The act of crossing over the Don River and into the East End is refreshing: the pace of life seems to slow immediately, skyscrapers become sparser, and there’s an overall air of cheerfulness. Somehow, the residents of the East End even seem slightly more trendy than their West End counterparts.
Perhaps it’s the unconventional atmosphere that makes East End condos for rent all the more attractive to trendsetting residents. Quirky businesses are plenty here, such as the Art and Sole Academy in Leslieville, where students can learn the art of shoemaking, or the Toronto Newsgirls Boxing Club, where women can get some exercise while learning to defend themselves.
Leslieville and South Riverdale are also destinations in their own right. The latter is home to East Chinatown, a smaller, and perhaps more charming version of the Chinatown found at Dundas and Spadina. And Queen Street East, which connects these two neighbourhoods, is home to notable businesses. The Opera House, a Vaudeville theatre-turned music venue, has been standing at 735 Queen since 1909; the Broadview Hotel, a newly opened hotel in a longstanding heritage building, contains a café, rooftop bar, and restaurant; and then there’s Ruby Watchco, which is arguably the perfect place in the East End to celebrate a milestone or an achievement.
While East Chinatown can be found over in South Riverdale, residents hungry for the spiciest of curries should head over to Greenwood & Coxwell, where they’ll find Toronto’s own Little India — also known as the Gerrard India Bazaar. While some wholeheartedly believe that no trip to this area is complete without a trip to Lahore Tikka House, other East End restaurants may beg to differ.
While many East End condos for rent are situated near the attractions previously mentioned, there’s still more to the area: it reaches all the way from the Don River to Victoria Park Avenue, and from the Danforth down to Lake Ontario.
Speaking of Lake Ontario, the Beaches is another neighbourhood that consistently attracts prospective residents to the East End. The Beaches contains everything that its name implies: sunbathing spots, volleyball courts, a lengthy boardwalk, and numerous ice cream shops. The neighbourhood is in fact home to a single stretch of beach with four distinctive names: Balmy Beach, Scarboro Beach, Kew Beach, and Woodbine Beach line the waterfront from east to west.
As you can now see, it’s hard to choose between East End condos for rent, as each of the area’s neighbourhoods has something unique to offer. Foodies probably already have their sights set on homes close to Little India or East Chinatown, but North Riverdale & Blake-Jones is yet another spot worthy of consideration. Just south of Greektown on the Danforth, Toronto condos for rent in this neighbourhood promise residents access to some of the best spanikopita and moussaka in the city.
Those interested in quirky, alternative-style living spaces will want to focus their searches on East End condos for rent in Leslieville & South Riverdale. Thanks to this neighbourhood’s industrial past and its profusion of disused warehouses and factories, it’s the perfect spot to search for an authentic hard loft. Renters, for example, can live in a former chewing gum factory at Wrigley Lofts. Right next door to the Wrigley Lofts is the Garment Factory Lofts, where soft lofts sit atop converted hard lofts.
Last but not least, there’s nothing quite like a home within walking distance of Lake Ontario. Glen Manor in the Beaches is about as close as it gets: it’s located just one short block away from the beach.
East End condos for rent are convenient for both residents who drive and those who don’t. Drivers can use Lake Shore Boulevard East in order to connect with the Gardiner Expressway, while Kingston Road carries cars east toward the 401. Additionally, the Don Valley Parkway is also situated along the west end of the area, which comes in handy for anyone planning to head north into midtown Toronto or North York.
As for those who prefer not to drive, there are numerous options for getting around the area, thanks to the TTC’s extensive network of streetcars, buses, and subway trains. The Bloor-Danforth line is within walking distance of condos that sit to the north, while those who live down south in the Beaches or Leslieville can use buses or streetcars in order to reach stations in a hurry. Alternatively, a trip toward the downtown core is also as easy as hopping onto a streetcar heading west along Dundas or Queen.
The Locals: Trendsetters — with a twist.
Code of Conduct: Not crossing over the Don River for weeks at a time is perfectly acceptable.
What You’ll Find: Quirky, independent businesses.
What You Won’t Find: Views being blocked by rows and rows of skyscrapers.
The Homes: A mix of single-family homes, idyllic townhouse complexes, and hard loft conversions.
Sealing the Deal: The friendly, laid back atmosphere.