While some Torontonians live for TIFF, others, just want to get away from it all. While celebs and stargazers take over the city, it’s the perfect time for you to make your escape—and make it great!
Whether you’re looking to take a short road trip or a flight away from the bright lights of Hollywood North, here are your best bets for taking a break from life in general and TO during TIFF:
1. Los Angeles
What better way to avoid the celebrity chaos of TIFF than to head to the one place in the world you know they won’t be? A quick trip to Los Angeles is just the ticket for a relaxing getaway while Hollywood heads north. Since celebs and execs aren’t going to be around to make you wait, treat yourself to a star-studded stay at the Millennium Biltmore or Dream Hollywood, where Beyoncé reportedly held a birthday party; indulge in a world-famous martini at Musso + Frank Grill, where major Hollywood deals are signed; make yourself feel larger than life with a helicopter tour over the city with Group 3 Aviation; or pamper yourself with a Korean soak or body treatment at the luxurious Wi Spa. Pack your bags and throw on your “no photos, please” shades – you’re about to touch down at LAX for a trip that’s worth much more of your time than celeb-gawking back home.
If you’re looking for an escape from the 6ix that’s far from the hustle and bustle of TIFF, but also not too far, Niagara is just the ticket you need this film festival season. Not to mention, September is the perfect month to visit the region (sans summer crowds) and one of Ontario’s most beautiful towns—Niagara-on-the-Lake)—whose beauty extends inside and out. No acting here, experience the best of Niagara locals’ genuine warmth and hospitality, whether staying in one of the area’s charming B&B’s, browsing ones of the town’s one-of-a-kind shops or simply strolling around the picturesque Heritage District. Plus, dine at some of the country’s best restaurants like The Restaurant at Pearl Morrissette and sip on world-renowned wine from Two Sisters Vineyards or Hidden Bench, all within the heart of Niagara region and without having to get on a guest list.
Booking.com, the global leader in connecting travellers with the widest choice of incredible places to stay, has every kind of getaway the solitude-seeking Toronto escapee could want. Grab your passport and exit not only the city but the country too, on a relaxing getaway at Marrakech’s Riad Spa Sindibad, featuring a swimming pool on the patio and a hammam. Luxurious guest rooms at Japanese ryokan Shiosai-no-yado Seikai, offer open-air hot spring baths overlooking the ocean. Or, take this escape to a genuine jungle treehouse experience at Costa Rica’s Tree House Lodge, where ocean-view air-conditioned bungalows are cradled in canopy citadels with a soundtrack of quetzal calls. If these are just a bit far for the quick getaway you’re hoping for, scoot up to Blue Mountain for a cozy nature getaway at The Grand View @ Blue, complete with a restaurant, outdoor pool, and nearby hiking and tennis, before the ski fans take over.
Wondering how to vacation like a celeb while trying to avoid the crowds that are sure to follow? Casa De Campo Resort and Villas, a secluded resort enclave, caters to A-listers and has an impressive guest list including Beyoncé, Jay-Z and Elton John. Offering private pools, its own equestrian centre with polo fields, country-club style tennis club and arguably the best golf course in the Caribbean, there are endless ways to keep busy while getting away from it all. Interested in bringing your entire posse along? The newly opened Planet Hollywood Beach Resort Costa Rica specializes in larger groups and offers “Director” and “Producer” Suites that can accommodate parties of up to nine guests. This luxury resort is fit for Hollywood royalty featuring authentic Hollywood memorabilia, VIP-worthy gourmet dining, a rejuvenating hydrotherapy pool and even rock star riders for guests who upgrade to Star Class ™. Sunwing offers regular flights to Punta Cana and Costa Rica from Toronto, making getting away quickly a breeze.
5. Out on the Waters
Looking for the ultimate private escape when the city becomes too much during TIFF? How does a luxury yacht getaway sound? Once thought to be accessible to only the rich and famous, yachting is becoming increasingly popular amongst millennials looking for 5-star vacations. Imagine exploring some of the most exotic locales around the world all from the comfort of your own private, state-of-the-art vessel. The Moorings, the world’s premier yacht charter company specializing in tailor-made vacations on the water, offers skippered, bareboat and fully crewed charters, meaning all you have to do is pack your sandals and swimsuit and enjoy the sweet serenity of ocean living.
There you have it. Safe travels!