Monday, June 15, 2009

A Day Downtown, Toronto

On Friday I had the pleasure of interviewing Kimberley Newport Mimran, designer of Pink Tartan. Thankfully, the Canadian Tourist Board accommodated my request of getting an insider's point of view of Toronto. I wanted the insider to be fashion and travel savvy and a native of Ontario. Interviewing Kim exceeded my expectations and I'm so pleased to be able to share some of her practical advice on fashion, packing AND travel.

When asked what her favorite family day trip would be in Toronto, Kim didn't hesitate–the ROM. The Royal Ontario Museum was also a favorite of James and mine during our media tour. Situated downtown, close to some of Toronto's best shopping and restaurants, a trip to the ROM is like traveling the world through time in one afternoon.

A visit to the First Peoples Gallery brought James and me upclose to Chief Sitting Bull's feather war bonnet. We marveled at the enormous collection of work by the pioneer painter Paul Kane. His depiction of life amongst Canadian natives reminded me of the Hudson River School painters–grand, bucolic and Mohican!

A visit to the ROM would not be complete without a stroll through the Age of Dinosaurs. There are some jaw-dropping specimens in residence here, a 90 foot Barasaurs skeleton, that's the one with the long neck and tail, tiny head. Say hello to several duck-billed dinosaurs, hadrosaurs, from Alberta. The Age Of Mammals on the same level houses mammals who rapidly diversified following the extinction of dinosaurs. Here you'll find your woolly mammoth. Note: The gift store has a great stuffed woolly mammoth that James really wanted.

As with any grand museum, there was so much at the ROM that we didn't see. Fortunately for Kimberley Newport Mimran, she's lucky enough to visit again and again with her eight-year-old, Jaquiline. When they've had enough of world cultures at the ROM, a trip to Holts Cafe at Holt Renfrew is in order. There, mother and daughter rest their feet and partake in a tartine made from world-renowned Pollane bread that's flown in from Paris daily. Isn't that chic?

After a rest up, Mimran suggests a trip to Indigo, otherwise known as Chapters Indigo. Right on Bloor Street, Indigo is a great big bookstore for exploring, reading, buying a toy or a snack. It is a great "bribery stop" after too much time spent in mommy stores. Kim mentioned that her daughter has gotten the reading bug and that she, herself wasn't much of a reader at Jaquiline's age. As Kim discovers all the great childhood reading out there stores like Indigo are, in ways more fun then ever before. I'm sure Kim is still augmenting her design and photography book collection that she uses for inspiration as well!

So there you have it: Designer Kimberly Newport Minram's Toronto Pick:
A tartine at Holts Cafe
A book, music or toy at Indio

Check in with me next time for more travel and style advice from Kim.

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