Articles by: OLM StaffOLM Staff
Providing provocative, informative and entertaining information about life in Canada’s Capital. Join us in discovering Ottawa!

From Hockey Player to Chiropractor

June 1, 2016 1:51 pm
From Hockey Player to Chiropractor

For a short time in chiropractor Karlo Pavich’s life, playing hockey was all he ever wanted to do.

During his youth, Pavich lived that dream. From the age of 16 until the age of 23, Pavich skated his way into the professional hockey circuit. In his early years, Pavich played in minor hockey and eventually broke into the Central Canada Hockey League as a #1 pick and the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League. Pavich turned his junior career into a professional career in Europe. After living there for a few years, Pavich received an invitation to try out for the Montreal Canadiens.
Hockey Player to Chiropractor – image 3As a child, the Ottawa South team Pavich was playing for went on an exchange to play a Montreal team under the chaperone Jean Beliveau. That evening, Pavich watched his first and only NHL game and met player Mario Tremblay. He promised himself at that tender age that the next time he was in the Forum, he would be wearing a Montreal Canadiens jersey. Ten years later, he kept that promise and wore that jersey, albeit only for a few weeks.

Not long after, Pavich began studying at the National University of Health Sciences in Chicago and graduated at the top of his class. After his studies, Pavich returned to Ottawa and immediately opened his practice, Atlas Chiropractic and Massage Therapy.

Pavich’s practice is welcoming and open. The waiting room walls are adorned with backstage passes for bands he has worked on, along with autographed sports memorabilia. Pavich’s patients typically hear about his clinic by word of mouth. While he has worked on big names, Pavich takes pride in being a family-friendly clinic.

“Chiropractors adjust and rid the spine and extremities of subluxations or distortions,” Pavich explains. “These distortions in the supporting structures of the body that support spinal vertebrae cause a stress response in the brain. Every time we adjust a patient, there’s a direct effect on brain chemistry, which allows the brain-body connection to adapt and heal. The body is a self-healing and self-regulating entity.”

Pavich adds that his practice uses gentle hands-on techniques, as well as additional modalities to add to the patient’s experience and treatment value, including the use of Intersegmental Traction and Hydromassage tables.

“EVERY TIME WE ADJUST A PATIENT, THERE’S A DIRECT EFFECT ON BRAIN CHEMISTRY, WHICH ALLOWS THE BRAIN-BODY CONNECTION TO ADAPT AND HEAL.”

Pavich is passionate about providing quality care for his patients. He tells the story of a young patient who was having difficulties learning and concentrating at school. With the help of a chiropractic treatment plan,  Pavich worked on the child to develop better focusing skills. Today, the now-teenaged patient is an aspiring golf player.

“My patient’s story is one of many little miracles, as I like to call them, that happen daily across this city and this country in chiropractic offices,” Dr. Pavich says. “Having a healthier community is what really motivates me to assist my patients, their families, friends, and coworkers. We all have a purpose in life, and hockey was my stepping stone to hone my eye-hand coordination and concentration to do and practice what I do today, and that’s being a Chiropractic doctor.”

Hockey Player to Chiropractor  – image 6

You can find out more about Karlo Pavich at atlaschiro.ca.

John’s Reno Tips Spring Into Reno Season

May 30, 2016 11:48 am
John’s Reno Tips Spring Into Reno Season

Photos courtesy of John Gordon. 

As we enter the key renovating season, there are certain trends that are turning up everywhere. Fresh from the Ottawa Home Show, here are a few of John’s hip tips.

Kitchens and Living Areas

Mixed materials in kitchen such as rustic wood beams, stone columns, subway tiles and bright shiny counter tops are part of the 2016 kitchen trends.

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Photo: Kevin Miller

Brick and stone: Exposed brick and stone walls are a great way to add a rustic charm and texture to your home.The kitchen is the perfect room to add a stone or brick accent wall that ties in your living area. Another option for these materials in your kitchen would be behind floating wooden shelves displaying decorations, photos or dishes. You can also use it for a backsplash. Need to cover up ceiling or looking to spruce it up? Try rustic wooden beams.They add warmth and depth to a space.

Cool cabinets: Solid colour cupboards with touches of natural wood are an innovative new trend that is likely to pick up this year.Cabinets can be painted in a very earth-toned grey colour with a wooden island or decorative legs. Go the extra mile and add a custom wood hood fan to the design?

Hardwood floors: If you want to make your kitchen look timeless, go for hardwood floors.They bring warmth to the kitchen design and go with any style or colour of cabinetry.It goes way beyond the shelf life of a 10-year trend cycle.

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Freestanding bathtubs allow for more placement options.

Photo: Courtesy John Gordon
The rough brick adds texture to the space and constrasts nicely with the highly polished stone on the floors and waterfall countertop.

Photo: Joshua Rablin

 

Hit the Loo

Grab bars and shower seats: More and more, we seem to be getting requests for shower seats. They are functional and good to have if you have seniors in your home. Grab bars are another trending addition to bathrooms. You can install them just about anywhere you might need them, but showers and tub surrounds are the most popular place to install them.

Freestanding tubs: Built-in tubs are becoming less popular these days. Freestanding tubs on the other hand, if your space will allow it, offer a lot of flexibility in placement and some might even chose to place their freestanding tub in their shower area.

Heated floors and towel racks: We can all agree that bathroom floors are generally cold, but they don’t have to be. Electric-heated floors are the solution.They are popular in bathrooms because of their ability to help dry out moisture and humidity. Heated towel racks, or towel warmers, are another great gadget to have in the bathroom. Who doesn’t enjoy being wrapped in a warm and fuzzy towel after a shower or a bath? They also act as a supplemental heater and damp outerwear dryer.

Colour trends: Beige used to be the number one colour choice but now white, greys and blacks are in this year with hints of brightness such as mauve, turquoise or light green accessories.

YourRenoGuys.com

John’s Reno Tips: A Guide to Building Permits

May 13, 2016 10:35 am
John’s Reno Tips: A Guide to Building Permits

 

JOHN’S RENO TIPS

A Guide to Building Permits

 

Navigating the world of building permits can be overwhelming for any homeowner. However, these permits can be a very important part of any home renovation or remodelling project. John Gordon, owner of Your Reno Guys, takes the guesswork out.

First of all, it is important to point out that in Ontario, anyone, regardless of qualifications, can practice construction. In order to increase quality control construction, the Ontario Building Code Act was enacted in 1976 to protect both municipalities and homeowners. There have been many amendments to it over the years. The Code is important to consider in your renovation projects.

There are two main reasons why a homeowner should get a building permit:

  1. Peace of mind that the work performed meets Building Code standards. A lot of trust must be placed in the renovator to do the plumbing, electric and mechanical work according to Building Code requirements. Because anyone can sell their services as a renovator, a second opinion is of the utmost importance.A city building inspector is very knowledgeable about Building Code regulations and will catch any mistakes.
  2. Peace of mind for homeowners so there will not be any legal consequences after a renovation. If a renovated home is sold, the new homeowner may sue if the renovations were completed without a permit. Acquiring a permit A Guide to Building Permits after the work was performed can be very invasive and in some cases the space may need to be completely demolished because the bones were not built properly, according to Code.

If you are a homeowner of a newly renovated home where the previous homeowner performed the renovations, it is best to ask for a copy of the construction plans and the building permit. If they cannot be given to you for whatever reason, you can ask the city to supply you with a copy. Fill out an application for a Compliance Summary Report, which will give you the history of the property, what had been applied for and at what time.

The Permit Process

When applying for a permit, the city requires a clear plan of what is being proposed. A plan is necessary when architectural, plumbing and/or mechanical work is being performed. Plans can be drawn by the homeowner or by a registered designer with a Building Code identification number (BCIN) – another measure developed by the government to help ensure that plans are completed in accordance to Building Code standards, making the review process easier and quicker.

Applying for a building permit can be fairly simple. The City of Ottawa website provides a great deal of helpful information to get you started on the right foot. If you are unsure of whether your project requires a building permit, the best way to determine your needs is to email buildingpermits@ottawa.ca or call Building Code Services at 3-1-1. If you are told you require a permit, always ask to have an email sent to you so you have written confirmation.


Common renovation projects that do not require a building permit:

  • Painting or applying wallpaper
  • Installing new finished flooring (hardwood, tile, etc.)
  • Replacing bathroom and kitchen cabinetry (when plumbing, dishwasher location and vents are not being affected)
  • Replacing plumbing fixtures when they are staying in the same location
  • Building a deck that is lower than 24 inches off the ground

Next Steps

  • Complete a building permit application, which can be found on the City of Ottawa website. Bring the completed application along with two sets of plans to any of Ottawa’s Client Service Centres, which can also be found on the City of Ottawa website.
  • The fees for building permits are structured as $11 for every $1,000 of forecasted project cost.
  • The review period for a building permit varies by the complexity of the project but for residential renovations you should expect 5 to 10 business days.
  • Once your permit is issued,it must be posted in a window so it is visible from outside your home. When picking up the permit, it will be explained to you that specific inspections will need to be scheduled as the work is completed.
  • Building permits are essential for a successful renovation and city officials have made efforts to make the acquisition process as smooth as possible to ensure homeowners understand the process. Renovating without a permit can be as damaging as driving without respecting traffic signals. Protect yourself and your home by acquiring the proper building permits before your next renovation project.

Don’t miss the upcoming Ottawa Home + Garden Show, March 25-28 at the EY Centre, for more expert tips and advice. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www. ottawahomeshow.com.

YourRenoGuys.com

Five Unique Ways to Enjoy Ottawa’s Nightlife

May 2, 2016 1:04 pm
Five Unique Ways to Enjoy Ottawa’s Nightlife

Clubbing and bars not your thing? Fortunately, Ottawa has so much more going on once the sun goes down. From fantastic quick food to quirky stops downtown, there’s always a way to turn your evening into a blast. We have a list of five off-the-wall things you can try in the city this weekend, no pints required.

roulette-1253626_1280 (1)1. Go Gaming

If you’re looking for something with higher stakes than the average night out, both Ottawa and Gatineau have great gaming options. If you head south you’ll find the Rideau Carleton Entertainment Centre, and just across the river is the swanky Casino Lac Leamy.
If an exciting night in is more your speed though, where the food, the drinks and the vibe are all up to you, then Casino.com is your best gaming option. Just follow the rainbow and get welcome bonus for your first try.

House of Targ-8

Photo by Andre Gagne.

2. Play Pinball at House of Targ

House of Targ isn’t for everyone, but those who dig it are fans for life. Settled into a basement just beside bank street, Targ is always full of the sound of pinball machines, old-school arcade games and perogies sizzling. The atmosphere is a great combination of chill and fun, and every few minutes one of the staff uses a microphone to call out that the next person’s order of perogies are ready. The wait for your own name to be called is intense.
So grab a drink, find a game and make sure to bring some change.

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Photo by Erin Noseworthy.

3. Go out for Tacos

Ottawa is being recognized more and more as a city that offers some fantastic snacks, and no quick-bite is shining brighter than tacos. Some of the biggest buzz has been surrounding the tacos from El Camino on Elgin Street. You can order them with a bigger meal or just grab them at the takeout window, but either way, these tacos will surprise you. There are a ton of choices, including the basics like pork or chicken and some out of this world options like Japanese eggplant and Ox tongue.

Sidedoor Contemporary Kitchen has slightly more upscale tacos, which cost about $9.50 for two pieces. They’re worth the cost though, as each one comes in a deliciously soft shell and inside you’ll find a constellation of interesting flavours. The Bajan crispy-fish are a must try.

If you’re looking for classic tacos that are a little more economical, Corazon De Maiz in the market or Nacho Cartel in Sandy Hill won’t leave you disappointed.

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Photo by Eric Murphy.

4. Do a Haunted Walk

Do ghosts get your heart racing? Ottawa has downtown tours that go in and around some of the city’s spookiest locales. The Haunted Walk of Ottawa has experienced guides that will take you from Sparks Street through the heart of the ByWard Market and even into the Ottawa Jail Hostel. Once called the Carleton County Jail, the hostel is the site of three executions and is often considered one of the most haunted buildings in North America.

5. Play Some Board Games

Many locals don’t know that Ottawa has not one but two fantastic board game cafes downtown.

You can find Monopolatte on Somerset Street just on the edge of China town. Inside is a quirky and colourful café with just about every board game you can imagine stacked on the shelves. The servers are friendly and have an encyclopedic knowledge of how to play each game they offer.

A more casual alternative to Monopolatte is The Loft, a board game lounge just outside of the University of Ottawa. The décor alone is a good enough reason to visit. The Loft has a gorgeous hardwood floor set beneath gigantic wooden beams that crisscross the ceiling. The old stone walls are only interrupted by an enormous mural and floor-to-ceiling shelves that hold up their massive collection of games. So if your weekend goal is to cozy up to a fireplace and get your scrabble on, this is the place to visit.

Music To Our Ears

April 15, 2016 9:00 am
Music To Our Ears

These Alfa Genus V2 headphones are high quality, refined and, well, pardon the pun, music to our ears! Lightweight and durable, Alfa Genus V2 headphones feature a unique tuning filter system that brings out the best of your favourite music genre. You can even control the highs, lows and neutrals in your music! Visit rockjawaudio.com for more details.

OICC Campaign Launches with a Leg Up on its $5 Million Goal

April 8, 2016 2:39 pm
OICC Campaign Launches with a Leg Up on its $5 Million Goal

When the Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre launched its first major fundraising campaign on Wednesday in the Canadian Tire Centre, they had a little surprise to go along with the public announcement.

“I am pleased to announce that we have now reached $1 million towards our $5 million goal,” said Bryan Murray, General Manager of the Ottawa Senators Hockey Club and the OICC Campaign’s Honorary Chair.

By the time they’d launched the ambitious campaign, called “Changing How We Live with Cancer,” OICC already raised one fifth of their goal.

“We are excited that our fundraising is off to a strong start,” Murray said.

The early boost came from two separate donations. On the day of the launch, the OICC announced a $100,000 donation from the Ottawa Senators Foundation, and a contribution of $900,000 from an anonymous foundation. That money will go to funding essential patient programs, innovative research and subsidized patient care for those unable to afford integrative cancer care at the OICC.

The OICC approach to cancer care helps people live the best they can while undergoing treatment by reducing side effects, improving quality of life and helping prevent recurrence. Throughout the morning, different people whose lives had been affected by the OICC spoke up about the work it does. CBC News Anchor Lucy van Oldenbarneveld, who was diagnosed with stage two breast cancer in 2015, delivered a particularly moving testament.

“The OICC has been a lighthouse in the storm for me,” said van Oldenbarneveld. “Trying to figure how to manage a diagnosis like breast cancer is something that requires more than just surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. For me, it also meant dealing with the emotional fallout, and the physical recovery from each round of treatment. The OICC has been there to help guide the way.”

Murray, who has fought his own battle against stage four colon cancer, said that the Integrative Cancer Centre has helped “keep both my physical and mental strength high.”

“The OICC and their tremendous staff have allowed me to enjoy all of my normal daily activities, including quality time with family and my passion towards bringing a championship NHL team to Ottawa,” he added.

You can find out more about the OICC at oicc.ca/foundation, and you can donate to the “Changing How We Live with Cancer” campaign at oicc.ca/donate.

Second Skin

March 22, 2016 10:15 am
Second Skin

Surfs up! Take one look at these suits and it’s obvious: SlipIns are fashionable, functional and fresh. Designed to help women and children get in and out of bulky wetsuits with ease, the colourful and fun SlipIns suits can also be worn alone. Designed, tested and loved by surfers, SlipIns make you feel beautiful, fabulous and, most importantly, comfortable. A bold adventure awaits. slipins.com

Contest: Go Green at the Ottawa Home and Garden Show

March 16, 2016 1:17 pm
Contest: Go Green at the Ottawa Home and Garden Show

Spring is fast approaching, and that means it’s time to dig out your trowel and dust off those gardening gloves. Ottawa Life Magazine is helping you get ready for the planting season by giving away two tickets to five lucky winners to attend the Ottawa Home and Gardening Show.

To enter your name into the contest draw, all you have to do is tweet or comment on our contest Instagram post what you want to do with your garden this summer and include the hashtag #Ottgarden and tag @OttawaHomeShow. So if you feel like giving your garden a rock path or growing some tomatoes, radishes or ghost pepper chilies, let us know in a tweet or Instagram comment and make sure to include #Ottgarden and @OttawaHomeShow.

(Bonus: A tweet and instagram comment count as separate entries, so if you do both, your name goes in twice!)

Also, if you wanted to buy tickets for the Gardening show, we have a special promo code that can save you a few dollars. Just enter the promo code “ottlife” when you go to buy a ticket, and you’ll save $4 off the original $13 price.

The contest will run until March 22nd, when we will announce the winners. The Home and Garden Show runs from Match 25th to the 28th. You can find more information at ottawahomeshow.com. For our contest rules, click here.

Good luck, and happy planting!

Best Picks Roundup

March 11, 2016 11:31 am
Best Picks Roundup

Catalyst Weatherproof Phone Case

Stylish glasses? Check. Comfortable clothing? Check. Yummy delights? Check! It’s safe to say that our Best Picks roundup has got your gift giving for any upcoming occasion covered. Check out some of our favourite picks below.

derek-cardigan-7005-brown-aqua+frClearly Stylish
Clearly is the go-to website to find your 2016 style. With unbeatable prices and personal help an email or phone call away, grab your current prescription and start shopping for beautiful new frames. clearly.ca


A Truly Smartphone
Finally, a smartphone that gets all the important elements right: The HTC One A9HTCOneA9_DeepGarnet is the complete package. It has a stunning design, front and rear 13 MP camera, powerful editing tools, fantastic performance and cutting edge software. htc.com


W_Heatzone_PurpleDahliaKeeping Warm
Part of Columbia’s Titanium Collection, the Heatzone 1000 is insanely warm. Featuring a helmet-compatible hood, ski-pass pocket and the ability to keep you warm and having fun, no matter what extreme conditions come your way. columbiasportswear.ca


Reading the Railway
Canadian Pacific: Creating a Brand, Building a Nation is the intriguing story of a Canadian Pacific - Standard Edition - ISBN 9783981655049 book coverprivate company that manages to unite a nation politically and geographically. Canadian Pacific: Creating a Brand, Building a Nation is a luxury coffee table book sure to unearth a feeling of Canadiana. ISBN 9783981655049


Weather Protection
Avoid tech trauma with Catalyst Waterproof Cases. Featuring a hard-coated optical lens, true sound acoustics and an ultra-slim waterproof case, you’ll even be able to trust the kids with it. wittidesign.com


Delectable Delights
Mustard, vinegar, and gherkins…oh my! Maille gourmet condiments are great gift ideas for the COFFRET GIFT CANADA FACE BD(1)favourite foodie in your life. With a wide variety of mustard’s, vinegar’s and gift packs to choose from, you can bet that this gift will be one that will surely cut the mustard. maille.com


Brow Raising
Parissa makes eyebrow shaping a dream with ready-to-use Brow Shaper and mini Wax Strips. Shape and maintain your brows up to six weeks, and keep the experience mess-free. This kit is ideal for beginners, touch-ups and travel, and even includes Azulene Oil to sooth and soften the skin. parissa.com

McDonald’s Delivers Experience to Remember

March 9, 2016 3:43 pm
McDonald’s Delivers Experience to Remember

All photos courtesy of McDonald’s Canada. 

With new Guest Experience Leaders, cooks, Self-Order Kiosks, table service and a hundred new ways to make your burger yours, the golden arches are looking a lot different in Ottawa.

McDonald’s Canada has officially rolled out their ‘Restaurant Experience of the Future’ in 25 Ottawa-area restaurants. This experience comes with plenty of new features that put guests in the driver’s seat.

“It’s really been an overall transformation,” says Natalie Saulnier, the Regional Vice President for McDonald’s.  “It’s about changing and personalizing the experience of the guest.”

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A Guest Experience Leader shows one customer how to navigate the self-order kiosk.

When you walk into one of these restaurants, the first new thing you’ll likely notice is the giant, easy to use touch screen – similar to a tablet or Ipad. You can use these screens to order exactly what you want from classic favourites, like the iconic Big Mac, to something completely different like creating your own burger.

To make the ‘Create Your Taste’ option extra special, McDonald’s is now offering guests the choice of nearly 30 ingredients – some that they’ve never seen before. There are five cheeses to choose from, like blue cheese, and toppings like guacamole and the ever popular sriracha sauce (the lifeblood of students everywhere!) along with two new bun options.

“You can also choose to have it in a lettuce wrap instead of a bun, which is my personal favourite actually,” says Saulnier.

Perhaps another interesting tidbit is that if you’re someone with eccentric tastes, you can combine them in whatever bizarre way you want – it truly is up to you. You can have three patties on your bun with nothing else at all, or come up with a really unique masterpiece.

“[There’s] no limit!” says Saulnier. “The way you like it we is the way we will make it…the combinations are pretty endless.”

DSC_4673

There is a lot you can do with the new ‘Build Your Own Burger’ option.

If you do build your own burger, a cook who specializes in Create Your Taste will start working on it as soon as the order comes in. When the meal is done, a “Guest Experience Leader” will bring it right to your table. All of these features are launching alongside the McCafé Bakery, which appeal to a customer’s sweet tooth with French croissants, mini chocolatines and fruity cream cheese Danishes.

What might be most interesting about all these new additions is how they’ve challenged the way many people might view automated customer service. When we think of ‘self-order kiosks,’ it’s easy to imagine these restaurants will be cutting jobs, but with the new cooks, guest experience leaders and table delivery service McDonald’s Canada is actually adding about 10 to 15 jobs per location, which stacks up to about 300 new jobs across the city!

“Today we’re taking three giant steps forward, with not only the reate-your-own-burger concept, but with fabulous new pastries and the self-serve kiosks,” says Jeff Robinson, owner of seven McDonald’s franchises in the National Capital Region.

“It’s very exciting,” he adds, “another step in our transformation.”

You can find out more about McDonald’s new, fresh experience and ‘create your taste’ at mcdonalds.ca/createyourtaste.

January 15th to 17th

January 15, 2016 1:54 pm
January 15th to 17th

Here at Ottawa Life we are always looking out for great things to do on a weekend! Check out some of the events that are happening right here in our city this weekend.

TD Place Stadium, Ottawa 67’s vs. Niagara IceDogs Jan.15th (7:00pm)
This Friday, come support your local OHL hockey team at the TD Place Stadium. This match between the Ottawa 67’s and the Niagara IceDogs should be a very intense one. Both teams are currently ranked second in their divisions which will make for an interesting match. Tickets are on sale here.

wolfgang-branded-event-image__large

Photo courtesy of Andrea Ruttan.

National Arts Centre, WolfGANG – Jan. 16th (9:00pm)

This certainly isn’t your grandparent’s classical music session. Mercury Lounge and the NAC present THE WolfGANG Sessions, a mix between old and new. WolfGANG mixes contemporary music and indie classical with collaborations between the NAC Orchestra, and adds a touch of flair with video projection and DJs. Scoop up your tickets here.

Wall Space Gallery, The Great Escape – Jan. 16th
We find nothing more romantic than spending a weekend in an art gallery. Why not escape from the cold weather this weekend and admire the vivacious paintings of West-Coast artist Erica Hawkes and Toronto-based artist Laura Culic. Both artists provide a refreshing and unique take on landscapes.

coreymax2015

Photo courtesy of Corey Sauve.

Flapjacks, Kitchen Party – Jan. 16th (10:00pm)
Have you ever been to a Kitchen party before? If not, it probably isn’t what your thinking of. We guarantee that the Flapjacks Kitchen Party on Preston St. won’t involve any dirty dishes for you to clean. Kitchen Party was founded by two DJs  in 2011 and has been a big hit ever since. This party includes the best of funk, disco, hip hop, techno and everything in between. It’s a party you do not want to miss.

National Art Gallery, Art Moves Me – Jan. 17th (11:00am – 4:00pm)
Family Sundays at the National Gallery of Canada is the place to be! Catch an all-ages dance performance and workshop this Sunday by Luv2Groove. Then, release your inner artist with some dancing puppet making. Songs, stories, sensory-based play is also available for kiddos ages 0-2, and those ages 3-12 can catch a gallery tour that begs the question: can art move?

Weekend Roundup for January 8th to 10th

January 8, 2016 2:21 pm
Weekend Roundup for January 8th to 10th
Vikings-Canadian-Museum-of-History-985x552

© Canadian Museum of History

Canadian Museum of History, Vikings exhibit – Jan. 9th (9:30am)

Vikings are definitely in vogue right now. With the History channel show of that name gearing up for its fourth season and a new Netflix series based around the famously brutal raiders just starting, there’s no better time to dive into the truth behind the legend.

The Museum of History’s myth-busting Vikings exhibit has been open since early December, and its collection of ancient helmets, swords and pendants more than worth the visit. If you’re looking to go this weekend, the museum is closed on Friday but re-opens Saturday.

NAC Orchestra: Symphonic Vikings – Jan. 9th (1:30pm and 3:30pm).

A spin on Viking legends, Symphonic Vikings at the NAC Southam Hall will delight, thrill you and make you laugh. This performance is 60 minutes with no intermission. With tickets starting at $23, Symphonic Vikings is a great and budget-friendly way to spend your Saturday!

Studio Sixty Six, Unsold by Stéphanie St-Jean Aubre (visual arts) – Jan. 9th (11:00am).

DSC04902

Photo courtesy of Danuta Sierhuis

Many of us try to shy away from our failures or sweep them under the rug. But what’s an artist with a few too many unsold painting to do when those works start piling up? Hold an exhibition, of course!

Lasting until January 24th, Studio Sixty Six is hosting the fascinatingly simple and eye-catching works of Stéphanie St-Jean Aubre in their Unsold exhibit. The nature of the exhibit explores the beauty in failure and second chances.

If you’re looking to go this weekend, Studio Sixty-Six is open Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. You can find out more about Unsold at http://studiosixtysix.ca/blogs/exhibitions

Avant-Garde Bar: Adema and the No Bones, jazz music show – Jan. 8th (8:00pm)

Listen to Adema and the No Bones perform jazz classics at one of Ottawa’s favourite watering holes: the Avant-Garde. The band boasts members who have played at the Ottawa and Montreal Jazz Festivals, respectively. Cover is $5, fun is free.

macbeth_posterMacbeth at the Bytowne Cinema – Jan. 8th (6:55 p.m.) and Jan. 9th (9:15 p.m.)

One of theatre’s darkest stories gets an even darker treatment with director Justin Kurzel’s take on the Scottish Play. In the latest contemporary go at Macbeth, a brooding Michael Fassbender donnes the crown while Marion Cotillard plays an unsettlingly unhinged Lady Macbeth.

Perfect for a date night that’s a little on the macabre side, Macbeth will be on the Bytowne Cinema’s big screen Friday at 6:55 p.m. and Saturday at 9:15 p.m. You can find the full schedule and more of the gorey details at http://www.bytowne.ca/movie/macbeth-2015

Algonquin Commons Theatre, Happy Life New Year Variety Show – Jan. 9th  (7:00pm).

The Federation of Ottawa Chinese-Canadian Organizations (FOCCO) has grown to be the largest Chinese community organization that includes 40 groups from across Ottawa. FOCCO represents a wide variety of academic, social and cultural organizations, and proudly presents the Happy Life New Year Variety Show at the Algonquin Commons Theatre. Tickets are $20 for floor and main level centre seats, and $15 for floor and main level side seating.

2015 Best Picks Holiday Round Up

December 18, 2015 12:17 pm
2015 Best Picks Holiday Round Up

Oh no! Are you in gift giving limbo? Never fear, 2015 Ottawa Life Magazine’s Best Picks Holiday Round Up is here! Here are our some of our favourite Best Picks for the holidays!

NBA - Spalding Ball.

There is nothing wrong with sticking to a classic, and a Spalding Basketball will do the trick for your future NBA or WNBA player! High quality and long lasting, Spalding Basketballs are the official game balls of the NBA. Go out and shoot some hoops this holiday season! shop.spalding.com/


If you are looking for that perfect holiday gift for your favorite coffee drinker, then TH Holiday Mug-2015look no further. A Tim Hortons gift pack is in order! Drop by your local Tim’s and pick up a Collector’s Mug and a tree ornament (featuring a Tim Hortons restaurant inside a dreamy snow globe). timhortons.com


kodiacKodiak knows how to get around in a Canadian winter. Kodiak’s years of home and native experience bring comfort even when winter turns bitter cold. From city to slopes, Kodiak handles it all. With the world’s very first fully waterproof leather boot, Kodiak is forever a leader in footwear engineering and design. www.kodiakboots.com


Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 12.11.50 PMCreate a WiFi access point at any location with cellular coverage with the AirCard 785S. Connect up to 15 WiFi devices to your service provider’s mobile broadband network. Complete with a colour display with data usage met, the AirCard has a 10-hour battery life to keep you going. netgear.com


We love these House of Marley Little Bird in-ear headphones. Made with little birdrecyclable plastic and packaging, these headphones provide ultimate comfort and signature sound wherever your music takes you. thehouseofmarley.ca


Dec2015_BP_1-CR35-light on with hand main(Amazon)Wake up to a blast from the past with Electrohome’s Retro Clock Radio. A great gift for those who are sensitive to loud sounds, or who have trouble waking up, this clock radio’s twin LED lights brighten as wake-up time nears. electrohome.com


Dec2015_BP_A32_LeftFr_MattDarkGray_EN_Canada_NSThe HTC Desire 626 is more than just a good looking smartphone. It has a 720p screen and HTC BlinkFeed® personalized info feed that updates to your needs throughout the day. The device’s memory is expandable up to 200GB. htc.com/ca/smartphones/htc-desire/


Dec2015_BP_Zest bookZEST Your Life – A Taste of Inner Wisdom by Linda Babulic will inspire the favourite woman in your life. zestyourlife.com


Dec2015_BP_Diablo Steak 2Nova Scotia based, Fuego Diablo delivers premium steaks to any doorstep in Canada. With a variety of steaks to choose from (including filet mignon, porterhouse, ribeye, striploin, tomahawk and chateaubriand), it’s a gift that will bring a mouth-watering smile to any meat connoisseur. The steaks arrive in vacuum-sealed packages and do not require a marinade, sauce or rub. Place your order at fuegodiablo.com


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Made from wood that has been sourced from local family-run wood lots, Stinson Studio bowls are one of a kind. Finished with a food-safe combination of vegetable oil and a beeswax-mineral oil finish, these beautiful bowls can be used for hot and cold items or as art pieces. stinsonstudios.ca


The tech fanatic on your list will appreciate Bracktron’s new BT5-708-2(5)JamSpot portable tablet stand. The adjustable easel design can hold any device and provide wireless stereo sound for music, movies, gaming or video chats on the go. With a ten-hour battery life, charge the device overnight to keep it powered during your day. bracketron.com


Dec2015_BP_12 DaysofBeautyBeautyMinisBeauty Minis spice up the 12 Days of Christmas. walmart.ca


Dec2015_BP_CaudalieThe next best thing to the gift of eternal youth is Caudalie. From its star product, Resveratrol Lift Firming Serum to the eye lifting balm, face lifting moisturizer, night infusion cream and facial treatment, the line has all of your antiaging needs covered. caudalie.com


SB cover pulled back - 300 DPISay goodbye to tangled sheets and start your day out right with Simplified Bedding’s innovative all-in-one duvet cover and flat sheet. The patented zip-off flat sheet comes off for easy laundering. simplifiedbedding.com


Lightweight, durable and incredibly sleek, the Trinity Hyperion HYPERION_1[1]Earbuds exemplify high-end technology. trinityaudioengineering.com


Dec2015_BP_Pillows_goldterra_zpstsvzjr7lPerfect for anyone who loves fine art or simply the finer things in life, Arcadia Park Designs intertwine the artistic photography of Katherine Henry with premium textile design. Their pillows feature timeless and diverse looks. arcadiaparkdesigns.com


Dec2015_BP_Tolmie_mainMeet the Hudson’s Bay’s 11th Annual Charity Bear, Tolmie. 100 per cent of the fuzzy creature’s net proceeds support the HBC Foundation’s Strength in Stripes program. To date, the HBC Charity Bears have raised more than $1.6 million and continue to improve the lives of Canadians. Tolmie bear is named after Scottish Dr. William Fraser Tolmie, who in 1833, developed the first scientific agricultural operation in the Pacific Northwest. thebay.com


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Three gifts in one with Be Delectable Mix and Mingle coconut and cream trio. walmart.ca


Dec2015_BP_Funkins_0453With over 3.4 million tons of paper towels and napkins being thrown into landfills each year, Funkins are a bright, reusable and ecofriendly alternative. Made specifically for kids using 100 per cent reusable cloth and available in many bright patterns, Funkins are sure to be the “it” accessory of the lunchroom. myfunkins.com


Trail Crampon w_ bootFor the adventurous folk in your life, the Hillsound Trail Crampon is a must-have for added traction while hiking on local trails or deep in the backcountry. The Crampon was tested on the trails of the Himalayas, making it guaranteed to handle difficult winter terrain. The ergonomic plate system also reduces muscular fatigue. hillsound.com/hillsound-product/trailcrampon/


Notes of toffee and accents of honey make Carolans Irish Cream a decadent treat for happy hour. carolans.ie carolans_bottle_glass


Lip Colour Collection - All in PackagingPucker up this season with Hard Candy’s Lip Colour Collection. walmart.ca


The water-resistant leather and the textile upper of the KEEN Elsa boot combined with its warm sherpa fleece collar and heat reflecting barrier will keep toes toasty in the coldest Ottawa weather. keenfootwear.com


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You can’t go wrong with a classic. Chanel No. 5 is the iconic feminine fragrance for women that will make any woman feel like a goddess. For men, Bleu de Chanel offers a woody aromatic fragrance for men who defy the ordinary. thebay.com


Nobody has ever appreciated climbing into a cold bed after a cold day. Get comfortable, and wrap yourself in the warmth you deserve at night whileMSU6PQS-T000-12A50 resting comfortably on a heated, not to mention waterproof Sunbeam mattress pad. Equipped with preheat settings, auto-off functionality and ThermoFine® technology to auto-adjust for consistent heat control, so you can finally fall asleep as soon as your head hits the pillow. sunbeam.ca 


 

BSM8SFQ-RW09-17A50 Branches_frontStop losing sleep to winter, and get the warmth you need to sleep soundly. Sunbeam’s ultra-soft, microplush heated winter blanket is sure to keep you toasty despite frigid outdoor conditions. Featuring ThermoFine® technology that auto-adjusts for consistent heat control, and a variety of sizes to fit any need, the Sunbeam Patterned Heated Blanket is an all sewn up winter essential. sunbeam.ca

Written by: Samantha Lapierre and Valerie Crew

Explore Lake Placid, a Winter Wonderland!

December 16, 2015 1:23 pm
Explore Lake Placid, a Winter Wonderland!

Photos Courtesy of Golden Arrow Resort.

Written by: Alessandra Gerebizza & Mike McEwan.

Long before hosting its first winter Olympics in 1932, Lake Placid had developed a reputation as a winter destination for the active outdoor enthusiast, a character that still remains to this day. Melvil Dewey, inventor of the Dewey decimal system, first laid these roots with the creation of the Placid Park Club in 1895, “a place where educators might find health, strength and inspiration at modest cost.” The club quickly gained national recognition for its commitment to winter sports excellence and the property grew to encompass 9,600 acres by 1923.  Nearly 100 years later, Lake Placid has hosted two winter Olympics (1932 and 1980). Not bad for a quiet upstate New York town with a population of less than 3000.

Dogsled rides for the familyTurning onto Lake Placid Main Street on a mild, late-winter evening you can’t help but feel the excitement and energy that once filled this small town centred around two lakes in the shadows of the Adirondack Mountains. The streets are no longer filled with aspiring athletes, but the energy remains as young families, outdoor enthusiasts and curious tourists dot the colorful shops and restaurants that light up the streetscape. Hotels, motels and bed and breakfasts to suit your every need are dotted among the other local shops.

Amidst the myriad of accommodation options is the Golden Arrow Lakeside Resort. The Holderieds family, originally from Germany, bought the Golden Arrow in 1974 and continue to own and operate the hotel with serious attention to sustainability and environmental stewardship in all areas of operation.  The first and only hotel in the United States to receive a Platinum rating from the prestigious Audobon International Organization for their green lodging program, Golden Arrows’ many rooms come with large soaker tubs, fireplaces and dramatic views of Mirror Lake with the Adirondack peaks in the background. The rooms maintain their focus on environmental sustainability through initiatives like recycled decor, building innovation and an extensive recycling program.

The hotel offers a variety of family friendly activities you can access from the grand lobby, which opens onto Mirror Lake’s centre. Cross country skiers can enjoy ski in/ski out lodging from anywhere on the first floor. A really fun experience on the lake is the ever-popular dog sled rides, a big hit with both children and adults.

Once settled in, definitely purchase an Olympic Passport for $35 USD that provides entry to many former and current Olympic training facilities. With your Olympic Passport, you can begin your visit with a trip to the Lake Placid Olympic Museum, or as it was known, the Field House, just a short walk from the Golden Arrow and site of the famous “Miracle on Ice” where the US Men’s Hockey Team managed the unlikely defeat of the U.S.S.R. in 1980. Here you can learn the Olympic history that helped shape Lake Placid and its surrounding communities. If you prefer to see the sites where some of these great athletes competed firsthand, you can take the short drive to the Olympic Sports Complex and, if you are fortunate, witness future Olympians in training at the bobsled/luge track.  If you aren’t afraid of heights you can visit the Skydeck at the Olympic Jumping Complex and marvel at the view from the 120 metre ski jump.

Not far from the Olympic Complexes is Whiteface Mountain, a former winter getaway for President John F. Kennedy and his family.  Included with your Olympic passport is a gondola ride to the top of Littleface Mountain. This is a must do for anyone who wants to get some great panoramic pictures of the mountains on a clear day.  If you are going to be at Whiteface Mountain you may as well take advantage of the highest vertical elevation (1045m) in eastern North America and hit the slopes. Whiteface Mountain has trails to suit every level of skier or snowboarder and offers plenty of rentals and lessons. When it’s time for a rest, grab a table or a cozy Adirondack chair on the large outdoor patio at the base of the mountain or stay later and catch a live act inside the bar. If downhill sports aren’t for you, Whiteface Mountain and the surrounding national parks provide untold kilometres of hiking and cross country skiing trails to explore in every season.

Whiteface Mountain powder

After a busy day of outdoor adventure, Lake Placid has plenty of places to eat on Main Street, within walking distance of Golden Arrow. During the day, Big Mountain Deli and Creperie is a popular spot for locals and tourists alike, offering 46 different sandwiches, each named after the 46 peaks once thought to be within the Adirondack Mountain range.  At night, Smoke Signals and the Great Adirondack Steak and Seafood offer savory and unique local dishes that are sure to nourish and satisfy even the most famished returning adventurer. Generations at The Golden Arrow has the best selection of Burgers in town. Whatever it is you’re after, you can find it on the lovely Main Street.

After riding down Whiteface, visiting the Olympic sites, sledding around Mirror Lake and feeding your inner foodie on Main Street, be sure to visit The Whiteface Lodge spa and treat yourself to any one of the restorative winter facials. The Vitamin C Wrinkle Repair and Brightening Repair Facial is most popular in the winter, and it’s especially refreshing after you’ve been out on the slopes all day!

Whether you’re looking for a family getaway, a romantic couple’s escape or a great place to shred some powder, Lake Placid will deliver on all fronts. Pack up the car and get ready to enjoy this winter playground!

For more information on Golden Arrow visit golden-arrow.com.

From Ottoman to Ottawa

December 14, 2015 4:23 pm
From Ottoman to Ottawa

Canada is a nation of immigrants with a long and proud tradition of celebrating diversity. Part of that diversity includes citizens of Turkish origin. Turks first arrived in Canada in 1901 in small numbers from the Ottoman Empire, working mainly in Ontario in mining and logging camps. However, deteriorating relations between the Ottoman Empire and Europe and Commonwealth countries, combined with a Canadian government policy that discouraged “Asian” immigration, resulted in a low number of Turkish immigrants to Canada for several decades. In fact, at the outset of WWI, the federal government classified Turkish immigrants as “enemy aliens” and then used the War Measures Act to forcibly relocate a small group of Ottoman Turks from Brantford, Ontario to a remote internment camp in Kapuskasing, Northern Ontario. They had done nothing wrong but fear, prejudice and the attitudes of the time prevailed.

Turkish immigration to Canada started to increase during the 1960s when the government of Turkey encouraged, and financially supported, Turkish students to study in Canada.

During that period, many of the Turks who came to Canada were either students or they were professionals, many of them doctors and engineers whose expertise was in high demand in Canada. By 1972, there were 9,342 Turkish-born persons living in Canada. The next significant migration to Canada came in 1989 when thousands of Turks in Bulgaria began fleeing the unrest and oppression of the Bulgarian government. Many were welcomed in Canada as political and economic refugees. By 2006, according to Canadian census data, there were 43,700 Turks (from Turkey) living in Canada. The majority were concentrated in Toronto (14,970), Montreal (10,345),Vancouver (3,380), Ottawa (2,455), Hamilton (1,590), Calgary (1,305), and Edmonton (1,250). However, the actual number of Turkish Canadians in Canada is believed to be much higher.

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The Ortaköy Mosque is located in one of Istanbul’s most chic, artsy neighbourhoods

Today, the Turkish diaspora in Canada makes contributions across the county working in  numerous  professions in business, government, the private sector, academia and the labour sector. Canadians of Turkish descent are proud to cherish the Charter of Rights and Freedoms in Canada and the principles of democracy. They are also proud of their Turkish heritage and history.

The Council of Turkish Canadians (CTC) is a non-profit lobby organization based in Ottawa that undertakes advocacy in the interests of promoting a better understanding of Turkish heritage and history, advancing the positive image of Turks around the world, demonstrating a strong presence in public and political domains and participating actively in Canadian politics.

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A view of Istanbul and the Bosphorus at night.

For the past 8 years, the CTC has organized thTurkish Canadian Youth Congress, bringing together Canadian youth of Turkish origin and other ethnic and cultural backgrounds. These are active youth who are willing to take a positive and constructive role on issues related to Turkish Canadians and wish to contribute to a balanced view and representation of Turkish Canadians in Canada and around the world.The 2015 Congress was held in Toronto the weekend prior to the federal election and featured an impressive list of speakers, including His Excellency Selçuk Ünal, Ambassador of the Republic of Turkey to Canada, Paul Heinbecker, the former Canadian Ambassador to the United Nations & Distinguished Fellow at Wilfrid Laurier University, Dr. Ozay Mehmet, a distinguished Research Professor in International Affairs from Carleton University and Ergun Kirlikovali, Past President of the Assembly of Turkish American Associations.

The conference was opened by Zahide Sezerman, the President of the CTC who spoke of the importance of secularism and the need for young Canadians of Turkish descent to be involved in Canada’s democracy and to make a contribution. Ambassador Ünal provided facts about the Turkey-Canada bilateral relationship and more importantly, friendship. Paul Heinbecker looked at  implications for Turkey and made a passionate case for Canada to do more for refugees from Syria. He gave the audience some great insight into what would happen if Justin Trudeau were elected Prime Minister and less than a month later it appears Heinbecker got it right as Trudeau has moved quickly to change Canada’s foreign policy regarding Syrian refugees.

The conference featured a presentation by Dr. Christopher Gunn, Assistant ProfessorCoastal Carolina University. His talk, The Rise and Fall of Armenian Terrorism from 1973-1994, touched on the horrendous 1982 assassination of the Turkish military attaché to Canada, Colonel Atilla Altıkat. The act shocked the country and Ottawa residents in particular, and was forcefully condemned by then Prime Minister of Canada, Pierre Trudeau. In September 2012, a monument was erected to the memory of Col. Altıkat and to remember all the fallen  diplomats who were victims of terrorism. To this day, the killers are free at large and the RCMP has an ongoing investigation into the case.

Dec2015_TurkeyCanada_logoThe students at the forum shared ideas on how they can contribute to both the Canadian political and government process and ideas they have with regards to Canada playing a responsible and relevant role in world affairs. All came away from the weekend with a better understanding of Turkish heritage, history, and values and how to apply those principles to make their own effective contributions to Canada’s multicultural mosaic.

Over the next several issues of Ottawa Life Magazine, the Canada- Turkey friendship series will continue to examine the history, role and contribution of Canadians of Turkish decent.

The Turkish Community invites you to join us at Fundraising Gala Dinner for Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, CHEO on the occasion of Turkish National Sovereignty and International Children’s Day on Saturday, April 23, 2016 at Delta Ottawa City Center. For information : tcca.ottawa@gmail.com.

The Five Downtown Hot Chocolates You Have to Try Before Christmas

December 11, 2015 1:56 pm
The Five Downtown Hot Chocolates You Have to Try Before Christmas

The Ministry of Coffee’s nutty Nutella hot chocolate. Photo by Samantha Lapierre.

We’ve all said it, there’s nothing better than a hot chocolate on a cold day. A good cup warms you from your fingers to your toes and can provide a head-spinning sugar rush or a stomach settling heartiness. As residents of the world’s coldest capital city (take that Ulaanbaatar), Ottawans take hot chocolate very seriously, and our local restaurants, cafes and chocolateries deliver year after year. This year, OLM brought together a few of our chocolate-obsessed writers to dish on the best spots in the city to grab a warm and sweet coco. So sit back, put your feet up by the fire, and let our list of ‘The Five Downtown Hot Chocolates You Have to Try Before Christmas’ warm you up a little.

American Hot Chocolate at Cacao 70 (53 William Street, ByWard Market)

Mireille's Hot Chocolate

By Mireille Sylvester

I like to think of myself as a bit of a hot chocolate connoisseur. My friends and I have even coined a hip term for the drink – HoCho. You heard it here first. I hope it sticks! I’ve sampled many a hot chocolate in the Ottawa area, but I often find myself returning to Cacao 70 in the ByWard Market. The restaurant almost exclusively serves chocolate-related items such as fondue, crepes, ice cream, and even gourmet chocolate pizza (the s’more one is my favourite). The hot chocolate, however, is on another level entirely. My favourite is called the American Hot Chocolate (pictured), which sounds like a regular, plain Jane drink, but I can assure you it tastes like you’re taking a sip of Willy Wonka’s chocolate river. It comes with marshmallows and drizzled chocolate. For the adventurous types, Cacao 70 also offers Mexican style hot chocolate (spiced with cinnamon), a Cacao 70 spicy hot chocolate (featuring paprika and curry) and frozen hot chocolates. As an added bonus, you can choose between milk, dark, or semi-sweet chocolate. ‘Tis the season for hot chocolate, and I can guarantee you that Cacao 70 won’t disappoint!

Peanut Butter Hot Chocolate at Truffle Treasures (679 Bank Street, the Glebe)

Hot Chocolate

A very festive peanut butter hot chocolate. Photo by Sofie Sharom.

By Sofie Sharom

In the heart of the Glebe, Truffle Treasures is a local chocolatier serving up decadent chocolates, sinful gelatos and gourmet hot chocolates. The specialty peanut butter hot chocolate does not disappoint. Gently foamed milk is melded together with your choice of white, semi-sweet or dark chocolate, and mixed with the key ingredient – a scoop of real peanut butter. Topped with whipped cream in a generously-sized mug, the light chocolate peanut butter flavour is a welcome surprise. Their peanut butter hot chocolate is just one of many hot chocolate creations which also include peppermint, ginger/orange, pumpkin spice and banana.

Nutella Hot Chocolate at The Ministry of Coffee (279 Elgin Street)

Ministry Sign

Photo by Samantha Lapierre.

By Samantha Lapierre

Since 2013, The Ministry of Coffee has been serving up delightful hot drinks and delectable treats. Its Elgin Street atmosphere is the stuff of café legend: homey, relaxed and full of friendly baristas who know their stuff. It comes as no surprise, then, that The Ministry’s Nutella Hot Chocolate is a delight. Standing in front of the counter, it’s easy to see that not a single packet of hot chocolate powder or drop of lukewarm water goes into it. From the moment I took my very first sip, I was blown away by its rich (but not too sweet) hazelnut flavor and creamy texture. It is often difficult to find a luxurious hot chocolate that doesn’t have a luxurious price tag attached. A great aid to help with the winter blues, The Ministry’s Nutella Hot Chocolate is a treat for even the pickiest hot chocolate connoisseur.

Signature Hot Chocolate with Coconut Whipped Cream at Thimblecakes (369 Bank Street)HC4

By Eric Murphy

Everything about Thimblecakes is absolutely adorable and sweet. Their famous treats are beautifully decorated, their plush chairs and couch look too cute to sit on and if you ask for their signature hot chocolate, the powder comes from inside an enormous glass jug. Like just about everything in the store, the cocoa powder is made in house. It comes with coconut whipped cream on the top and you can order it with coconut milk to make it dairy free. That’s great news for any lactose intolerant folks like me, because no one wants a hot chocolate made with just water.

Thimblecakes is known for their beautiful cupcakes, but once I’d taken a sip of the signature hot chocolate it was obvious that they really are masters of all things sweet. The coconut milk makes the hot chocolate light and gives it an unusually deep flavour. Naturally, the coconut whipped cream is so good you could eat it with a spoon. As light as the hot chocolate is, it ends with big chocolaty kick that makes your eyes pop and gets you ready to head back out into the cold, as any good cocoa should.

Aztec Hot Chocolate at Bernard Callebaut (256 Dalhousie Street, ByWard Market)

BC Hot CocoBy Kathleen Smith

When I discovered Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut last year during a cold January quest for some hot chocolate, it was love at first sip. I was transported back to the year I lived in Belgium, where every cup of rich, creamy hot chocolate sent shivers down my spine and made angel choirs sing.

Earlier this week, I returned to taste their god’s-nectar once again. I tried their Aztec hot-chocolate, flavored with cloves, cinnamon, chilli, and cardamom, with semi-sweet chocolate as a base. My drink was perfection.  The spices lend sophistication and complexity, while also adding to the drink’s warming effect. The chocolate was rich and flavorful, and the milk was perfectly steamed. I also stole a few sips of my boyfriend’s peanut butter hot chocolate. Imagine, if you will, a frothy, liquid peanut butter cup with a gourmet chocolate base — it was lovely. This is hot chocolate at its finest — rich, flavourful, and indulgent. I cannot recommend it highly enough.

Cobble Beach: Georgian Bay’s Extraordinary Waterfront Golf Resort Community

November 23, 2015 2:51 pm
Cobble Beach: Georgian Bay’s Extraordinary Waterfront Golf Resort Community

Written by: Alessandra Gerebizza & Mike McEwan.

Upon turning onto Cobble Beach Drive you will get your first glimpse of the hidden gem that will keep you talking and coming back for years to come. From that first turn, a sense of relaxation and purpose should begin to enter your body as you are greeted to magnificent ponds on either side of the road and the blue glow of Georgian Bay in the distance.

The drive down the windy but spacious road towards the inn and clubhouse gives further indication that you are in for a treat as the championship course begins to peak its head out from between the unique and colorful custom and model homes that dot across the breath taking 574 acre property purchased in 1998 by Willis Mcleese. Your final turn towards the inn gives you a closer look at the Nantucket style lighthouse that sits next to the dock, built for residents and visitors complete with ever inviting Adirondack chairs, and if it is a sunny day, a view of the many shades of blues and greens Georgian Bay has to offer.

At the inn you will be greeted by knowledgeable staff, which is more like warm extended family than resort employees. The rooms are both luxurious and practical with every amenity of home available making it very difficult to ever imagine leaving.

Once you have settled in, a tour of the inn should begin on the first floor where you will find the Sweetwater Restaurant & Bar.

From the restaurant your view of both the course, with its St Andrew’s inspired finishing bridge, and of the Georgian Bay is matched only by the creations of the executive chef and his team. Offering unique and delicious meals, and focusing on locally grown produce and fish, each visit is truly an occasion to be remembered for its culinary excellence. You can’t go wrong with the beef tenderloin or the chef’s special. If you have a sweet tooth, the apple crumble tart is a must. So decadent and moist, it’s sure to please! For special events or larger groups there is the Bridgewater Four Seasons Room and Dunvegan room which are connected to the restaurant and offer intimate and private alternatives to the dining room area.

On the north side of the inn you will find the pool and spa. If you’re a spaaficionado, this is the place for you. Facials, massage, body treatments, and even gentlemen services are all available. However, the standout service is the Mango Enzyme Firming Wrap. The treatment begins with a full body exfoliating scrub followed by a moisturizing body wrap while you’re receiving a scalp, neck, foot and shoulder massage at the same time. The treatment concludes with a rain shower and coconut lotion application. You will leave feeling refreshed and ready for a round of golf.

The 18 hole championship course was completed and opened for play on May 18, 2007 by course designer Doug Carrick (Eagle’s Nest & Muskoka Bay among other courses) and is truly exceptional. Admiral Owen’s House marks halfway point between the 2 nine holes and beside it there is a fully operational driving range and outdoor practice facility. Electric GPS carts are available for rent and are recommended as you will notice there are considerable elevation changes on the aptly named holes ( from the inviting short par 3 8th hole Sanctuary, to the snowman inducing par 4 13th, Rob’s Gulch).

Picturesque views can be found on every hole and a variety of tee boxes for every skill level are offered. The course is immaculately maintained by meticulous and friendly staff that work hard to provide lush fairways, and a manageable rough paired with lightning fast but true greens and a generous helping of hazards.

For the non golfer there is still much to do beyond the links. Cobble beach has an extensive list of activities available to guests and residents including tennis courts, a large docking area for guests and residents arriving by water, a beach club with a variety of light watercrafts available for use, a fire pit, and a children’s playground. In addition to these activities there are kilometres of trails to be explored including an enchanted forest with wood carvings commissioned from a local artist to be admired and amazed at. Nearby, you can visit and explore Fossil Glen a unique and challenging hiking trail with a variety of millennium old fossil deposits to be discovered. If you don’t have time to explore or need to stay intouch with the office, Cobble Beach has fibre optic cable and natural gas services available to all residents allowing for all the modern conveniences of a large city.

Less than 15 minutes away is the quaint town of Owen Sound offering shopping and the Tom Thomson gallery. Cobble Beach truly is a place to be a discovered either as a vacation destination or as a permanent residence offering a master planned community suited for people with the desire to embrace life and all it has to offer. The passion for excellence that the McLeese family has is evident throughout the property and is sure to leave all guests with fond memories and the desire to return again and again.

To find out more about the Cobble Beach resort, check out their website cobblebeach.com or call them at  888.278.8112.

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