Located right in the heart of downtown Toronto, featuring fantastic condos and homes. See if living in Queen West will match your lifestyle.
Boutique hotels, speakeasy bars, and the iconic Trinity Bellwoods Park – there’s a reason why Queen West has been ranked one of the world’s coolest neighbourhoods.
Is Queen West a good place to live?
No matter who you are or what you’re into, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more liveable neighbourhood in Toronto than Queen West.
Between inspiring cafes, world-class restaurants, electric bars and nightclubs, lust-worthy shops and boutiques, well-stocked vintage outlets, inspiring galleries and museums — and essentially anything else you can think of — it’s all right here in Queen West.
Whether you’re right in the thick of the action or simply watching it all go by from Trinity Bellwoods Park with a perfectly pulled coffee in hand, there are few neighbourhoods in Toronto that are more exciting to be in than Queen West.
No matter if you’re here for an afternoon or have lived in the area your whole life, here are just a few reasons you’ll love being in Queen West:
- The Amazing Restaurants - it’s hard choosing favourites when all of the restaurants here offer unique and unforgettable experiences.
- The Charming Cafes - some of Toronto’s best coffees are brewed on this stretch of Queen Street, not to mention the pastries and baked goods too!
- The Inspiring Personalities - if you love people watching, you’ll love the diverse and inspiring Torontonians who frequent this truly cool neighbourhood.
- The Awesome Vintage Boutiques - scattered across the neighbourhood, the collection of vintage boutiques on Queen West let old clothes make new memories.
- Trinity Bellwoods Park - one of the city’s largest — and certainly most popular — parks covers a large stretch of Queen West, spanning from Crawford Street to Gore Vale Avenue.
From new-build luxury condos to artfully redesigned hard loft spaces to heritage red-brick Toronto Victorian homes, Queen West’s buildings and structures offer a beautifully stimulating mix of architecture and design.
Queen Street itself is primarily lined with original low-rise Toronto brick buildings, which house most of the commercial and retail businesses in the neighbourhood. Alongside those original buildings, you’ll find a mix of newer high-rise condo and office buildings that have been tastefully integrated onto the strip — for the most part!
The sidestreets that run just north and south of Queen Street West offer a quieter escape from the hustle and bustle of the neighbourhood’s main strip. These more tranquil streets are where you’ll find most of the area’s detached and semi-detached houses, which are extremely coveted for their close proximity to Queen Street itself.
It’s not just their location that makes these homes so incredible, however, but also their design and architectural cues too. Made up of heritage red-brick Victorians and Edwardians, these are some of the city’s oldest and most character-driven residences, many of which have been spectacularly renovated to fit modern standards and preferences. As you might expect, these can be very difficult to come by and can cost quite a pretty penny.
Young or old, social or independent, trendy or more reserved — living in Queen West is something that appeals to everybody. And why wouldn’t it? Considering all of the fantastic local amenities right at your doorstep, the vibrant and inspiring social culture, the prime downtown location, and all of the fascinating Toronto heritage landmarks, this coveted neighbourhood doesn’t lack in any department.
Whether it’s a modern condo unit, a revitalized hard loft space, a quaint townhouse, or a charming heritage red-brick house, when a home in Queen West becomes available, it usually doesn’t sit on the market for long.
Generally speaking, the best opportunities to get into the Queen West market are through the numerous condo buildings that populate the busier intersections within the neighbourhood. Due to the number of individual units in each building, these tend to be the homes that pop up for sale most frequently here.
For those with more of a high-end luxury budget looking to get into the single-family homes market here, it may take a bit more patience to find the listing you’re looking for here. While they do come up for sale, the housing market isn’t quite as lively as the condo market — and it’s no wonder why. If you’re lucky enough to own a house in Queen West, you’re probably not going to be very motivated to sell!
When it comes to the amenities in Queen West, there’s almost nothing the neighbourhood doesn’t have. From fashionable shops and boutiques to first-class restaurants and eateries, unmatched cafes and bakeries, and some of Toronto’s best galleries, theatres, and museums, there genuinely is something for everyone here.
When it comes to the public parks and green spaces, Queen Wests’ very own Trinity Bellwoods Park is probably the most cherished among the city’s downtown residents. And getting around is a cinch too, with highly active streetcar and bus routes seemingly always available for pedestrians.
Where to eat in Queen West
- Bar Poet - This chic up-scale bar is very popular among Queen West’s younger crowd as the drinks list is long, the pizza is fantastic, and the interior decor and patio space is edgy-yet-classy.
- Mamakas Taverna - Perhaps Toronto’s best Greek restaurant, this neighbourhood favourite is located along the energetic Ossington strip, where many of the city’s most adored restaurants live. Most diners come for the food but fall in love with the atmosphere at Mamakas.
- Union Restaurant - Along that same strip of Ossington Avenue near Queen Street is Union Restaurant, which has won a ton of acclaim since opening relatively recently. If you’re a fan of French-inspired food, this ever-changing menu always offers something new and exciting to try.
- Bar Piquette - Just a few streets west of Ossington near the intersection of Queen Street West and Dovercourt Road is Bar Piquette, another adorable and delicious independent restaurant. The small plate, European-inspired cuisine at this charming eatery has captured the hearts (and tummies) of essentially every guest that joins them for dinner.
- Nadège Patisserie - End things on a sweet note by paying a visit to Nadège Patisserie’s Queen Street West location. This vibrant and modern bakery will leave you re-evaluating your entire idea of classic French pastries. Don’t miss out on their exceptional Macarons!
What to do in Queen West
One of the neighbourhood’s favourite pastimes is definitely a group meet-up in Trinity Bellwoods Park. This enormous park situated right in the middle of Queen West is perennially popular among residents and visitors of Toronto alike. Grab a coffee and a bite to eat and lay down a blanket in the middle of the lush green grass, or bring your favourite sporting equipment and work up a sweat on the various sports fields and areas here.
Taking its name from this beloved public park and the street that runs alongside it is Bellwoods Brewery, which is another must-do when in Queen West. Stop by their alluring brewery on Ossington Avenue and see the beer-making process first-hand, then grab a seat on their picket-fenced-in patio and share a few cold ones with friends.
Next, stop by Flashback Vintage and let store owner Roger help you sort through his vast collection of unique retro gear until you’ve got a brand new outfit that already has a covetable old-world patina.
Now that you look the part, show off your new outfit at Gladstone House, a recently revamped hotel and art gallery set in a massive 19th-century Victorian brick building on Queen Street West.
Cap your perfect day on Queen West off with a drink at another one of the neighbourhood’s trendiest hotels, The Drake. Whether you’re inside at their mid-century modern-inspired bar or outside in the Sky Yard, their eclectic, art-directed rooftop patio, their extensive drinks list will take great care of you.
Where is Queen West?
Queen Wests’ borders can loosely be defined between Dufferin Street to the west and Bathurst Street to the east. As far as the northern and southern borders, there are no real set boundaries, but anything further south than Adelaide Street or north than Robinson Street is probably no longer considered Queen West.
Who Lives Here?
Take a brief walk around Queen West and you’ll find that essentially everyone enjoys spending time here. While there isn’t necessarily a dominant profile or demographic of person, you most definitely will encounter plenty of “hipsters” that add to the neighbourhood’s vibrant arts scene.
People love visiting Queen West, but they love living here even more. The distinct charm of the area is highly attractive to buyers young and old. As much as there is going on, Queen West still retains a certain neighbourhood charm.
Getting around Queen West is also one of its most notable highlights. Streetcars run constantly going both eastbound and westbound along Queen Street and are supplemented by reliable bus routes going north and south along major intersections such as Dufferin Street, Shaw Street, Strachan Avenue, Ossington Avenue, and Bathurst Street.
For motorists, driving around Queen West poses more of a headache as the popularity of the neighbourhood means bumper-to-bumper traffic occurs frequently during peak travel hours. You can avoid this during the warmer months by bicycling around the neighbourhood, however, with plenty of dedicated bike lanes set up for public use.