Eataly is coming to Canada, eh?

Italian food marketplace will open the doors to its first Toronto store in 2019

Eataly has confirmed plans to open its first Canadian location.

The upscale grocer is set to become the anchor tenant of the Manulife Centre in Toronto’s trendy Yorkville neighbourhood.

Eataly, which bills itself as a vibrant Italian food marketplace, will span three storeys over a total of 50,000 square feet.

The launch of Eataly Toronto is part of a larger transformation of the Manulife Centre, whose current tenants include William Ashley, Cinepex and Indigo. Bloor Street Market, a Loblaw-owned grocer, can also be found in the building’s lower level.

While it’s unclear what will become of the Loblaw-owned store, Eataly has partnered with Selfridges Group, which is owned by the Weston’s, and Terroni Restaurants on the new store.

The Westons and Eataly have already established a friendly working relationship. Eataly has plans to open a store within the Weston-owned Selfridges department store in London.

READ: Eataly talks Toronto plans with Canadian Grocer

“We are entering the market with people we full trust and we share the same passions with,” said Oscar Farinetti, Eataly’s founder, in a press release.

Analysts have long speculated that the Manulife Centre would become home to Eataly’s first Canadian store.

In an exclusive interview last year, managing partner and CFO Adam Saper told Canadian Grocer that his company was eager to find real estate in Toronto as soon as possible and was working with Loblaw’s Weston family to find a space.

And a little less than half a year ago, the Globe and Mail reported that a location had been found, and the Weston family would have 52% of the real estate and retail project.

Eataly’s Toronto store will be in good company. High-end stores like Pusateri’s and Whole Foods occupy the area, and a Longo’s store stands two blocks away.

Eataly has nearly 30 locations worldwide, with stores in Italy, Japan, Dubai, Turkey and Brazil and the U.S.

Its format is inspired by the European food hall concept, with massive stores stocked with tasting areas and gourmet restaurants.

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