Luxury Hotels in Toronto Offer a Taste of the Extravagant

Likely the majority of your life is spent on a budget. It is the rare few who can walk into a store free of pricetags without worry. Even so, from time to time, we all want to splash out without regard for our future RRSP contributions. We want to live more like rap stars than conservative adults. It is at those times when luxury hotels can bait us, showing us that there is a version of life that is all too easy.

Whether money is no issue or you are turning a blind eye to your savings account, luxury hotels in Toronto are filled with grandeur and splendour. (Frankly, you just don't use those same words in day-to-day life.) From Lenny Kravitz-designed suites at Toronto's Bisha Hotel to The Four Seasons, which (perhaps unfortunately) is even better than you would expect. Put aside the responsibilities and allow someone else to fluff your pillows.

A luxury is by no means a necessity, but there are times in life when we all wish to put down the reigns and relinquish control. These Toronto hotels are perfectly equipped to treat you like royalty. You can always return to reality tomorrow.


The Windsor Arms is a mix of historic charm and modern luxury. The hotel opened in 1927 in Toronto's Yorkville neighbourhood and immediately became a favorite with travelers seeking high-end accommodations. Years of neglect caught up with the Windsor Arms in 1991, when it closed. But a new owner breathed new life into the designated historic property, and since its 1999 opening, the hotel's 28 rooms have played host to visiting celebrities and dignitaries. With amenities including 24-hour butler service, a full-service spa and elegant afternoon tea served daily in the original tea room, it's not hard to see what draws them here. Rooms include Italian linens and handmade furnishings, as well as creature comforts including DVD players, sound systems and spa-like bathrooms. Each of the hotel's 28 suites also includes a musical instrument. You could find a guitar, a harp or even a baby grand piano waiting for you.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: Not many hotels come with a Nespresso maker and a musical instrument. You may want to take up harp playing in your new luxury life.

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SoHo Metropolitan Hotel & Residences
Photo courtesy of Soho Metropolitan Ottawa

While Toronto is in the midst of a luxury hotel building boom, this 72-room boutique hotel has been offering guests many upscale touches since 2003. The contemporary-designed rooms feature spacious and inviting marble bathrooms with large tubs and heated floors and remote-controlled curtains and lighting for those comfortably curled up in bed. An onsite spa is available for those who need a bit of pampering after a day of sightseeing, as well as an indoor pool and whirlpool. If you're visiting Toronto to check out the city's Broadway-quality theatre productions, art galleries, or to catch a baseball game, The SoHo Metropolitan is perfectly positioned in the heart of it all. While the hotel is just a hop, skip and jump away from some of Toronto's best dining options, the innovative Asian-influenced menu at Senses Restaurant has been a consistent favourite for years with Torontonians.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: This posh hotel is ideally located to do everything in Toronto.

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The King Eddy has been a landmark hotel in Toronto since it opened in 1903. For many years, it was the hotel for the rich and famous. Over the years, its gleam faded until local investors poured millions into restoring the property to its former glory. It remains the hotel to come and stay for special occasions (and the hotel for Prince William). The carved marble columns and the glass-domed ceiling in the lobby harken back to more genteel days. Rooms are on the small side but seem larger because of the high ceilings and large windows. All have been decorated with an Old European flair and many personal touches. The large marble bathtubs are truly decadent. The on-site spa is also a great place to be pampered. You will be within walking distance of all the best restaurants, as well as Toronto's theatre district and many other attractions.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: From Queen Victoria to Elizabeth Taylor, the King Edward has housed some VIPs (with emphasis on the V).

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Shangri-la hotel Toronto
Photo courtesy of Shangri-La Toronto Facebook page

There is a whimsical look to the Shangri-La that warrants a second glance, even amidst the commotion of the busy location. University and King is one of the hubs of activity in Toronto and the Shangri-La keeps up, making their attention to detail appear effortless. Expect luxurious classiness at every corner, with everything from high tea to a Turkish fitness centre available onsite. The Shangri-La is excellent at providing top-notch service, such as nightly live music in the lobby to decadent chocolates in each room. Rooms efficiently use space, appearing minimalist yet having more than what you require for an opulent stay. Adjacent to the hotel is David Chang's three-story Momofuku complex.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: This stylish downtown hotel does its best to erase all traces of difficulty from your life.

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Hotel X Toronto by Library Hotel Collection
Photo courtesy of Library Hotel Collection

Hotel X brands itself as an urban resort and we would certainly agree. It is just far enough out of the downtown core to avoid aggravated city drivers and guests are greeted with smiling receptionists framed by a living green wall. it is far too simple to hunker down and ignore Toronto's spectacular offerings, which can be seen through one of the many floor-to-ceiling windows that drench the hotel in natural light and the glittering lights of the city. As the only hotel located at Exhibition Place, there are 404 guest rooms, a gym with jaw-dropping views of the CN Tower (as well as a tennis court, hot yoga room and daily classes) and a heated pool on the rooftop that seems to attract people to their bathrobes for far longer than they anticipated. Book here, and it may very well end up being a bathrobe kind of holiday.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: Spectacular views of Lake Ontario make this hotel an enchanting choice.

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Bisha Hotel Toronto
Photo courtesy of Bisha

Walking into the velvet adorned lobby of the Bisha Hotel will mute the buzz of downtown immediately, even though you couldn't ask for a more prime Toronto location. 85 guest rooms, 10 luxury suites and a two-floor, Lenny Kravitz-designed "Bisha suite" are decked in natural stone, dark leather and effortless cool. The 70s theme is by no means gaudy, with rooms awash in eclectic photographs, exquisite drink carts and televisions that fade into mirror when not in use. Retro details are carefully curated (yes, those are real Andy Warhols in the corridor). If you can distance yourself from your bathrobe, the infinity pool and unmissable Kost restaurant on the 44th floor are well worth a moment of your time. When the front desk texts you to ask about your stay (hello, 2019!) there is no answer more fitting then, "Hell yes!"

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: You may become cooler as a side effect of staying at the Bisha Hotel Toronto.

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The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto
Photo courtesy of Ritz Carlton Toronto Facebook page

The first Toronto entry from this luxury global hotel chain opened in February 2011 on the western edge of the financial district, offering guests an ideal base to explore both the city's downtown core and theatres. The 53-storey tower includes 267 hotel rooms on its first 20 floors, with 159 condo residences occupying the top floors. Both residents and hotel guests at the Ritz have access to a wealth of luxurious amenities. The fifth-floor spa and fitness centre offer body treatments and training sessions, yoga, as well as professional hair and makeup services and a lap pool surrounded by views of the city. The menu at TOCA draws from Canada's bounty, from Quebec foie gras to Alberta bison, served in a dining room rich with dark wood accents. Guests can retreat to spacious rooms featuring floor-to-ceiling windows, heated floors and spa bathrooms.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: From a private lounge to floor-to-ceiling windows, guests of the Ritz-Carlton Toronto live large.

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The St. Regis Toronto
Photo courtesy of The St. Regis Toronto

If you fear that your current life doesn't have enough elegance, then a night at the St. Regis will surely satisfy your craving for the luxurious. This high-end hotel could not be more perfectly situated in downtown Toronto, oozing style while remaining effortlessly welcoming. Rooms are equipped with details like fireplaces and deep soaking tubs, while chandeliers decorate almost every ceiling. Butler service is manageably friendly (you can email or text your butler), making it feel somewhat acceptable to request a drawn bubble bath. Take a ride up to the 31st floor to the spectacular Louix Louis restaurant with a unique interior meant to look like the inside of a whisky glass. On the same floor is their saltwater pool that looks up into the clouds and over Toronto's stunning skyline. No matter how your life may be going, the world looks pretty sweet from that view.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: The St. Regis is both luxurious and friendly, a rare occurrence in today's day and age.

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Four Seasons Hotel Toronto
Photo courtesy of Christian Horan

The Four Seasons was started by a Canadian businessman and this Yorkville location has only been open since 2012. 55 stories high and in the heart of the glamorous, there are 259 guest rooms including 42 suites. All rooms are incredibly spacious with wraparound couches, sleek desks and plush beds with down duvets and light-as-a-feather pillows. With Michelin starred chef Daniel Boulud blending French flavours with the cosmopolitan flair of Canadian cuisine, there is ample opportunity to wine and dine, or you can order room service from the in-room iPad. The spa is an impressive 300,000 square feet and the ultimate place to indulge in a massage or take a private yoga class.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: The Four Seasons is a brand that is finely tuned to the finer things in life.

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The Hazelton Hotel Toronto
Photo courtesy of Hazelton Hotel Facebook page

The Hazelton Hotel is an exclusive five-star hotel that made its home in Toronto's posh Yorkville neighbourhood. It opened just before the annual Toronto International Film Festival in 2007, and every year it is filled with stars and elite clientele. Rooms are as elegant as an old black-and-white movie, with 62 detailed rooms and 15 extraordinary suites. Each of the 77 guest rooms is at least 620 square feet in size and feature nine-foot ceilings and custom-designed furnishings. Other exquisite details include French doors that open onto Juliet balconies and modern touches such as heated bathroom floors. The effect is both classic Parisian elegance and 21st century convenience. Lobby restaurant One is run by top Toronto chef Mark McEwan. Their health club includes a lap pool and personal trainers. For the best seat in town, book their 25-seat state-of-the art theatre for a private movie screening.

Recommended for Luxury Hotels because: A five-star hotel in the heart of a five-star neighbourhood: you can't go wrong with the Hazelton Hotel.

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Meet Courtney Sunday

Courtney Sunday has lived in England, Switzerland, Canada and the US, finding her way into the professions of freelance writing and yoga teaching in between travel opportunities. She learned...  More About Courtney