"This is the first Ritz-Carlton combined hotel and condominium residence in Canada and will be the only Toronto hotel to offer The Ritz-Carlton level of luxury and service," said Michael Beckley, vice-president of development for Marriott International Inc., the parent company of The Ritz-Carlton.
The project will generate approximately 1,500 construction jobs and more than 500 permanent, full-time jobs. Zoning for the development is in place. Construction is scheduled to start in 2006 and be completed in 2009. A presentation centre for the condominium residences will open this September.
Toronto Mayor David Miller said, "The arrival of Toronto's first five-star hotel is another sign of our city's renaissance. Not only will this hotel create hundreds of jobs, it will also help attract visitors from around the world to Toronto.
There is simply no building of this caliber in the city. The building will change the face of Toronto by its internationally inspired design," said Garnet Watchorn, President of Graywood Developments Ltd.
The project's architecture is a collaboration between New York-based, Kohn Pedersen Fox (KPF) Associates Architects and Planners and Toronto-based, Page + Steeles Architects Planners. The building's interior spaces will be designed by HBA/Hirsch Bedner Associates Design Consultants' Atlanta office and Babey Moulton Jue and Booth of San Francisco.
Combining classic and contemporary architectural elements throughout, the building has three main components. The tower will rise out of a five-level podium. Storys six to 20 will contain luxuriously appointed rooms and facilities for hotel guests. Condominium residences will be located on storeys 22 to 52, with a private lobby and amenity centre for residents on the 21st and 22nd storeys.
At story 26, the tower's south wall begins to slope outward, forming an arresting architectural feature designed to visually compliment the sweeping curves of Roy Thomson Hall across the street.
The five-story podium at the tower's base features a largely glass exterior designed to create a sense of interaction between the street and the lobby. The podium will also hold two large ballrooms, fine-dining restaurants, conference and meeting facilities to attract high-end conference and meeting business. The grand ballroom will host leading social events and functions.
In addition, the top level of the podium will house a world class 23,000 sq. ft. spa, which will be Toronto's largest and most luxurious.
Most condominium residences will be one, two and three bedroom suites ranging from 2,000 to over 3,000 sq. ft. There are also a few smaller one bedroom pied-a-terres in the 1,300 to 1,700 sq. ft. range.
Suites will be priced from the $700,000s to over $8 million, the exception being the top penthouse. Located on the 52nd floor, it will be a palatial 10,920 sq. ft., for approximately $11 million.
The opportunity for condominium owners to live above and share facilities and services with a five-star Ritz-Carlton hotel is unprecedented in Toronto," said Pat Baker, CEO, Baker Real Estate Corp.
The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto and The Residences at The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto marks another step in the ongoing evolution of The Ritz-Carlton brand. Since 200l, The Ritz-Carlton has successfully opened 23 hotel and resort properties. The expansion program is part of the Company's philosophy of gradually evolving to accommodate the changing needs of a clientele seeking more contemporary design standards and a less formal, more relaxed atmosphere of elegance.
Graywood Developments Ltd. was recently selected by the Royal Ontario Museum for the planned redevelopment of the McLaughlin Planetarium site. Graywood has completed major residential, commercial, office and hotel projects in both Canada and the United States. In the Greater Toronto Area, the Company's condominium developments include Number One York Quay, Landmark of Thornhill and 370 King West.