- to be at a very convenient location, meaning close to the subway, close to grocery stores, close to the city and our jobs.
- to have a view (We saw so many apartments that had views to the dumpster and who wants that?)
- to have a new kitchen – There were a lot of management companies in Toronto that advertised their apartments with renovated kitchens and bathrooms but when we saw them the “renovated” part of the apartment was just re-painted on top of ugly old layers of paint on already 30 years old wood cabinets.)
- to be in an area that has a vibe and charm and where we would feel home.
- not to be overly populated area
- to be a very European area because like every other person you would to stay close to your culture and habits.
Our search for apartment took us two of the coldest months of the year ( December and January) to figure out where we want to live. We learned the city neighbourhoods inside and out.
We stumbled upon areas that were known as bad and dangerous neighborhoods (Sherbourne and Bloor) and figured that out on our own by accidentally passing by a house for rent that was given for rent for $600. There is no apartment in Toronto that you would get for this much unless there is something wrong with it.. be it the area or the apartment itself.
We quickly learned where we didn’t want to live and it took us a while to figure out where we wanted to live. One cold day in December when the snow was up to our knees we met with a friend of ours who had lived in Toronto for the past 6 years and she told us that if we wanted to live in European like areas, she would recommend Roncesvalles or Bloor West Village.
We took the subway and got off at every single station going west of the city of Toronto on our way to Bloor West and Roncesvalles. Just from seeing the area around the subway and the subway station itself we knew what area was for us and what was not.
We finally got off at Runnymede Station (which is the station of Bloor West) and oh wow. Finally! There was something our eyes liked! A cozy little neighbourhood with lots of bakeries, European type tiny deli shops, small clothing and yoga shops and boutiques. This was where we wanted to live. By looking at Google Maps we even figured out that High Park (The biggest urban park in Toronto could be right at our doorstep and this was what happened.)
In Toronto it’s hard to find an apartment for rent. The stats say that only 1% of all apartments for rent are available. However, we were lucky enough to find a place that was available the beginning of February. The lady that was living there told us that she had finally saved enough money to buy a house which was why she was giving up this amazing spacious for my standards apartment with a 5 star hotel view to Toronto – that I am not giving up on. Ever! Okay, maybe one day but not in the near future.
We thought: That’s the one! They were going to install a new kitchen, completely new bathroom and we were going to live in an apartment with a view only to dream of, close to the subway and close to the city and in an area that was totally European (Ukrainians, Polish, Serbians, Germans, and of course Canadians ;)). The building has storage, summer pool and tennis courts.
So we moved from the East to the West side of Toronto and we loved it. We still love it. See soon how we live in the neighborhood and what is great about it.
This is what I enjoy every single morning when I wake up for work or every night before I go to bed.
See soon the entire collection for “Toronto from my window photography”.
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