A beloved Toronto diner forced to close in two days launches GoFundMe campaign

UPDATE: Just a month ago, Toronto stalwart Flo’s Diner stunned its loyal patrons with news of its sudden closure after serving the community for over three decades. The decision came amidst a lease negotiation gone awry, so the beloved diner was forced to shut its doors.

In response to the outpouring of support from loyal customers the diner’s team has launched a GoFundMe campaign to alleviate the financial burden of legal expenses incurred during the lease negotiations and to cover the expenses of shuttering the business.

“In our attempt to stay and secure a new lease, we incurred an overwhelming legal bill,” the page said. “Our costs to wind down the business are also formidable. Any donation to help us offset these costs would be appreciated

So far, the campaign has raised over $9,000 towards its $100,000 goal.

While the future of Flo’s remains uncertain, dedicated diners can now show their love by contributing to the campaign and visiting the restaurant which will officially close in two days’ time.

Flo’s Diner, a Yorkville staple for 33 years, will close on March 31, ending an era for Toronto diners. Located at 70 Yorkville Ave., Flo’s is known for its welcoming vibe and classic diner food.

Co-owners Pierre Hamel and Peter Lau hope for a new Yorkville location but face uncertainty due to a legal dispute with their landlord. According to the owners, they were denied an extension of their lease or an offer for renewal.

“This legal challenge means we’re losing 15 valued staff members and hundreds of cherished patrons. We’re devastated and hopeful that the landlord will reconsider its decision not to renew our lease,” says Hamel.

Entering Flo’s felt like traveling back in time, with its classic decor and cozy atmosphere. The diner’s high staff retention spoke volumes about its sense of community and teamwork.

“Once you worked at Flo’s, you stayed at Flo’s,” says veteran line cook “Suresh” who has been crafting burgers and grilled cheese sandwiches for over a decade.

Serving a wide selection of all-day breakfast options, including their standout eggs Benedict, regulars at Flo’s often discovered hidden gems not listen on the menus. Families have been drawn to the diner for its simple and delicious menus and accommodating hospitality.

As patrons bid farewell to Flo’s, they reflect on the countless memories made within its walls – from first dates to family milestones.

“Our patrons are like family to us, and we are endlessly grateful for the vibrant memories and shared experiences,” says Hamel. “Each person who dined here was — and still is — part of the Flo’s Family.”

Flo’s Diner will officially close its doors on March 24.

Article exclusive to STREETS OF TORONTO