits.
I managed to catch a dozen locations this year over Saturday and Sunday.
Doors Open Toronto 2015 – Saturday
I joined the Doors Open instameet held by @6ixwalks to check out some great downtown spots included in the event.
Toronto City Hall
The Observation Deck on the 27th Floor, the taller curved building in the City Hall complex.
Great views through dirty windows…too bad they didn’t give ’em a shine before they invited company over : /
The Peter Gilgan Centre for Research and Learning at The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids)
A high rise research laboratory at 686 Bay Street.
The $450,000,000 building was designed by Diamond & Schmitt Architects and opened in 2013.
Doors Open provided a perfect opportuinty to inside those beautiful curves!
Elgin and Winter Garden Theatre Centre
The last double-decker Edwardian theatre facility in the world at 189 Yonge Street.
Website: The Elgin & Winter Garden Theatre
Commerce Court North
A gem of the city, completed in 1931, a marvel of its time, and still so today.
Website: Commerce Court
The Design Exchange
The original location of the Toronto Stock Exchange, now a centre for design at 234 Bay Street.
The winners of a high school design contest on display. Clearly the theme was Sponge Bob Square Pants. So fun!
Website: Design Exchange
Native Child and Family Services of Toronto
Contemporary interpretation of the longhouse, a traditional lodge of the local First Nation people, inside 30 College Street
MaRS Discovery District
The glass atrium at this science and technology research centre.
Now called MaRS, this location has been part of important scientific discoveries in Toronto for over a century, including insulin and heparin.
Website:MaRS Discovery District
Doors Open Toronto 2015 – Sunday
On my own on this day, covering some locations a bit further afield, starting with the spectacular Aga Khan Museum in North Toronto.
The Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre Toronto
A beautiful recent addition to Toronto, designed by Fumihiko Maki
The Aga Khan Museum and Ismaili Centre are both located on Wynford Drive and can be seen prominently along the Don Valley Parkway
Both buildings, on the same complex, are packed with gorgeous details all giving a nod to Islamic design and geometric pattern.
Aga Khan Museum
Website: Aga Khan Museum
Website: Ismaili Centre
Amsterdam Brewery at 45 Esandar Drive in Leaside
I remember the original Amsterdam Brewery inside the restaurant on John Street back in the early ’90s. The brewery has come a long way since then.
Website: Amsterdam Brewery
Sky Zone Indoor Trampoline Park
Doors Open fun for the kids at 45 Esandar Drive, Suite: 1A, right next to the Amsterdam Brewery
It hadn’t occurred to me that this would be a place for kids until I opened the door and heard what seemed like 10,000 gleeful little voices!
Website: Sky Zone
High Level Pumping Station
Turn of the century water pumping facility in Rathnelly at 35 Poplar Plains Road.
This is the oldest water pumping facility in Toronto, sending water up to higher ground.
The Masonic Temple
Theatre and Offices at Davenport & Yonge
The Masonic Temple has been used for a lot of purposes over the years. Currently, the building is the home of Info Tech, a reasearch and technology company. It made me think of HBO’s Silicon Valley – a a very “Hooli” kinda vibe with its funky grafittied walls, golf-simulator and gym facilities.
Website: InfoTech 888 Yong
My only disappointment is that the event isn’t longer so I could see more. There’s just not enough time to see them all.
Oh well, there’s always next year.