Toronto the most romantic city in Canada, according poll

Jordana Divon
Contributing Writer
Shine On

Toronto is unlikely to win any awards for friendliest city in Canada, but underneath that all-business veneer lies a warm, beating, steamy heart, according to a new survey.

Or at the very least, it’s a city that would love to dress up and go out for a romantic dinner on February 14.

“Torontonian singles have shed their cynicism and will embrace the holiday this February,” reads a line from the press release.

The informal poll, which surveyed 1,054 Canadians over a four-day period last summer, showed that 72 per cent of single Torontonians believe that Valentine’s Day is a romantic holiday they hope to be filled with chocolates, flowers and declarations of love.

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On the flip side of the equation, Winnipeg proved the least romantic, with a mere 56 per cent subscribing to the notion that Valentine’s Day is a day unlike any other day and only 36 per cent planning to even acknowledge it – although many may see that as anti-consumer pragmatism rather than a distaste for romance.

And for Montreal singles, well, they are the most likely to want to be single for Valentine’s Day (19%).

Perhaps for Torontonians it's the abundance of attractive single people, the buzz of a bustling city, the endless possibilities for romance or the slew of terrific restaurants, that makes it their hearts eager for love.

A further trip into the mind of Torontonians reveals an even more sensitive, romantic consciousness. A surprising 74 per cent believe in the idea that somewhere amid the steel and concrete and gridlock traffic they have a soul mate out there just waiting to be spotted amid a sea of unknown faces.

What’s more, over half of these hardened big city dwellers (57 per cent) believe in love at first sight.

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If you manage to snag a date with one of these lovely, exotic Toronto creatures, here are a few things you may want to keep in mind.

A café or coffee shop is the preferred first-date location for 54 per cent of Torontonians, with only 21 per cent selecting a romantic restaurant in its stead (a meal is too big a commitment if you fear you may need a swift exit strategy mid-date).

If you do end up at a place with tablecloths, however, be sure to brush up on your amateur sommelier skills, as wine is the top first-date beverage of choice for this sophisticated lot.

Also the average date with a Torontonian does not come cheap. The poll shows they spend an average of $40 to $50 on a first date, but if you’ve ever been out in the city you know that’s a pretty conservative estimate.

All in all, February 14 does brisk business for florists, chocolatiers and restauranteurs around Toronto, all of whom likely look to the day with a similar anticipation as a child on Christmas Eve.