Endearingly referred to as “The Gaybourhood,” this rainbow-hued nabe holds appeal for folks of all stripes—and it’s the place to be during Pride Week. —By Viviane Kertész
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1 DINE IN STYLE Fuzion Resto-Lounge & Garden boasts the best patio on the block, bar none. Inside a historic mansion, floor-to-ceiling banquettes create a luxe, ultra-comfy setting to chill with friends. Find fabulous mains like pan-seared kona kampachi in an artichoke and kaffir lime broth with gingered scallion and garlic chive curry.
2 HEY MISTER DJ Dancing queens of every kind populate Straight Lounge (553 Church St., 416-926-2501), where a mixed, gay-positive crowd gets its groove on. This three-storey hot spot—with no visible signage—has established itself as a go-to locale for great music and a premium selection of liquor, wine and beer.
3 SHOP THE GAMUT If you can’t find it over three floors at retail emporium Out on the Street, chances are you don’t need it. Find flags, guys’ togs and accessories, sundry novelty products—of both the risqué and tame varieties—plus gifts like cheeky cards, and irreverent vintage-inspired buttons. 551 Church St., 416-967-2759.
4 GET ZEN Designed for women and men seeking the ultimate urban day spa,Elmspa provides a luxurious escape. This offspring of the acclaimed Elmwood Spa features treatments like sports pedicures and Icelandic mud wraps in a Feng Shui-conscious space.
5 WOMEN ONLY Slack’s Restaurant and Bar is a predominantly lesbian hangout that marries refined dining and novel pub fare in a casual atmosphere—think baked brie with walnuts and fig chutney. Live entertainment Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday and DJs spinning on Fridays and Saturdays after 10 p.m. draw crowds to this loft space.
6 CATCH A SHOW The most prolific queer theatre in North America, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre regularly produces boundary-pushing shows. Some nights, it’s purely a disco called Tallulah’s Cabaret, with the stage turned into a dance floor. On Saturday nights, prepare to wait in line if you get there late.
7 JUST FOR MEN Known as Toronto’s hottest gay bar, Woody’s is a cavernous tavern of five bars with nightly DJs, a pool table and 21 video monitors showing some of the raciest images around. Immortalized on the popular television series Queer As Folk, this hip urban landmark boasts prime views of the main strip.
8 GRAB A BITE For one of the best hamburgs in the city, order the delicious mushroom-pecan burger at Hair of the Dog. This great date spot has many tables for couples and a nice rooftop patio. An unconventional menu (jambalaya, “Mac’s cheese”) and quaint ambience offer cozy respite from the bustle of the Village’s busier establishments.