Over the weekend, actor Mark Wahlberg and his famous brothers officially launched their new burger joint, Wahlburgers, at the SoHo Metropolitan Hotel. Wahlberg along with brother Donnie and his celebrity wife Jenny McCarthy were on site, eating burgers and shakes, at the private grand opening in the Entertainment District. The quick serve restaurant is a first for them in Canada, with plans to expand the chain in Ontario. Wahlburgers investor Michael Wekerle (who is also on CBC’s Dragons’ Den) recently made headlines after purchasing the historic El Mocambo Tavern, a music venue on Spadina Avenue, for $3.78-million. Marky Mark recently told Toronto Life his reason for launching in Toronto saying it’s the “most interesting city in the world.”
“It’s a great place to test the waters. If a film does well at TIFF, it stands a great chance of being successful around the world. I think the same is true of restaurants. It’s a cutting-edge city with a lot of cool people. If you can make it in Toronto, you can make it anywhere…Torontonians have always found a balance between working really hard and having a lot of fun.”
It was rumoured that Wahlberg loved the city so much he bought a $12-million penthouse at 36 Hazelton Avenue. According to reports, he purchased a 4,600 square foot two-level suite in the swanky Yorkville building that includes A-lister amenities like a wine tasting room and dog-washing station. Sadly, Wahlberg confirms it was only a rumour saying, “I did not buy (the condo). I was interested and was in negotiations and got close, but in the end it just didn’t work out.” While the actor might not live in Toronto (yet), he loves the Yorkville neighbourhood. He dines at Sotto Sotto and visits the St. Basil’s Cathedral when in town. When Wahlberg does call Bloor-Yorkville home, he could spend his mornings at the Yorkville Club, an exclusive fitness facility, before heading to Whole Foods for coffee and groceries. Later he could shop at Holt Renfrew, visit an art gallery and have a massage and high tea at the Four Seasons Hotel. For dinner, his entourage could grab some comfort food at the longtime restaurant, Flo’s Diner, dessert at Carole’s Cheesecake and drinks at the Pilot Tavern. In wintertime, there is the majestic ice carving festival along Cumberland Street and it’s always a celebrity hot spot during the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).
Hey Mark, when you want to move to Toronto, give us a call!