Entries Tagged 'Lofts in the City' ↓

Then and Now: 245 Carlaw Ave

This photo was taken in 1917.


This factory was built in 1907. It was the home of the Wrigley Gum Factory.

The Industrial Revolution had brought steel, plate glass, and mass-produced components. These enabled a world of bold structural frames, with clean lines and plain or shiny surfaces. In the early stages, a popular motto was “decoration is a crime”.

The side view of this building is completely unadorned. The front of the building however, does show case a repeated geometric motif between the windows.


The company moved the manufacturing operations to Leslie and Eglinton, and in 1998 Atria developed the building into residential lofts. 245 Carlaw Ave is now home of the Wrigley Lofts.

The building has been preserved wonderfully and residents can enjoy all the characteristics a hard loft has to offer from 14 foot ceilings, exposed brick and wood beams, concrete floors, large fluted columns and floor to ceiling warehouse windows.

For those who can afford loft living (a 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom unit sold in March 2012 for $499,000), the space is filled with inspiration. William Wrigley Jr. founded Wrigley at the age of 29, with only $32 in his pocket. He started out as a soap salesman. He offered merchants two packs of gum as a thank you. When the gum proved to be more popular, he made it his focus.

The company was acquired by Mars Inc in 2008 for $23 billion.


“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined.” – Henry David Thoreau.

The Sorauren Lofts

347 Sorauren Ave

The boutique loft is only 2 stories tall and has only 48 units. It was originally used as a ball-bearing factory. The red brick building with yellow coining around the entrance way is a fantastic display of gothic industrial architecture. In the summer, building is covered in leafy vines. The structure isn’t very wide, so it appears quite small from the street, but it is very long. The long hallways with concrete flooring enhance the industrial experience.

Specs: The units themselves vary incredibly. Some have mezzanine levels, which owners have turned into studies, while others have raised bedroom, giving the appearance of a second floor. Many of the units have plenty of storage space, as the 12-15 foot ceilings allow for lots of creativity. The units on the first floor have wooden beams and pillars, while the second floor units have steel joists.

Amenities: None. Dundas St W is just north of the lofts, where the streetcar runs from 5am to 1pm. Also just a short walk to High Park and Roncesvalles where you can find lots of shops and trendy restaurants

The Tannery Lofts

736 Dundas St East

A small industrial loft conversion, known as the Tannery Lofts, was built over 100 years ago. The original use for the building was to manufacture soap; however it was re-purposed and most recently used by the Adam Beck Cigar Box Manufacturing Company. Oddly enough, the loft conversion was named ‘The Tannery Lofts’, which is nothing more than a marketing ploy, since the building has never been associated with the production or storage of leather.

Specs: The building is quite small, with only 5 stories and 36 units. The units themselves are also very small, with cramped layouts and minimal storage space (particularly the 1 bedroom units). The developers kept the loft authentic with features such as sandblasted exposed brick walls, high wooden ceilings, large industrial windows, industrial doors and exposed ducts, yet managed to incorporate new finishes such as granite kitchen counters and engineered hardwood floors.

Amenities: None. No owned parking spaces either. The building is located next to the D.V.P., and the street car runs along Dundas 24 hours a day.

The Chocolate Factory Lofts

955 Queen St West

This beautifully engineered building is composed of two early 20th-century buildings linked together by a brand new building along Queen St West.

Specs: The original loft architecture includes wood slate or corrugated steel ceilings, wooden posts, steel beams, exposed brick, huge windows, and high ceilings. New construction offers barn style doors, concrete ceilings, and steel beams, floor to ceiling windows. Most units are bright and airy, many have French balconies and private gated courtyard entrances. Penthouses have terraces and two- storey designs.

Amenities: 24 hour concierge and a fitness room. Trinity Bellwoods park is right across the street, there is a countless supply of restaurants, clothing and antique shops in the neighbourhood, and the streetcar runs 24 hours a day along Queen St West.

The Robert Watson Lofts

363 and 369 Sorauren Ave

This gorgeous structure built in 1903, was once The Robert Watson Candy Factory Warehouse. Divided into two buildings, it is now a true hard loft conversion. The original building #363 preserves the original brick, wood beams and columns. The second building #369 is a new construction of concrete, steel and glass.

Specs: Units in the original building have exposed century-old brick, wood ceilings/columns, 10- to 16-foot ceilings, massive windows and are loaded with spectacular raw finishes including granite and stainless steel appliances. The units in the new loft building have polished concrete floors, concrete columns, and expansive glass with spectacular views of the city skyline. Units on the first floor level walk out to a front yard terrace, while upper level units feature long bbq friendly balconies.

Amenities: The two buildings share a landscaped courtyard – where neighbours passing through engage in pleasant conversations. Also just a short walk to High Park and Roncesvalles where you can find lots of shops and trendy restaurants

The Abbey Lofts

384 Sunnyside Ave

A rare find and truly spectacular, this former neo-Gothic Methodist church has been converted into 24 units in the heart of Roncesvalles. It has light grey limestone walls and glorious stained glass windows. The developers even kept the three original solid wood arched doors fronting onto a 30 ft terrace.

Specs: Almost every unit has exposed limestone walls, some have magnificent stained glass windows with 13 ft ceilings and sunken living rooms. The lofts don’t come on the market often, but when they do you can expect to pay a high price for this address. The first floor units walk out to a lovely terrace, perfect for entertaining.

Amenities: None, but it’s just a short walk to High Park and Roncesvalles where you can find lots of shops and trendy restaurants. Also a short walk north to Bloor Street, where you can hop on the streetcar or catch the subway train.

The Tip Top Lofts

637 Lake Shore Blvd

The place to be if you love sailing – the building is next door to Toronto’s highly reputable National Yacht Club. The building was originally built in 1929 for the Tip Top Tailor clothing company, a popular men’s clothing chain in Canada.

Specs: The units have the concrete pillars and exposed duct work. The two storey units have soaring floor to ceiling 13 ft windows and Juliette balconies. The Tip Top lofts feature 256 lofts ranging in size from 600 to 2,580 square feet with over 50 unique floor plans. The 1 bedroom units start in the mid $300s and the 1 bedroom plus den start at the low $400s. The few penthouses that do come on the market can go from $1,000,000 – $2,000,000.

Amenities: Next door to National Yacht Club and Alexandra Yacht Club. The building is at the foot of the Martin Goodman Trail – perfect for runners and cyclists and just a short walk away from Harbourfront. Residents can enjoy a fully equipped fitness centre,
yoga/aerobatic room, concierge and bbq patio.

The Argyle Lofts

183 Dovercourt Rd

This Edwardian building is the former home of the Ideal Bread Company. Keeping in line with its historic purpose, what was once the corner bakery entrance, is now the loft’s front door. In short, this is one very industrial looking building.

Specs: These units showcase exposed ductwork, hardwood floors, schoolhouse looking windows and high ceilings. While most units do not have balconies, the 2 storey penthouse units showcase tremendously tall floor to ceiling windows and large terraces with spectacular views of the city. Units range in size from 500 square feet to 1,600 square feet+.

Amenities: None, but walk a few blocks south and you can find a countless supply of restaurants, clothing and antique shops in the neighbourhood, and the streetcar runs 24 hours a day along Queen St West. Trinity Bellwoods Park is just around the corner.

The Candy Factory Lofts

993 Queen St West

Pour some sugar on me – this is one sweet address. It’s historically known for its production of rocket candy. To showcase the building’s history, the concierge keeps these candies in one of the biggest bowls I’ve ever seen for guests and residents to enjoy.

Specs: In any given unit, you can find 12 foot ceilings, exposed brick, cedar beams and pillars, exposed duct work, enormous windows. Some units have Juliette balconies, while many do not have any balconies. The penthouse units have large terraces with spectacular views of the city. The halls are excessively wide and spacious. The units range in size from 700 square feet to 3,500 square feet +. Prices start in the $500s but some have sold for double.

Amenities:  24 hour concierge, live in superintendant, party room, fitness room, barbeque patio. Trinity Bellwoods park is right across the street, there is a countless supply of restaurants, clothing and antique shops in the neighbourhood, and the streetcar runs 24 hours a day along Queen St West.