Friends of the Toronto Islands


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Rectory Cafe
Rectory CafeHistory

The Rectory is a two-story, stucco residence built in 1948 by the same engineer who rebuilt the seawall along the boardwalk. Presumably, he used the same construction techniques in the house as on the seawall – poured reinforced concrete. When the city decided to remove cottages in the area in order to expand the island park in the 1960s this concrete construction saved the building.  It was just too hard to demolish.

For many years after, the Rectory housed the priest in charge of the Church of St. Andrew-by-the-Lake and this is how the building got its name.  Later it served as an annex to the Sunshine Seniors Centre (to the east).  In 1993 the building became part of the Land Trust and now contains offices and community meeting rooms as well as the Rectory Cafe and Island Art Gallery.

The Rectory Today

The Rectory Cafe operates year round offering a wide selection of food and drink in a beautiful natural setting beside the boardwalk.  It's part tearoom, part coffee shop, and part elegant restaurant.  Brunch is served on the weekend and is a great start to your island visit.  Especially on a warm sunny day, the patio is a beautiful place to sit and relax.  The Rectory building also houses the Island Art Gallery. 

The Rectory Cafe is open Monday to Thursday 11-5, and Friday to Sunday 11-8.  Please note that all hours are weather pending.  The restaurant is available for private receptions, and may be closed from time to time for private groups, so please check ahead.

The Rectory is about a 5 minute walk from the Ward's Ferry Dock along the main road.  For more information or to check out the menu please take a look at the Rectory Cafe website.  The Rectory Cafe can reached by phone at 416-203-2152.