Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Tuesday Treasures

Reporting today as I am still busy sorting out our recent photos.

Tom hosts Tuesday's Treasures.

May 2014 - Toronto ON

Yesterday we went to some of the Toronto Doors Open exhibits.

Doors Open Toronto is an annual event when approximately 150 buildings of architectural, historic, cultural, and social significance to the city of Toronto open their doors to the public for this free city-wide celebration.

Doors Open Toronto was developed as a millennium project in 2000, by the City of Toronto (developed from a European model) and has since attracted over 1.7 million residents and tourists. Doors Open Toronto gives people of all ages and backgrounds the opportunity to learn about Toronto's history, get involved and celebrate Toronto's built heritage.

Doors Open Toronto was the first city in North America to launch this type of program, and it has inspired similar programs across Canada and in the United States. Many participating buildings organize guided tours, exhibits, displays, and activities to enrich the visitor experience.

We were especially interested in visiting the Ontario Legislature as it is not normally open to the public.

The Ontario Legislative Building (French: L'édifice de l'Assemblée législative de l'Ontario) is a structure in central Toronto, that houses the viceregal suite of the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, and offices for members of the provincial parliament (MPPs). The building is surrounded by Queen's Park, sitting on that part south of Wellesley Street, which is the former site of King's College (later the University of Toronto), and which is leased from the university by the provincial Crown for a "peppercorn" payment of CAD$1 per annum on a 999 year term.

Designed by Richard A. Waite, the Ontario Legislative Building is an asymmetrical, five storey structure built in the Richardsonian Romanesque style, with a load-bearing iron frame. This is clad inside and out in Canadian materials where possible; the 10.5 million bricks were made by inmates of the Central Prison, and the Ontario sandstone—with a pink-hue that has earned the building the colloquial name of The Pink Palace—comes from the Credit River valley and Orangeville, Ontario, and was given a rustic finish for most of the exterior, but dressed for trim around windows and other edges. There can also be seen over the edifice a multitude of stone carvings, including gargoyles, grotesques, and friezes. The exterior is punctuated with uncharacteristically large windows, allowed by the nature of the iron structure.

Inside, a central hall runs between the main entrance at the south and a grand staircase directly opposite, from the mid-landing of which is accessed the parliamentary library in the 1909 block. At the top landing of this stair is the lobby of the legislative chamber, with the door to which centrally aligned in the south wall. From this core, wide corridors extend east and west, each bisected by a long and narrow atrium lined with ornate railings; the east wing is decorated more in the Victorian fashion in which it was built, with dark wood panelling, while the west wing corridor is more Edwardian Neoclassical in style, the walls lined with white marble, and reflecting the time in which it was built.

 Some not so traditional portraits that caught my eye.


The crest is a black bear standing on a gold and green wreath

The shield of arms — which appears on Ontario's flag — consists of three golden maple leaves, representing Canada, on a green background. On a chief is the Cross of St. George, the name saint of King George III, in allegiance to whom the Loyalists first came to the land that would form the province.

a moose and deer

The motto is Ut incepit Fidelis sic permanet, Latin for Loyal she began, loyal she remains.


  1. I'm envious that you got inside!

    Such beautiful details inside and outside. And it's such a great concept, having buildings like this opened up. Our Doors Open is in early June.

  2. ...Hi Jackie, for someone like me who loves architectural detail, your images are a feast for my eyes. Thanks so much for sharing, I hope to see you again.

  3. I look forward to a similar day here in the UK, known as European Heritage Open Days. It is fascinating to tour these buildings and learn more about their history and this Legislative Building is so ornate and grand. Great tour!

  4. Thanks for reposting!

    A few more weeks, and the season starts picking up again. Guelph does their Doors Open to kick off the Ontario events on the 22nd of April, if I've got the date right.

  5. Incredible post! I love events such as this. Learning about one's area history is so important. The architecture is stunning. Really loved the interior!


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