Among the many villages of Toronto, one remarkable stood to the test of time — the Forest Hill Village. It is now a resemblance of a Norman Rockwell artwork. If you are one of those that are fortunate to witness how the village progressed into a community of charming lineage of proprietary stores that boasted premier services and quality products.
The Forest Hill was likened to a scene from Frank Capra’s movie in the 1940s. Its streets were occupied with gourmet restaurants and food shops for a quick or leisurely dinner, two gas stations with trusty mechanics in cases of engine failures, a movie theatre, one of the original Loblaw shops, and a candy-filled Stop and Shop variety store that equates to convenience stores of today. When you take a moment to ponder the streets of the Forest Hill now, you’ll observe a slow decay in its retail system and a lack of architectural persona that defined the village for many years in the past.
The existence of this village can be traced from 1923 and its first barbershop, The Forest Hill Barber Shop opened its doors during 1931. What’s even more fascinating is the fact that its owner, Nick Vitantonio aged 71, has been in the business of cutting hair for more than 50 years. The Forest Hill apparently got its name after John Wickson’s summer residence. The house was located at the junction of the Old Forest Hill Road and Eglinton Avenue. Although the forest can no longer be enjoyed, the hill still stands up to this date.
Before being known as the Forest Hill, it was commonly referred to as the Spadina Heights. The term Spadina was derived from the First Nations word as Ishapadena, which means a sudden rise in terrain or hill. As observed, the boundaries of the present-day Forest Hill pays respect to the old Spadina Heights school district.
During 1930s, Lower Forest Hill, located in the south of Eglinton, was gradually developed. The upper portion of the Forest Hill later progressed because it was previously inhabited by the old Belt Line railway and then by the industry.
It was in 1967 that the Forest Hill joined another village called, Swansea Village as one of the remaining two independent villages that are annexed by the City of Toronto.
If you have the chance to visit the Forest Hill and bask in its elegance, you should squeeze in some entertainment for your vacation, as well. About three miles away from the Forest Hill is the magnificent, Ed Mirvish Theatre. Especially if you’re an artist, an aspiring architect or an actor, this place should be at the top of your must-visit in Toronto.
You can fill your eyes with music and acting from the production inside the Ed Mirvish Theatre, satisfy your inner Picasso for its murals and paintings or, awaken the architect in you for its exquisite feat of construction. You can never go wrong with the Ed Mirvish Theatre, which will surely awaken all of your senses.
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