Upper Village businesses evolve

Gallery offers new service, a pub moves in and kids finally get their digs

Gallery offers new service, a pub moves in and kids finally get their digs

Lots of news to report in the Upper Village this month.

Steven Petroff of Petroff Galleries has added a new service to his fine art and artisan gallery: custom framing services.

In a way it’s the perfect match for them, as Steven says they’ve been selling a lot of paintings in the last year and some pieces are not framed.

The good news for peeps with a ton of unframed art stashed in their closet is that the gallery does a lot of the work on-site. That means prices are good.

“It’s revolutionized the gallery in a way we never thought of before,” Steven tells me.

Businesses have had to evolve and adapt over the last year and a half, he says, as they’re not getting as many people on the street and biz has suffered as a result.

1016 Eglinton Ave. West, 416-782-1696, www.petroffgallery.com

Foxy pub

Speaking of evolution, there’s a sign in the old Monte Carlo restaurant advertising the coming of The Thirsty Fox Pub.

As far as I know there is no, nor has there ever been, a pub in the area, so it’s pretty thrilling to see a new idea taking shape in the ’hood.

John Almeida, who will be opening the place with business partners and longtime pals Tony Viveiros and Hamid Shalabi, tells me they hope to be open by mid-August, September for sure. When we spoke in late July they were in the heat of renovations.

The trio, who John says have been friends forever, has worked in the pub and resto biz for years, sometimes together, sometimes not.
But they’ve always been thirsty to open their own place together.

Finding the location along Eglinton was pure destiny, according to John. As the story goes, he and his wife were driving to a wedding and were stopped for having an outdated sticker. The exact spot where they pulled over was in front of the empty space they are now renovating.

John says the place will be family-friendly and hopes it will become a real neighbourhood pub where customers become friends.

With over 10 beers on tap planned, all I can say is I’ll drink to that.

1028 Eglinton Ave. West

Movers and shakers

Other news: a Pro Glo Paints Décor Centre is opening soon at 1162 Eglinton Ave. West (www.torontopaintstore.com), and Marina Lemoyne Couture at 962 Eglinton Ave. West is moving to Bathurst and Rutherford at the end of September. There’s a moving sale with items up to seventy percent off; just note the sign in the window says by appointment or chance.

416-652 3737, 647-295-1727, www.marinalemoyne.com

Sad news: Alex Farms Eglinton at 970 Eglinton Ave. West has closed. It just didn’t fly in the neighbourhood, I hear, which is surprising as the one I know on the Danforth is hopping. There are still piles of huge fake cheese wedges in window, sadly.

But on a brighter note, The Loving Hut across the street, open for less than a year and specializing in an all-vegan Asian fusion food, stands in cheery contrast to the empty window with the cheese. It’s bright yellow sign and matching chairs and umbrellas on the patio are like welcoming beacons and I hope they bode well for the success of the place.

953 Eglinton Ave. West 416-782-4449 or 416-916-0880, www.lovinghut.ca

Fashiony duds and yoga

The purple walls at Kidshill Children’s Wear draw me in. Open since April, the shop carries a range of fashionable clothing for babies and tots all the way up to a boys and girl’s size 14 or 16 — another new business category for the strip as there isn’t a kidswear store on this side of Eglinton.

Owner Debbie Bendavid went in to biz with her longtime pal Valerie Sadoun as she wanted to try something different. But she’s always loved kids’ clothing, and, with three kids of her own, fondly recalls the times when she would shuttle back H&M kids clothing to Canada before the megastore opened here.

There’s some sweet stuff here that I would totally wear if the sizes were big enough for me, like the Ed Hardy Kids tees, dresses, and even baseball caps. They’re rock n’ roll motorcycle chic.

There’s plenty of darling pink ruffled dresses for girls, too. The Italian leather ballet slippers have been flying off the shelves, Debbie tells me.

I dig that there’s a long leather couch for husbands to drop onto while their wives shop, with a flat screen TV, to boot. It’s built right into the girly-chic white fireplace in front of the couch — genius.

Coming in September: yoga, ballet and exercise classes for kids in the lower level of the shop, and a new line of yoga wear for kids too.

1048 Eglinton Ave. West, 647-341-4454

About this article:

By: Kelly Gadzala
Posted: Aug 10 2010 12:08 pm
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto