Do you daydream of owning a unique urban space in the centre of the city - where you're surrounded by everyday essentials and life-enhancing amenities - that's liberated from being mired amidst the density and intensity of the 'concrete jungle' which frequently accompanies downtown living? If you are looking to turn that dream into a reality, the one destination in Toronto that offers a live/work balance by design, and landscape is Harbourfront's Queens Quay.
Situated just south of the Financial, Fashion and Entertainment Districts, living lakeside is the perfect antidote to the high octane vibe that characterizes urban living. Having ribbons of green space, a promenade, and the expansiveness of Lake Ontario on your door step invites instant decompression. For most city dwellers, connecting with nature requires expending some effort to find it, but when you live on Queens Quay it's right on your door step and an integral part of your everyday environment. Stroll to Sugar Beach and dip your toes in the sand; ride your bike to Cherry Beach on the bike path; feel the wind in your hair on the ferry crossing to Toronto Island; and make sailing Lake Ontario your go-to extension of your health and well-being!
For those who know Harbourfront well, the consensus is that very few lakeside condominiums marry quality construction, contemporary finishes, and stellar service as well as 500 Queens Quay West! This picturesque waterfront building marries all the benefits of its park like setting with phenomenal cultural amenities, numerous green grocers & shops, light rapid transit, and, for jet-setters, the extremely convenient island airport! Plus, the energy, dynamism, and diversity of downtown Toronto, is mere minutes away.
Welcome to 500 Queens Quay West, Suite 318E!
Imagine spending the day biking the Martin Goodman Waterfront Trail, renting a boat, picnicing in Coronation Park, catching a live classical music performance in the Music Garden, or lounging in a comfy Muskoka chair enjoying your favourite read-of-the-moment with soft sand between your toes at HTO Park or Sugar Beach. This is a place where everyday can feel like you're on vacation. Dog owners will love the Canoe Landing dog park 4 minutes away at neighbouring City Place! Harbourfront Centre, located on Queens Quay between York and Rees Street, is an arts-and-culture destination that stages free festivals and events throughout the year, including craft and artisan fairs, theatre and dance performances, and concerts. Additionally, it’s a great place to check out if you’re thinking of starting a hobby or looking to learn something new; a variety of classes are offered year round - everything from pottery and glass blowing to silk screening or sailing. Meeting up with friends? Amsterdam Brewhouse, with their impressive selection of local brews, will be your go-to spot for tasty pub fare. For special occasions, or maybe an intimate dinner for two, Harbour Sixty Steakhouse is just a short stroll away.
Just east is the Terminal Building at the foot of York Street, featuring three floors of shops, galleries, restaurants and a Sobeys grocer. A short stroll east, at the foot of Jarvis, you’ll find the LCBO, a huge Loblaws, and even the trendy Joe Fresh. Living along the waterfront has added conveniences, such as proximity to Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport for easy jet-setting, the Air Canada Centre, Rogers Centre, and Exhibition Place. It’s all easily accessible! Getting around is also a breeze, with a street car stop right outside your door, Union station a fifteen minute walk away, and the nearby Gardiner Expressway is moments away for those who commute by car.
Completed in 2000, 500 Queens Quay West (dubbed 5QQ) was developed by Cenpac Developments Inc. as part of a pair of sister condos (adjoining 550 Queens Quay West next door). Rising 11 storeys, housing 187 units and cradling a garden courtyard, 500 QQ sits in the heart of Toronto’s vibrant waterfront neighbourhood between Spadina Avenue and Bathurst Street. Located facing Lake Ontario, the complex was designed and developed just prior to the condo boom which saw buildings crammed with tiny suites geared to investors and first time buyers. Instead, 5QQ was launched catering to affluent professionals and down-sizing boomers seeking spacious suites with quality appointments. Upscale yet pretense-free, I love the understated elegance of this condominium, with its lush courtyard and bespoke lobby. Managed by Crossbridge Condominium Services (416-542-1699), 500QQ offers an array of amenities, including 24-hour concierge, gym, sauna, hot tub, lounge/party room, multimedia room, and 11 visitor parking spots. Fan of a waterfront view? WHile the views are already pretty outstanfding, the trees in the front courtyard are to be replaced within the next year with plantings that are more conducive to a Lake Ontario view.
Suite 318E is a rarely offered 2 bed, 2 bath suite which features an intelligent space plan, excellent proportion and scale, and both south and north exposures. Comprising 1293 square feet of interior living space, plus an additional 183 square feet of outdoor living space (the unit is one of only six in the complex with a covered south facing balcony and an open cityvista terrace), this contemporary suite has been thoughtfully renovated with quality fixtures and fittings! This suite enters into well-proportioned foyer of polished stone that extends into a generous gallery ideal for those seeking a feature wall for their art collection. An expansive closet offers storage for all your coats and gear, and its mirrored doors provide the convenience of executing the always essential head-to-toe wardrobe check before you head out the door. A 3-piece washroom - located off this gallery discreetly away from the entertainment area - is unusually spacious, features a large window, and has been tastefully upgraded including a dazzling eye-catching glass bowl sink. The stacking full-sized washer/dryer is contained within this space, in addition to a utility closet with built-in shelving.
The gallery flows into an open-concept entertainment space which offers the rare benefit of two exposures. Flooded in natural light, floor-to-ceiling glazing in both the living and dining zones opens to a south-facing covered balcony overlooking the lush courtyard and Lake Ontario beyond, or the north-facing open terrace with gas barbecue hookup. These outdoor spaces extend the living space seasonally and, in what I consider truly unique, serve to bridge the unit between the Bright Lights Big City synergy of the north exposure and the contemplative water-park-skyscape of the south exposure.
The Entertainment Space is cohesive, unified, yet delineated into zones by design. Configured within an L-shape, the custom NEFF-designed kitchen with white lacquer cabinetry, silver back-painted slump glass counter tops, and acid-etched mirror backsplash features Miele appliances (including an integrated Miele Hot Beverage Centre) and a concealed Subzero fridge with 2 freezer drawers. This kitchen also boasts generous storage, pragmatic task-oriented recessed lighting, a deep stainless steel sink, raised glass breakfast bar, and a large window with ever-changing view.
The living and dining areas straddle the width of the suite, and because of the rare-to-find north and south outdoor spaces, has exceptional cross-ventilation which is unusual in a condominium. With the benefit of nine foot ceilings, two walls of floor-to-ceiling glazing, and light pre-engineered wood floors, the entertainment space is bright, airy and casual. Both the living and dining areas have their own custom built-ins, creating 2 focal points perpendicular to each other to visually broaden, and unify, the space. In the dining room, a custom cabinet of quality millwork features recessed display shelves with accent lighting, while floating shelves in front of the fixed north-facing window accommodates a cocktail bar. Behind the cabinet are two additional shelving units, in addition to two acid-etched mirror panels that slide across the glazing on tracks for privacy and shade. In the living room, a gas fireplace is wrapped in matching millwork, with an acid-etched storage wall for compact discs located on one side, while a series of glass shelves delicately suspended from the ceiling anchor the other, create a visually arresting setting for your curio collection. Above the gas fireplace is an integrated Samsung Frame TV with three built-in speakers, all of which are included with the sale.
Beyond the Entertainment Space are the sleeping quarters. To the right - opposite a closet with acid-etched mirror doors - is a versatile second bedroom with generous north-facing windows. Outfitted with a built-in Murphy bed system with flanking wardrobe/drawer components that provide additional storage - this well-designed room can accomodate the dual needs of a home office that is easily transformed into a guest bedroom in a snap! To the left of this hall lay the Master Suite, comprising a wall of generous built-in closets, an upgraded ensuite with separate shower and soaking tub, and a well-proportioned sleeping sanctuary with Hunter Douglas blinds (and remote)! My favourite feature? I love the sliding shoji-style screen beside the soaking tub that retracts so one can soak in the tub without feeling confined. Spacious, gracious, and sun-drenched by the large south-facing windows, this space is a perfect, calming retreat.
This unique urban space is pet-friendly (one caged bird, aquarium fish, two domestic cats or one dog under 40 lbs), has reasonable common fees ($863.12/ month), one car parking with 2 bike racks ($31.67/month), and a separately deeded locker ($7.92/month). Hydro is separately metered (averages $72.75/month), and a gas recovery charge of $10.75 per month is billed by the condo corporation for the gas fireplace and barbecue hook-up in the suite. The Sellers say residents do post their parking spaces for rent occasionally on the 5QQ Community website, so if you require a second parking space one should be available anywhere from $125 to $175 per month.
Looking for a place to down-size but not quite ready to move? The Sellers welcome leasing this suite back from the Buyer for a minimum one-year lease at $3500 per month + hydro for the suite, parking and locker!
If you're seeking a space that bridges the best of urban living with the tranquility of lakeside living, which is well-executed, well-proportioned, and welcoming, this contemporary condominium in one of Harbourfront's most reputable buildings is worthy of consideration.
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