Highlights of the Tastemakers Lounge at TIFF ’12

Le Dolci treats

Taking a step away from the movies, and the red carpets, the stars of the 2012 Toronto International Film Festival are getting some extra pampering as the 8th Tastemakers Lounge puts swank brands and goodies in the hands of stars from Canada and around the world.

On the 11th floor of the InterContinental Toronto Centre hotel, I got a deluxe tour of Tastemakers Lounge on the day that TIFF kicked off–the day before the lounge would play host to the first round of stars–and right away it was easy to pick out my favorite goodies, although there were certainly a lot of brands and products to check out.

At the top of my list though was John Allan’s grooming service. Since a lot of actresses end up at the lounge, there are a number of products just for the ladies, but John Allan’s is a great exception just for the gentlemen. The professional service company offers shoe shines, hair clean-ups, manicures, and hand massages, which they gave guests a sample of during the lounge visit. It was pampering on a first-class level, and leaving with shiny shoes was a big bonus during TIFF.

A lot of the brands at the lounge do work well for both the men and the women coming by, including Bobble water bottles, which filters water as you drink, for the more eco-consious people; Le Dolci treats–like the TIFF-inspired cupcakes they were handing out–were just plain delicious; and of course the same thing goes for the all-natural Popchips, which boasts themselves as the healthy alternative to chips.

For the guests at the Tastemakers Lounge though, some brands get a little more attention: La Senza had their sexy new bras and lingerie on display; Indeed Laboratories and their skin treatments also drew a lot of attention; Kiss nail products were showing off their latest nail art and nail polish kits; and Yorkdale Shopping Centre had a bundle of goodies which included a limited edition bracelet from Tiffany & Co., and a very pricey tote set from Ann Taylor.

While journalists are sometimes treated quite well at events, strolling into the Tastemakers Lounge as a journalist is fairly surreal since it puts you in the figurative shoes of the stars, with the same swag on top of it all (aside from the Ann Taylor, mind you). That swag for 2012 was everything you could hope for–whether you’re a star or not–and when you mix that swag with things like the Le Dolci treats, and the mood of the suite, it’s no wonder Tastemakers Lounge brings the celebrities back again each year.

La Senza
La Senza
Tastemakers Lounge goodies
Tastemakers Lounge goodies
Yorkdale Shopping Centre
Yorkdale Shopping Centre
Kimberley’s Own Granola
Kimberley’s Own Granola
Indeed Laboratories
Indeed Laboratories
Bobble water bottles
Bobble water bottles
Popchips
Popchips
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W. Andrew Powell lives, sleeps, eats, and breaths movies and entertainment. Since launching The GATE in 1999 Andrew has enjoyed being a pest to any publicist who would return his calls. In his "spare time," Andrew is also an avid photographer, and writes about leisure travel and hotels around the world.