Concierge.com's insider take:
After a wave of style-over-substance hotel openings, Toronto, still in need of more rooms at peak times, was ready for a Ritz-Carlton. Opened in February 2011 in the heart of the financial and performing arts district (close enough to the Toronto International Film Festival Bell Lightbox to scoop up the influx of tired celebrities), the Toronto Ritz hews closely to the brand's patented model of confident, solid luxury. There are few design surprises in the 267 guest rooms (predominantly taupe furnishings with leather headboards, deep soaking tubs, and honor bars), though the spaces are large by Toronto standards (starting at 450 square feet) and absolutely quiet. To make the most of the floor-to-ceiling windows, opt for a waterfront room showcasing Lake Ontario views. The hotel's defining sense of comfort is buoyed by the spa's 16 treatment rooms, saltwater pool, and yoga studio. The casual DEQ Terrace and Lounge serves an eclectic mix of flatbreads, afternoon tea, and specialty drinks (consider the watermelon-aloe cocktail), while the formal TOCA restaurant is centered on chef Tom Brodi's locally sourced menu. If he's serving his beef tenderloin with oxtail, or the bone marrow stuffed with sweet crabmeat, you will forgive the hair-curling prices.—Raphael Kadushin
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