Toronto is a city very much on the up. High-rise development is booming, famous names in hospitality are heading there to take on new projects, and hipster favourite The Drake Hotel‘s parent company recognised it was no time for half measures when launching its first standalone restaurant, bringing in a big noise in North American interiors to spearhead the design of Drake One Fifty.
Martin Brudnizki has a series of high-profile New York and London projects under his belt and more coming up in Miami and Chicago. Under his direction, Drake One Fifty (named after its address at 150 York Street) has announced itself on the city with a retro look led by some noteworthy statement features. Colourful stools and banquette booths seating catch the eye, while at the subtler end of the spectrum 60 feet of marble forms the circular bar top. A wooden pergola by Brothers Dressler, a handmade tile floor, vintage light fittings and a restored photo booth all contribute to the atmosphere. You can take a little retro home with you too, as there are various bits and bobs on sale at the Drake General Store – a 30ft bespoke display case dominating one wall. This being Drake, there’s a strong focus on art and culture too; a permanent art collection is joined by a revolving door of site-specific works, performances, video art and DJ sets. Spiffing.