A Q&A with TL Insider Chase Chandran on the perks and flexibility of membership

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Toronto Life Insider is a membership club that connects you to the city. With your membership, you get an upgraded subscription to Toronto Life and FASHION magazine, access to cool outdoor patio events, invitations to workshops and one-of-a-kind cooking and cocktail masterclasses with Toronto’s most interesting characters, weekly giveaways and promotions from top brands—and more.

Chase Chandran is a practical nursing student at Durham College and a long-time member of TL Insider. From in-person soirées to some of the most exclusive virtual fireside chats, he’s experienced a wide variety of what membership has to offer. We caught up with Chase to discuss some of the perks that come with being a member as well as how TL Insider continues to fit into his busy lifestyle. 

Tell me a bit about your relationship with the city. Has it changed during the pandemic? 

My relationship with the city has taken a pause during the pandemic, because there hasn’t been as much opportunity to interact with it. I’ve also started a career change—enrolling in Durham College’s practical nursing program. After living in Toronto for nearly 10 years, and spending most of that time working in hospitality, it has been an interesting time to start school again, especially online. But now that things have opened up, it feels like an exciting time to rekindle my relationship with Toronto and all of the things I love so much about it. 

What attracted you to TL Insider? 

I was looking at different magazines and event subscriptions, hoping to find something like this. When I came across TL Insider, I saw it as a perfect opportunity to engage with the city in a new way. I especially liked how many events were happening, and not just on weekends. No matter what my schedule is like, there’s always something for me to look forward to. 

What have been some of your favourite virtual experiences?

I loved the trip to Miami event with elle cuisine, where, interestingly enough, I work in operations. It was fun because for a while I’ve been the person delivering the food kits to people for these events, so this was a really great opportunity to be on the other side of things. It took place on the day after my last exam, and it was such a fun time to have cocktails and unwind with good food. We made tacos, ceviche, braised beef arepas and a picante margarita, which was a very good drink—it’s like a sexy margarita. I’d absolutely attend an event like that again.  

What has TL Insider taught you about the city? 

For the most part, I think it’s allowed me to be part of a larger social group, and it’s a nice way to meet people from different communities who share similar interests. Getting invites to fireside chats or cooking classes during the week is a great way to keep Monday to Friday a little more exciting. It’s also taught me to say yes to the invites, because even when you’re not sure what to expect, it’s always worth it. 

How does membership fit into your busy schedule?

The virtual chats are really informative events that I can tune in to while multitasking with work or something around the house. It almost has a podcast format, which makes popping in really easy. There’s also just such a variety of daytime and evening events that let you pick and choose according to your schedule—it’s very flexible. This also makes it easy to attend events with my partner or, if he isn’t free, one of my roommates or a friend. Because there are so many different kinds of events, it’s a nice way to reach out to people who maybe I don’t get to see so often.

Are there perks you’ve especially enjoyed? 

The contests and giveaways are a fun part of membership. I recently won the Seed to Skin Ritual and Céla Products package from Hammam Spa, which was exciting. 

What type of in-person events would you like to attend again in the future?

I really enjoyed the different types of venues I’ve visited through TL Insider. There have been some fun pop-ups along Queen West, and a really fun Mercedes-Benz soirée at one of their downtown dealership—that was awesome. With Toronto being such a big city, membership has given me a really easy way to explore. I’m excited for more of that, with of course many more dinners outside with other members to socialize with. TL Insider does food and drink in a really special way.

Experience TL Insider for the special rate of $50 (reg price $95). Sign up here.