Friday, August 26, 2011

Spadina & Queen - "TransitHub Thursdays" @ Hotel Ocho, a #TransitHubbing Adventure

Spadina and Queen is a lively Toronto Hub that runs round-the-clock. At the intersection of the Entertainment District, the Queen St. shopping strip, and China Town, you'd expect nothing less! But there's a little-known fact about this Hub that has so far remained a secret... until now. every Thursday evening, Spadina and Queen is the meeting place of your very own team of TransitHubbers, working hard to deliver TransitHub to you and your friends. :) Where do we meet, exactly? At a relatively undiscovered cafe/bar called Hotel Ocho, for a weekly  #TransitHubbing Adventure...

To get to the Spadina and Queen Hub, take the Queen Streetcar west from Osgoode or Queen Station, or take the Spadina Streetcar south from Spadina Station or north from Union Station.

Hotel Ocho (@HotelOchoTO) is one part cafe, one part restaurant and lounge, and one part boutique hotel, located on a nondescript corner one block north of Queen, on Spadina. In fact, it's so well hidden that you've probably walked past it many times - and might do so again if you didn't know where to look. Use the following signs: the small chalkboard sign propped up near the corner, touting the day's specials, and the "field turf" front lawn, right next to the row of BIXI bikes.

Once inside, you'll find a relatively chill atmosphere, with comfy couches, friendly bartenders, and at least for now, not too many people! Although the Wi-Fi can be touchy at times, and there are only two power plugs for people to use on the first floor, the Ocho burger - a juicy slab of beef grilled to perfection (see photos!) is worth the visit.

And, if you drop by on a Thursday evening, you'll find an added bonus - the Transit Hub Team, downing long Americanos and Mill Street Organics as they work hard to bring you some TransitHub love. Working hard? Hah! Who are we kidding... we come there to drink. And with half-price martinis on Thursdays, can you really blame us? ;)

The well-hidden Hotel Ocho - look for the BIXI bikes and the "field turf"!

The Thursday special: half-price martinis!

Neil looks super-thrilled that his Americano was interrupted just to take this photograph!

Ian preparing to down his half-price martini in one gulp - can he do it?

John winds down the day with a cool, crisp, Mill Street Organic

The bread and hummus dip can't be beat - it even makes a great piece of art!

Hotel Ocho features lots of room and a trendy, loft-like feel

The juicy, perfectly-grilled Ocho burger, before...

The juicy, perfectly-grilled Ocho burger, now ready to be eaten!

Long, large windows provide lots of natural light and tons of inspiration!

Arvind joins us a bit later as we put our heads down and get to work

Is this a critical moment in the history of TransitHub? Or just two guys doing some Facebook stalking?

Arvind and John display a rare, laser-like focus... as they research the cheapest place to print more TransitHub T-shirts!

Later in the evening, Hotel Ocho transforms into an intimate place to have a romantic dinner... and that's our cue to leave :)

Good-bye, Hotel Ocho. Good-bye, Spadina and Queen. Until next Thursday...

Have a #TransitHubbing Adventure of your own that you'd like to share? We'd love to hear from you! Email us at and tell us about a Hub that you've visited (or one that you know like the back of your hand). What makes it interesting? What are some relatively-unknown places or things that TransitHubbers should check out? Send us your story, along with your photos, today!

See you on the subway...


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