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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Queen's U chapter.

It’s September, and we’re back on campus! 

I always love the first few weeks of coming back to Kingston. The weather hasn’t gotten too cold yet, classes are just starting up again, and I finally have the time to come back to my favourite Kingston businesses. After a summer away, I definitely feel excited and nostalgic about walking down Princess Street and re-familiarizing myself with the places I loved last year. Here are some of the Kingston local businesses I’m most excited to revisit!

Novel idea

I’m a huge book nerd, and I love shopping at local businesses, so this store is right up my alley. Sometimes my profs will order the books we need for class through Novel Idea, which makes supporting this amazing local business easy. And if there’s a book you need that they don’t have in the store, you can always ask them to order it in, and it’ll usually arrive within 7-10 days. They’ve also got cool notebooks and greeting cards — it’s always hard to pull myself away from this store!


This was one of the first places I visited when I moved to Kingston. My family stopped there after helping me move in, and after trying their cheesecake brownies on that first visit, I’ve been in love ever since. Now, I always take the opportunity to get a cherry hot chocolate when the weather turns cold. They’ve also got a really nice seating area if you want to sit down and catch up with a friend over coffee, or use the caffeine boost for a study session at the tables in the back.

The screening room

The Screening Room is an independent movie theatre. It plays newer releases, but also a variety of indie films, foreign films, classics, and more. The main entrance area is fully decorated with old films, posters, and announcements for upcoming theatre events (I love the Reel-IN Str8 Cis Film Fest in particular!) and the theatres themselves have red or green velvet seats, patterned carpet, and warm lighting that really sets the atmosphere for the movie you’re about to see. Going to the Screening Room is always an amazing way to spend an evening.


Midori is a great place to shop for gifts. They have plushies, enamel pins, stationary, room decorations, and so much more. I’ve done a fair bit of Christmas shopping there before heading out for winter break, and I’m always able to find something adorable that my friends or family will like. 

Geneva Crêpe Bistro

When my family came up to visit Kingston for my mom’s birthday, we took a short walk down Princess Street and decided to eat at Geneva. It was a great choice — the food was delicious and I loved their maple latte. The menu focuses on crêpes (of course), but they have sweet and savory options — so regardless of whether you’re looking for lunch or dinner, odds are they have something you’ll like. I’ve been there a few times since then with friends, and they never disappoint.

Maverick’s donut company

Maverick’s Donut Company makes signature donuts. I love bringing these to events because there’s always something fun and interesting for everybody. Ranging from Maple Bacon to Pumpkin Spice to a classic chocolate glazed, the list of options is huge (and they always look beautiful too!).

Those are some of my favourite places to revisit now that I’m back in Kingston. If you spied some of your favourites — or made new discoveries — on this list, definitely give them a visit this week! I love supporting local businesses, and can’t wait to keep exploring this year and discover new amazing places.

Sapphyre Smith

Queen's U '24

Sapphyre is a fourth-year English major at Queen's University.