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A slice of Europe in Old Chelsea

June 21st,2024 | Arts & Entertainment

Patrons of La Terrasse du Square take in some nice weather on the patio while Craig Simon strums a tune on stage. Photo: courtesy Lélia Bâcle-Mainguy

By Kendall Knowlton

Manuela Teixeira has placed the final puzzle piece in her Old Chelsea Square project with an impressive $6 million terrace that has already begun hosting outdoor concerts, movie nights and farmers’ markets. 

Teixeira is the owner of Terrasse du Square, and also owns Chelsea Pub, the Manchester Bistro Pub and several other Chelsea businesses. She and her crew pulled out all the stops when designing this new, approximately $6 million space for the community that’s located in the heart of Old Chelsea. 

The area is filled with fresh picnic tables for people to sit and enjoy drinks, food and events. There is a large wooden stage at the front, framed by her newly built distillery and rows of rustic barrels. 

The ground is fine gravel, which is perfect for dancing the night away. 

Trees are scattered throughout the space, outdoor lights create a vibrant evening atmosphere, there’s a fire pit, a food trailer and games like Jenga and Petanque. 

Teixeira says she was inspired to create the space by her travels in Europe but also closer to home – Toronto’s Distillery District.

“If you go to Italy, Portugal, Spain, France, you always have squares surrounded by businesses,” says Teixeira.

Terrasse du Square opened earlier this summer and is already creating a cultural vibe with events like outdoor dance parties, movies under the stars, paint nights and outdoor games. 

These are just a few of the events that are slated to liven up Chelsea’s centre village this summer, including: a gourmet food night, La Grande Tablée Des Collines; and Terrasse Electronique, a June 29 outdoor dance party with electronic artist Jesse Mac Cormack. 

“We have amazing programming that is coming for the summer, so, we will have some shows, we will have some outdoor cinema, there will be markets every Sunday,” says Lélia Bâcle-Mainguy, Le Terrasse’s director of marketing and public relations. 

She says the Marché du Square will take place every Sunday in Terrasse du Square from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., and the markets will have local artisans and food from local producers. 

La Terrasse will also serve food like burritos, corn dogs with different toppings, grilled cheese, chicken burgers, soft serve ice cream and more throughout the summer. The food truck is open from 12 p.m. until 8 p.m. on Mondays and Tuesdays and until 9 p.m. from Wednesday to Sunday. 

The Distillerie du Square, also located in the Square, serves cocktails, along with their own brands of alcohol such as Gin du Jardin, Gin du Jardin Mediterranean and Belle Ciao! Aperitivo and will include a new Amaretto, which will be released later this month. 

Speaking about the completion of the Terrasse du Square, Bâcle-Mainguy says, “It’s the final project of the Old Chelsea Square, and it’s the place we want everyone to gather and just have fun. “We’re really open to collaborate with the community,” she says.

Canada Day at Le Terrasse

The Terrasse du Square will buzzing on Canada Day this year. There will be activities for kids such as face painting and a bouncy castle obstacle course. Buskers will be playing tunes in the Square as well as DJs, including the Low Down’s own Trevor Greenway (DJ BeatScience). 

“It’s really family-orientated,” says Bâcle-Mainguy, describing the Canada Day events. 

Canada Day festivities kick off at 11 a.m. and run until 4 p.m.

Terrasse du Square is located at 248 Ch. Old Chelsea, Chelsea.

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