Barrie, population 115,000, has become more and more popular with an increasing number of people, especially young families. Located 90 kms. north of Toronto on Lake Simcoe, Barrie is favoured by commuters who drive to the GTA for work every day.
The downtown is a charming area with many restored historic buildings and small boutiques. It's an easy walk from here to Barrie's waterfront, the focal point of this community. Here, residents enjoy swimming, sailing, windsurfing, fishing and boating and the numerous festivals and special events that take place. The city's marina features more than 300 slips for large and small boats. In the winter, ice fishing is a popular pastime.
All the big retailers are here, including Canadian Tire, The Bay, Wal-Mart, and Costco. Barrie is also home to more than its fair share of restaurants, due in part to its location along Highway 400.
Barrie is just minutes from skiing at Hardwood Hills, Horseshoe Valley and Snow Valley, with Blue Mountain and Mt. St. Louis Moonstone only a short drive. As well, dozens of private and public golf courses surround Barrie. Twenty minutes away is Casino Rama, open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Molson Centre is a 4,000-plus seat multi-purpose sports and entertainment facility, home to the Barrie Junior A Colts hockey team.
Barrie offers a wide variety of cultural experience including the MacLaren Art Centre, the Simcoe County Museum, and numerous theatre groups including the Gryphon Theatre, Theatre By The Bay and Cerridwen Theatre.
Home buyers enjoy cheaper-than-Toronto real estate prices. There are plenty of new home communities being built in and around Barrie, including everything from upscale condominiums, town-homes, traditional bungalows and large single-family homes. A number of high-rise condominiums have been built along the waterfront, and some of Barrie's most exclusive residential neighbourhoods are just off the lake. Many of the newer developments are being built in Barrie's surrounding hills, with a panoramic view of the bay and the surrounding countryside.