Your ultimate celebrity hot spot guide for TIFF 2017

The Toronto International Film Festival brings the world’s biggest stars to town, and when they're not walking the red carpet or sitting down for interviews, they hit the city's hottest restaurants and bars. Here's our definitive list broken down by neighbourhood of where you're likely to spot a famous face or two.


ENTERTAINMENT DISTRICT 

Montecito

299 Adelaide Street West 


Ivan Reitman’s Californian-inspired restaurant is steps away from the TIFF Bell Lightbox, making it easy for stars to head over after a premiere or press conference. In 2016 the cast of Sing including Jennifer Hudson, Reese Witherspoon, Scarlett Johansson and Matthew McConaughey took over the space. In 2015, after chatting with etalk on the red carpet, Sandra Bullock and George Clooney enjoyed a fun night out celebrating their film Our Brand Is Crisis. George worked the entire room sipping his Casamigos tequila, while Sandra nibbled on chef Jonathan Waxman's famous crispy potatoes. In 2014 Robert Downey Jr. and wife Susan, along with Kristen Bell, Dax Shepard and Jason Reitman were spotted at the restaurant.  

Soho House Toronto

192 Adelaide Street West 


Even members can’t get into the ultra-exclusive parties at this private members club during TIFF.  It seems every star that rolls into town ends up at the house, which partners with Grey Goose each year. In 2016 Jennifer Garner and Bryan Cranston hosted an enormous buffet dinner before their premiere and Matt Damon, Nicole Kidman, Anne Hathaway, Evan Rachel Wood, Christian Bale and many more also toasted films there. The year prior saw the likes of Rachel McAdams, Jake Gyllenhaal, Naomi Watts, Drew Barrymore, Shia LaBeouf and Emily Blunt. Soho House is also where Taylor Swift and Julia Roberts had a very magical meet cute moment in 2013.

Byblos

11 Duncan Street


This Mediterranean mecca is found inside the STORYS building right off the King St. strip in the heart of the festival. Last year Matt Damon, Oscar winner Casey Affleck and Michelle Williams celebrated the premiere of their film Manchester by the Sea with a dinner at Byblos. Casey reportedly requested an all vegan menu. In 2015, John Travolta tasted the restaurant's lamb ribs, salmon and empanadas and Gerard Butler was seen ordering fried chicken. The venue's hosted a slew of other stars including Amy Adams, Jeremy Renner, Eddie Redmayne, Alicia Vikander, Drew Barrymore, Toni Collette, and David Oyelowo.  

The Ritz Carlton

181 Wellington Street 
TIFF 2015 Hot Spot: Ritz Carlton

With its prime location near the TIFF Bell Lightbox and Roy Thomson Hall, stars who stay at The Ritz Carlton don’t have to travel far. They can enjoy a delicious dinner at the hotel’s restaurant Toca like Richard Gere in 2016, grab a drink at the bar like Sam Rockwell in 2015, or relax in DEQ lounge. The large outdoor terrace, which has hosted the likes of George Clooney, is an urban oasis complete with an open-air fire pit and views of the CN Tower.

Bisha Hotel Toronto

80 Blue Jays Way

New to the scene this year is the highly anticipated Bisha Hotel Toronto. The soaring rooftop (44 floors high to be exact), will likely lure stars in need of a break from all the festival action.      

Momofuku

190 University Avenue


The Momofuku complex has three levels for stars to explore. On the first is noodle bar, where the mouthwatering pork buns are a must. The second level houses Nikai for drinks and Milk Bar for sweets. And on the third, Daisho offers large meat platters and Shoto for fancy tasting menus. Past sightings include Robert Downey Jr., Jake Gyllenhaal, Tina Fey, Justin Theroux, Lupita Nyong’o, Liam Neeson and Ralph Fiennes

Bosk 

188 University Avenue

The stunning space inside the celebrity-friendly Shangri-La hotel serves Asian-inspired cuisine with a Canadian twist. In 2015, major movie stars dined at Bosk including George Clooney, Johnny Depp and (then wife) Amber Heard and Jessica Chastain.      

Figo  

295 Adelaide Street West 

 
Right at the corner of John and Adelaide, Figo is smack dab in the middle of the fest frenzy. With its wrap-around patio and bright and airy dining room, the Italian resto has hosted the likes of Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber and Kiernan Shipka.

Kiin 

326 Adelaide Street West

 

The newly opened Kiin is located around the corner from the TIFF Bell Lightbox and we're pretty certain stars will love the stunning design and unique menu that features traditional and colourful Thai dishes.

The Anne Boleyn 

117 Peter Street  



This dreamy British pub just opened their doors at Richmond and Peter, a stone's throw from festival central.  Slide into a booth or grab a stool at the bar, and keep your eyes peeled for a famous face.   

The Chase

10 Temperance Street 
TIFF 2015 Hot Spot: The Chase
(Photo courtesy Arnaud Marthouret/KM images)

During TIFF 2013 Jake Gyllenhaal took in the stunning views overlooking downtown Toronto from The Chase’s sprawling rooftop patio. It’s the perfect place to grab a cocktail or a bite after a film premiere. Almost as perfect: snagging a table inside. The upscale dining room serves standout dishes including a whole roasted chicken stuffed with foie gras, apples and chestnuts. For dessert, their lime curd-layered angel food cake with coconut cream and toasted marshmallow icing is not to be missed.  

RBC House 

11 Duncan Street

New this year, RBC House will play host to a series of exclusive premiere parties, film junkets and a special RBCXMusic party headlined by the Arkells. Possible sightings include Nicole Kidman, Penelope Cruz and Andrew Garfield to name a few. 

Bar Adelaide

325 Bay Street
 
Located in The Adelaide Hotel Toronto (soon to become Canada’s first St. Regis Hotel late 2018) this intimate street-side lobby bar is perfect for those looking to either unwind before a movie or post dinner drinks. The stylish lounge offers a varied selection of cocktails and local-inspired bites – and you may even see a star staying at the hotel! 

Hooters

280 Adelaide Street West


In 2015 Hooters patrons will never forget the epic sighting of Kristen Stewart and Nicholas Hoult who dropped into the establishment and snacked on what else... buffalo wings!   

KING WEST

Brassaii

461 King Street West 


Brassaii has been a festival favourite for years with the likes of Salma Hayek, Kate WinsletDakota Johnson, Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Benson, Zac Efron, Colin Firth, Scarlett Johansson, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Nicole Kidman stopping by. It also serves as the home of The Hollywood Reporter for the duration of TIFF, so if you book a lunch, brunch or dinner here you’re bound to get a few sightings in.

Lavelle

627 King Street West 


With its massive 16,000 square foot rooftop lounge and 155 foot-long pool, Lavelle attracts the A-list. In 2016 Ryan Gosling, Emma Stone and John Legend schmoozed it up at the Hugo Boss party for La La Land and Snowden's Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zachary Quinto took in the stunning viewsWe can also confirm none of these stars went for a dip.  

Calii Love  

367 King Street West 

Poke is pretty popular and last year celebs like Jane Lynch and Parker Posey chowed down at this Californian-Hawaiian spot on King Street. Amy Adams and Rami Malek made it there for the coffee (which they do very well).

Weslodge

480 King Street West 


Described as a “casually refined saloon,” Weslodge’s bartenders sling modern cocktails with a focus on bourbon and scotch. For the food, executive chef Ben Heaton uses traditional techniques like salt curing, brining and smoking. During the festival in 2014, both Ryan Reynolds and Anna Kendrick dropped by after the premiere of their film The Voices.  

Patria

478 King Street West 
TIFF 2015 Hot Spot: Patria

One of TIFF 2014’s wildest parties took place in this tucked-away Spanish spot. At the after party for St. VincentBill Murray led a full-fledged conga line with Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy in tow. A year earlier, Adam Levine and Keira Knightley were there to fete their movie musical Begin Again.  

Thompson Toronto

550 Wellington Street West TIFF 2015 Hot Spot: Thompson Toronto

It’s all about that view at the Thompson Toronto. The wraparound rooftop is one of the best places to take in the city’s soaring skyline like Brad Pitt did in 2013. Over the last few years it’s also where The Hollywood Reporter has held their annual Breakthrough Awards bash. In 2014, Eddie Redmayne and Felicity Jones were honoured for their performances in The Theory of Everything.

Cibo Wine Bar

522 King Street West 


In 2015 this Italian eatery hosted The Martian cast dinner, with Matt Damon, Jessica Chastain, Kate Mara, Jeff Daniels and Donald Glover all in attendance. Other stars spotted at Cibo include John Goodman, Viggo Mortensen, John Travolta, Tom Hardy, Noomi Rapace and Jason Reitman

Fring's 

455 King Street West 


Drake's eatery with celeb chef Susur Lee opened just after TIFF 2015 and with the rapper set to appear at this year’s festival (he’s an executive producer on a basketball documentary The Carter Effect), we’ll be shocked if he’s not celebrating with his famous friends at Fring’s. Rihanna, Serena Williams, Jada Pinkett Smith, Jaden Smith, Kevin Hart and Lebron James have all made appearances there in the past.

Spoke Club

600 King Street West 

For over a decade this private members club has partnered with etalk on the eve of TIFF for The Canadian Filmmakers’ party. Each year the who's who of Canadian film eagerly pack the club. Previous attendees include Jason Priestley and Tatiana Maslany. Once the festival kicks off, Villa Azur sets up shop blanketing the place in white and giving major Miami vibes in the process. Celebs spotted at Spoke include Miles Teller, Anna Kendrick, Penelope Cruz, Bradley Cooper and Christina Hendricks

Colette Grand Café

550 Wellington Street West 


This French eatery welcomed British actors Max Irons, Sam Claflin and Douglas Booth in 2014 for the GQ/Hugo Boss party celebrating their film The Riot Club. Located on the ground floor of the Thompson Toronto, the elegant space has a stunning bar and al fresco dining – perfect for star spotting.

YORKVILLE & BEYOND 

Café Boulud inside the Four Seasons Hotel

60 Yorkville Avenue 
TIFF 2015 Hot Spot: Cafe Boulud

Stars like Al Pacino and Denzel Washington love the Four Seasons, and 2015 saw the opening of the hotel's refreshed and reinvigorated Café Boulud. The restaurant’s feel is of a brasserie, with the look courtesy of Martin Brudnizki who’s created celeb favourite spots like The Ivy in L.A. and Cecconi’s Miami Beach. As for the food, think French, French and more French. Plus, there's a stunning rotisserie that slowly cooks meat and veggies simultaneously over open flames.

One Restaurant

116 Yorkville Avenue 

Susan Sarandon, Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Daniel Craig, Adam Sandler, Mark Wahlberg and Robert Deniro are just a handful of the famous humans who have dipped into celebrity chef Mark McEwan’s eatery during the fest. One is located at the Hazelton Hotel (a Justin Bieber favourite) and if you’re eating there, do so on that prime people-watching patio.    

STK Toronto 

155 Yorkville Avenue 


The lively steakhouse officially opened after TIFF 2016 but that didn't stop them from welcoming some celebrities before that including Jennifer Connelly, Dakota FanningAnne Heche, Sandra Oh, Uzo Aduba, and Nick Cannon.  This year the restaurant will be home to the Nordstrom Supper Suite and once again host the Creative Coalition Spotlight Initiative Awards.  

Estia   

90 Avenue Road 

Taking over the former NAO steakhouse, Estia brings flavours of Greece, Southern Italy and Spain to life.  With dishes cooked over the restaurant's charcoal grill and served on their plant lined front patio, you're sure to spot a fews stars.     

BlueBlood Steakhouse  

1 Austin Terrace
 
There’s a new steakhouse on the scene and from the looks of it, it’s ready for the A-list.  Located inside Casa Loma (former home to the star packed Artists for Peace and Justice Gala), BlueBlood will be open to the public just before TIFF, and word is they’ll be hosting some private functions. We’ll keep you posted on who turns up!   

Cafe Nervosa 

75 Yorkville Avenue 


This Yorkville staple has been serving up delicious Italian fare for 20 years. Past TIFF celeb appearances include Jared Leto, Dustin Hoffman and regular Renée Zellweger, who loves their grilled salmon and veggies. And oh yeah, Beyonce, JAY-Z and Blue Ivy have also dined there. Need we say more?

Brothers

1240 Bay Street 
 
Brothers, which was named Toronto Life's Best New Restaurant of 2017, is located above the Bay subway station and just down the street from the celeb fave Four Seasons hotel. It's a small space so if you happen to have a star encounter, get ready to rub elbows.  
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