News   Sep 29, 2023
 683     1 
News   Sep 29, 2023
 2.4K     4 
News   Sep 29, 2023
 567     0 

Paradise Theatre (1006 Bloor St W, Tawse, restoration, ERA Architects)


Member Bio
Apr 24, 2007
Reaction score

Derelict Delights: Paradise Cinema

Derelict Delights is a weekly series where we look at abandoned buildings begging for revitalization. This week: the old Paradise Cinema was recently recognized as a heritage site by the City—so now what?

MON MAR 26, 2012

Since 2006, the Paradise has stood empty and neglected. The future looked grim for the property and, last January, a prospective buyer for the property submitted an application for demolition. But because the Paradise had been listed on the City of Toronto’s inventory of heritage properties since 2007, Heritage Preservations Services raised a red flag with City Council, and the cinema was given heritage designation on March 5.

Since the heritage designation, the prospective owners rescinded the demotion application. (In fact, they claimed that they had only submitted the demolition petition in order to speed up the process of heritage designation for the site.) According to Anna Kral Vargas of Ward 18 City Councillor Ana Bailão’s office, there is a 30-day appeal period, so technically the designation could be challenged in the next couple of weeks. But she says they expect the designation to go through, so it seems the Paradise is likely out of immediate danger.

However, as we know, a heritage designation does not guarantee the Paradise will soon be brought back to life. In response to inquiries from the community, Vargas contacted the real-estate agent handling the property, and she says that, though negotiations continue with the prospective buyer, the property has not yet been sold.

Area resident Sarah Latha helped form Friends of the Paradise in 2009, a group of community members who wanted to see the cinema repurposed. “Right away, we had a vision of a multi-use community art space that would be non-profit,” she says.

“It remains to be seen why it would be in the interest of a developer to get a designation when they can do anything they want,” she said. “If they’re interested in the façade, they can just co-opt that whole original-architecture language in their branding for whatever they’re building there.”

Latha suspects that theatre could be turned into condominiums, a fate she also sees for the postal distribution centre nearby at the corner of Dovercourt and Northumberland. (Canada Post has announced the site may be closing.) Another nearby building, the church at Northumberland and Westmoreland, is also being turned into pricey condo-lofts (though that development has been subject to various delays over the past few years).
Last edited:
Appears to be some construction material/equipment in place.

They've been steadily gutting the inside over the past few months; not many workers on-site, so it's slow, but sometimes when I walk past the hoarding at the front is ajar and you can see it's been stripped down to bare concrete inside. They took the marquee down a few weeks back – hopefully to restore it, but I honestly have no idea what's going on here anymore.
Thank you.

When you subscribe to the development, David Thorek from Liberetto responds back. This could be very interesting as I hear this is a heritage designated building. Also, locals have told me the main floor is suppose to be an event space with a bar upstairs. Who knows for sure though.
Still no updates. But my prediction would be something along the lines of a Drake Hotel-lite for the area. Venue plus restaurant and bar space.
I passed this site a few days ago and there construction workers busy on the side of the building, so there is definitely on-going activity.
I am not sure who the owner is, but I have a friend who is going to start working on the creative side for this venue next month, so it is definitely going forward.

From yesterday:



  • IMG_6906.jpg
    154.5 KB · Views: 1,346
I love the curved brick corners often found on deco buildings. It would be interesting to see a project similar to King Portland Centre and Kingly Condos with brick (curved at the corners) along the floor plates instead of a band of spandrel. It would create a nice material contrast, provide some texture and help break up the coldness that all glass facades can have.
Last edited:

Meet Paradise!
by Paradise

Date and Time
Sat, 28 Jul 2018, 1:00 PM

**Please note that an RSVP does not guarantee entry. Seating is first come, first served.**

Free and open to all. Attendees receive a limited-edition Paradise tote!

Meet the team at Paradise, re-opening in late 2018 at the corner of Bloor and Westmoreland.

Our director of programming, executive chef, interior design firm and the new owner of the 1937 heritage building, Moray Tawse, will be present to speak to the highly-anticipated restoration. Get a sneak peek of the renovation so far and discover what Paradise will look like when our doors open to the public. There will also be a preview of the events and series to take place in the theatre, as well as an overview of the food and beverage offer.

Set to present a curated mix of newly released films, older classics, undiscovered gems, themed seasons and event cinema, Paradise will also feature live music, comedy, talk series and multi-arts events. Patrons can additionally enjoy in-seat dining in the theatre balcony, a bustling full-service restaurant, intimate cocktail bar and impressive lobby with a unique food and beverage selection. The building on this site has operated as a cinema since 1910, and we are proud to continue its century-long tradition of entertaining Torontonians.

Central Coffee is a wheelchair-friendly venue with automatic doors, wide hallways and an accessibly washroom. Paradise is committed to accessibility. Please contact us to let us know about your access needs.