Teachers' blog


【Farewell Captain John’s】

(Contributed by Mike)
Since the 1980s, the luxury ship Jadran has been a staple of the Toronto tourism industry. The reason for this is that the Jadran is both a ship and a restaurant. In the 1970s and 80s, a floating restaurant was a unique and interesting concept, and it was a popular dinner destination for tourists and celebrities. The novelty of having a wedding or bar mitzvah on Captain John’s Harbour Boat Restaurant meant that it was a commercial success.
Of course, this story doesn’t have a happy ending. By 2002, the owner was bankrupt, and most people agreed that the food was only OK or worse. Not many who ate there had good things to say, and most of the customers were foreign tourists traveling on a package tour who didn’t really know better.
In 2008, public health officials, who oversee the food safety of Toronto’s restaurants, order the restaurant closed, and by 2009, the owner of the Jadran tried to sell the ship and business. With the owner owing more than one million dollars is back taxes and other fees, the city started to seize the boat in 2013.
After much legal wrangling, the Jadran has been towed away for it’s final voyage. While it was a unique landmark for tourism in Toronto, many of the residents of Toronto are glad to see that it’s finally gone. Most feel that it’s an eyesore, while others feel that the legal drama went on for far too long.
In the end, it’s the owner’s life’s work that is being towed away. There are reports that the owner asked that he be allowed to travel on the ship to the scrap yards in Port Colborne on Lake Erie. I hope he gets to say farewell on his own terms.

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