Toronto Canada - London UK

Toronto Companion | 05 Feb 2018 - 08:54
Toronto Canada - London UK

What are the differences between living in Toronto and London UK? How does a high end companion who has bases in Toronto and London UK compare life in them? If you’re travel curious, here’s a limited account. Reading this tale of two cities will be much lighter than Dickens!

I divide my time equally between Toronto and London UK

Nowadays I always add UK after London, because there’s a London about 2 hours’ drive from Toronto and more Londons elsewhere in the world. Hence adding UK to London prevents confusion. Since there’re also 4 Torontos in the USA and one Toronto in England, I should also be adding Canada after Toronto. Yet somehow people don’t seem to be as confused about Toronto as they are about London, so I add Canada after Toronto only when I feel that the situation calls for doing so. What’s better about life in Toronto than life in London UK? Many people ask me this question. There’s better and there’s worse in each country. So I reframe this common question to what’s different about living in Toronto from living in London UK.

The first difference

is condo living. If you live downtown anywhere in north America, you’re bound to live in a condo or in close proximity to those who live in condos. Condo [short for condaminium] high-rise buildings remind somewhat of hotels with their long twisted corridors [that could at times do with convex mirrors to enable one to see round corners] and many doors with suite numbers. The hotel resemblance is complete with a lobby with a reception desk where a concierge [also called a security guard] oversees the comings and goings of visitors and variously assists the residents and staff of the building.

The terms condo and apartment are not interchangeable as are the terms flat and apartment in the UK. The term flat is not used in Canada at all, while the term apartment in the Canadian sense denotes a suite in a building which does not have facilities such as a gym, swimming pool, sauna, steam room, jacuzzi or hot tub, party room with tables, chairs, and a bar that residents can rent, and guest suites. Condo buildings have these facilities in various combinations. Another useful difference as a result is that living in a condo is more expensive. Maintenance of the facilities is reflected in the condo fees [or service charge in the UK].

The second difference

is that if you live in a condo, not everyone will know your name and suite number. High rise buildings have hundreds of suites, hence it’s impossible to know everyone even if you live in the building all your life. If you plan to entertain guests in your suite, you may tell the concierge that you’re expecting someone called [name] at a certain time. And you may not. The choice is yours. But it’s still easy to be discreet if one has the brains…

If your guests will come by car, you or they will have to request a visitor’s parking pass from the concierge to park in the lot under the building free of charge. Everything is on camera. If your guests give the concierge the wrong name for your suite, the concierge will call the suite owner and ask whether s/he is expecting a guest called X – if the concierge does his/her job efficiently. So there is certainly no room for pseudonyms! But the concierge is there to protect the residents. And that indirectly keeps the value of properties high and easily sellable.

The third difference

are the facilities in the recreation centres of condo buildings. If you’re reading this in a country where people pay memberships for attending the gym, sauna, jacuzzi, or hot tub, you’ll know how awesomely you’d feel if all you had to do was take the elevator / lift to the top or ground floor and have it all there from 6a.m. till 11p.m. for your mostly sole use 7 days a week!

These facilities are ones I [and my guests] generously help myself to in Toronto, and greatly miss in London. The costs and traveling time make attending health and fitness facilities a less attractive in London UK. It is striking how many Torontonians take these facilities so much for granted that they don’t use them!

And the fourth difference

which I’ll cover in this article is in traveling. Any person who has been to or lived in London UK will be glad to learn that s/he can get from any side of Toronto to the airport for the price of a single ticket if taking the public transit! That difference will certainly be notable! Just imagine how much it would cost to get from anywhere in London to the Heathrow or Gatwick airport! I’m sure I needn’t labor the point. Toronto’s public transit is run the same way as are public transits in many European cities. Transfer tickets exist. And all forms of transit are run by one company rather than each means of transport being run by a different private company. That is the case in London UK.

Toronto – London – anywhere…

Traveling broadens the mind. And even more so with a companion. Would you like to take one?

 

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Comments
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Very interesting, good job and thanks for sharing such a good blog.