The Drake Hotel
What We Love
- One small hotel – five places to order a drink
- Live music most nights
- Super-friendly staff makes guests feel like locals
- READ MORE: 72 Hours in Ontario
What To Know
- Noise and vibration from bar travels to some rooms on second floor
- Big name retailers and downtown Toronto attractions are at least a 10-minute cab ride away
- Guestrooms are open-plan and a bit on the small side
- No elevator
- Free WiFi
- Parking On Site
- Room Service
The Drake’s eclectic interior embraces both the building’s rich history — including its 1890s construction and 1940s refurbishing — and its current role as a cutting-edge cultural icon in the West Queen West art and design district. A 2001 renovation gave new life to the Drake’s old bones. Instead of a face-lift, 3rd Uncle Design highlighted many of the original design elements — wrinkles and all — and layered them with their own edgy stylings. Turn-of-the century terrazzo floors, mahogany wainscoting and exposed brick mix with Midcentury Modern furniture and vintage objets to give the Drake an authentic retro cool. A full-time art curator rotates a prominent and playful display of contemporary art.
Bed and Bath
The well-conceived guestrooms are models of space and design efficiency. Though smaller than most other Toronto rooms (starting at 150 square feet), they don’t feel cramped thanks to creative and functional open shelving, high ceilings, lots of natural light and glass separating the bathroom from the sleeping area. Entertainment options include an iPod loaded with a Drake-approved playlist, a selection of cool Hollywood classic movie rentals and, for the frisky, a “pleasure menu” with toys and erotica for sale.
For a 19-room hotel, there’s a lot going on. Choose from one of five spots in the hotel to drink, dine or take in live music. The main floor lounge are accessorized with vintage radios, murals and the endlessly looping, eclectic Drake TV. Head to the rooftop Sky Yard for fresh air, or join the hipster crowd downstairs for a live indie show at the Underground. The bright and cheerful Corner Café is the perfect recovery breakfast spot. Get some of their yummy homemade jam or baked goods to go.