LIVING IN BRIDLE PATH
The Bridle Path has often been referred to as “Millionaires Row”. Indeed he mansions in this neighbourhood sell for well in excess of a million dollars. This exclusive enclave of homes is surrounded by the Don River Valley and lush parkland, which provide the perfect backdrop for The Bridle Path’s stately homes.
Bridle Path residents shop, play, and educate their children along Bayview Avenue, whose landmarks include the upscale York Mills Shopping Plaza, the posh Toronto Granite Club, and the private Crescent School for boys. The Toronto French School is located just off of Bayview at Lawrence Avenue.
HISTORY OF BRIDLE PARK
The Bridle Path could hardly have been envisioned by Alexander Milne, who settled on what is now Edwards Gardens in 1827. Milne operated woolen and saw mills on the banks of Wilket Creek until 1832 when a dwindling water supply forced Milne to move east to a mill site along the Don River.
The Bridle Path inconspicuously spent the rest of the 1800’s and early 1900’s as farmland. It wasn’t until 1929, when the Bayview Bridge was built over the steep Don River Valley, that this area was considered for residential development.
Hubert Daniel Bull Page, a Toronto-based land developer was one of the founders of the present day neighbourhood. Page envisioned the Bridle Path as an exclusive enclave of estate homes. In 1929, Page built the Cape Cod Colonial style house at number 2 The Bridle Path, in an effort to spark interest in his subdivision.
Early plans for this neighbourhood called for an elaborate system of equestrian Bridle Paths. These Bridle Paths have long since been paved over, however their legacy remains in the Bridle Path’s unusually wide streets and in the name of this neighbourhood.
HOMES IN THE BRIDLE PATH
The Bridle Path’s largest mansions located between Post Road and Park Lane Circle are among the largest homes in Toronto. These grand homes are situated on one to six acre lots and feature stone and cast iron gateways with elaborate built-in security systems. The houses south of Park Lane Circle are somewhat smaller in scale with still very generous one hundred foot frontages.
The houses in the Bridle Path were built mostly in the 1930’s, 1950’s and 1960’s which accounts for the eclectic mix of architectural styles found here. This mix of designs includes Georgian, Colonial, Greek and Tudor Revival, Italianate, Neo Gothic, California bungalows and futuristic modernist style houses. There is also a new luxury condominium apartment building scheduled to be built at number one Post Road, in the French Chateau style.
The typical Bridle Path estate offers a wide range of luxury features, ranging from pools, tennis courts, gazebos and cabanas, to greenhouses and waterfalls. Interior features range from gold fixtures and marble finishes to dance floors, saunas, personal gyms, and home theatres.
The French Chateau inspired luxury condominium at One Post Road is an exclusive building with only 42 units, all with private elevator access. Also noteworthy are the European-design Chedington Place Condominiums situated on the north-east corner of Bayview and Lawrence Avenues. These exclusive condominiums also feature private elevators and spectacular ravine views.
LIFESTYLE IN BRIDLE PATH
York Mills Plaza, located at the south-west corner of Bayview Avenue and York Mills Road was once described by Toronto Mayor Mel Lastman as the Tiffany’s of shopping centres. Here you will find vintage wines, imported cigars, swiss chocolate, decadent desserts, Cartier eyeglasses, designer lingerie, and a glittering coffee shop serving up espresso, cappuccino, and caffe lattes.
Situated at the north-east corner of Bayview and Sheppard Avenues is the Bayview Village Shopping Centre which features designer clothing stores and an excellent selection of restaurants.
RECREATION IN BRIDLE PATH
Bridle Path residents can walk to beautiful Edwards Gardens which is the home of the Toronto Botanical Garden , one of Canada’s finest public gardening resource centres. Edwards Gardens contains rockeries, perennial gardens, a pond, waterfalls, a rose garden and the beginning of a nine kilometre paved trail that extends through the Don River Valley all the way to Warden Woods Park in Scarborough.
The Edwards Gardens trail passes through Sunnybrook Park which features top quality sports fields for cricket, field hockey, rugby and soccer. Sunnybrook park also has riding stables which offers lessons to the public. It is appropriate that these equestrian facilities are located on the border of the Bridal Path neighbourhood which has such a rich horse riding tradition.
TRANSPORTATION IN BRIDLE PATH
The Bayview Avenue bus connects passengers to the Davisville station on the Yonge-University-Spadina subway line and also provides passengers with a connecting route to the Lawrence Avenue subway station.
Motorists can get directly downtown to Toronto’s business and entertainment districts in approximately twenty minutes from nearby arterial roadways including Mount Pleasant Road and Yonge Street. The Highway 401 on-ramp off Bayview Avenue and the Don Valley Parkway on-ramp off Lawrence Avenue, are both approximately a five minute drive from here.