After years of great success as “Canada’s largest casual dining restaurant chain,” Boston Pizza was looking to expand its opportunities further with a new urban restaurant strategy. The company set out to develop locations with inviting contemporary designs that would attract younger generations in Canada’s larger cities. After opening the first of these restaurants, located at Front and John St. in Toronto, Boston Pizza was met with a strongly positive response and knew that their next urban restaurant development should be even more ambitious. After choosing a historic building at 401 Yonge Street, near the corner of Yonge and Gerrard in the heart of Downtown Toronto, they turned to OpenAire to create an enclosure concept that was truly unique.
OpenAire designed, built and installed a customized 1,300-square-foot retractable skylight for the newly-renovated building’s top floor, which lets visitors enjoy great casual dining in an open, outdoor-style atmosphere at any time of year. This skylight is the first of its kind in any Boston Pizza restaurant. The design measures 27 feet by 49 feet and is divided into three telescoping sections that open to let in the natural light and fresh air of sunny days, as well as the beauty of starry nights. The roof closes at the touch of a button at the first sign of cold or inclement weather, yet its large glazed panels still give visitors plenty of natural light. The restaurant opened on October 11, 2017 to large and enthusiastic crowds, who greatly enjoyed Boston Pizza’s premium menu choices in the energetic and vibrant atmosphere of Toronto’s streets. With its bold metropolitan design and prime location near Ryerson University and Yonge-Dundas Square, the uniquely-styled Boston Pizza at 401 Yonge St. is sure to appeal to guests for many years to come.