Cottage in the City

52 Helena Avenue , Toronto, ON M6G 2H2 Canada (Show map)


The Cottage is an intimate up-scale downtown accommodation built during the last century and totally restored. We have two intimate rooms each furnished with early Canadian antiques. Guests occupy the second floor which includes a common room with artifacts and original artwork. Relax in our soaker claw-foot tub. Escape to the front porch in white wicker chairs with a morning coffee. Breakfast is created with our guests in mind as we cater to special needs such as gluten free and non-lactose diets. Natural fruits and vegetables create the basis for our menus which will beckon you to the breakfast table set with English bone china, silver, and cloth napkins. The dining room features an art deco chandelier, polished wood floor and stained glass window. We are located just steps from trendy Artscape Barns, Wychwood Park, and all modes of transportation to the city's landmarks. Casa Loma and Corso Italia beckon our guests and lend an air of "old Toronto" to their stay. St. Clair West is also known for the diversity of restaurants which are just one block from The epicurean delight for guests from any country. The neighbourhood is quiet and green, an oasis from the bustling city of Toronto. Guests also enjoy the outdoors with nature walks and city parks in the vicinity, and the beachfront of Lake Ontario is just a short subway ride away. A great attraction is the Ferry Boat ride to Toronto Islands...a must for visitors who enjoy the city skyline.



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  • Guest room4.6
  • Service4.7
  • Value4.8
  • Cleanliness4.7
  • Onsite Dining4.9

Absolutely Wonderful!

5 on September 13, 2017

Staying at Cottage in the City was among the highlights of our recent 6-day trip to Toronto.  Mardelle and Ron Kish’s warmth and hospitality made us feel as if we were old friends visiting instead of strangers paying for a room.  Breakfast each morning featured a different fresh fruit cup and warm entree and an opportunity for leisurely conversation with our fellow guest and sometimes our hosts.  Our room was clean & comfortable and the bathroom was spotless.  We enjoyed staying in an urban neighborhood that offered excellent restaurant choices, easy access to the subway and downtown, as well as quiet tree-lined residential streets.  Room rates were very reasonable (actually, probably too low for the value received) and our hosts consistently went out of their way to be helpful.  We definitely recommend this B&B to anyone visiting Toronto who wants a restful and relaxing place to come home to each night...a place that offers a different way to be in the city. We hope our paths cross again in the future. Sandy and Greg  

Absolutely Wonderful!

5 on September 10, 2017

Our recent visit to Toronto was one of our best trips ever thanks to the warmth and hospitality of innkeepers Mardelle and Ron Kish. They opened their hearts and home to us as if we were old friends visiting not paying strangers who found them on the internet. Their house and rooms are beautifully decorated but definitely comfortable. Breakfasts were superb featuring artistically assembled (and varying) fresh fruit cups and a different hot entrée each morning. The inn is on a quiet tree lined street that is close to the subway and an interesting array of small restaurants. We enjoyed our time at the inn and our interactions with Mardelle and Ron and our fellow guest as much, if not more, than any tourist thing we did in Toronto. We were actually sad to go at the end of our stay (and my husband is still raving about Mardelle's breakfasts!) Sandy and Greg C.

Beautiful home and lovely hosts

5 on August 18, 2017

Ron and Mardelle, Thank you for the wonderful stay at your lovely B&B! Your home is beautiful and charming, the breakfasts delicious, and you were such perfect hosts. Thank you for all of your help with everything; you definitely helped to make our visit to Toronto even more enjoyable!

Beautiful oasis in a busy city

5 on July 04, 2017

My husband and I recently stayed for a few days at this beautiful B&B. It is located on a quiet residential street in a lovely neighbourhood and is close to a park, great restaurants, stores and public transportation routes. Our room was spacious and beautifully appointed with interesting art and nice furniture. Our room, as well as the rest of the house, was spotless. Ron and Mardelle were wonderful hosts - welcoming, warm , friendly and attentive ( as well as very interesting to talk to ). They pampered us with delicious breakfasts each morning and made our stay truly enjoyable and memorable.

Couldn't have been nicer

5 on August 15, 2015

We stayed in both rooms and they are are beautiful and spotless. Ron and Mardy went out of their way to make sure we had everything we needed. Breakfast was delicious, and truly they are the nicest, most gracious hosts we could have imagined. Ron gave us great tips for getting around and things to see, and they were just neat, kind people who were great to talk to. The house is near public transportation and we did not need to drive our car at all during our time there. The neighborhood is quiet and peaceful and a short walk to Casa Loma. We will definitely stay again on a return trip to Toronto.

highly recommend

4.6 on March 19, 2015

I was in Toronto for a seminar recently and booked in for a stay at Cottage in the City. Mardelle and Ron were very friendly and extremely accommodating hosts especially with my request (requirement) for gluten free meal choices. Breakfasts were delicious and nutritious.Together they provided gracious hospitality and a friendly orientation to the neighbourhoods outstanding restaurants and shops. Public transit was reasonably efficient and access was easy and convenient. My room was very comfortable and quiet, conducive to a good and restful sleep. This is a well run, lovely little inn, located in an historically significant neighbourhood that would interest those who have an appreciation for the arts. I highly recommend Cottage in the City and wouldn't hesitate to book in again.

Toronto Gem

5 on November 02, 2014

We love staying at Cottage in the City. Mardy and Ron offer warm hospitality and delicious breakfasts. The house and bedrooms are beautiful, cosy, and impeccably clean. The location is close to bus and subway, the neighbourhood is lovely to walk through and nearby St. Clair Street has lots of restaurants worth trying. We look forward to staying at the Cottage again.

Wonderful week in Toronto

5 on September 11, 2014

I visited Toronto to do the world premiere of my show - Left-Hander in London - The Earthquake in June of 2014. I needed a location that was quiet, nice, that afforded an experience of Toronto's neighborhoods, people and culture with parking and easy access to transit. The Cottage in the City was all of the above and more. Mardy and Ron are very nice , accommodating and welcoming. The house is lovely and on a pretty street in a nice area. They obtained a parking pass for me and I rarely used the car. I went for a walk around the neighborhood almost every day. The bus and streetcar are at the end of the street and the subway is a block or two away. Ron and Mardy were helpful with directions. There are lots of eateries and shops within easy walking distance. I could not have picked a better place. If you are visiting Toronto, check them out. JJ Gufreda, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA

A nice place to stay in a city that can be tough to find a bed.

4.8 on September 02, 2014

We found this place by accident on a weekend that was insanely busy due to festivals and concerts. It ended up being pretty much our only option, yet had we known it would have been our first choice... It is in an excellent, walkable location and close to transit. The neighborhood is safe and has plenty of restaurants and the like. The breakfast was great as was the hospitality. We would surely stay here again. In fact, I have been recommending this place to all my friends in Buffalo as a great weekend destination.

Excellent Hospitality, Lovely House & Delicious Breakfast

5 on August 18, 2014

My son and I stayed at Cottage in the City for two weeks this summer and I highly recommend this B&B to anyone who wants warm-hearted hosts, clean & comfortable bedroom and yummy breakfast. The location is also very convenient to take the subway or a bus and there are lots of affordable restaurants near by. It is located in a safe neighborhood and provides free wifi. Especially, Ron and Mardy were wonderful hosts with good sense of humor. They were always friendly and gave me useful travel tips to enjoy Toronto with my teenager boy.

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Location Type

City, Downtown


Toronto, ON, Canada (YYZ-Pearson) 18 miles

Directions to property:

Provided with confirmation. Nearest major intersection Bathurst and St. Clair Ave. W.

Area Attractions

Amusement Park, Antique Shopping, Art Galleries, Beach, Concert venue, Gourmet/Fine Dining, Historical interests, Lake, Live Music, Movie Theater, Museum, Nature area, Casa Loma, Hockey Hall of Fame, Toronto attractions, Honest Ed's shopping emporium, Shopping, Spadina House, Performing Theater, Religious Services, Winery, Zoo

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Inn Details

On-site amenities

Air conditioning, Desk, Library, Telephone , Links to Niagara Falls service, Attraction brochures, Toronto reading material, Downtown map

Room amenities

Alarm clock, Bath robes, Hairdryer, Ironing Board, Radio, Turndown Service

On-site activities

Tarragon Theatre, Nature trails, Shopping, Sight-seeing, Swimming

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  • Check In:: open ended
  • Check Out:: Noon
  • Open All Year Round: No
  • Smoking Allowed: No Outdoors only
  • Drinking Allowed: No
  • Alcohol Provided No
  • Suitable For Children: Limited Children aged 12 and up welcome, existing beds only.
  • Childcare Provided: No
  • Guest Pets Allowed: No
  • Disabled Access No

Terms and Conditions

  • Minimum Stay: Two night minimum, surcharge for one-night stay
  • Accepted payments Travelers checks, Cash
  • Deposit Amount Required: One full night prior to arrival. Full payment upon arrival.
  • Cancellations: Full refund with two week notice prior to arrival date
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Mardelle and Ron Kish

Languages spoken


About the innkeepers

Ron is a retired television journalist with an intimate knowledge of the city and national politics, if you are so interested! Mardy is a former special events planner with a flair for cooking and making our guests feel "at home".

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  • Time Served: Between 8 and 10 a.m.
  • Serving Location: Dining Room

Special meal options

Low fat , Restrictive , Vegetarian Wheat/dairy-free

Signature Dish

Cottage Country Breakfast
The season dictates our breakfast menus. Winter mornings with steaming oatmeal, cinnamon pancakes, or pumpkin waffles. Spring and summer brings fresh fruits and vegetables to the table in strawberry crepes with fresh creme sauce, buttermilk blueberry pancakes with berries, or omelettes with spinach and home-grown tomatoes. The fall is apple time at the cottage with fresh picked Ontario apples baked and carmelized to complement crisp french toast.

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