Located just east of Toronto’s downtown centre and known for its numerous art galleries, Victorian-style homes and a strong multicultural presence, the neighbourhood of Riverdale has become a hotspot for young professionals and new families — and with good reason. With its vibrant scenery, ample recreational space, and a close trip to downtown Toronto, it’s no wonder more and more people are looking to settle down in Riverdale. Here, we’ll lay out the reasons why you should also consider if you’re looking to relocate.
For eager parties, the most important test of a potential move is the housing situation. If you’re a fan of multi-story Victorians, you’ll be sure to find a home in Riverdale. More recent residents are giving their homes contemporary updates, but you’ll have to snatch those up quickly. It’s not unusual for a listing to be picked up in a week’s time.
If you’re more in the market for a new condo, South Riverdale always has apartments and condos available, but be warned — they’re fairly competitively priced.
Another key concern is what the public transportation and private street parking situation looks like.
The good news is that whether you’re a public transit commuter or enjoy a quiet ride all on your own, Riverdale has accommodations for you. In addition to rear laneways outside homes and purchasable permits for street parking, residents will find themselves no more than a five-minute ride to the Lake Shore Boulevard, the Don Valley Expressway and the Gardiner Expressway.
There’s also plenty of reliable public transportation, including both buses and streetcars, so commuting to work will never be a problem. If you’re worried about avoiding potentially obstructing snow conditions, Toronto is fairly prepared for when snow strikes.
Love shopping? You’ll love traversing Danforth Avenue! Here, you’ll find one-of-a-kind boutiques like Social Butterfly, Snug, Evymama, and Body Blue. These are great shops for gift shopping for a special someone in your life, and you can add to that gift with some neat stationary for Postables.
Seeing as Riverdale’s a beautiful location, you wouldn’t be alone in wanting to have a wedding here. Not too far from Riverdale Park East, there are excellent bridal and tuxedo shops, from Lea-Ann Belter Bridal and Becker’s Bridals to Zeglio Custom Clothiers and Andrew’s Formal. You’ll even be able to find a local photographer at Mango Studios Wedding Photographer or Purple Tree Wedding Photography.
While Toronto’s full of green space, Riverdale has some phenomenal parks, including Riverdale Park East, Withrow Park, and Jimmie Simpson Park, each of which has a tennis court, hockey rink, baseball diamond and an indoor or outdoor pool.
In case you’re looking for some indoor relaxation, there are also four public libraries that routinely host events fit for the whole family, an indoor playground (Kids Fun Town), and an assortment of events and programs for those reaching the age of 60 plus.
If you want to get a taste of what the creatives are working on, check out IX Gallery, Creative Work Studios, Rouge Concept Gallery, Hangman Artist Gallery, and Visions Gallery.
Say you’re looking for a quality Greek restaurant in Toronto. Where do you go? Well, if you’re near Danforth Avenue, there are no wrong answers. Danforth, also known as Greektown, is the largest Greek neighbourhood in the entirety of North America. Every year, its host to “Taste of the Danforth,” a no-admission food festival primarily featuring Greek cuisine, but there are also vendors including Chinese, Brazilian, Japanese and more. In recent year, more than a million people from all over the globe have come to the August event.
If you’re more partial to barbeque, you’ll enjoy AAA Bar. It’s a tight spot on Gerrard Street with more cuts of meat on the menu than sides and a relaxed atmosphere. Not too far away, there’s the newly opened Vietnamese restaurant, Pho East. Their menu includes fresh rolls, traditional pho, and an assortment of add-ons for the adventurous type. If you’re looking for an eclectic and healthy mix, head to the neighbourhood favourite, Mocha Mocha. Try their East African chicken stew or tuna potato cake, and stay for the crepes and alfajor.
But if all you want is a coffee shop, check out Hailed Coffee, Boxcar Social, Rooster Coffee House, or Dark Horse Espresso Bar.
Just in the mood for sweets? There’s no place like Leonidas Chocolates Canada, the premiere boutique for Belgian sweets and gift boxes.
Of course, if you’re planning on bringing or starting a family in Riverdale, you’ll need to look beyond food and recreation and check out what the schools are like.
The area’s school districts include Riverdale Collegiate Institute, which has a deep roster of notable alumni. The building has been featured as the scenery in a number of television shows. Other school options include the Triangle Program, SEED Alternative School, and the First Nations School of Toronto.
But that’s not all you’ll want to think about in Riverdale. Some of the best places to go are the junior public schools, like Frankland and Withrow.
As always, however, you should always contact schools you’re considering over the phone to make sure you’re within the stated boundaries and meet the enrolment qualifications.
Sold on Riverdale yet?
Don’t just take our word for it — head to Riverdale yourself, and take advantage of all of these things to do in Toronto, either as a visitor or newcomer, while you’re there.