A great event starts with a great venue, one that will have your guests wide-eyed from the second they walk through the doors. In the GTA, we’re fortunate enough to be blessed with so many great event venues throughout the city, but with all that amazing variety comes hard decisions about choosing the best venue for your event.
While there are many event venues that fit the traditional format, there are others that are anything but ordinary. If your goal is to stand out from the crowd and the typical ballroom banquet setting doesn’t suit your style, take a look at these five unique event venues in the GTA.
1. The Bata Shoe Museum
The Bata Shoe Museum, located at Bloor and St George, was opened in 1995 after Sonja Bata ran out of space for her private shoe collection. The museum is home to over 12,500 pairs of shoes from different time periods—it also happens to be an amazing event space.
Your guests will be welcomed by a light-filled atrium, featuring a four-storey high glass art window. It’s an elegant and dramatic event venue with the capacity for large events in the main atrium or smaller functions in the two intimate studio spaces. Guests are also encouraged to explore the museum and it’s collections during the event. Great conversation pieces!
2. The Fermenting Cellar
The Distillery District located off of Parliament St., has been a popular event venue ever since it was revamped in 2001, and one of its most unique spaces is the Fermenting Cellar. The cellar was first opened in 1861 when it was used to store the mash as it went through the fermentation process on its way to becoming alcohol.
The Fermenting Cellar has now been transformed into a chic modern event space featuring the original limestone walls, heavy timber beams and trusses for a beautiful industrial setting. This venue can accommodate a wide range of events from corporate gatherings to large-scale weddings.
3. Design Exchange
The Design Exchange is located in the heart of the financial district and is Canada’s only Design Museum. The historic Bay St. building was also once the home of the Toronto Stock Exchange.
The centre highlights a number of design disciplines including fashion, architecture, and digital design among others, and part of what makes this venue unique is the fact that the museum is a non-profit organization. This means that proceeds from events held here go directly back to the organization and maintaining its programs and exhibits.
The Design Exchange facility has a number of spaces to accommodate a wide range of events and capacities, including the historic art deco Trading Floor.
4. Artscape: Daniels Spectrum
Artscape is a non-profit urban development organization with a number of unique event venues located around the city. A standout among their venues is Daniels Spectrum, located in the Regent Park neighbourhood.
The building’s bright, colourful exterior was inspired by the flags of the world and the location has been a beacon for arts and culture events in the city. This airy, modern space is unique, and proceeds from events go towards operation costs and developing further community projects, so you can feel great about this sustainable venue option.
The Daniels Spectrum building is available for event hosting 24 hours a day and has three different spaces to accommodate a wide range of functions. They also offer a sliding scale for non-profit organizations and Regent Park community groups.
5. Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada
What could be more unique than hosting your event in a space where your guests are surrounded by live sharks, colourful fish, and vibrant coral?
Ripley’s Aquarium of Canada opened in October 2013 and has been delighting patrons ever since. Many people are unaware that the Aquarium can actually accommodate a wide range of events including corporate and social gatherings, birthday parties, team building events, and even weddings!