#TBT: TIFF memories at The Drake

Posted by Jen McNeely, September 09, 2016

With twelve years of TIFF behind us, we've got stories. Some we'll tell, others we never will. Either way, things always go down here during festival time: million dollar deals with Harvey Weinstein, getting jiggy in the Drake Underground with Adrian Grenier, or midnight streakers on Queen Street West (if you're lucky).

We've always provided west end relief for TIFF filmmakers and talent who want to get away from the bright lights of the red carpet. Past guests have included some of our most treasured talent: Catherine Keener, Philip Seymour Hoffman (RIP), Jeremy Irons, Donald Sutherland, Jessica Biel + Kevin Spacey.

Steve McQueen

Steve McQueen cocktail

We won't tell you to come here for star gazing, but we will tell you that things happen when you lean against the bar and slowly sip a Voodoo Child, Pisco Verde or a cocktail named after a Hollywood legend.

BlueBerry Pancakes

Our celebrity approved Blueberry Pancakes

While most celebs visit us after dusk, Donald Sutherland joined us for a big breakfast, and Amanda Seyfried was so taken by our blueberry pancakes that she left her personal contact information with the kitchen so we could follow up with the recipe.

Red Carpet

Red Carpet ready

But of all the TIFF moments we've experienced, perhaps the most memorable was in the early days when our Chief Development Officer, Bill Simpson, helped escort then Governor General Adrienne Clarkson and her husband, John Ralston Saul, to their limo through the throngs of guests at the legendary TIFF bash. While exiting onto Queen Street, the entourage was greeted by performance artist Istvan Kantor who bellowed loudly from the top of a parked car. He was quickly joined by a streaker who mounted the roof of a cab and began gyrating for all to see and enjoy. Clarkson then turned to Bill and said, "This is why I absolutely LOVE The Drake – you just never know what is going to happen around here!”


Check out our L.A. programming on now!

This year The Drake is bringing the good vibrations of L.A. to Hollywood North with food, fashion and culture.

Neal Fraser brings his sought-after restaurants to Toronto for two exclsuive pop-ups.Redbird comes to Drake One Fifty September 13 and his gourmet hot dog restaurant, Fritzi Dog, sets up at The Drake Hotel on September 14.

Drake General Store sets up an L.A. Market with products from Poketo and Vacancy Project as well as a capsule collection of L.A.-inspired pins and patches, and a limited collection of vintage denim jackets, shirts and dresses.

The Drake Hotel hosts its always popular TIFF celebration with the help of A Club Called Rhonda on September 15 at 9 p.m. ($10 at the door), launches the art show Prismatic and connects mind, body and soaul with RAW Yoga, weekends at 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. Finally, Drake One Fifty closes TIFF with the launch of its new year-long exhibition FOMO on September 18.

Posted in: Art

Tags: Celebrities  Hollywood North  The Drake  TIFF