Toronto Welcomes Michael Lee-Chin Crystal on its Opening Weekend

40,000 attend Opening Ceremonies & Concert

25,000 people visit ROM through the weekend

The Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) is pleased to announce that it welcomed 24,777 guests during the opening weekend of the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal. Through the Museum’s first 18 hours of operation, from midnight to 6 pm on June 3, 2007, 22,227 curious visitors explored the building’s dramatic new spaces free of charge, courtesy of CIBC, the Inaugural Season Sponsor. Line-ups extended around the block for most of this period. Another 2,550 people attended Gala receptions held on Friday and Sunday evenings.

On the evening of June 2nd, a massive crowd numbering an estimated 40,000 people gathered on Bloor Street West to celebrate the Architectural Opening & Building Dedication of the Lee-Chin Crystal. They were treated to a free outdoor concert called A World of Possibilities, featuring top Canadian and international performers such as David Foster, Jann Arden and Deborah Cox, and the official dedication of the Lee-Chin Crystal. Following the concert, the sky was illuminated with fireworks and the doors opened for the first time to the public.

"We're delighted to see how strongly the Toronto public has embraced the Michael Lee-Chin Crystal," said William Thorsell, ROM Director and CEO. "With all the gallery opening celebrations we have planned for the coming months, our audiences will have many reasons for a return visit to the new ROM."

During the opening week, from Monday, June 4 to Sunday, June 10, visitors can experience ROM Exposed, an architectural preview of the 175,000 square-foot Michael Lee-Chin, designed by world renowned architect Daniel Libeskind. This is a special time-limited opportunity to explore all of the building’s new spaces, until the gallery floors temporarily close on June 11 for the installation of permanent exhibits. During ROM Exposed, the public can explore the Lee-Chin Crystal through free guided Architectural Tours. These 45-minute tours are available on a first-come, first-served basis, running hourly from 11 am – 7 pm weekdays and 11 am – 4 pm on the weekend. For more information, please visit Crystal Preview page.

The Michael Lee-Chin Crystal is the centrepiece of the Museum’s $270 million Renaissance ROM expansion project. The entire development was designed by Studio Daniel Libeskind, in a joint partnership with Toronto’s Bregman + Hamann Architects. Among the features of the new building are: seven galleries overlooking Bloor Street West, a new main entrance, the Bloor Street Plaza and Bennett Music Court, the Hyacinth Gloria Chen Crystal Court, the Spirit House, the J.F. Driscoll Family Gallery of the Stair of Wonders, the ROM Museum Store and Garfield Weston Exhibition Hall - Canada’s largest space for international exhibitions. Also open is Food Studio, the Museum’s new fresh family eatery; the ROM’s new fine dining destination, Crystal Five (C5) Restaurant Lounge, will open mid-June.

Admission Prices:
As of June 4, 2007: Adults: $20; Students with ID and Seniors: $17; Children: $14; Children 4 & under: Free; Members: Free. During ROM Friday Nights (4:30 pm – 9:30 pm): Adults, Students with ID and Seniors $5; Children $2; Children 4 & under are free. Special exhibitions included with admission: Ancient Peru Unearthed: Golden Treasures of a Lost Civilization; Glass Worlds: Paperweights from the ROM’s Collections; Hiroshi Sugimoto: History of History; Drama & Desire, Japanese Paintings from the Floating World, 1690 – 1850; The Black Star Sapphire of Queensland.

Summer 2007 Museum Hours:

June 4 - June 8: Daily 10 am - 9:30 pm

June 9 - June 30: Daily 10 am - 6:00 pm, except Fridays 10 am - 9:30 pm

July 1 – August 31: Monday to Friday 10 am - 9:30 pm; Saturday and Sunday 10 am - 6 pm