I have been living and raising a family in the City of Markham for the past 18 years.  And as a Realtor, I thought about how I can bring value added information to all my customers by doing more and going beyond the level of customer service they have come to expect.  And then it came to me.  I thought about all the things that would be important to me in deciding where to move, as it relates to the neighborhood. I came up with having a forum in which I could write about all the things that make my neighborhood so special. 

Every neighborhood is made up of local businesses you support regularly.  These local businesses are an integral part of the neighborhood which, through the passage of time, become part of your routine and thus, part of you.  I decided to write reviews on local businesses which would serve two purposes.  First, it would give the local businesses added exposure and secondly, it might help someone decide to move here, or have a slight influence over their decision to move.  


When it comes to buying Real Estate, we often hear the phrase that the most important thing to remember when it comes to choosing a property is “location, location, location!!”  For the majority of people, buying a home as their primary residence is the single, largest investment they will make in their lives.  It is for this very reason, when considering a property; one must look at the amenities in the neighborhood and measure the level of convenience and enjoyment their surroundings have to offer.  And let’s face it.  When you buy a home, it’s not just a house you're getting.   You are getting… the whole neighborhood as well.  It is very important that the decision of buying a house be based on the amenities of the neighborhood as well.


Naturally, I felt compelled to start with my favorite eating places as meal time can be a sacred time for family get-together, social events, business functions and the like.  A very popular place to eat in Markham, which has only become busier due to its popularity, is called Bamiyan Kebob Restaurant.  Named after a city in Afghanistan, this place has become known for serving healthy, barbecued style food with a little spice and a little kick.  Conveniently located at Markham Road and 14th Avenue in the Armadale Plaza, it can easily be called the best Halal eatery in Markham.  If you are looking for a tantalizing sit-down family restaurant, look no further. 

This is quite easily one of my favorite places to eat.  On a night where I don’t wish to cook, this is my go-to place.  I have been coming here since it opened back in 2009.  I recently had the privilege of sitting down with the owner, Mr. Hamid Rahim and asking him about his greatest passion.  Hamid, a mild mannered and soft-spoken man, first started working in the food industry at the tender age of 14 back in Afghanistan.  He is a self- taught chef and cook and has always had an affinity for food.  Hamid is one of seven children whom all work together and are involved in various aspects of running the family owned restaurant Bamiyan Kebob. Bamiyan now boasts 6 locations with Hamid opening a TH location soon in Pickering. 


 When I asked Hamid what makes Bamiyan such a  sought after  restaurant, he told me that “The  customers keep coming back f  for the food.  The food  is simply delicious.  Everything is  barbecued and  served fresh.  It is probably the only restaurant  in all  of Toronto that does not have a freezer.”  I was quite  surprised that since most restaurants freeze their  meat.   Hamid mentioned that all the meat is  marinated for 12  hours in a central location located at  their Head Office on  Gordon Baker Road.  This is the  warehouse where everything  is prepped and shipped  to the various locations. Hamid beams  with pride in  telling me “only the highest quality product is  used.”


 My favorite item on the menu is the chicken breast.  The meal  comes with rice, salad, and naan.  The naan is baked in special  oven called a Tandoor and it is divinely delicious as an  accompaniment to the chunks of marinated white meat chicken breast.  Hamid uses recipes that have been passed down through generations in his family.  Bamiyan offers lamb, veal, and ground beef variety of kebabs as well.  The food served is creative and flavorful without being overly spicy.

During the day, you will find this place relaxed with the order-at-the-counter service being fast and friendly.  By night, the place is always hopping and very busy.  Families come in droves, place their order, and wait for the food to be served for pick up at the front counter.  The restaurant is clean and the staff is friendly.  “All staff here are treated as family.  We are one big happy family,” says Hamid.  I can attest to the fact that I have always received hospitable service and over the years, I have personally gotten to know the staff.  I share Hamid’s view of the family atmosphere at Bamiyan.

Bamiyan Kebob restaurant has been featured on the Food Network, CBC Radio and written up in the Toronto Star.  In an industry where success rate of a restaurant in the first year is quite low, Hamid has succeeded by leaps and bounds with no stopping in sight. 

Bamiyan is a must-try if you have not already been there.  It is one of Markham’s hidden jewels and one of my favorite neighborhood restaurants.  Stay tuned for more of my personal reviews on local Markham businesses. And, of course contact me should you require an excellent Realtor who lives in the neighborhood.  


Leila N. Khan

Century 21 Leading Edge Realty Inc.

Office:  905 471 2121

Dir:  416 300 3453








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Leila Khan

Leila Khan

Sales Representative
CENTURY 21 Leading Edge Realty Inc., Brokerage*
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