Muskoka

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Murder in Muskoka

For three years, Ian Borbely told everyone that his girlfriend, Samantha Collins, had abandoned him and their young son. Then a cottager found a mysterious crate hidden beneath his floorboards

Murder in Muskoka

Murder in MuskokaSamantha Collins met Ian Borbely at a mutual friend’s party in 2003. They came from different worlds. She was 25 and striking, with long black hair and fair skin. She’d been raised by a single mom in Mississauga and never knew her father. She got pregnant in high school, dropped out and gave up custody of her baby. After that, she started selling drugs and working as a stripper at a club near Pearson to earn a living. ­Borbely was three years ­older, a body­builder from Bracebridge, the son of ­doting ­middle-class parents. His friends describe him as a gentle ­teddy bear—the nicest guy in the room. He’d moved to ­Toronto to work as a personal trainer, taking a fence-building gig on the side. He was attracted to Collins, and after that first hookup he invited her to move into his place.

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The Informer

Real Estate

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Cabin Fever: five Toronto buyers let loose in cottage country

Toronto’s real estate mania is spreading to cottage country, making prime spots on the water increasingly tough to get. Here, five city buyers who managed to snag an idyllic getaway

Cabin Fever: five Toronto buyers let loose in cottage country
She’d wanted the cottage next to her parents’ place in the Rideau Lakes since childhood. Decades later, she finally got it

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The Informer

Real Estate

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Cottage of the Week: $1.4 million for a Muskoka cottage surrounded by fountains and sculptures

Cottage of the Week: 1650 Peninsula Road Address: 1650 Peninsula Road
Neighbourhood:  Port Sandfield, Ontario
Agent: Max Hahne, Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, Brokerage
Price: $1,400,000

The Place: A three-bedroom, two building cottage set on 60 acres bordering Lake Rosseau.

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The Informer

Real Estate

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Cottage of the Week: $3.3 million for a private island on Lake Muskoka

Cottage of the Week: Cove Island Address: Cove Island
Neighbourhood: Lake Muskoka
Agent: Max M Hahne and Storey Badger, Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, Brokerage
Price: $3,295,000

The Place: A small island in Lake Muskoka with a four-bedroom cottage, a bunkie and a boathouse.

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The Goods

Weddings

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Real Weddings 2013: a modern rustic wedding at a lakeside inn in Muskoka

Real Weddings 2013: Steve and Erin

Location: Sherwood Inn in Muskoka | Guests: 112 | Date: May 25, 2013 | Budget: $25,000

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The Informer

Real Estate

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Cottage of the Week: $4.9 million for a 12-acre Muskoka compound with a deluxe boathouse

Cottage of the Week: $4.9 million for a Muskoka compound with a two-bedroom boathouse

Address: 1086 Pennwood Road
Neighbourhood: Port Carling, Ontario
Agent: James Gefucia, Chestnut Park Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage
Price: $4,895,000

The Place: An enormous compound with a five-bedroom main cottage and a two-level, two-bedroom boathouse on Lake Muskoka.

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The Goods

Weddings

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Wedding Guide: the best Toronto wedding planners

Wedding Guide 2013: Event Planners

(Image: Let’s Party Consultants)


Bliss
60 Sumach St. (at Queen St. E.), 416-323-3353
Wedding coordinator Tara O’Grady is known for her unflaggingly good taste. Bliss’s staff of four consult from their downtown studio, pulling off six-tent high-society extravaganzas, small out-of-town gatherings in Niagara-on-the-Lake and chic urban restaurant weddings at places like Canoe. Clients’ budgets range from $50,000 to $250,000. Wedding day service from $2,500. Full service from $5,000. By appointment.


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The Informer

Real Estate

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Year in Review: the five best getaways from Cottage of the Week

Whether you’re in the market for a vacation property or not, ogling other people’s places (and judging other people’s decor) is rollicking good fun. That’s why we spend the summer hunting down the most beautiful, most luxurious, most over-the-top cottages for sale and posting full photo tours for anybody stuck in the city. Here, our five favourite cottages from the past 12 months.

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The Dish

Food Events

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Beer geeks steel yourselves: Cask Days 2012 will be bigger than ever

Bar Volo, the Yonge Street den for beer geeks, seems perpetually restless. It was just voted the city’s best spot to grab a craft pint; it operates a “nano-brewery” onsite (micro-brewing not being quite small enough); it hosts an IPA challenge; and every year, it runs Cask Days, the cask-conditioned ale festival that has emerged as one of Toronto’s premiere beer events. This year’s iteration is massive: Hosted for the first time at Evergreen Brick Works, it will feature more than 150 brews from over 75 breweries (up from 80 and 50, respectively). 

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The Dish

Drinks

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Once again, Bar Volo cleans up at the annual Golden Tap craft beer awards

Ontario’s best beer: Muskoka’s Mad Tom IPA (Image: Twitter)

Sometimes it feels like Toronto is drowning in the best possible way: tournament-style beer-offs, new bars (both huge and humble), Toronto Beer Week—it’s a golden age for Toronto craft beer lovers. Keeping track of all this activity is The Bar Towel, a long-running blog and discussion forum, which capped off this year’s Beer Week with the 10th annual Golden Tap Awards at Beerbistro. Great Lakes Brewery and Muskoka Brewery each snagged a pair of awards, while Bar Volo took away three of its own, holding on to its title as Toronto’s go-to taphouse for fans of the new and peculiar (it won the same three categories last year). Oh, and the best beer in Ontario? Muskoka’s Mad Tom IPA.

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The Informer

Real Estate

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Cottage of the Week: $975,000 for a lakefront cabin with two kitchens, two living rooms and one massive loft

ADDRESS: PT LT 3 Lindhill Island

NEIGHBOURHOOD: Kahshe Lake, about 15 kilometres southeast of Gravenhurst, Ontario

AGENTS: Maggie Tomlinson, Chestnut Park Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage, Port Carling, and David Reid, Enjoy Muskoka Realty Inc., Brokerage, Gravenhurst

PRICE: $975,000

THE PLACE: A sprawling cottage on the tip of Lindhill Island, in Kahshe Lake, just south of Gravenhurst. The property has been in the same family since the early 1960s; in 2007, they built a two-storey addition with cathedral ceilings, floor-to-ceiling windows, an upgraded kitchen and a sleeping loft.

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The Informer

Real Estate

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Cottage of the Week: $2.7 million for a Georgian Bay getaway with a pirate ship

ADDRESS: 168 Old Mill Road

NEIGHBOURHOOD: Georgian Bay

AGENT: Bob Emmett and Fred Shaw, Royal LePage Four Seasons Real Estate Centre, Brokerage

PRICE: $2,650,000

THE PLACE: A unique (how many homes greet you with a totem pole at the front door?) and grandiose (check out the chandelier in the bathroom) cottage that still maintains a home-y feel, thanks to wide-plank wood floors, reclaimed wood-beam ceilings and that old cottage staple, a moose head on the wall.

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The Dish

Drinks

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Our top four picks for Toronto Beer Week

The third annual Toronto Beer Week kicks off this Friday, with over 50 bars and restaurants, 25 breweries and two importers participating during the nine-day celebration of the city’s craft beer scene. After the jump, we assemble a four-pack of some of the more buzz-worthy events.

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The Informer

Real Estate

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Cottage of the Week: $1.6 million for a bayfront property that’s classic Muskoka

ADDRESS: 1338 East Bay Road, Torrance

NEIGHBOURHOOD: Lake Muskoka

AGENT: Iris and James Gardiner, Chestnut Park Real Estate Limited, Brokerage

PRICE: $1,575,000

THE PLACE: A six-bedroom, five-bathroom cottage on a sheltered bay in Lake Muskoka.

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The Informer

Features

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Into the (Not So) Wild: our look at the summer camps of Toronto’s rich and famous

Summer camps of Toronto’s rich and famous

A sojourn to Northern Ontario used to mean grabbing a sleeping bag and a can of beans and roughing it in the woods, all in the name of character building. Today, high-end camps offer perks that sound like something out of a brochure for a four-star resort. Here, a glimpse at life as a modern-day camp kid.

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