North of downtown Toronto, those who live in South Hill get a special treat: stunning views of the city, and their own castle. South Hill is dominated by a steep hill, or escarpment, which was formed by the former Lake Iroquois during the ice ages. This hill allows residents of South Hill to enjoy the city from a complimentary point of view. The neighbourhood is also shadowed by Casa Loma, which is a landmark in Toronto. Although South Hill may not have the reputation of other affluent neighbourhoods such as Forest Hill or Rosedale, it is still very much a beautiful, affluent neighbourhood.
In the late 19th century, South Hill became home to some of the wealthiest citizens of Toronto. Atop the hill, a series of majestic manors were built and belonged to some of Toronto’s most influential residents. Senator John Macdonald built Oaklands, which today is part of the private De La Salle College. The Eaton family built Ardwold and James Austin built Spadina House, which today is a museum. Many of the manors that were built on the hill have been demolished or converted to other uses. South Hill still remains an upscale neighborhood in Toronto, and even features its own independent republic, Rathnelly.
Defined by Avenue Road, South Hill contains some of the largest houses in Toronto. Mixed in with the upscale homes are condominiums that are relatively new, and also some upscale rental apartment buildings. The neighborhood is located near businesses and entertainment districts. Families will appreciate its close proximity to some of the most highly regarded public, private and Catholic schools. It is also close to South Park, which is close to George Brown College and Tarrogon Theatre – Toronto’s leading venue for independent drama. South Hill is walking distance to the Royal Ontario Art Museum, University of Toronto, Yorkville, Bloor Street and the multi-cultural excitement of St. Clare.
Joggers and those who love going for walks amongst nature and scenic sights will appreciate the Nordheimer Ravine, which connects to Toronto’s beltline trail. Nearby is Winston Churchill Park, favoured for its running track, playground and 10 tennis courts. St. Clair Reservoir is also close by and is very popular with dog walkers.