What to eat, drink and do at Summer House, the new multi-level staycation experience at Hotel X

What to eat, drink and do at Summer House, the new multi-level staycation experience at Hotel X

More Summer Fun

With international travel still a bit tricky, those looking for an escape closer to home can swing over to Hotel X for what is being called a one-stop staycation destination. Summer House has transformed the CNE hotel’s restaurant and rooftop patios into a 75,000-square-foot playground, with food and drink specials, DJ sets and (for an extra fee) yoga and spin classes. (The rooftop pool, however, is only for overnight guests.) Here’s a virtual tour of the “staycation activation,” on now until early fall.

Here’s the entrance:


The rooftop is separated into two different zones. Each offers a view of the city and Lake Ontario from 29 storeys up. The Peak on the rooftop terrace includes the covered Sky Lounge (because rain) and an open green space. Every Saturday, a yoga class is hosted here by Solis Movement in collaboration with 10XTO:


The Peak’s cocktail bar serves up fresh and fruity cocktails, like the Strawberry Mint Mash made with Bulleit Bourbon, lemon juice, strawberry purée and soda ($22):


The Castle Fizz features Ciroc vodka, lemon juice, basil, cucumber and elderflower tonic ($24):


There’s sangria, too:


The swimming pool and nearby lounge area are only available to guests who are staying overnight at the hotel. Guests can sit poolside and order from the Summer House menu:

Photo courtesy of Hotel X


And here’s the poolside lounge area:

Both The Peak and Prime Grill, the hotel’s restaurant, have been given Hamptons-inspired makeovers. The menu has been revamped by The Food Dudes and currently features summery sharing plates like fresh oysters and mezze platters, and a variety of steaks. The patio at Prime Grill allows for plenty of socially distanced al fresco dining and drinking:

Photo courtesy of Hotel X


The steak tartare seasons prime strip loin with sambal mustard, fried shallots, pho aïoli, Vietnamese herbs and puffed rice ($19):


The vegetarian and gluten-free chopped salad is a mix of kale, red cabbage, cucumber, tomato, corn, bell peppers, quinoa and mint, all tossed in a cilantro-lime vinaigrette, topped with crispy chickpeas and served with a swoosh of jalapeño pimento cheese ($18). For a bit extra, guests can add in avocado ($3), grilled chicken ($9) or grilled shrimp ($9):


Margherita flatbread comes topped with fior de latte, parmesan, “ciao sauce” and basil ($21):


Here, Albert Najem, Hotel X’s V.P. of food and beverage, carves a 52-ounce tomahawk steak ($150):


Grilled asparagus is dressed with grilled lemon, bomba and cured egg yolk ($13):


The charcoal beets are finished with cilantro crema and spiced almond dukkah ($13):


Thinly sliced and layered potatoes are served with aïoli and black truffle ($19):


In addition to a new line of adults-only cocktail-flavoured ice cream, there’s this cookie fudge sundae that tops house-made chocolate chip cookie ice cream with chocolate fudge, chocolate chip cookies and vanilla Chantilly ($16). It’s good for all ages:


Spinco, Canada’s largest spin studio, hosts daily outdoor classes at the Waterfront Parkette. You know, to work off all of the above:

Hotel X, 111 Princes’ Blvd., 855-943-9300, summerhouse.to/roof/, @summerhouseto