Allergy Friendly Cities:
A Summer Glance

By Ilona Kauremszky
Special to the Allergic Magazine 2005

New York City

Take a bite out of New York City this summer. The city’s tourism office, NYC & Company wants you to experience the five boroughs with ease and fun through its summer savings program, “NYC Summer Breaks 2005.” The handy pocket sized brochure offers coupons, listings for accommodations starting from $120 US as well as a grab bag of other discounts on dining, tours and attractions valid until September 5. No wonder the Big Apple is labeled the “City That Never Sleeps.”

Upcoming Festivals
Museum at The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT)
June 14, 2005- July 30, 2005 Fabulous Fashions of the 1940s

Matisse: The Fabric of Dreams: His Art and His Textiles
June 23, 2005-September 25, 2005 The Metropolitan Museum of Art
June 25-July 23

Tap City, the New York City Tap Festival
June 5-August 29 Friedlander The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA)
Summer Restaurant Week: June 20-24 and June 27-July 1


The Blakely New York
136 West 55th Street First opened as the Gorham Hotel in 1929 but recently reopened as The Blakely New York, the 120-room hotel offers a no-pet policy, plenty of wooden floors with very little carpeting and a kitchenette for those who wish to cook microwaveable meals. In fact, each guestroom features a full kitchenette with sink, microwave, mini-fridge, dishes and flatware, down comforters and Egyptian cotton bed linens that are washed with hypoallergenic products and Frette cotton robes. Located in midtown walking distance from Carnegie Hall, Rockefeller Center and Central Park.

Apple Core Hotel 129 West 46th Street
(800) 567-7720 or (212) 790-2710
Designated as the Big Apple’s first completely smoke-free hotel back in 2001, the 79-room hotel’s policy includes all areas. For travelers with smoke allergies, the entire hotel has been thoroughly disinfected from deep cleaning the carpets, drapes and bed spreads to disinfecting phones, coffee makers and hair dryers. “No smoking” signs are found throughout and you’ll never find an ashtray anywhere. The hotel reports for those caught violating their strict antismoking law, they will be asked to leave the premises.

Blue Moon Hotel 212-533-9080
On the Lower East Side, Manhattan’s only kosher hotel will feature 22 suites when it opens later this year on historic Orchard Street.


Le Perigord
405 East 52nd Street
In an era when many a “celebrity” chef will brook no substitutions or special requests less their culinary creations be compromised, Le Perigord, the 41-year old dining institution is a breath of fresh air. It’s where big names like Liz Taylor and Richard Burton dined after they returned from filming Cleopatra. Possibly the oldest upscale restaurant in New York City continuously owned and operated by one individual, Georges Briguet, Le Périgord is certainly one of the last two of the classic fine dining formal French restaurants left standing in a city in which they once ruled.

The professional service staff know all of the ingredients of the menu’s dishes and happily share with those who inquire. If a diner has a problem with anything, it is either eliminated or the chef vamps with an appropriate substitution if needed to maintain the flavor integrity of the dish. Le Perigord is also a peanut free environment.

Starwich locations:
525 W. 42nd Street, (212) 736-9170
153 E. 53rd Street @ Lexington Ave., 212-371-7772
63 Wall Street, 122-218-3057
One of the newest food trends to hit the Big Apple, Starwich assures no worries about food allergies in that diners literally create their own dishes – sandwiches and salads – by choosing among more than 120 organic ingredients. Couldn’t be easier to steer clear of most anything problematic. And the staff is knowledgeable about what ingredients are used in dressings and sauces. Starwich, which debuted just about a year ago, now has three New York locations.

Besides the extraordinary number of ingredient options the eateries have a comfortable lounge living room setting with leather couches, complimentary Wi-FI and cell phone charges including an array of intriguing original artwork and a selection of international periodicals. New locations seem to be popping up for this growing food chain that accentuates organic and wholesome foods.

Abboccato Ristorante
136 West 55th Street
(212) 265-4000
Just when you thought you couldn’t find a fine Italian restaurant in midtown, the Abboccato shows up. It’s easy to spot with the restaurant’s striking symbol of La Boca della Verita, the famous landmark as seen in the Audrey Hepburn, Gregory Peck classic, “Roman Holiday.” Chef partners Jim Botsacos and Jake Addeo offer gluten-free dishes and accommodate requests for food allergies.

City Crab & Seafood Company (not for the shellfish/fish allergic)
235 Park Avenue South
Located in the Gramercy Park/Flat Iron District, City Crab besides providing an amazing dining experience is sensitive to special diets and those with food allergies. In fact one of the owners has taken the issue so seriously he is active on the board of the Food Allergy Initiative. The chef here is flexible, accommodating and openly shares ingredients, cooking specialty menus. All dishes are peanut free.

Candle 79
154 East 79 Street
Floor to ceiling windows, purple accents and blonde interiors reflect the upscale Candle 79 located in the Upper East Side. Rated as “New York’s Naturally Restaurant of 2005” the organic, vegan restaurant serves an extensive gluten-free menu in addition to their regular, seasonally changing menus. The mantra here is “all’s well that eats well” and they are very allergy friendly. The restaurant prints an ingredient list for every dish, trains their staff to be aware of allergies such as nuts. And since no animal or dairy products are used in their cuisine, those with a milk intolerance will be in heaven here. Using only organic produce in addition to serving organic wines and beverages, Candle 79 protects guests from harmful chemicals and pesticides while helping to promote sustainable agriculture. The ingredients are purchased daily from at least 10 local organic farms and small businesses. Chefs Angel Ramos and Jorge Pineda have converted more than a few non-vegetarians with their vibrantly flavored signature dishes.

Other Neat Finds
As a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, and having experience in preparing meals for her daughter who is severly allergic to peanuts, Kathleen Gallo has started a new catering company for those who suffer from food allergies and restricted diets. Kathy says, “Now they too can enjoy culinary Delites.” Working one on one, she develops special meals for people with food allergies.

For more travel info visit or call 1-800-NYC-GUIDE or stop by one of NYC & Company’s Official Visitor Information Centers. Locations are Midtown at 810 Seventh Avenue and 53rd Street, downtown at City Hall Park at the intersection of Park Row and Broadway, in Chinatown at the intersection of Canal, Baxter and Walker Streets; and in Harlem in the State Office Building Plaza at 163 West 125th Street at Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard for more details.


Amid the slick serpentine towers of Mies van der Rohe, Pelli, Phillip Johnson and Frank Lloyd Wright dotting the Windy City’s skyline, Chicago is opening its famed waterfront for a blockbuster summer. And with the recent completion of the 24.5 acre Millenium Park that hugs Lake Michigan, the city is celebrating the public park’s first summer by hosting more than 50 free concerts, exhibitions and events. By night sit in the bleechers for a jazz performance or by day cruise up and down the Chicago River.

Long gone are the days of Hog Town’s notoriously dirty water as today scores of kayakers and canoe enthusiasts are seen waving up and down the river system passing the architectural wonders that have made this city famous. Folks can ascend the 110 story Sears Tower for a birds’ eye view, peer into the US’s oldest planetarium that sits on the waterfront like an old jewel.

Later coast down one of the many neighborhoods like ultra hip Wicker Park where granola is in or enter one of the upscale shops dotting the famous Magnificent Mile district for the latest looks from Hermes, Gucci and Prada. Whether you’re after a slice of Chicago’s famous deep-dish pizza or a glimpse into one of the hot jazz clubs, the Windy City’s got something for everyone.

Upcoming Festivals
6th Annual Chicago Outdoor Film Festival -July 12-Aug 23
48th Annual Venetian Night July 30
17th Annual Viva! Chicago Latin Music Festival August 27-28
27th Annual Chicago Jazz Festival September 1-4


The Hilton O'Hare Airport
It’s the latest trend in enviro-room design techniques. Allergy sufferers can now enjoy the intimate surroundings of this luxury hotel’s two newly refurbished suites designed especially for them. The hotel ripped up carpet and laid down polished wooden floors adding wall coverings, fabrics, furniture, paints, adhesives and cleaning products to control and remove dusts, molds and chemicals that could trigger reactions in allergic guests. In addition, a new air purification system reports the hotel helps reduce dust and other allergens that are emitted through carpets, furniture and cleaning products. Amenities in the two rooms include filtered air ducts and purifiers that remove 99 percent of dust and particles from the air. The rooms also have wallpaper with thousands of invisible pinpricks that release moisture and prevent mold. The rooms are aimed at travelers who have allergies or asthma.

Ritz-Carlton Chicago
160 East Pearson Street
Tel: (312) 266 1000
No wonder Condé Nast Traveler has named it ‘best hotel’ in North America for several years running. Like its sister hotels, the Ritz-Carlton Chicago is a symbol of luxury and provides special rooms for allergy-sensitive guests, a full service spa, and toys for kids. Upon request allergy sensitive guests can have rooms with hypoallergenic fabrics and vent guards so your every whim is met at the touch of a dial with the on-call concierge service.

Alice and Friends Vegetarian Café
5812 N. Broadway Ave. Chicago
An all-vegetarian and mostly-vegan Asian place on the far north side of Chicago, renowned for their fake meat dishes, there are also neat inspirational sayings throughout this restaurant reflecting its quiet setting. Wheelchair accessible. Smoke free.

6207 N. Milwaukee Ave. Chicago
773-774-0276 Owners Bill and David Choi believe that food has the power to heal. Judging by their dishes like Nine Ways to Nirvana, a wholewheat noodle soup with nine-grain miso beans, it’s no wonder. Influences of Tibet and the Indian subcontinent are big themes at this vegetarian and vegan eatery.

Chicago Diner
3411 N. Halsted Chicago
Considered Chicago’s oldest vegetarian restaurant, the Chicago Diner is popular among the health conscious and those who opt for alternative dining. The owners say almost any option can be made vegan including altering menus to meet your special diet.

Green Zebra
1460 Chicago Avenue
A contemporary vegetarian experience that is allergy sensitive. Green Zebra’s cuisine celebrates an Asian fusion with the charm of the mid-west. Owner and chef Shawn McClain has received many accolades including Esquire’s “Chef of the Year” award and was voted as Best New American Restaurant in Travel & Leisure’s December 2004 issue.

Karyn's Fresh Corner
1901 N. Halsted
Karyn Calabrese, one of the most popular and innovative leaders in the holistic health industry, besides offering a cornocopia of healthy living advice runs the longest standing raw-food restaurant in the Midwest. Chicago Tribune's William Rice calls Karyn, “the high priestess of raw food” and after stepping foot in her signature restaurant, you'll know why. She serves a wide selection of gourmet living foods that are high in protein and contain no cholesterol. Other menu notes include dairy-free and she refrains from eggs, refined sugar, salt, or artificial flavors. Karyn's Fresh Corner offers some menu choices that are gluten free but she adds "don't be afraid to ask."

Other Neat Finds
Bean Products, Inc.
1500 S. Western Ave., 4CS
800-726-8365 or 312-666-3600
Manufacturer of therapeutic, environmentally friendly pillows, yoga and meditation mats, hemp shower curtains and more.

Healthy Dining Chicago
Chicago, IL
This is a bimonthly newsletter on healthy dining in Chicago. To request a complimentary issue, send an e-mail to

For more travel info, contact the Chicago Office of Tourism at 1-877-CHICAGO, or visit or for hotel reservations visit

San Francisco

Since Tony Bennett sang “I left my heart in San Francisco” many others have remarked similar sentiments. Authoress of amorous novels, Danielle Steele gets her inspiration from “America’s Favorite City” so does Chef Wolfgang Puck whose restaurant Postrio is a staple here. With symbols like the famed Golden Gate Bridge, Transamerica Building and the infamous Alcatraz prison, vacationers will have plenty of sightseeing to keep them busy. After scooting up the streets in the famed streetcars, walking in Chinatown, indulging in the hundreds of restaurants many of which can accommodate special diets, this bustling town of 750,000 residents will get you wanting more.

Upcoming Festivals
Cable Car Ringing Competition - July 14th July 28-31
Sail San Francisco now through October 15th
Golden Gate Park Band in The Botanical Gardens at Strybing Arboretum, Golden Gate Park August 1-September 17 - 2005
AfroSolo Arts Festival
Stepology Tap Festival August 15-20, 2005
San Francisco Fashion Week August 24-28, 2005


Garratt Mansion
Alameda (20 miles from San Francisco)
A green business 20 miles from San Francisco, the Garratt Mansion underwent rigorous certification by Alameda County ensuring its inn's waste management, water, appliances, and cleaning supplies met the county’s high green business standards. You’ll see the drains are flushed monthly with baking soda and vinegar, linens are line-dried, and for fragrance sufferers, there’s an absence of potpourri, room deodorizers, and fragrance dryer sheets making the property an ideal choice for those with environmental sensitivities and allergies. Most cleaning is done with microfiber cloths, vinegar and baking soda. Guests love the 100-percent cotton linens and robes, and choice of feather or hypo-allergenic pillows.

Orchard Hotel
665 Bush Street
San Francisco
Near Union Square on Nob Hill, this 10-floor 100-roomed boutique hotel is totally smoke free.

Tassajara Zen Mountain Center
39171 Tassajara Road
(831) 659-2229
Open April through August, this off-the–beaten path monastery situated in the hilly Carmel district offers three vegan meals a day. Its isolated beauty captures the pure “serenity now” experience for the weary urbanite.

Millennium Restaurant
580 Geary Street in the Savoy Hotel
(415) 345-3900
Newly introduced to the ritzy Savoy Hotel, the Millenium Restaurant emphasizes its own gourmet dining experience specializing in vegetarian and healthy, environmentally friendly fare. Nestled in the heart of San Francisco’s theater district, it’s been rated as one of the Top 100 Bay Area Restaurants for four consecutive years by the San Francisco Chronicle. Lauded as a “temple of vegetarian food,” the vegan restaurant is known around the local foodie circuit for its openess about listing ingredients. The chef upon request can cook specialty meals that are gluten-free. On an average night, Chef Tucker typically receives at least a half dozen requests a night pertaining to gluten-free dishes.

Renaissance Parc 55 Hotel/Veranda Restaurant
55 Cyril Magnin Street
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 403-6629
Dining at Renaissance is always a unique experience. From imaginative menues to elegant modern interiors, the innovative culinary style known around San Francisco is seamlessly highlighted here. Chef David Felix is known around the SF Celiac circuit for his strong knowledge of gluten intolerance and cross-contamination issues. Ever want to dine here? Contact him before your dinner date and alert him of your needs. Once at the restaurant, Chef David is known to walk you through the buffet pointing out gluten-free dishes. In his grab bag of wizardry, he can even fix a caesar salad without breadcrumbs. It’s where you can eat out and still feel like “normal people.”

The Ultimate Guide to Vegetarian Living in the SF Bay Area (UG)
Over 250 businesses catering to vegetarian foods & services with over 300 customer reviews.

For more travel info, visit or call 415-391-2000


Home to the Red Sox, Boston Bruins, America's Mother City is where old meets new. From the colonial beginnings of musket bearing revolutionaries to the modern metropolis that recently saw the completion of the “Big Dig,” Boston is shining up its brass for sizzling summer festivities. And what perfect timing, the city is celebrating its 375th birthday with a bonanza of activities including more than 100 cultural celebrations, concerts, fireworks, parades, public art and events. The compact size makes it easy for sightseeing. From over 1,000 points of interest, you’ll quickly realize how this place possesses scores of superlatives.

. Upcoming Festivals

24th Boston Harborfest 2005 June 29-July 4, 2005
“Whispers from the Winds” Family Fun Day Georges Island Boston Harbor Islands July 23-24, 2005
5th BostonUSA Restaurant Week, August 22-26, 2005
Boston 375 Hip Hop Boston City Hall Plaza August 6, 2005
10th Free Shakespeare In Boston Common, July 16- August 7, 2005
Dominican Festival & Parade, August 12-14, 2005
11th Bank of America Pavilion Music Festival May 20-September 15, 2005
Puerto Rican Festival, August 29-31, 2005


The Stone Lion Inn
Wellfleet, MA (Cape Cod, MA; about an hour from Boston)
Innkeeper Janet Loewenstein wants all her guests to feel at home. To maintain a low-allergen environment, she uses scent and dye-free detergents for laundry and washing. All her natural cleaning agents used for day-to-day cleaning are unscented. Janet also uses a low concentration bleach-water mixture that is mixed at the inn to avoid dyes and perfumes. This mixture is utilized for sanitizing toilets. When it’s time for some shuteye, guests will find down-alternative comforters and fiberfill pillows. And with wood floors those with dust sensitivities can rest assured.


Since last year throughout the state of Massachusettes it is state law for restaurants to identify on their menu those foods that are raw and undercooked.

Blue Ginger
583 Washington Street
Wellesley, MA
TV celebrity extraordinaire Chef Ming Tsai of “Simply Ming” fame and his latest incarnation as one of the judges on “Cooking Under Fire” knows what food allergies are all about. His young toddler son suffers from seven of the top eight life threatening food allergies. Since Ming opened his award-winning restaurant in 1998, his motto has been on what he prescribes as “The Bible system,” which is a binder listing all ingredients from his menu and highlighting those that contain food allergy ingredients like tree nuts and shellfish so servers are educated.

When a customer alerts their server about a food allergy the order gets a special tag and the final meal is personally signed off by the chef everytime. Zagat Survey has rated Blue Ginger as the second top restaurant in its Boston Guide for the last three years. Besides maintaining his restaurant, completing three shows and working on cookbooks (he’s got three), Ming has been busy advocating for better awareness of food allergies. He’s the national spokesperson for the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN), and is actively seeking state legislation that would require all restaurants across the state to prescribe Ming’s approach to restaurantering ie following the Bible system.

Cambridge, MA
A completely allergy friendly restaurant, The Rialto has special menus for wheat-free, alcohol-free, nut free, dairy free.

Allandale Farm 259 Allandale Road
Brookline, MA
Billed as the sixth oldest business in the nation, Allendale Farm is the last remaining farm in the Boston area where the family has been farming on the same land since the French-Indian war. Current harvest includes over 40 varieties of veg, flowers and herbs suppling many local restaurants with their organic produce. Certified naturally grown.

Spirit of Change Magazine
New England's holistic magazine.
For more info log onto or call 1-888-SEE BOSTON.

Las Vegas

Famous Las Vegas is back and it’s having a party. Celebrating its 100th anniversary, America’s gambling capital has added “family vacation destination” to its moniker with animal attractions, roller coasters, amusement parks and for those who love the good things in life, there are multimillion dollar resorts with uber chic spas. For gaming enthusiasts venture down the famous Strip, a 3 ½ mile stretch of Las Vegas Boulevard South between Russell Road and Sahara Avenue, the heart of Las Vegas. Get ready to be spellbounded in this desert oasis. The kinetic skyline with outlandish odes to the Statue of Liberty, the Eiffel Tower, the Sphynx and Venetian cities all add a hyper feel to the glittering neon lights.Upcoming Festivals
June 2-July 13 36th Annual World Series Poker
August 27-29 Harvest Festival
Ongoing - Whistle Stop to Windfall: 100 Years in Las Vegas
[For more events details surrounding the centennial celebrations log onto


Rainbow's End Natural Foods
1100 East Sahara Avenue
A store and restaurant in one, there’s a definite friendly laidback atmosphere that mirrors the casual eatery. The chef is helpful and makes suggestions for those with food allergies and can prepare special dishes. Popular items include veggie chili, pizza and veggie burgers. Wheat-less and eggless main dishes are available.

Go Raw Café
2910 Lake East Drive
Las Vegas
Web Site:
A casual smoke-free vegan restaurant that celebrates mostly raw ingredients, Go Raw Café serves fresh juices and has meals like lasagna and green burritos on the menu.

Ronald's Donuts
4600 Spring Mountain Rd
Definitely not a Ronald McDonald type place, Ronald’s Donuts serves up mostly vegan donuts. It’s healthy dessert all the way.

Your Vegan Chef…A Personal Chef Service Patty "Sassy" Knutson
Self prescribed foodie, Patty “Sassy” prepares custom-made vegan meals in your home or she can deliver to your hotel room. The emphasis here is on special diets and eating healthy.

For other travel info on Las Vegas visit


No doubt Canada’s largest city is packed with a smorgasbord of activities and festivals this summer. Whether it’s North America’s largest Carabana festival, the Molson Indy 500, Gay Pride Week or the popular jazz festival, T.O. has a long menu of summer events and festivals. Immerse in the cultural fun down by the harbourfront, take a ferry to Centre Island, home to a rare carousel perfect for kids, or sip on a cocktail atop the CN Tower’s 360 Restaurant. For others who want some pampering, spas located in the swankiest hotels prepare natural elixirs for the most tired urban soul. For the rest, the city grid system allows for easy walking as most of Toronto’s attractions are located downtown or midtown. Crack open the SPF, tilt the shades and prepare to hit the streets.

Upcoming Festivals
June 1 – August 7, 2005 - Art Gallery of Ontario, The Shape of Color: Excursions in Colour Field Pride Week June 20-26
Francofete June 24
Dragon Boat Festival June 25-26
TD Canada Trust Toronto Downtown Jazz festival June 24-July 3
Festival of Fire June 25-July 9
Distillery District Outdoor Art Exhibition June 25-26
Chin Picnic June 30- 3
Fringe of Toronto Theatre Festival July 6-17
Summerlicious July 8-24
Celebrate Toronto Street Festival July 8-10
The Molson Indy July 8-10
Toronto International Circus Festival July 22-24
Caribana July 15-August 1
FFIDA Dance Festival August 12-21
Rogers Cup August 13-21
Canadian National Exhibition August 19- September 5


The Annex Quest House
Several attributes make this quaint guesthouse allergy friendly. A strictly no smoking property, the owners prescribe to the holistic teachings of Vastu. Pine planked floors, handmade wooden beds and dressers and soothing color combinations all marry together to celebrate the four basic elements of earth, air, fire and water.

Cosmopolitan Toronto
416.350.2000 or 800.958.3488
In the heart of Toronto’s financial district, Toronto’s newest boutique hotel is all about luxurious comfort with amenities that will make any allergy sensitive guest smile. All the suites have hardwood floors, full kitchens, air purifiers, balconies and windows that open. Everything is designed to maximize the oxygen and energy flow throughout the building. Prominent energy consultant Sylvia Noble, who has worked with the Bush family, Governor Schwarzenegger and many celebrities, consulted on this project in order to achieve this goal. Cosmopolitan Toronto believes a clean environment with quality air within the hotel will have a direct influence on the well-being of guests. “They will breathe better, will be more relaxed which will result in improved focus and energy,” says PR rep Dalia Blumenthal.

Sheraton Hotel (416) 361-1000
Introduced two years ago across the Sheraton chain offers weary allergy sensitive travellers its Sheraton Sweet Sleeper(SM) Bed. It’s a luxurious multi-layered custom designed bed equipped with a Sealy Posturepedic® Plush Top mattress, down and allergy sensitive pillows and crisp cotton sheets.

Four Seasons 21 Avenue Road
(416) 964-0411
Bedrooms come equipped with hypo-allergenic pillows and duvets and for allergy sensitive guests when notified the luxury hotel rewashes bed linen one more time without soap. Since it’s all about service at this four-star chain, guests need merely to make a request for their special needs.

Accor-Novotel Toronto Mississauga
3670 Hurontario Street, Mississauga
This Mississauga-based hotel offers a new concept in accommodation. Called the 'Novation' Room, the hotel says it will make you feel at home with its king-sized beds, European duvets, ergonomic furnishings and well designed lighting options.

Il Fornello
112 Isabella St.
Toronto, ON
M4Y 1P1
Tel: (416) 920-9410
Vegetarian Haven 17 Baldwin St., 416-621-3636, Food for the body and soul, Vegetarian Haven offers an eclectic menu of wraps, pastas and Oriental dishes.

Surati Sweet Mart
1407 Gerrard St. E. (e. of Greenwood), 416-462-3480
Indian music seranades you at this snacker’s heaven that doesn’t use eggs. At last count there were over 70 snacks and sweets like breaded deep fried hot peppers.

Super Sprouts Café
720 Bathurst St. (s. of Bloor)
Here you’ll find fresh made raw organic vegan cuisine where the menu changes daily. There’s a smorgasbord of different raw entrees, soups, salads and dessert. This past Earth day raw pizza was on the menu.

Soy-N-Joy & Mango
664 Finch Ave E. (e. of Bayview)
Crave a soya ice cream? Head over to this eastend ice cream parlor where there’s 26 vegan flavors including chocolate mint, coconut, coffee, banana, papaya, lychee and more. One of the owners, a food scientist hails from Hong Kong while the other, a nutritionist, is from Thailand. It’s totally take-out at this three bar stool venue.

Delta Hotels
33 Gerrard Street West
Reservations: 1-800-CHELSEA
This spring the hotel chain introduced its "Our Kitchen is Your Kitchen" concept where the premise is that all Delta staff work towards meeting the needs of their guests. So when you ask for something that isn't on a menu, or when you wish to modify an existing menu item, it’s done. Next time you’re at Delta and have food allergies or suffer from other allergies, be sure to say "Our Kitchen is Your Kitchen", or just plain ask for a specially prepared meal. They’ll make it happen. Another new feature is the "whitecoat program" where the chef visits your table and talks over the special particulars of your meal.

88 Nassau St, in Kensington Market
For tender tootsies, this new vegan store features hemp & micro-porous 'breathable' shoes, and accessories.

Novalis River Resort B&B
Near Beaverton, 705-426-4530
Perched on the banks of Beaver River this year round retreat 90 minutes from Toronto accentuates detoxification without feeling like you’re at a fat farm. The emphasis is on pure healthy organic eating loaded with a yummy veg menu and alternative spa therapies inspired from Thai and Swedish techniques.

For other travel information contact Toronto Tourism at or call them at 1-877-342-0243


Perched on one of the world’s great natural harbors, this capital city is sandwiched between Nova Scotia's South Shore with the coastal villages of the Eastern Shore and the pastoral landscape of the Musquodoboit Valley. Once teeming with old salts, Halifax has been transformed into a deluxe destination, offering summer vacationers a rich blend of tradition, culture, adventure and nightlife rolled into one package and topped off with the piece de la resistance, the stunning natural beauty. A virtual walking city, there are literally landmarks at every corner. No doubt 250 years of history does that. Overlooking the harbor, the star-shaped fortress of the Halifax Citadel dominates the city skyline and continues to fire its noonday gun daily. Step back in time as music and pageantry of the 78th Highlanders breathe life into history amid costumed guides and historical re-enactors. Jazz, buskers, outdoor festivals, and cultural and sporting events are plentiful.

Upcoming Festivals:
Atlantic Jazz Festival - July 8-17, 2005.
Nova Scotia International Tattoo - July 1-9, 2005
Halifax International Busker Festival - August 4-14, 2005
Atlantic Fringe Festival - September 1-11, 2005

Chanterelle Country Inn & Cottages
48678 Cabot Trail
866-277-0577/ (902) 929-2263
A definite leader on the allergy friendly front, owner Earlene Busch has gone to great lengths to make her property an enviro friendly place. Surrounded by the beauty of Cape Breton Island, overlooking St. Ann’s Bay and the Highlands to the north, the 150-acre estate serves up plenty of maritime charm with dining options that truly inspire. It’s Cape Breton fresh cuisine where Earlene uses only organic and locally grown fruits, vegetables and meats and seafood. Specialty dishes use the fragrant Chanterelle mushrooms collected on the property, lobster and crab, grass-fed Highland beef, Cape Breton Lamb and free-range chicken and eggs. Dinners feature vegetarian, non-vegetarian and seafood dishes. The rooms are designed for the highly discerning or chemically sensitive traveler. Only organic, fragrance-free facial and bath soaps, cleaners and laundry soap are used. Water and space heat are provided by solar power to avoid petro-chemical exposure and airborne contaminants. The inn and cottages are all non-smoking.

Four Points Sheraton Halifax
1496 Hollis Street
Tel: (902) 423-4444 / 1-866-444-9494
Besides having a unique 7,300 square foot mural of historic Halifax appears in the hotel’s open-air courtyard, the Four Points Sheraton Halifax is completely smoke-free.

Heartwood Bakery & Café
6250 Quinpool Road
(902) 425-2808
Strewn with local art for sale on its walls, owner Laura Bush has made this quaint eatery a local fixture since first opening in 1996. This scent-free vegan restaurant is big on providing only the best in organic ingredients. A sample menu includes vegetable curries, bean pies, Roast Marinated Tofu in Coconut Sauce and broccoli al mondine.

Satisfaction Feast
1581 Grafton Street
For over 20 years, Satisfaction Feast has been creating cuisine for healthy living. This is the hangout for vegetarians. Inquire about their allergy friendly dishes. For menu options log onto their web site.

Velvet Olive
1770 Market St. Tel: 492 2233
Gluten-free items are available.

'Tea By The Sea Café
18 Walker Street; 902-475-7615
Prince George Hotel/Georgio’s
1725 Market Street in downtown Halifax
All the menu items at Georgio’s, the luxury hotel’s signature restaurant, have a content breakdown or a list of ingredients. The servers work with each guest to ensure special dietary needs are met. The chefs here are known to prepare special meals especially for those with gluten/wheat free diets.

For more travel information on Halifax visit or call them at 1-800-565-5068

Billed as the “Heart of New West,” Calgary is where oil tycoons, stampedes and equistrian shows all gather. This summer it’s just in time for the “greatest outdoor show on earth” as the annual Calgary Stampede gets going attracting crowds of 10-gallon hats. An urbanite’s playground for golf, camping and hiking summer vacationers will want to highlight nearby destinations such as Alberta’s Badlands, home of our very own Jurassic Park and Kananaskis, a wilderness juggernaut situated west of Calgary. Lots has happened since Calgary was founded in 1875. Today, the city of nearly 1-million residents is known for its warm western hospitality and boasts more than 80 attractions, 1500 restaurants and diverse shopping.

Upcoming Festivals
June 25-26 RAILWAY DAYS June 29-July 3 “CANADA ONE” Tournament, Show Jumping at Spruce Meadows
July 8-17 2005 CALGARY STAMPEDE]
August 24- Sept 1 GLOBAL FEST 2005
For more travel information, contact

Outback Steak House
130 Crowfoot Terr NW
This chain restaurant has locations across the country including Calgary. A favorite gluten-free steak house, inquire about their separate GF menu. One popular dish is their Chocolate Thunder from Down Under. It’s a flourless chocolate cake. You can download a handy GF menu from their web site.

Joey`s Only Seafood
620 20 Crowfoot Cr NW
At Joey’s you can eat fish anyway you like it and that means without batter for those on GF diets.

Primal Grounds Cappuccino Bar and Eatery
Westside Recreation Centre Building Suite 144, 2000 69th St SW (663-0137) 3003 37th St SW (240-4185) Crave pizza but can’t have it because of your gluton-free diet? This Calgary eatery makes GF pizza at their 69th Street location while you can order yummy GF desserts from their 37th St. location.

Restaurant Indonesia
1604 14th St SW
The flavors of Indonesia are the big draw here but you’ll also find most items are already GF making it an extra bonus. If you call ahead or tell your server about your special diet, the chef will accommodate. So for the few dishes that call for flour, the chef will use cornstarch instead.


Best Western Calgary Centre Inn
3630 Macleod Tr. S.
Ph (403) 287-3900
This Best Western location is strictly a no pets zone.

Best Western Suites Downtown
1330 - 8 St. S.W.
Ph (403) 228-6900
Another location that practices a “no pets” policy, it also has full kitchenettes making it easier for home cooking if needed.

Calgary Historic Bed and Breakfast at Twin Gables
611 - 25 Ave. S.W.
Ph (403) 271-7754
At this quaint bed and breakfast, there are two rooms carpet free and hardwood throughout the premises. However, the owners have a poodle but these pets are supposed to be hypoallergenic.

For more travel information on Calgary log onto or call them at 1-800-661-1678


As a backdrop to familiar shows like “DaVinci’s Inquest” and X-Files, Canada’s westcoast city has welcomed the best of Hollywood and is home to some of the newest trends to hit the country. (Think Starbucks). Call it the westcoast laidbackness that perhaps comes from the surrounding natural beauty. Surveys generally list Vancouver as one of the 10 best cities in the world to live in. It's also one of the 10 best to visit according to Condé Nast Traveler.
July 27 and 30, August 3 and 6 HSBC Celebration of Light
July 23-August 1 Gay Pride Week
July 7 - 16: Dancing on the Edge Festival (
July 13 – August 31: Theatre under the Stars (
July 15 - 17: 28th Annual Vancouver Folk Music Festival (
tba: Vancouver Chamber Music Festival (
July 23 & 24: Caribbean Days Festival (
July 23 – 31: Vancouver Pride Week Celebration (
July 24 – August 14: Vancouver Early Music Festival July 27 & 30, August 3 & 6: HSBC Celebration of Light (
August 1 - 14: Festival Vancouver (
August 13 - 15: Abbotsford International Airshow (
August 20 – September 5: Fair of the Century at the PNE (
August 25 - 28: Vancouver Wooden Boat Festival (
September 5: Vancouver Triathalon (


Listel Vancouver Hotel
1300 Robson Street
Getting some shuteye just got easier at the Listel Vancouver. For those suffering from smoke allergies, the city’s “most artful hotel” became Vancouver’s first 100 percent smoke free hotel when it introduced its own New Years’ Resolution in January 2003. Often dubbed as “a cultural tourist’s dream” the 129-room boutique hotel is situated in the heart of fashionable Robson Street.

Wedgewood Hotel
845 Hornby St.
1 800 663 0666
Ranked fifth in the world and best in Canada for “best value” by Travel & Leisure Magazine, the award-winning boutique hotel is only getting better and gets high marks for allergy friendliness as guests are guaranteed hypo-allergenic sheets, pillows, duvets, and robes.

The Fairmont Vancouver Airport (FVA)
1-800-441-1414 or (604) 207-5200
Whoever coined the term “walking on a cloud” needs to stand on the 11th floor of the Fairmont Vancouver Airport. The luxury property is the first hotel in North America to offer an entire floor of hypoallergenic guestrooms. In total 42 rooms have been converted to hypoallergenic or low allergen content. Besides substituting feather pillows and duvets, the allergy friendly rooms have special filtration systems to further purify the air and water and a central vacuum system to reduce dust with one room having a hardwood only floor, perfect for those who suffer from carpet allergies. No smoking and no pets allowed on this floor. Other features include a nut free bar.


Diva at the Met
Metropolitan Hotel
645 Howe Street
Vancouver, B.C., V6C 2Y9
The front-of-house staff here are very good in accommodating food allergies and work closely with the kitchen's brigade. Once the specific allergies are identified, servers will communicate and verify any components of the dishes with the kitchen. Separate pans will be used in all preparation stages as well as confirming all alternatives with the guest. Executive Chef Ray Henry is extremely diligent regarding food allergies and will accommodate every guest's request. It seems that the restaurant is seeing more and more gluten allergies than in the past.

New - Lemon Grass Vietnamese Restaurant
2143 West 1st Ave.
Tel: 261 0688
A gluten-free friendly eatery full of fresh Vietnamese fare.

Rain City Grill
1193 Denman St.
Tel: 685 7337
The New York Times named it "the hottest restaurant in Vancouver." Buy locally eat seasonally is the mantra at this award-winning dining establishment situated in the tony English Bay district. The menu focuses on seafood, game, and poultry, and organic vegetables from British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest and there are gluten-free items available too. For full listings log onto their web site.

For other travel information on Vancouver visit or call 604.682.2222

Vancouver Island

The surf is up and so is the heat of summer along Vancouver Island’s sun-kissed coastline. Home to the finest old growth forests of redwoods and Canada’s most westerly point of Tofino, Vancouver Island’s wildly rugged beauty has been the spawning ground of some of Canada’s most renowned painters, poets and artists. Often pegged as the “Provence of North America” this island bounty offers the perfect climate for foodies and nature lovers. It’s easy to veer off-the-beaten path to explore hidden treasures that pepper the isle’s sleepy towns and inlets.

Upcoming Festivals
Summer Time Blues Festival (July 9- August 27th) at the Harbour Front Plaza in downtown Nanaimo
The Cadillac Van Isle 360 Yacht Race,


Fairmont Express
250 384 8111
For those suffering from a sweet tooth, the Fairmont Express like its sister hotels across the chain has allergy free dessert options in all of their restaurants. Here are just a few favorites at the Empress: Gluten-free crème or lemon caramel, Gluten-free scones (Afternoon Tea menu alternative), Diabetic-friendly chocolate éclairs (Afternoon Tea menu alternative), Diabetic-friendly chocolate mousse coupe and diabetic-friendly baked cinnamon apple stuffed with fresh berries.

Strathcona Park Lodge & Outdoor Education Centre
Campbell River
(250) 286-3122
The dining room at this non-smoking resort caters to a variety of food sensitivities and dietary needs. For all meals the lodge offers vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free options. In addition, they also label all items that contain dairy, nuts and so on. etc. We can provide options for any dietary needs.

Sooke Harbour House
1528 Whiffen Spit Rd.
250-642-3421 /1-800-889-9688
Considered one of the island’s rare gems, Sooke Harbour House epitomizes the rustic natural beauty so many of us crave. And the owners are very sensitive to today’s allergy sufferers. At the time of booking, it’s standard practice to ask all guests if they have any dietary allergies or aversions. The kitchen staff will easily accommodate special diets and they regularly design menus for them. “We enjoy meeting these challenges and our guests almost always find these adapted culinary creations delicious,” says Sinclair Philip. The cuisine here is light, fresh, seasonal and locally based with much of it coming straight from their garden.

347 Wesley Street
250 716-8831
Located in a restored heritage house in Nanaimo’s old city district, Phoenecia serves up a long menu of Mediterranean dishes and has been catering to allergy sufferers since it first opened. They understand food allergies since one family member has a sulphite allergy while several have dairy and nut allergies. Here’s a quick menu sampler: gluten free calamari as their regular calamari order usually has flour in the coating. Then there are dairy free salads along with extensive vegetarian and vegan choices on the menu.


A Country Breeze B & B
3961 Gilfillan Rd
Nanaimo, BC
250 751 0156/1-866-423-4900
This 12-acre oasis within the city is a pure country getaway. Breeze B & B is allergy-friendly. They have no carpeting in the entire home only hardwoods, tile and laminate and they don’t have feathers or use perfumes.

Painted Turtle Guesthouse
121 Bastion Street
(250) 753-4432/1-866-309-4432
Nanaimo’s only year round boutique style guest house was fully refurbished last year with modern kitchen and appliances. Totally 100% pet free and smoke-free, owners Bruce and Ang can accommodate special dietary needs.

Buccaneer Inn
1577 Stewart Avenue
(250) 753-1246 /1-877-282-6337
Over at this waterfront nugget, the family operated Buccaneer Inn feels more like new age pirateering as the owners let guests pick their own room rates. No wonder Lonely Planet and Moon Handbooks dubb them as “clean, comfortable with great value.” This newly renovated three-star select hotel in the heart of Nanaimo caters to many people who have severe allergies. All rooms are 100% non-smoking. They have a 100% no pet policy. While there is carpeting in the living rooms and bedrooms, the kitchen and bathroom areas have tile floors and countertops. No fragrances in their detergents or fabric softeners are used. Dave Ilyn, the owner, reports they’ll be replacing the bedspreads shortly with hypoallergenic duvets.

Long Lake Waterfront Bed and Breakfast
1-877-758-5010/(250) 758-5010
Marianne and Harold Robinson know about allergies. Two of their five children have serious allergies including asthma so for them it is very important that no animal hair contacts people with allergies. Two of their units also have kitchenettes so light cooking is available.

Neat Finds

Aces and Eights Holdings
Contact: Suzie at Aces and Eights
This limo rental company does not allow pets or smoking and they clean the luxury cars with as few allergy causing cleaning products. When it comes to air quality, the air systems are cleaned as a regular maintenance program.and they pop open the sunroof for fresh ventilation whenever possible.

Travel With Taste Tours Ltd.
(250) 385-1527
After traveling around the world self-prescribed foodie, Kathy McAree has cooked with the best of them. Founder of Travel With Taste Tours, Kathy operates a culinary tourism company on Vancouver Island and naturally has guests all the time with allergies and sensitivities. She prepares customized tours and finds that her favorite restaurants are great about accommodating food allergies.

For more info on Vancouver Island visit Tourism Vancouver Island online at or call them at (250) 754-3500


Montreal is the place of l’amour. It’s where Canada’s own Kennedysque marriage of Justin Trudeau and his lovely bride, Sophie Gregoire recently took place. It’s also where singing songstress Celine Dion tied the knot and where John Lennon and Yoko Ono staged their famous “love in.” Besides being the city of l’amour, Montreal is revving up for a blockbuster summer where this City of Festivals is setting the stage for some of the best. And afterwards, visitors can head to the many neighborhoods for a taste of fine cuisine and amazing shopping.

Upcoming Festivals
July 14-24 - Just For laughs
June 30 – July 3 – ArtFest
Now through Sept 18 – Saint Peter and the Vatican: The Legacy of the Popes
July 16-31 - 11th FINA World Championships
[June 30-July 10 Montreal International Jazz Festival
July 14- 24 - Festival Internationale Nuits d’Afrique de Montreal
July 28-Aug 6 - Les Francofolies de Montreal Aug 6-14 – Rogers Cup
Aug 26-28 Molson Indy Montreal


Auberge Bonaparte
447, rue Saint-François-Xavier
(514) 844-1448
One of the jewels of Old Montreal’s hotel scene, the Auberge Bonaparte is a blessing for those who suffer from carpet allergies as all the 30 rooms have wooden floors at this no-smoking property. Other bonuses of this Louis Phillipe style boutique hotel include soundproofed rooms where the warm or fresh air is discretely pulsed into each rooms.

Auberge du Vieux-Port
Big wrought-iron beds, exposed brickwalls and floor to ceiling windows facing the St. Lawrence River are some of the accoutrements to this elegant boutique hotel situated in Old Montreal. An allergy friendly venue, the rooms contain hardwood floors, hypoallergenic pillows and comforters and soft terrycloth bathrobe and slippers.

Hôtel Godin
10 Sherbrooke West
Away from the wave of boutique hotels popping up in Old Montreal, Hotel Godin is situated at the top of bustling Boulevard saint Laurent and is a welcome from the tourist crowds in the famous historic quarter. Constructed in 1914 and designed by avant-gardiste Joseph Arthur Godin, the building became the first poured-concrete structure in North America. Today, the elegant 136-roomed property possesses uber chic design elements and for those with carpet allergies, they can notify the hotel ahead of time as the rooms can be cleaned with a special ozone machine removing dust and other allergens.


La Bouchee de Pain
910 Duluth Street.
A quaint bakery and restaurant specializing in vegan, vegetarian and healthy food. They serve bio food and gluten free treats.

Bonnys 2485, Rue Notre Dame
At her newly expanded vegetarian restaurant, award–winning culinary instructor and vegetarian chef Bonnie Tees offers a diverse menu for those of us who need low-fat, dairy-free, wheat-free, sugar-free, or high-fiber foods. It’s gourmet style. The fare is big on flavor and includes delicacies like lasagna with tofu ricotta and Japanese soba noodle stirfry. With the growing trend nationwide for gourmet health supportive cuisine, you’ll find Bonnys is a leader in the field. And as a Queen of Vegetarian Cuisine, Bonnys is the best kept restaurant secret in Montreal.

For more travel info on Montreal log onto


Many of us might recall Winnie the Pooh’s home was here while others have affectionately dubbed Manitoba’s capital as “Winterpeg” for its frosty winters but mention summer and you’ve got a whole new phenomenon happening where some of the country’s biggest festivals like Folklorama take shape. This summer, Winnipeg will be hosting a special visit of “Guerillas in the Mist” legend, scientist Dr. Jane Goodall who will be in the city to launch the fascinating exhibit, ChimpQuest – Your Passport to Primate Adventure on June 29th.

Upcoming Festivals
Jazz Winnipeg Festival-June 16-25, 2005
The 6th Annual Summer Agassiz Chamber Music Festival - June 20-29, 2005
ChimpQuest – Your Passport to Primate Adventure - June 29-September 23, 2005
Winnipeg Folk Festival July 7-10, 2005
Les Jeux de la francophonie canadienne/TheCanadian Francophone Games July 20-24, 2005
Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival July 20-30, 2005-
Folklorama July 31-August 13, 2005


Fort Garry Hotel
222 Broadway Ave
Winnipeg’s flagship historic hotel a city icon since opening in 1913 is currently in the process of changing the flooring in all rooms. The carpets are being ripped up and replaced with smooth hardwood to help eliminate allergens including dust mites. The luxury property also offers allergy-free pillows, foam comforters and special duvets; For those with special diets, they will also adjust meals upon request.

Place Louis Riel
1-800-665-0569 toll free in North America
190 Smith St.
Aboriginal artwork, a floor dubbed “Cloud Nine” experience on its 23rd floor are some of the elements that make Place Louis Riel unique. When the building was completed in 1970, it was considered the newest highrise apartment building to dress Winnipeg’s skyline. Today, the hotel continues to pave inroads and is a refreshing welcome for allergy-sensitive guests. The hotel is an all-suite hotel with kitchens. There’s an allergy-free executive floor. You’ll find on this floor the public areas and rooms are allergy-free. No pets allowed and the hotel uses natural-based cleaners. Other allergy sensitive procedures include not using air fresheners and using special vacuums with hepa filters.

Sheraton Winnipeg
161 Donald Street
(204) 942 5300
Like its other sister hotels in the Sheraton chain, Sheraton Winnipeg offers oversized spacious guest suites where the rooms are equipped with their “Sweet Sleeper Beds” which can be outfitted with hypo-allergenic pillows and duvets. Other allergy friendly features include having access to fresh air in their rooms and the chef can accommodate allergies and sodium-free and dairy-free diets upon request.


Gluttons Bistro
842 Corydon Ave
(204) 475 5714
This restaurant even uses bottled water in the kitchen, whether as an ingredient or to boil potatoes! Food allergies and gluton-free diets are accommodated. They will even adjust salt and sugar if requested.

The Velvet Glove
No wonder The Velvet Glove is Manitoba's sole honored recipient of the esteemed 2005 CAA/AAA Four Diamond rating for the 2nd consecutive year. Executive Chef Geoffrey Morden is committed to creating the best dining experience using the finest indigineuos ingredients. Persons with special diets are accommodated.

Sydney's at The Forks
Chef Michael Schafer along with his wife Kate Schafer have created a fresh culinary destination in the heart of Winnipeg’s famed Forks Market. Wanting to take cuisine to new heights, the pair uses only the freshest local produce. There’s new meaning to parsnips when you nibble on his Carrott and Parsnip cake with beat mango sorbet. Sydney’s emphasizes food fresh to order and for those on special diets, the menus can be accommodated to whatever food allergy.

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