Toronto is known for its diversity and culture and this is reflected in its many neighborhoods. Each weekly blog post will feature a Toronto neighborhood and highlight all you need to know about each community, helping you make well informed relocation decisions.
All About The Annex
The Annex neighborhood is Toronto’s most diverse community. Its residents include successful business persons, artists, university faculty and students, and people from all walks of life. It is known as an affluent neighborhood with mainly English speaking and well-educated residents.
The Annex is an energetic neighborhood that draws its liveliness from the world renowned University of Toronto, as well as from the five star restaurants, hip bars, and classy nightclubs that crowd together along Bloor Street. This neighbourhood is fairly centrally located, being within walking distance of many major attractions, including the Honest Eds and the Royal Ontario Museum. The Annex contains many vibrant smaller neighbourhoods including Yorkville. Most of the commercial activity in the neighbourhood takes place along Bloor St, which is filled with restaurants, pubs, community centers and bookshops. The side streets are mostly residential, with long townhouses to the south of Bloor and large, stately mansions to the north.
The Annex residential area mainly consists of Victorian style homes, as well as international style apartment buildings. The streets are lined with lush trees and landscaped green outdoor spaces. The Annex’s properties, both residential and commercial, exemplify a unique style of house popular among Torontonians since the late nineteenth century, and now known as the ‘Annex Style House’. Annex style houses are most often made of brick and typically feature large rounded Romanesque arches with Victorian decorative items such as turrets. The architectural detail in this area is among the finest in the city!
The Annex is very close to the world renowned University of Toronto, and because of its proximity to the university, the Annex has a high rate of seasonal tenant turnover. Built for many of the city’s wealthiest citizens, the houses are extremely spacious. As the wealthy relocated, many of the houses were consequently subdivided into apartments. Its residents range from students to older long-time residents. Many of the rooming houses and multi-unit homes in the Annex have recently been converted back to single family houses reflecting the return to prominence of this historic Toronto neighbourhood.
From Bloor to Bathurst one can find an array of energetic social sceneries and great services that appeal to a wide range of individuals. From luxurious boutiques to discount retailers, it is very easy to satisfy every consumer’s needs. The Annex has more restaurants packed in per square metre than any other part of the city! Keeping true to Toronto’s diversity, you’re likely to find sushi restaurants, pizzerias and falafel stands within a few steps of each other. Whatever you crave, you can find it in the Annex.
The neighbourhood has a thriving retail scene. Stores are open late and some restaurants are open well past midnight. There are approximately 170+ stores and restaurants in the neighbourhood, from dentistry offices and hair salons, to bakeries and award winning restaurants, the Annex is a great one-stop shop community.
While it is easy to find parking on the tree-lined side streets, the area is also great for those who commute by public transportation such as the TTC. There are four subway stations within the Annex community: Bathurst, Dupont, St.George and Spadina!
When evening falls, the Annex turns into one of the busiest, hippest areas of town, with people flocking from all over the city to the many restaurants, bars and patios offering food and drink from all around the world. It is a great example of Toronto’s diversity at its very best.
“Growing up, I never actually had an Annex address, but I spent every weekend there once I hit 16 and became friends with a group of neighbourhood kids. As much as North Toronto was where I spent my youth, it was the Annex that captured my heart when I was old enough to choose where I spent my time.”
TORONTO REAL ESTATE BOARD OVERVIEW
• LOCATED IN SECTOR: C02
• AVERAGE 2012 SALE PRICES
• ALL HOMES: $951,361
• DETACHED HOUSES: $1,080,077
• SEMI-DETACHED HOUSES: $1,135,500
• TOWNHOMES: $495,000
• APARTMENTS: $824,765
• Boundaries: North to Dupont Street, South to Bloor Street, West to Bathurst Street and East to Avenue Road.
⇒ Admiral Road in the Annex is home to the Canadian writer Margaret Atwood, as well as John Ralston Saul and his wife, the former Governor General of Canada Adrienne Clarkson.
⇒ David Suzuki lived for years on Bernard Avenue.
⇒ The Annex has endured and is now over one hundred years old. It remains one of Toronto’s premier neighbourhoods.