Is traffic congestion, chaotic commitments, or toddler tantrums getting you down?
Stress relief can be as simple as a walk in the park.
Recent research shows that taking a stroll through a natural setting can boost energy and focus, and taking in the sights and sounds of nature appears to be especially beneficial for our minds. Similarly, the experience of listening to music has been linked to the production of dopamine in our bodies, which gives us pleasure. When a particularly powerful piece of music gives us “the chills,” researchers have cited this as an emotional process. Music has the power to bring back memories, improve our moods, enhance the tone of a film, make us fall in love – and perhaps most importantly, it has the power to heal.
So what could be more amazing than a park designed by the inspiration of music?
At Urbaneer.com we support maintaining inner-balance in a busy urban life, so we love to visit the Toronto Music Garden on Harbourfront to take in the beauty of the changing seasons. (This blog's snaps are from a stroll there last fall!). Located at 475 Queen’s Quay West on the waterfront - between Bathurst Street and Spadina Avenue - this serene spot is beloved by local residents, and us!
What's particularly amazing, this pleasant urban garden was designed by the internationally renowned cellist, Yo Yo Ma, and landscape designer Julie Moir Messervy, as a reflection in landscape of Bach’s Suite No. 1 in G Major.
Designed to reflect the six dance movements, each one corresponds to a different section of the garden. We start at the Prelude, represented by a wave-like curve of a river-scape with low-growing plants softening its banks. The nearby alley of native Hackberry trees suggest measures of music. The Allemande, an ancient German dance, is represented by a forest grove filled with wandering trails, and the Italian/French Courante is created by a swirling path through wildflowers. The Sarabande, an ancient Spanish dance form, is the garden’s poet’s corner with the large stone acting as a stage for readings.
A short stroll west is Menuett represented by a circular pavilion, hand-crafted with ornamental steel, perfectly lending itself to rest and quiet reflection, but also designed to showcase musical ensembles and dance groups. We end the tour at Gigue, a jaunty English dance, interpreted by grass steps that cover beautiful views of the harbour. In the summer months you can enjoy a classical music concert held under a weeping willow tree while taking in the cool breeze from the lake.
Although musical performances and tours are limited to summer months (May - September), this enchanted part of Toronto can be enjoyed in all four seasons, as each season brings out a different aspect of the landscape design.
It's magical at any time of year.
Even if you’re not familiar with the classical music repetoire. this enchanting park is just the spot for an afternoon walk. Bring along a book and a hot cup of java from the nearby Starbucks, or lose yourself in a daydream while staring out at the serene waters of Lake Ontario. It’s not uncommon to stumble upon a morning yoga session in the Menuett area, a wedding party photo session on the stairs of the Gigue or joggers winding down from their run at the benches along the path.
If you're interested in living by the lake, please know it would be our pleasure to assist!
Thanks for reading!
- Urbaneer Team
Steven Fudge, Sales Representative
& The Innovative Urbaneer Team
Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage - (416) 322-8000
- we're here to earn your trust, then your business -
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