A Q&A with Stephen Durbin, a TL Insider, on being in the know in the city that he loves
Toronto Life Insider is a membership club that gives you front-of-the-line access to the best experiences and offers in the city. With your membership, you get an upgraded subscription to Toronto Life that includes access to signature events (like a taco party with La Carnita), hands-on workshops (hello, cocktail-making classes from top bartenders), hard-to-get tables at some of city’s best restaurants (we’re looking at you, Momofuku Kōjin) and candid conversations between TL’s editor-in-chief Sarah Fulford and some of the city’s most interesting characters.
We chatted with TL Insider Stephen Durbin, the owner of family law firm Stephen Durbin and Associates, about his experience with the membership so far.
Tell us about yourself.
I was born and raised in Toronto, and I love this city dearly. I’m excited and overjoyed that it has become truly world class and the choice of so many people to live and visit. I would never live anywhere else… okay, maybe for a bit of the winter. I recall decades ago my American cousins visiting and referring to Toronto as “provincial.” Not anymore! I lived in the suburbs for a bit to raise a family, but I jumped at the first opportunity to get back into the heart of the city.
What is it that you love about Toronto so much?
Even after travelling around the world extensively, Toronto remains the most vibrant city I have ever been to. Moses Znaimer once said something like, “If you were born in a capital of Europe, you were born into a rich, historical culture; if you were born in New York City, you were born into the city of kings; but if you were born in Toronto, that’s destiny”. I love going down the street hearing people spontaneously cry out “I love Toronto!”. And there is nowhere I’d rather be in the summer than this fine city—walking it, cycling it, or just hanging out at one of the many lovely patios, enjoying a multitude of international cuisines. Forget the United Nations, Toronto is the real deal—it’s where the world lives together shoulder to shoulder and gets along swimmingly! Destiny called and I will be forever grateful.
What do you do for a living?
I own one of the largest family law firms in the country, faithfully serving families in the GTA and environs during their most difficult times. Our reputation for putting children first and not draining clients’ assets means that we are always in demand. It keeps me busy.
Why did you become an Insider?
TL Insider lines up my leisure time in a way I had never even hoped for! The best thing about joining is that I am always made aware of great events happening around town. I’ve subscribed to Toronto Life for a couple of years now, but I regularly purchased it from newsstands prior to becoming a subscriber. Being a deeply devout member of the Foodie Religion, I jumped at the chance to join TL Insider when I first heard about it a couple months ago.
And what do you think so far?
It has repaid itself several times over, and there have even been some great free events which included food and drink.
Any favourite events?
One would definitely have to be the Shaft premiere party. I took my son and he knew every recording artist and video creative there. The Greenwood Stakes event was also fabulous, and dinner at Kōjin was a phenomenally pleasant surprise. I went once before to try it out and was nonplussed—it was probably opening growing pains. Returning for the TL Insider event, I was completely blown away!
Are you looking forward to any upcoming ones?
I’m really looking forward to the pig roast at Stackt Market, which is right around the corner from me. I used to roast pigs all the time, but I haven’t in years.
Be like Stephen and become a TL Insider today.