May 23, 2024

CPS

Travel Adventure

Queen’s Cross Food Hall Brings Global Flavours to Toronto Eaton Centre

3 min read

Last week, Oliver & Bonacini Hospitality and Cadillac Fairview hosted an exclusive sneak peek of Queen’s Cross Food Hall, set to open on April 24th at the south end of Toronto Eaton Centre. The collaboration brings together two powerhouses in the hospitality and retail industries, with a shared vision of creating a vibrant, inclusive dining destination in the heart of Downtown Toronto. The event offered a tantalizing glimpse into the remake of the 19,000 ft² “chef-driven” dining area located close by the Queen subway station entrance on the mall’s lower level.

The food hall’s design by Solid Design Creative draws inspiration from the bustling atmosphere of a cosmopolitan train station — in particular London’s iconic King’s Cross station. Visitors are greeted by the “Queen’s Cross Food Hall” signage, presented in a style that echoes London’s tube station signs, immediately setting the tone for the immersive experience. Above the entrance, an eye-catching split flap board, reminiscent of the classic departures boards found in transit hubs, adds to the dynamic ambiance, with its changing display.

Entrance to Queen’s Cross Food Hall, image by Anthony Teles

 Once inside, the space begins with a Victorian greenhouse aesthetic, with greenery and inviting communal seating areas that include wooden banquettes and which create a social-friendly environment. Adding to the King’s Cross connection is the clock above the bar, evoking the clock tower of London’s famed station.

The bar and cafe, image by Anthony Teles

Further in, the facades of each food stall reflect their brands, while this space is characterized by exposed ceiling fixtures dropped from an industrial-chic open ceiling with blacked-out ductwork.

Queen’s Cross Food Hall, image by Anthony Teles

As Sal Iacono, President and CEO of Cadillac Fairview, and Andrew Oliver, President & CEO of Oliver & Bonacini Hospitality, addressed the gathered crowd, their enthusiasm for the project was palpable. Iacono emphasized the culinary collaboration and food hall’s role in enhancing the mall’s retail and dining mix. It was a sentiment echoed by Oliver, who spoke of the challenges faced during the pandemic and the desire to create a space that serves the community.

Sal Iacono, President and CEO of Cadillac Fairview, addressing the crowd, image by Anthony Teles

Chef Michael Robertson, Oliver & Bonacini’s Corporate Events Chef who is overseeing Queen’s Cross’ cuisine, spoke on his team’s commitment to creating an inviting space for everyone, from morning coffees to nighttime cocktails, catering to different tastes and preferences. “This is not an elite space. Everyone is welcome,” he stated, highlighting the food hall’s inclusivity and accessibility.

Within Queen’s Cross Food Hall, image by Anthony Teles

Queen’s Cross Food Hall boasts 13 food stalls, a bar and café, two rotating pop-up stalls, and enough seating for 300 people. The diverse array of cuisines offers new quick-service brands and adaptations of Oliver & Bonacini restaurants and pop-ups, with something for every palate, from the classic comforts of fish and chips to the inventive twists of sushi bowls. The inclusion of limited-time pop-ups allows a refreshing of offerings on a regular. At opening, the pops-up are Lil Rebel by Chef Eric Chong of Michelin Bib Gourmand-rated R&D, and Craig’s Cookies which will add scrumptious desserts to the mix.

Within Queen’s Cross Food Hall, image by Anthony Teles

 

Looking ahead, Queen’s Cross Food Hall plans to launch a pick-up and delivery app, the first of its kind designed specifically for food halls. The app will cater to nearby office workers and businesses, particularly those in the office towers at the Eaton Centre itself, allowing them to combine items from various food stalls in a single order.

With its global flavours and inviting ambiance, this new dining destination will add a significant new fast-casual dining option when it opens tomorrow, offering a unique and accessible experience for hungry patrons.

UrbanToronto will continue to follow progress on this development, but in the meantime, you can learn more about it from our Database files, linked below. If you’d like, you can join in on the conversation in the associated Project Forum thread or leave a comment in the space provided on this page.

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UrbanToronto has a research service, UrbanToronto Pro, that provides comprehensive data on construction projects in the Greater Toronto Area—from proposal through to completion. We also offer Instant Reports, downloadable snapshots based on location, and a daily subscription newsletter, New Development Insider, that tracks projects from initial application.​​


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