Guild Park and Gardens covers 88 acres of unique forest, shoreline and open parkland located atop the Scarborough Bluffs at 201 Guildwood Pkwy., Toronto. The property is former home of the popular Guild Inn
, a private hotel, licenced restaurant and arts/cultural centre owned and operated for more than 50 years by art patrons and entrepreneurs, the late Rosa and Spencer Clark.
The Guild Inn expanded from a country estate, originally built in 1917. The facility expanded many times to accommodate growing numbers of guests (local residents and out-of-town visitors), special events (from weddings to arts festivals) and corporate activities (such as education classes and professional conferences).
Guests ranged from Canada’s Prime Minister Lester Pearson and the Netherlands’ Queen Juliana; to musicians Sir Ernest MacMillan and Glenn Gould; to performers Sir Lawrence Olivier and Lorne Greene.
The property was purchased in 1978 by the Province of Ontario and is managed by the City of Toronto. The hotel and restaurant operations closed in 2001 and in 2009 the hotel portion of the Guild Inn was demolished
The park includes a unique collection of outdoor sculptures and architectural fragments preserved from more than 50 downtown Toronto buildings that were demolished in the 20th Century. The site remains a popular site for wedding and commercial photography, television and video production and outdoor community activities.
"To walk through the Clark collection [of architecture] at The Guild is somewhat like walking through history. When we see the pillars of the Bankers Bond Building, for instance, we can visualize the magnificent classical structure they supported."
Pierre Berton (1920-2004)
Canadian Author and Broadcaster
Chairman, Heritage Canada Foundation.