The most influential honorary Torontonians of 2015

The most influential honorary Torontonians of 2015

They’re from elsewhere. They love Toronto. The feeling is mutual

Jamie Oliver (Image: Getty Images)

Jamie Oliver

The British superchef has been a fan of Toronto since 2011, when he tweeted that the salumi- and truffle-topped pizza at Buca was the best meal he’d eaten all year. Now he’s pairing with Buca chef Rob Gentile to create a 200-seat rustic Italian spot at Yorkdale mall, set to open this month.

Ian Gillespie (Image: courtesy of West Bank)

Ian Gillespie

The CEO of Westbank Projects is a household name in Vancouver, where he oversees a $25-billion real estate portfolio. In Toronto, his portfolio includes the Shangri-La and Honest Ed’s, which he’ll refashion as a new multi-use fantasia with 1,000 apartments, retail space and a public market.

Meghan Markle (Image: Getty Images)

Meghan Markle

When she’s not filming Suits on Bay Street, Markle runs lifestyle website the Tig. It features recipes, celeb Q&As and fashion tips, many from strolls in Yorkville and Queen West. She could be a permanent resident soon enough: she’s said to be dating culinary Adonis Cory Vitiello of the Harbord Room.

Panda (Image: Getty Images)

Er Shun, Da Mao

There’s no denying their star power. Attendance at the Toronto Zoo jumped an impressive 15 per cent when the giant pandas arrived here in 2013. Those numbers are expected to spike even higher now that Er Shun has given birth to twins, the first ever born in Canada.

Laurence Fishburne (Image: Getty Images)

Laurence Fishburne

The actor lived in Toronto while shooting NBC’s Hannibal, attending Raps games and fashion parties, and devouring brisket tacos at Playa Cabana. His wife, Gina Torres, films Suits here, and Fishburne got a gig playing Nelson Mandela in the upcoming Canadian miniseries Madiba.