July 24, 2014

Project Blog – Hotel X – Bringing Toronto’s History into the Future

If you are at all like me, you are already feeling summer flying by (sadly!).  2014 has been a challenging year so far, between a never ending winter, and a spring full of legislative changes to Health and Safety and the CASL coming into effect.  I know I am glad to be on the second half of this year now!  Before you know it, the CNE will be opening, marking the end of summer, which made me interested in one of our under construction projects at CFMS – Hotel X – located on the CNE grounds.

Have you heard of Hotel X yet?  If not, it’s worth looking at further.  It is managed by hoteliers ‘The Library Collection’ which are responsible for some pretty slick Manhattan hotels.  Their hotel offerings are not your typical hotel experience, but aim towards a unique experience – such as ‘Casablanca Hotel’ – which gives you a Moroccan experience in the heart of NYC.  Hotel X will be a 400+ room hotel, convention centre and urban resort – with a full sports centre, cinemas, and spa.  Given it’s location, I am sure the rooftop bar and restaurant (plus pool!) will have some pretty amazing views of the best of Toronto lakefront and skyline.

Despite all the modern features, Hotel X will also be home to some pretty key Toronto history, as the location where it is built was once home to ‘New Fort York’, otherwise known as the ‘Stanley Barracks’.  The barracks had been covered by the parking lot where Hotel X is being built, but now the barracks will be an archeological feature of Hotel X, with walkway over a glass cover of the excavated foundation.  Even though the preserved ‘Old Fort York’ is a major Toronto tourist attraction, it’s hard to look at modern Toronto and remember it’s history, as sadly many historic locations have been lost.  Even though I have lived in Toronto my whole life, I was only vaguely aware of the ‘Stanley Barracks’ – only from quickly passing the remaining officer’s quarters building during my annual trips to the CNE.  But there is quite the history there if you care to do more research – from British Military, to  both World Wars (including an internment camp during WWII for P.O.W.s).  Who would have thought that a CFMS project would make me more aware of the history of the city I’ve grown up in?

And of course, I am also pleased to note that Hotel X will be pursuing LEED certification.  Hotel X will be a remarkable blend of past, present and future – I look forward to the opening in 2015!

Why Commissioning