Toronto's trendy, affluent neighbour to the southwest is Oakville, a city in the Halton region that counts just over 180,000 residents. Home to Canada's donut-making giant, Tim Hortons, the city is catching the eye of a booming number of young professionals who helped in making the local population expand by more than 10% from 2006 to 2011. In Oakville, the average household income is more than $100,000 a year and the evidence of this city's affluence is visible on the streets, where young couples stroll the tree-lined trails that meander along the harbourfront, sporting the trendiest fashions from the many independent boutiques who have found their goldmine along Lakeshore Road. Bursting with good taste and low on crime, Oakville's downtown area is as charming as they come, with big heritage homes parked on large tree-covered lots being the norm, and the neighbourhood of Bronte Village near the shore offers the same, plus a healthy dose of waterfront mansions to boot.
Surprisingly, relatively few seniors call Oakville home, despite the plentiful offering of heritage homes in the city. Instead, residents of Oakville are on the young side of average and they're the rich side of average too. Families with kids love the schools in Oakville and young, working singles love the trendy scene that's blooming here.
Young professionals, with or without children, who will be in their glory among others just like them, who are on their way up and are proud to show it. People who like a quiet suburban life will be thrilled with the big homes on big lots all around Oakville, while lovers of the nighttime city lights will find the city's nightlife fills their appetite for micro-brewed beers and indie nightclubs.
People with low income, who will find Oakville doesn't fit well with their budget.
Oakville is a mecca for great cuisine, trendy cafes, yoga and Pilates studios, and upscale shopping. The weekends bring out residents and tourists keen to take full advantage of this pretty city's cultural offerings, especially in the summertime when Oakville's everyday charms are bolstered with great warm-weather festivals, including the Waterfront Festival, Jazz Fest, the Love of the Arts Festival, the city's own Ribfest and the Maple Syrup Festival that happens in the spring in Bronte Provincial Park. Though Oakville has its own corporate district with high-rise office towers, the lifestyle here leans more to the quiet and quaint side, with residents preferring a calming stroll on one of the many gorgeous award-winning trail systems in town, browsing the shining vessels anchored in the marina, or passing a sunny afternoon on a waterfront patio.
Oakville is nothing short of expensive, for renters and for buyers of real estate. The average price of a detached house in Oakville surpasses $720,000 – well above even the GTA average. That's partly because Oakville is one of the most desirable communities to live in in the GTA, but also because the local housing stock differs from its neighbours, with far more grandiose estates, well-preserved heritage homes, waterfront mansions, penthouse condos with panoramic views and stylish new three- and four-bedroom homes in the city's northern parts. Rents are pretty high here too, for the same reasons. Plenty of rental stock is available and most of it is rather charming or high-end, demanding higher monthly rents.
Avg. rent compared to other Toronto-area towns and regions
Oakville is 12% higher than GTA average
Impressive Victorians and Edwardians downtown, some large new detached houses in the north, and a few shiny new condos.
Its two harbours are some of the focal points and weekend destinations for Oakville residents, who will find great pubs along the water. But another big draw is Oakville Place, the city's biggest shopping mall. Meanwhile, the arts are serious business in Oakville – the small city has its own arts council, which is very active in the community and puts on several events throughout the year. In addition, there's the Oakville Centre for the Performing Arts, which hosts live music and other performances, and the Oakville Galleries, which show artwork at two locations in the city. Part and parcel to Oakville's affluent lifestyle is the Glen Abbey Golf Course, located in the neighbourhood that goes by the same name and hosts the Canadian Open. Plus, there's the Canadian Golf Hall of Fame and Museum. Besides Oakville Place mall, the city's best shopping is focused along Lakeshore Road, where residents flock to, to find some of the best restaurants and bars in town. Some of the shops here are international chain retailers, but many are small, locally owned places that feature the creations of the designers who sit at the cash register and welcome those who stop in. Two pubs named for royal extremities – the King's Arm and the Queens Head – are among the oldest in the region, while newer offerings such as Pascuale's and Trattoria Timone representing Italy, and Kerr Street Cafe and Stoney's representing new-age sandwich shops, are quickly becoming favourites among locals and tourists alike.
Bordered to the south by Lake Ontario and to the north by the QEW, the neighbourhood of Bronte is endowed with old and new homes and boasts great parkland throughout, including Shell Park, Coronation Park and an awesome outdoor stage area where the annual Waterfront Festival is held. Great transit takes residents to downtown Toronto easily and for renters, there are lots of options in the community's high-rise apartments that have great views over the lake. Businesses are focused at Bronte Road at Lakeshore
Townhouses, attractive semis and detached homes make up the housing stock in Clearview. The community's notable features are its park-like setting, bicycle paths and walkways, and the neighbourhood is also home to plenty of shopping, professional amenities and medical services just north of Winston Churchill Blvd. It shares its southern border with Mississauga's north.
College Park, bordered to the east Morrison Creek, to the north by Upper Middle Road, to the south by the QEW and to the west by Sixteen Mile Creek, offers a variety of housing options for its residents, including townhouses, semi-detached houses, bungalows, split levels and detached homes. College Park is home to the Oakville Place Shopping Centre and Sheridan College Campus located on the west side of Trafalgar Road and south of Upper Middle Road in Oakville. Residents here enjoy easy access to ravine paths, walkways and public transportation.
Home to the famed Glen Abbey Golf Course and a wide variety of walking and biking trails, the neighbourhood of Glen Abbey is bordered to the north by Upper Middle, to the east by Sixteen Mile Creek, to the south by the QEW and to the west by Bronte Road. It offers a mixture of housing, ranging from small walk-up apartments to five-bedroom detached homes and is known as a family-friendly area. Its large recreation centre has two skating rinks, fitness classes, a swimming pool and a branch of the Oakville Public Library and the Oakville Gymnastics Club.
Eastlake, or Joshua Creek, is situated in southeast Oakville along the shore of Lake Ontario. The neighbourhood is bordered to the north by Cornwall Road, on the west by Morrison Creek and to the east by the Mississauga border. Public parkland, recreational facilities, natural environment areas are among the amenities here. Single detached homes make up the most part of the housing stock in Eastlake.
Part yuppie, part hippie, part hipster, Kerr Village neighbourhood touches Lake Ontario to the south, Dorval to the west and Sixteen Mile Creek to the east and north. Homes here come in all shades, from fixer-uppers, to luxury townhomes, to custom-built houses and upscale condominiums, and lots of charming historic homes. It has unique businesses like boutiques, restaurants and spas, hosts year-round events and boasts easy accessibility to the GO Transit line.
A mecca of million-dollar estates, Old Oakville is some of the best restaurants and shops in town, the campus of the well-known Appleby College private school for boys and girls, and Oakville’s main public library branch. The community is part of Downtown Oakville, founded in 1957, and the population is, in general, over 45.
Formerly called Hargartown, Palermo is centred at Dundas and Bronte, and is the location of the Richview, Saw-Whet and Deerfield golf clubs. Most homes here are huge and pricey, some measuring 4,000 square feet, and are graced with plenty of park land to the north.
Uptown Core is a planned neighbourhood of high-rise condos with lots of shops and restaurants on the ground level, still under construction. It is expected to include a 27-acre park and lake, 1 million square feet of retail, over 3 million square feet of office development and housing for 10,000 residents. There is a transit terminal in the heart of Oak Park, which is part of the Uptown Core, to connect Oakville, Halton, Mississauga by GO Transit.
River Oaks neighbourhood is bordered by Trafalgar Road and the Uptown Core (Oak Park), to the east by Dundas Street to the north, Sixteen Mile Creek to the west and Upper Middle Road to the south. Home types include; single family detached apartments, semi detached and town homes. Some of its striking features are; The River Oaks Community Centre, Oakville’s new state-of-the-art sports park, a library facility. Other sections are still under development.
Home to a large population of young families because of its many great parks, trails, day cares and schools, West Oak Trails neighbourhood also includes the new Oakville Trafalgar Memorial Hospital which provides assessment, teaching, counselling chemotherapy administration, blood transfusions and procedures for oncology patients.