Since 1982, The Rivoli has been through many incarnations. Originally a hip dance club, this Toronto landmark has matured into a bar, restaurant, pool hall and performance space all rolled into 2 stories. Really. Although admittedly I think at times it finds itself a tiny bit short on one or two of these lofty goals.
Their lilliputian and somewhat bare lounge on the first floor is easily eclipsed by nearby competition and the restaurant, albeit tasty, can be a tad of a mixed bag, ranging from delicious to average. Their pool hall however is one great room to play in and I have held numerous events there myself. Their stage on the main floor carries shows almost every night of the week, from comedy, jazz, plays to burlesque(!). Best to check show listings on their website if interested in dropping by and catching a performance. Check their website for listings.
Surprisingly, you’ll find although many have ‘heard’ of The Rivoli, like Bigfoot or the Yeti, only a few of them -outside locals that is, have actually seen it, from the inside.
Also, as of this writing, on Wednesdays at 19:30 you will find the Toronto Babel language group meeting for their weekly get-together. This is a great event where people come to meet new friends and speak in dozens of languages, including your own. Personally, I use Spanish. It is a great way to make new acquaintances fast and get extra tips on exploring the city.
The Rivoli, a mini-Toronto within Toronto.