Hidden Gem: Spadina Museum, Ontario

This week’s hidden gem was taken at Spadina Museum in Toronto, Ontario. Built in 1866, it was later home to James Austin, founder of the Dominion Bank. At the time the house was located on what was  known “Millionaire’s Row” (City of Toronto).

After stepping in to the past in the 1920s & 1930s furnished home, be sure to check out a true hidden gem – the estate’s Victorian-Edwardian Garden behind the house. Start your tour by admiring the house and gardens from this bench just to the south of the property.

Once you’ve taken it all in, wander through the gardens take a closer look at these early fall flowers. The gardens feature more than 300 varieties of plants consistent with the period – the City of Toronto consulted drawings, photographs, journals, letters and stories told by the Austin family to create a truly historic garden.

An added bonus about the Spadina gardens? Much of the original plant material can still be seen on the grounds – including several white oaks which are older than the house! A walk through the gardens is a way to imagine what Toronto looked like before it was the Toronto we know today.

Bonus Hidden Gem – Calling all gardeners! Can you identify this flowering tree on the Spadina House grounds?

Finally, wrap up your day by heading to the neighbour’s house – Casa Loma! Spadina Museum is just a 1 minute stroll away from one of Toronto’s most recognizable historic landmarks.

Hard to believe this peaceful setting is in the middle of Ontario’s largest city!

For more about all you can experience in Toronto visit us online.

Have you been to a historic house or garden in Ontario? Which one is your favourite?

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