Just west of downtown’s Fashion District (where fashion is designed, rather than an area of boutiques), the Queen and Bathurst streetcars are mere minutes from the front door. If flying from the US and travelling light, try and fly Porter to the little known Toronto Islands airport — you can actually walk from the airport ferry dock to the hotel.
Rooms have all the modern, high tech touches you’d expect, plus floor to ceiling windows that look out at the cityscape and, from rooms on the south side, Lake Ontario. Furnishings are angular, but I was surprised to find, are noticeably comfy.
The lobby is vast and takes up the corner of Bathurst and Wellington — it’s a prime people-watching haunt and I can happily idle away an afternoon, lounging in those super stylish chairs, scanning the parade of pretty people checking in. There’s also a screening room.
Eating and drinking
Artisanal beer or late night PB&J — peanut butter and jam — sandwiches are up for grabs at the 24-hour Counter. More elegant eats are on the menu at celebrity chef Scott Conant’s hyper-hyped Scarpetta. The guests-only rooftop bar with its infinity edge pool that looks out over the city and lake are where the A-listers hang out.
A 24-hour fitness centre is eclipsed by the scene-y (but tiny) rooftop pool and its adjacent bar.
I suspect that some staff members were not so much chosen for their hospitality resumes as for their ability to double as models if a photo shoot was required, but everyone was quite pleasant, even when failing to deliver any orders correctly. Service is definitely one of the corners of the Thompson that still needs more sheen — although not in Charlie Sheen way.
Who stays there
A mixture of leisure and business guests, a lot of music and fashion people. The Thompson gets some pretty big names checking in. Will.I.Am. and his posse were at the bar the first time I sauntered up to the rooftop lounge.
- Business Centre
- Fitness Centre
- High-Speed Internet
- Room Service
- Swimming Pool
- Culture vultures
- Great views / scenery
- People watching
- Design and architecture
Pros & Cons
- 24-hour dining
- Inconsistent service