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When the prime minister comes to Toronto, where does he stay?

When the prime minister comes to Toronto, where does he stay? —Terrence Mars, Forest Hill

Don’t ask the PMO: they’re so tight-lipped, they won’t even say why they refuse to say. However, keen eyes have spotted Paul Martin at the Royal York, which actually has a Prime Minister’s Suite, a spread that used to be the hotel general manager’s apartment. Fitting, because the PM doesn’t necessarily stay in the top suite, as the best rooms aren’t always ideal for logistics and security. In addition to his entourage, a hotel must accommodate a detail of Mounties, who set up a command post in a nearby room. Security measures range from reserving an elevator to allow the prime minister’s unimpeded movement to setting up a secure telephone line that bypasses the hotel switchboard. PMs have also been known to show up at the King Eddie and the Delta Chelsea, as well as digs on the airport strip. And in many cases, the answer is “he doesn’t”: Toronto is such a short flight from Ottawa that the prime minister can be back at 24 Sussex in time for bed.

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