December and early January are one of the high seasons for holidays, trips and staycations. Things get particularly festive as we approach New Year’s Eve, with families of all sizes opting to take the party outside the home.
But December is also the time to relax, refresh, re-energize and spend time with the loved ones in a serene environment, away from the hustle-and-bustle of the big city. FAJO’s Hannah and Ada Yakobi share with our readers why they chose Four Seasons Toronto to do just that, and provide insight on their individual experiences.
Hannah Yakobi, Editor-in-Chief
“My sister has been living in Montréal for almost a decade. Now that she and I have our own families, we truly treasure the time spent together. Whenever Ada comes for a visit, or I go to visit her, we completely clear our schedules and spend the days walking around the city, chatting over wine in the hotel room, entertaining my baby nephew and enjoying delicious food, be it for brunch or a gourmet dinner.
“During one of her many recent trips to Toronto, we decided to stay at the Four Seasons Hotel. I have many fond memories of this property: I remember the building before it was re-built, as well as all of my unforgettable family meals there. Over the years, I have also frequently dropped by the spa for hair styling sessions and massages, and attended many, many fashion and beauty events held at the hotel. Doing a stay at Four Seasons was a treat and I was really excited about it.
“We arrived a couple of hours later than planned because — as I learned that weekend — travelling with a baby stroller in Toronto limits your mobility and speed! It was an incredibly pleasant evening, and the weather was truly delightful. The entire Yakobi clan showed up, which in our case means a very small group: my sister, my little nephew, my Mom and myself. The concierge team immediately knew who we were. I always know that the property has a high service standard when I get greeted as “Ms. Yakobi” as soon as I show up.
“We headed upstairs, as quietly as possible. My baby nephew fell asleep on the way to the hotel. We all whispered and so did the hotel staff. In fact, they said they will notify everyone else on their team to be extremely quiet if they come up to us. It was such a nice touch, and truly appreciated by our family.
“Upon arrival at our room, the first thing I noticed was the adorable little plush toy deer that sat on the baby crib set up for my nephew. There were also “Baby Sleeping” signs that we could hang on the door, which were equally heart-warming. It was a very busy couple of days, so what I particularly appreciated was the silence and serenity of the space. It was so relaxing!
“The Premier Room was spacious, and had a beautiful and very large bathroom, with a bathtub and a shower. As a fashion editor, I liked that the hotel had a special collaboration with Etro, which provided toiletries to all guests.
“The room was fully equipped with anything needed for a business or family stay. There was an iPad with an alarm and radio stations at the ready, a very large double mini-bar, a coffee and tea station, a variety of pillows and comforters, a hair dryer, plenty of floor-to-ceiling mirrors, several closets, a safe, an iron, various brushes for clothing maintenance, a make-up mirror and a weighing scale. It felt like a mini home.
“We were welcomed with a bottle of Earthworks 2010 Barossa Valley Shiraz, which was well-paired with the charcuterie plate that arrived shortly after we checked in. I lay on one of the double beds for at least an hour and so did my Mom, while my sister took a bath. We were so relaxed that we dozed off for a bit, and woke up truly refreshed.
“I headed out to a meeting later in the evening, and was pleasantly surprised when the hotel offered to give me a ride. Apparently, they offer complimentary car service to all guests, subject to availability. My Mom had to go home, so she hopped in the car with me. Our driver was a wonderfully polite and friendly young man.
“It was a beautiful evening that I spent surrounded by the people I love. I’m grateful to Four Seasons Toronto and their entire team for making it so special, and for helping us celebrate another family day in a very memorable way.”
Ada Yakobi, Senior Reporter
“Upon arriving at the Four Seasons Hotel in Yorkville, the first thing that strikes your attention is the abundance of fresh, perfectly picked, colourful bouquets that grace the entry of the reception area. Being greeted with a huge smile by the concierge team and then personally escorted to the elevators is another great touch.
“Once I entered our room, I immediately noticed the perfectly made beds and a crib with a personalized Four Seasons toy awaiting. In addition, we had a bottle warmer already set up, which is a crucial aspect for new parents when packing for a trip anywhere. Your luggage is that much lighter when you know that the hotel already has all the necessary electronics on hand. Travelling with a four-month-old isn’t always easy, but staying at the Four Seasons definitely made it seem like a piece of cake.
“The one thing that any woman absolutely craves at the end of a long day is a nice soak. The stand-alone bathtub with personal Etro toiletries made the perfect bubble bath. And if that wasn’t enough, the mirror directly across from it had a built-in flat screen TV, linked to the speakers on the ceiling, giving me a chance to relax while watching my favourite show. Later on, I decided to turn on the mood lighting. It was like a perfect meditation.
“When travelling with an infant, your life is filled with very early mornings. Staying at the Four Seasons gave me the chance of pre-order my breakfast from room service. I also had the option to go downstairs to Cafe Boulud (our whole family is obsessed with the Boulud restaurants and, over the years, we have been to a variety of his locations across Canada and the United States), but I decided to stay in the room this time since I was on the 20th floor.
“I opened the curtains wide, since we had a corner unit and the windows wrapped around the entire room. The sunrise panoramic-view of the city was incredible. My breakfast was served exactly on time, with a personal stand-alone table. A very lovely gentleman frothed my latte right in front of me.
“Upon check out, I took advantage of the hotel’s house car as well. I was lucky that it was available. Three of hotel’s staff members helped with all my luggage — I really felt perfectly taken care of during the entire stay!”