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Monday, November 26, 2012

Holiday Cheer in Toronto—First Up, Shopping

I’m back in one of my favorite cities in North America, Toronto. If I don’t get my yearly dose, I go through withdrawal. There’s so much energy in this city right now, it’s electric. As my taxi driver noted, he’s seen more construction in the Toronto in the past two years than he’s seen in the past 20 years. That’s due to the large influx of immigrants, close to 100,000 annually, helping to push the population of the region to over 6 million people. 
The result is a boom in noteworthy architecture, which I described in The Boston Globe Sunday Magazine on my last visit. Lately, the city has unveiled a slew of luxury properties which I’ll visit this week and innovative North American cuisine that rivals the best of any city in North America. I’m particularly stoked about visiting Keriwa Café, where the chef and owner, a descendant of the Siksika tribe, brings First Nation cooking to new heights. 
Yet, since my arrival yesterday coincided with the last day of all the Black Friday specials, my first order of business was to shop at one of Ontario’s largest malls, Square One in suburban Mississauga (which is not so suburban when you consider their population exceeds 800,000). If the long lines to the fitting rooms at H&M, the Gap, and Tommy Hilfiger were any indication, this is going to be a banner Holiday season for retailers. This morning, which I’m hoping is much more laid back since it’s a Monday, I’m visiting the Yorkdale Shopping Centre in downtown Toronto. This month, they just completed a $220 million expansion, debuting 40 new stores like Ted Baker London, Kate Spade, and North Face. If lines aren’t too long, I’m going to sit on Santa’s lap. Just kidding. But I do hope to put a dent into the Holiday shopping. 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/26/12 at 12:00 PM
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Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk. is an Austin-Lehman Adventure's Top 125 Best Travel Blog Semi-Finalist

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