Maison de la Presse Internationale’s 99 Yorkville Ave. location will close its doors on July 22.
Cathy Ola, manager of the magazine and book shop started working at Maison de la Presse in 2003 when it was originally located at 105 Yorkville Ave.—now the location of the Hazelton Hotel.
“It’s the only French book store in Toronto, since Libraire Champlain closed down,” she said. “According to my loyal customers there’s nowhere else to go and get books and French magazines.”
International fashion magazines are the most requested at Maison de la Presse and the store carries not only French titles, but titles from and not limited to the UK and Spain.
Ola said the closure is due in large part to the change in atmosphere in the Yorkville neighbourhood.
“The 10 year lease is finished and Yorkville is not the same as it was,” Ola said. “ It’s becoming more like a condo residence. There are no special events, the film festival isn’t here anymore. The change was drastic. I used to love it because the later it got the more business we had—these days after 7pm it’s so quiet.”
Having been manager for ten year, Ola said her staff are not the only people she will miss.
“I’m going to miss the conversations with my customers because I got to know them,” she said. “We have some loyal customers that come here and I know their faces. That’s the sad part, because it’s kind of like my second family.”