CheckOut: The Omni King Edward Hotel for Toronto Gay Pride

By @ 06/28/16 in Gay pride, Gay travel, James Careless, ManAboutWorld, Toronto, Travel

Omni King Edward hotel for gay pride TorontoLooking for a hotel for Gay Pride Toronto? Look no further! ManAboutWorld Correspondent James Careless recently visited and provides this report on the Omni King Edward Hotel. James recently wrote about another fabulous Toronto hotel, the Windsor Arm Hotel.

Top/bottom line: Originally built as Toronto’s premier luxury hotel in 1903, the ‘King Eddy’ (as Torontoians have long called it) has just undergone a $40 million renovation/restoration – and it shows. Located just east of Yonge Street on King Street, the Omni King Edward is deep in the heart of downtown and close to the theater district, high-end shopping, the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, the Distillery District, and Toronto’s renowned Gay Village (Church and Wellesley). It features 301 over-sized rooms that seamlessly mix old-fashioned Edwardian class and spaciousness with modern style, appointments, and amenities. The result is a sense of airy elegance.

Rates: There are all sizes and kinds of rooms available at the King Edward; including the Luxury Executive (800 square feet) suites that include sitting rooms with 180 degree curved walls on one side and multiple windows. Not surprisingly, the King Edward’s combination of location, quality interiors, two excellent dining rooms (the Consort Bar is full service; Victoria’s Restaurant is exclusively for Afternoon Tea, which has been a tradition since 1903) is not cheap. But compared to other cookie-cutter luxury hotels that charge comparable rates, the King Eddy is worth it. Prices start at $215 (C$269.10) for a 350 square foot Deluxe Room, to $323 (C$404.10) for the Luxury Executive suite. If you are feeling particularly grand, the 1,800 square foot Royal Suite is available; you’ll have to call for prices. This one-of-a-kind, two-story hotel-within-a-hotel comes with a sunken living area, a formal dining area for eight people, a work area, two fireplaces, and full kitchen with butler’s entrance. Personally, I have stayed in most of Canada’s grand old hotels over the years; including the Chateau Lake Louise and Toronto’s Royal York. But the renovated King Edward is the only one I have ever visited that is traditional without being stuffy or dated – and the redecorated rooms (I toured all of the options) are superb.

Omni King Edward hotel for gay pride Toronto

Location: One reason I love downtown hotels is that they tend to be close to the action; whatever the action may be. On the classy side, the King Eddy is within walking distance of top restaurants, theaters, and clubs. At the same time, it is a short subway ride to the Gay Village in all of its textures; from LGBT entertainment venues to steamrooms and beyond. (I like to cover the waterfront.) A must-see destination that is close to the King Eddy is Club 120; two blocks’ north at 120 Church Street. Club 120 is a legendary Toronto LGBT restaurant and diner, and is home to Mandy Goodhandy; Toronto’s witty transgender comedienne. Club 120 also hosts LGBT dances, live music, and stand-up comedy nights.(Check for the latest events.)

Room/Bathroom: The King Edward’s rooms are all very individual, from the Deluxe to the Royal Suite. You’ll find stylish, comfortable furniture; big firm beds, and bold interior decorations; including the signature scarlet wall behind each bed with its monogrammed King Edward pillows. The bathrooms have also been completely updated; many of which have seen their tubs removed in favor of large walk-in showers with glass walls. Everything is fresh and well-appointed; as are the understated restaurants and the big two-story lobby with its giant chess pieces! If you can afford it, go for the Luxury Executive suite with its curved walled sitting room. It is literally a good walk to go from the bedroom past the bathroom, in order to get to the sitting room. You will feel like royalty!

Gay Factor: Staying at a one-of-a-kind, tastefully-decorated grand hotel is a definite ‘gay factor’ perq. You won’t cringe here as you might at a pretentious ‘McClassy’ chain hotel with its knock-off modern art and mass-produced mock-designer furniture. That said, the King Eddy’s gay factor is definitely one of swanky style, not glitzy flash. Meanwhile, the location of this hotel is perfect for any LGBT guest; everything you need or want (or both) is within reach! Frankly, one stay at the King Edward, and chances are that this will be your gay HQ anytime you stay in Toronto. (And if you want to impress someone you’ve just met, this is the place.)

About the Checkout: ManAboutWorld highlights properties we have recently and personally stayed at, and is editorial, not advertorial. Like virtually all travel publications, we sometimes accept discounted and sponsored travel, but ManAboutWorld is beholden to no one but you. Our recommendations are based solely on the experience and opinions of our editorial team and trusted network, putting our readers’ interests above all. If you ever have an issue with anything we recommend, please let us know. We always have your back, and your travel satisfaction in mind. Read our full disclosure here.



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