Similar to Los Angeles and New York City, Toronto is a huge celebrity hub. Go there once and you’ll probably run into Drake. In addition to the Canadian city being the hip-hop star’s hometown, movies and music videos are constantly filming in the area. Last month, Travel + Leisure got to be on the set of Kelly Rowland’s new power anthem “Crown” — a track she wrote in collaboration with Dove that officially dropped Wednesday — which celebrates all hair types. The iconic singer couldn’t have been more efficient with her project and was in town for a mere 48 hours. If you’re ever around for a quick business trip, short layover, or spur of the moment adventure, Rowland’s guide below is exactly what you need.
Head to the Hazelton.
Its luxury rooms, amenities, and dining experience has turned the hotel into a “second home to the stars,” and Rowland is proof. Live like her or your favorite celeb and treat yourself to a stay at this hotspot situated in Toronto’s posh Yorkville neighborhood. Whether you splurge on room service or grab a reservation at the Hazelton’s One Restaurant, Rowland confirms the food also can’t be missed. “You can literally close your eyes and pick anything you want from the menu and you're going to be absolutely happy,” she told T+L. “The food is amazing there. I had these Korean chicken tacos that were mind-blowing.”
Make your own international food tour.
During her lunch break, Rowland craved a spread of Asian cuisines. The options were endless and that’s what makes Toronto such a great food destination. Even in a short amount of time, you can experience an array of different cultures. There’s a Little Italy, several Chinatowns, a Little Portugal, and more making Toronto known as the “City of Neighborhoods.” Whatever you want, no matter where it’s from, chances are you can find a version of it here.
Take care of your face.
For speedy jet-setting moments like this, Rowland prioritizes her beauty routine. “The first thing I packed in my suitcase were my toiletries, I swear by them,” she said. “Being in the air and back down, I like to make sure my skin stays moisturized.”
If you don’t have a regimen as good as her’s or you just didn’t pack well enough, the good thing is there are plenty of celebrity-approved treatments all over the city. The Elmwood Spa, located in the heart of downtown Toronto, is a popular pick and offers an oxygen facial that will leave you with a fresh, revitalized glow. “Everyone from Madonna to Kate Middleton to Justin Timberlake have had this rejuvenating treatment,” the spa’s senior manager, Giovanna Manchisi, previously told Elle Canada.
Have dinner at Sotto Sotto.
After a long day of filming, comfort food is where it’s at and nothing beats the dishes at this Italian restaurant. There are countless homemade pastas along with mouthwatering seafood meals to choose from. If you can’t make a decision, some of the servers come straight from Italy — one has even served Drake himself — and are more than happy to guide you through the dinner of your dreams.