Pastry chef and owner Peter Fong brings his years of experience in some of Vancouver ’s top hotels, and passion to bear on classics and seasonally inspired creations. These originals are hand-made with the finest and freshest quality ingredients, using no additives or preservatives and choosing some lighter and healthier ingredients in the modern French style. Artfully as tasty to the eye as they are to the tongue Chef Fong lets his creativity shine. This is as close as your taste buds will get to the Parisien experience in Vancouver. $$$
Thierry, named for 3-star-Michelin chocolatier-patissier, Thierry Busset, offers a contemporary approach to the finest handcrafted chocolates, macarons, pastries, and desserts. Whether you drop by for a mid-morning cappuccino and croissant, a leisurely lunch, or a post-dinner dessert and drink on their licensed patio, Thierry is designed to uplift the spirit. $$$
Bars/lounges - Afterglow
| 5 Minutes
1082 Hamilton St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2W7
This room is a Vancouver icon, and its chameleon qualities are alive with energy day and night. From studious business lunches to early evening dinner, the room morphs and changes as the night wears on. After the plates are cleared the volume goes up and the evening is still very, very young indeed. Steaks. Seafood. A little something. A big deal. It’s all things to all people. You haven’t been to Vancouver until you’ve been to Afterglow. $$$
George Lounge is a mainstay in Vancouver’s vibrant cocktail scene. A heated, covered patio transitions into a room of red velvet, blown glass chandeliers and an underlit onyx bar top. The kitchen style island behind the bar covered in fresh fruit, herbs, syrups and infusions anchors the award winning cocktail program. The food menu offers eclectic small plates. $$$
Bars/lounges - Ginger 62
| 6 Minutes
1219 Granville St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1M6
Located in Granville Entertainment District, Ginger62 lives up to the reputation of being an upscale lounge where beautiful people savour premium drinks and creative cocktails. The inventive, luscious shaken cocktails are worth tasting over and over again. The ambience of Ginger62 is swanky and chic with a cool, relaxed vibe. Although it looks like it might be a tiny place when you enter the venue, it is bigger than it appears. There is an area where you can stand around and chat with other patrons, a dance floor, a DJ booth and VIP area with bottle service. Ginger62 maintains a warm, intimate setting with lots of comfy seating and romantic dim lighting. $$$
Uva Wine Bar epitomizes the spirit of its location in the heart of Vancouver's arts and cultural district. The elegant modernism of its interior design combined with the building's historical elements creates a unique, yet vibrant setting that must be experienced. Enticing cocktails, refined wines, eclectic import beers- Uva Wine Bar is Vancouver's enclave for connoisseurs of wines and spirits seeking a sanctuary that caresses the eye as well as the palate. From the finest charcuterie, to artisanal cheeses and hard-to-find wine selections, indulge in Uva Wine Bar's cosmopolitan, yet relaxed interpretation of a true Italian 'enoteca'. $$$
Casinos - Edgewater Casino
| 6 Minutes
750 Pacific Blvd (Plaza of Nations), Vancouver, BC V6B 5E7
Edgewater Casino is Downtown Vancouver’s Boutique Casino, nestled on the seawall next to BC Place and Rogers Arena. The building site is impressive, it is entirely made of emerald glass. Next to it is the equally impressive Plaza of Nations. At Edgewater Casino you will find 500 slot machines, 60 exciting table games – including blackjack, roulette, baccarat and poker – along with great dining specials. This casino offers two restaurants - the Splash Bistro and the Stadium Club as well as a nightlife venue - the Vue Bar and Lounge. $$$
This Four Diamond rated resort features a distinctly west
coast style, coupled with stunning architecture, to create a
vibrant yet tranquil atmosphere. River Rock’s four story lobby
featuring ponds, cascading waterfalls and a variety of natural
elements, transports you miles from anywhere. But rest
assured you are right in the middle of the action with River
Rock's dazzling casino, featuring close to 1,000 slot machines,
and all your favourite table games, Poker Room, Racebook, three high-limit rooms,and various dining options like The Buffet, Tramonto and Curve. $$$
Cosmetics - Shifeon
| 3 Minutes
1291 Robson St, Vancouver, BC V6E 1C2
If you’re looking for that rare, discontinued or unusual beauty product, chances are you’ll find it on the shelves of Shifeon. Despite the array of fascinating and exotic products and astonishingly comprehensive selection of perfumes and cosmetics, Shifeon’s true specialty lies in skin care. They stock 25 complete lines — some of the world’s best professional and pharmaceutical skin care brands such as Dermalogica, Obagi, La Colline and Guinot — and the staff provide one-on-one skin care analysis. $$$
Barcelona's Ultra Lounge concept lends itself to the boutique style clubs of Las Vegas, New York and London. From an eccentric DJ booth inspired from Cameo in South Beach, Miami to an imaginative twist on the features from Crobar in Chicago and Spider Club in New York, to the lavish colors and textures from XS in Vegas... You can expect a flavor of class comparable world-wide. A beautifully designed room with the sensual warmth for a first date drink, but with plenty of cutting edge glitz and glam to rock the night away. For all those music lovers Barcelona boasts a state of the sound system and the club has been extensively sound proofed to take the space to a new level! $$$
Dance Clubs - Bar None
| 3 Minutes
1222 Hamilton St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2S8
The epicentre of nightlife in Yaletown, Bar None’s reputation as Vancouver’s only true New York style nightclub is well deserved. For 19 years this hotspot has maintained its Soho attitude and feel, from the warm, classic brick and wood interior to the impressive line-up of international and local DJs and live talent. Surrounded by the city’s best restaurants and hotels, Bar None is the official after spot for the hip dinner crowd, and a favourite among Vancouver’s downtown-living elite. Enjoy craft cocktails, flawless table service and fresh tracks at this historic Yaletown club. $$$
Federico's is one of Vancouver's premier live music restaurants. Offered five nights a week, Wednesday to Sunday, the live music is retrospective in theme: crooner, legendary favourites, dance hits, blues/ jazz, Italian and latin. During and after dinner, there is something for everyone: a timeless factor that truly distinguishes Federico’s Supper Club from any of Vancouver's live music restaurants. $$$
Dance clubs - 560 Club
| 6 Minutes
560 Seymour St, Vancouver, BC V6B 3J5
Vancouver's most innovative visual display, combined with a state-of-the-art Turbo sound system, and five distinctive rooms are only part of what makes your experience at FIVESIXTY so special. Featuring the very best in live entertainment, unique nightlife experiences, and the world's most sought-after international DJ's, FIVESIXTY is where you should come play. $$$
The bright white store is a haven of fashionista glam and modern elegance. Fashion ranges from the truly high end - Prada, Channel, Alexander McQueen, Dolce & Gabana, etc- to the more accessible labels like Diesel and Hugo Boss. And if they're having a sale? Run, don't walk: Prices can be up to half off! - $$$$$
This downtown mall now comprises three city blocks but what's not so apparent is that the downtown core is laced with underground shopping. You can wander for hours among the underground corridors that link department stores and office buildings. This complex houses a variety of national and international stores at every price point, as well as a newly renovated food court. In addition to Holt Renfrew, there's Harry Rosen and Ermenegildo Zegna offering stylish, chic menswear. Recent additions include BCBG (trendy women's clothing) and Canadian chain Browns Shoes.
Celebrities Night Club is one of the hottest gay clubs in Vancouver. There are always special events and concerts taking place throughout the week. This hot spot has been a staple for Vancouver’s gay nightlife scene ever since it opened in 1978. In recent years, the club has also gained a large non-LGBT following due to its high appeal to a diverse spectrum of patrons and its ability to attract internationally renown DJs and performers. If you are the type of party person that likes to party until the sun rises, this place is for you! $$$
This mod salon may be the new kid on the block, but owners Dan Nguyen and Linda Refosco are no strangers to Vancouver’s best-tressed. The veteran stylists have assembled a team that focuses on tailoring cuts to suit each client’s unique features and style. Scottie Dunn is the resident Bumble and Bumble expert and travels frequently to New York to keep his finger on the fashion pulse. New on the shelves? A Bumble and Bumble treatment line from the creators of luxe skincare brand Crème de la Mer. $$$
Suki's Downtown salon presides over Vancouver’s most prestigious retail block –Tiffany’s, Hermés, Coach, Ports, Louis Vuitton and Gucci are all here. What better appointment in the midst of an afternoon of luxury? The downtown salon offers a warm, exciting and European feel – and naturally, the famous Suki's stamp of excellence. Here, the focus is on superb service and quality – and walking into luxury row looking your absolute best. $$$
Hair salons - Toni & Guy
| 15 Minutes
2179 W 4th Ave, Vancouver, BC V6K 1N3
Founded in London over 40 years ago, Toni & Guy is known for meticulous cuts and styling—and its Vancouver location is no exception. The team has won over 20 industry hair awards and is recognized internationally for their creative work. When you’re styled with TIGI, Bedhead and Catwalk products, you’ll be so satisfied that you’ll want to take them home. $$$
Home/gifts - CB2
| 3 Minutes
1277 Robson St, Vancouver, BC V6E 1C2
CB2 is the younger, hipper sister of Chicago-based retail purveyor of lustworthy home furnishings, Crate & Barrel. Its price points make its wares accessible to everyone from college students to home renovators. While there are plenty of solid, sturdy anchor pieces like dining tables and couches if you want to make an investment, it also has an abundance of playful, on-trend accessories that will keep your spaces looking fresh. $$$
Home/gifts - Circle Crafts
| 15 Minutes
1 - 1666 Johnston St, Vancouver, BC V6H 3S2
Circle Craft Shop & Gallery in the Net Loft gallery on Granville Island, features the work of 200 craftspeople from across British Columbia. Circle Craft has been a major force in promoting the work of craftspeople in British Columbia since 1972. For every season of giving, the Shop and Gallery features a wide selection of contemporary and traditional craft in clay, glass, fibre, wood, metal and mixed media - the Gallery hosts monthly exhibitions. $$$
Located at the crossroads of Vancouver's historic Yaletown district and the West End, a 1914 heritage building has been transformed into this 5000 sq ft. slice of heaven. It is a shopping delight, as well as a full service Interior Design Firm. The European inspired space is filled with countless treats in every corner. You would be shocked to know how much time you can spend at The Cross and not even see the time go by. From the dainty collector’s items such as John Derian’s Paperweights, to the Superb Mahogany Wood Armoires, you are sure to fall in love during your visit to this local store. $$$
The gallery specializes in fine Inuit sculpture in stone and bone, Inuit prints and original drawings; museum-quality Northwest Coast First Nations masks, totem poles, bentwood boxes and other ceremonial objects. It is renowned for presenting groundbreaking exhibitions, many of which have helped shaped the direction of both art forms. $$$$
If you're a visiting antiques fan with an interest in old-school Chinese pieces, this is the place for you. Presented like artworks in a lounge-cool contemporary boutique setting, you’ll find a collection that is so simple and beautiful in design that it really transcends any type of style; it’s timeless furniture. You'll enjoy perusing the price tags on intricately-carved dark wood chairs and armoires. Check out the lovely silk and linen cushions and consider buying an extra suitcase so you can take some home. $$$
Undisputedly, The Yale is the best and longest-running Blues Bar in the city featuring top local and international artists seven nights a week. Dance to live R&B, blues, soul, and funk at this Vancouver landmark. The Yale has transformed a Canadian Pacific Railway bunkhouse into one of the city's best live music venues, regularly attracting international R&B stars. $$$
Jewelleries - De Beers
| 1 Minutes
1060 Alberni St, Vancouver, BC V6E 4K2
Canada's first retail outpost for De Beers Jewellery, a glittering cube of glass and light, has landed on Luxury Row, bringing all the on-site extras as well as the iconic De Beers Diamond. Drawing on diamond mastery since 1888, the company continues to set the benchmark for assessing, crafting and designing diamond jewellery – fusing the essential timelessness of the diamond with dynamic contemporary design, flavouring it with iconoclastic verve and a dash of modern romance. $$$$$
For the budding fashionista in your life, the locally made and designed clothing line is so showstopping that each vivacious garment looks and feels like a custom-made one-off. Besides their own designs the boutique also feature classic children’s clothing brands, such as France’s Petit Bateau, Germany’s Steiff, Montreal’s Raplapla, New York’s Atsuyo et Akiko, and the UK’s Playsam Toys. Redfish has a cult-like following, enchanting a growing number of loyal fans, including many Hollywood celebrities. And now, you can see it all for yourself in their gorgeous store in Vancouver. $$$
Originally opened in 1917 in Vancouver's historic Chinatown, Ming Wo has been a source for professional cookware for over 90 years. The shop offer an international selection of kitchenware and trendy home accessories. This Canadian owned and operated company has a tradition of providing superior service and quality products to generations of Vancouver cooks. If you can't find what you want here, then it might not exist, and if you are still not convinced, ask the knowledgeable and friendly staff, there isn't much they don't know about kitchenware! $$
The 'Signature' in the name means this well-located shop – just off Robson St at Bute – is one of the larger-format BC government liquor stores. It carries far more stock, a lot of variety and the space is much larger than other stores around Vancouver. You'll find pretty much anything you might want to imbibe, including a back wall of regional and international beers and a large array of wines from around the world. $$
A leader in the high-end Canadian men's fashion. It is know for its ultimate bespoke tailoring, from formal wear to jeans, sportswear to suits and sports jackets, rugged outerwear parkas to superbly hand-crafted dress shoes. A must stop over for fashionista, traditional and classic man - $$$$$
Just walking by this storefront will make your heart ache and your credit card max out. If you're a staunch clothes hound you have just spotted heaven (or hell, depending on your budget). In the striking window displays there usually glitters a Miyake original to cherish or an Armani suit to covet. This is a conservatively elegant, highly professional, and very expensive boutique carrying exclusive international designer fashions. Among the lines, they carry Thierry Mugler, La Perla, Alberta Ferretti, Versace, Armani, and Issey Miyake. Shoes and accessories are also available - $$$$$
Brooks Brothers, that bastion of American prep and classic business attire, is finally in Vancouver. And along with its usual Ivy League favourites, the company is modernizing its looks with the edgier Black Fleece collection, created by Ralph Lauren alumnus-Thom Brown- $$$$
It’s taken this super-luxe British company over 150 years to launch in Canada, the gorgeous new space on the ground floor of Shangri-La showcases a full selection of men’s and women’s ready-to-wear from the Burberry Prorsum and Burberry London collections, plus luxury accessories including handbags, shoes, jewellery, fragrance and eyewear. Look for the obvious heritage pieces (the signature trench and anything featuring the trademark check), then supplement with a spectacular Burberry Prorsum item, such as a floral, full-skirted silk taffeta dress. $$$$$
With 160 footwear lines and 130-plus clothing, accessory, apothecary and home collections stocked throughout its stores, this leading emporium of covetable footware has become a tour de force in the fashion world (make sure to check the space two doors down, for the whole inventory). $$$$
Located inside the historic Sinclair Centre builging, this shop is beautiful. Large and spacious, it is home to international designs by Dolce & Gabbana, Calvin Klein, Prada and Stella McCartney. The foreboding price tag may have wishful buyers gawking but Leone is well worth a gander. $$$$$
This incomparable Canadian brand's standard of quality is just unreal, the fusion of timelessness, functionality and style is the reason Roots is the first stop for anyone visiting the Great White North - it's iconic status in our apparel legacy is completely deserved - $$$
It's the sense of whimsy and the elegant lines and the fact that they always make one smile, that distinguishs this iconic Vancouver institution. Architecturally, some of the shoes, with their signature Fluevogian heel, are absolutely breathtaking. The Gastown location is worth a look for the store itself, with its striking glass facade and soaring ceilings. $$$$
Recreations - Grouse Grind
| 20 Minutes
6400 Nancy Greene Way, North Vancouver, BC V7R 4K9
Locally known as 'Mother Nature's Stairmaster', the Grouse Mountain Grind path is built largely of big wooden steps. The track takes you 850m up the mountain and is a difficult and strenuous climb – but can be thrilling if you're into heart attack defying hikes. A hundred thousand people try it every year, making Grouse the most hiked mountain in the world. There's an easier way to get up too, the Skyride: a giant airborne gondola that departs every 15 minutes.
If you’re looking for one of the best public golf courses in Vancouver, the University Golf Club (UGC) situated in the University Endowment Lands is one to consider. This 18-hole par-72 course is cut straight out of rich forests and has been in operation since 1929. UGC is fully public and sports the mantra ‘Everyone Welcome’. The location is fantastic as it is steps away from downtown. The University Golf Club is a decent blend of narrow holes lined with douglas firs, some holes wide open for big hitters, a variety of terrains, and some water to challenge the golfer of all abilities. UGC has a full driving range facility and banquet halls too. Full locker rooms and showers are provided for guests. The staff are friendly, and an organized marshal will greet you at at the first hole.
Recreations - YYoga
| 3 Minutes
888 Burrard St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1X9
Six YYoga locations are offered around the lower mainland. The recently opened, downtown studio is truly a spa-like experience. Some perks of this location are an infrared sauna, a chic and spacious lounge with free wi-fi, a huge change room facility with ample showers, ‘conscious cardio’ classes called YYRide (spin class + yoga), and ‘happiness tea’ – just to name a few!
Bao Bei is a unique restaurant in Chinatown that cultivates simple intimate dining experiences by providing small plates meant to be shared amongst a close group of friends. Influences are taken from Taiwan, Shanghai as well as the Sichuan province's traditional cuisine but with a modern approach. They have taken great care to create distinctive libations and to curate a nice little list of wines. Bao Bei has added pizzazz to Chinatown and if you can make it through the crowd of hipsters you'll be rewarded with vibrant, fluorescent-free environs, but expect a long wait (no reservations). $$$
Inspired by the classic steakhouses of Chicago, Black+Blue re-imagines the concept for a new generation. A massive dining room built around a custom-built meat locker, filled with the most exotic and precious cuts, it’s the sexiest room and hottest vibe in the city. A three-storey temple dedicated to creating amazing experiences, expressly designed for the people who make Vancouver an amazing place to be. $$$$$
Blue Water Café is Vancouver’s definitive destination for seafood, widely known for its excellence in celebrating the extraordinary flavours of BC, with its East meets West coast kitchen and raw bar. Executive Chef Frank Pabst crafts innovative and brilliantly executed West Coast plates sourcing fresh seafood from wild and sustainable harvest. At the raw bar, cut master Yoshi Tabo has his own dedicated following for his expert sushi and sashimi. Awarded “Best Seafood Restaurant” in Vancouver and recognized for its unparalleled service, an evening at Blue Water Cafe is truly an unforgettable experience. $$$$
This restaurant features the finest seafood from local waters and around the world, prepared with fresh local produce and innovative sauces, C is the dining destination for seafood lovers. You will discover the riches of the oceans prepared in ways never before imagined. The floor-to-ceiling window is two stories high and provides you with a view of the parade of joggers and cyclists on the promenade, the sea-kayakers, ferries in False Creek and sun sets beyond the superstructure of Burrard Bridge-It is a night to remember. $$$$$
Restaurants - Coast
| 1 Minutes
1054 Alberni St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 2V6
If a fish house makes you think of lobster traps and buoys, you'll be pleasantly surprised when you cruise up to this see-and-be-seen seafood palace. Expect plenty of bling, from the shimmering lights to the sparkle-sporting patrons. What to eat? Why, seafood, of course—from oysters to sushi to fish-and-chips to any of the day's fresh catches. (The kitchen also served steaks, if you must.) The Coast frequently does a swimmingly good business, so reservations are recommended. $$$$
Bring your appetite to this traditional, american style, downtown steakhouse where staffers who "go the extra mile" serve what some call the "best steak this side of Brooklyn"; its stunning, intimate, candlelit dining room is a lock for special occasions, and when you add in classic pairings from a wine cellar that makes oenophiles "cry" with envy, you'll leave "poor but happy"; P.S. there's also a cocktail lounge with nightly piano music. $$$$$
The personal dream of one of Canada's foremost masters of cuisine, Hawksworth Restaurant, located at the legendary Rosewood Hotel Georgia, fuses together a celebrated past with a radiant future. Celebrating contemporary Canadian Cuisine, the goal is to set forth a… culinary legacy rooted in regional produce while embracing the culture and diversity of the city. The approachable menus reflect seasonality and spontaneity while demonstrating the highly skilled technique and relentless drive for perfection that has become Hawksworth's trademark. $$$$$
Kirin Restaurants, showcasing the finest Chinese Cuisine in Vancouver and served in a warm, authentic and elegant atmosphere. Indulge in their award-winning dim sum prepared fresh daily. Experience their exquisite seafood dishes; Kirin's culinary range is unsurpassed. Add this to their renowned attentive, personal service and it's easy to see why Kirin Restaurants are praised by critics as one of the best premium Chinese dining experiences in Vancouver. $$$
"Jumbo portions" of "perfectly cooked" "high-quality" cuts "satisfy" steak lovers at this "well-appointed" chophouse chain "classic", which earns Vancouver's Most Popular honors; "friendly" servers, "casual surroundings" and "moderate prices" make it work for anything from "celebrating" to simply enjoying a "night out with friends", hence the often "crowded" conditions. $$$
Restaurants - L'Abattoir
| 10 Minutes
217 Carrall St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2J2
Set in a refurbished brick and beam building that combines classic French tile work with industrial fixtures, natural wood, and glass and steel finishes, the restaurant offers a bar and lounge setting, elevated dining room and plush, sun soaked atrium.
Chef Lee Cooper is dedicated to highlighting the finer points of eating and drinking in L'Abattoir's informed but informal setting. French influenced West Coast fare is paired with Sommelier Robert Herman's eclectic wine program and Head Barman Shaun Layton's innovative cocktail list to offer a truly unique dining experience. $$$
Adam Pegg and Lucais Syme, the owners of La Quercia - the most coveted reservation in town - serve award winning cuisine in their new location at La Pentola Della Quercia inside OPUS Hotel. Handmade pastas and custom ?nose to tail? meat and fish are the focus at La Pentola, each carefully prepared in its natural state. The Chef-duo intense passion for turning the best local ingredients into simple, deliciously executed Northern Italian fare can be shared alla famiglia style or a la carte. Their pilgrimages and work experience in ‘Slow Food’ Italy is evident. $$$
Restaurants - Le crocodile
| 3 Minutes
100 - 909 Burrard St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 2N2
For over 25 years, chef and owner Michel Jacob has created one of Vancouver's most memorable dining experiences, serving up Alsatian regional dishes in luxurious surroundings. Le Crocodile's knowledgeable staff provides impeccable service in this fine dining environment. All the essentials of French cooking are here, but some sauces, through some sleight-of-hand, manage to be both rich and light. The kitchen excels at seafood, sole, plaice, mussels–and does very well with organ meats such as sweetbreads, just-done liver with a rich herb butter, and kidney with Dijon and demi glace. “magnifique!” $$$$
You can taste the quality in chef/co-owner Julio Gonzalez Perini's modern Italian dishes with classic touches at this charming downtowner in a romantic restored 19th-century home tended by warm, wonderful servers; wines selected by fellow owner/sommelier Michael Mameli further the appeal – just be advised the "prices match the magic of the night." $$$$
The Shangri-La Hotel provides a gorgeous backdrop for this restaurant, created by the world renowed chef Jean-Georges Vonjerichten. The service and ambiance match its sophisticated world class level. The menu honors seasonal and local ingredients by keeping concepts relatively simple, yet remaining solid in its execution, presentation and flavor. With a Jean-Georges ‘best dishes’ amalgamation, the menu at Market is practically fool proof. $$$$
ORU is one of the most impressive places to dine in a city rich in cuisine and architecture. From the custom-made Fazioli piano in the hotel’s marble-clad lobby to the 50-metre-long origami sculpture illuminating its haute-Zen flagship eatery, every gleaming fixture in this waterfront property screams luxury. Chef Brown, an Alain Ducasse aluminous, combines flawless technique with a vivid imagination. The result: profoundly Canadian, yet Asian-influenced, specialties with a point of view and visual flair. $$$$$
Restaurants - Tojo's
| 7 Minutes
1133 West Broadway, Vancouver, BC V6H 1G1
This is one of the most popular Japanese restaurants in the Metro Vancouver area and also a celebrity hot spot, this restaurant attracts sushi cognoscenti from around the world, as well as celebrities from music and film and even the Emperor and Empress of Japan. The highlight of their menu is Omakase, when you order Omakase, you are entrusting the chef to create your meal by selecting the freshest, seasonal and local ingredients of the day to create a special dinner that features hot and cold dishes. In a city blessed with world class sushi, Tojo's Restaurant in Vancouver stands alone. $$$$$
Restaurants - Vij's
| 7 Minutes
1488 W 11th Ave, Vancouver, BC V6H 1L1
Vikram Vij is a supernova star of Canada's celebrity-chef firmament. His innovative signature restaurant, Vij's, finesses riffs on Indian dishes that you've never even imagined. To get a table at this no-reservations eatery, be prepared to stand in line, eating complimentary chat (snacks). Vij's is dark, intimate, and richly decorated with Indian crafts. Women chefs cook in a partially open kitchen, filling the restaurant with the perfumes of lemon, ginger, coriander, and cumin. Mark Bittman of the New York Times calls it one of the best Indian restaurants of the world. $$$$
Spas - Absolute Spa
| 4 Minutes
1015 Burrard St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 1Y5
Gwyneth Paltrow’s been spotted here, J Lo too; but Absolute Spa’s Vancouver-wide empire has been built on the rubbed backs of mere mortals. Its diverse real-estate outposts include YVR and the flagship location at the Century Plaza Hotel (with a focus on luxury and anti-aging like the Diamond Microdermabrasion and Oxygen facial where essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, and pure oxygen molecules get blasted into every pore). $$$$
Spas - Chi, The spa
| 1 Minutes
1128 West Georgia St, Vancouver, BC V6E 0A8
ZeZen comes in many holistic shapes and sizes, but we like it best when it’s swanky like the warm, wood-panelled digs high above the fray at the tony Chi at the Shangri-La. Here, all treatments are based on natural healing methods. Take the brand-new Wushu Body Wisdom Massage, which starts with stretching (imagine yoga poses over a bamboo stick), then finishes with an hour-long massage with oils customized to your primary element (metal, water, wood, fire, or earth) to harmonize the body’s energy. $$$$
Spas - Willow Stream Spa
| 4 Minutes
1038 Canada Place, Vancouver, BC V6C 0B9
The Willow Stream at the Fairmont Pacific Rim has been the flavour of the month since it opened—two years ago. Probably because it sits surrounded by killer water views and a cavernous footprint that allows for three lounges, two fireplaces, and an outdoor spa terrace. (And for the less disciplined, platters of cookies, muffins, and fruit while you wait.) Although ridiculously perfect for girlfriends’ getaways, it’s equally great for the solo venture: the Van Active Grind, targets Grouse Grinders with a specific massage of the lower back, glutes, legs, and feet to help speed recovery for the next ascent. $$$$
Local-chef-turned-entrepreneur Barbara-Jo McIntosh spreads the good-food word with scores of cookbooks, including many by Vancouver- and B.C.-based chefs, as well as wine tomes, memoirs, and magazines. There are also regular book-reading events and cooking classes in the demonstration kitchen if you fancy rubbing shoulders with a culinary maestro or two—they're a tasty way to explore local cuisine. $$
Meinhardt is Vancouver’s most polished gourmet market, located in South Granville, striving to be at the pinnacle of the blossoming fine food culture in Vancouver. A trip to this market is something to be slowly savored, like international condiments, luxury canned goods and the kind of tempting treats that everyone should try at least once. Meinhardt calls itself an ambassador “for the love of food,” a belief that is evident in the array of fine and gourmet food items and the high-end appeal of its stores. For the gourmand, or for those who simply appreciate the finer things in life a visit to this store is a must. $$$
Urban Fare is one of the most stylish and fantastically merchandised stores in the city. The store is an aesthetically conscious person’s dream. Between the over-sized produce, the glimmering bakers’ shelves stocked with dry goods and the prepared food counters overflowing with delicious snacks. This company has thought of every detail and made every aspect of its existence completely brand consistent (they even have a sink by the disposable cutlery, so you can wash your hands before you dig in - germ-fearing Birkin's heaven!). The store managed to make the mundane task of food-shopping into a culinary experience, with style. $$$
The BC Lions are a professional Canadian football team competing in the West Division of the Canadian Football League (CFL). Based in Vancouver, the Lions play their home games at BC Place in Downtown Vancouver. Every year the Lions roars into action between June to November. For tickets call 604-589-ROAR(7627).
Rogers Arena has hosted some of the world’s top entertainers. But nothing gets this state-of-the-art building more electrified than when the Vancouver Canucks take to the ice on those 40-plus nights during hockey season in early October through early April. Most Vancouverites will attest that the buzz surrounding a Canucks game can be felt miles away from the stadium on city streets all over province on each game day, but it really doesn’t hit home until you step into the rink on Griffiths Way and into the home of the Canucks. For tickets call 1-855-985-5000.
The renovated and modernized BC Place is the new home of Vancouver Whitecaps FC. The stadium made history, as it is now a year-round open-air facility with a brand new cable-supported retractable roof – the biggest of its kind in the world.
This renews a long history for Whitecaps FC at BC Place which began during the days of the North American Soccer League. The regular season usually runs between March till the end of October. For tickets call 604-669-WAVE(9283).
Forum is the latest addition to Vancouver’s “Granville Entertainment District” - game time atmosphere, stylish layout, fifteen 58″ HD flat screens and four 110″ projectors. The Forum mixes televised sports entertainment with a fun, casual social atmosphere and dancing. Karaoke nights on Mondays, Comedy on Sundays and other events throughout. $$$
Conveniently located near the corner of Granville & Davie, G Sports Bar and Grill is Vancouver’s only ALL HD-Equipped Sports Bar. They’re constantly streaming All Sports through their 7 satellite feeds on their 24 HD TVs and 9-foot projection screen. All Sports ALL the Time! The food is not the usual pub fare. They serve the finest, freshest ingredients, and they’re not afraid to pile it on. Boasting the best wings and Beef Dips in town, they understand the importance of chowing down while watching the game. $$$
Score on Davie has quickly become a destination spot to check out in the city. Whether it's to catch a Canucks game, their award winning NFL Sunday Brunch, a late night bite to eat or a cocktail on their sunny patio- you will find something for everyone to love! Opened in 2007, Score is the recipient of many awards including Best Casual Bar, Best Gay Bar, Best Breakfast, Best Sports Bar and Best place... to Catch a game in both the Westender and Georgia Straight's readers choice polls. $$
Since 2004, this elegant tea salon has been treating locals and visitors to one of the most refined tea experiences this side of London. Explore the exquisite, luxury loose teas, offering a selection of over 250 exclusive blends and tea gifts from the finest harvests around the world as well as a unique selection of luxury lifestyle accessories. A complete selection of high quality, luxury TWG Tea is available with their all-day signature afternoon tea services. The tea salons, with its elegant white linen tablecloths, offers brunch, lunch, dessert and an extensive list of lattes and teas. $$$$
Xi Shi located in the lobby lounge of the ultra posh Shangri-la, Vancouver is a perfect location for an afternoon business meeting, quiet and private but also a great atmosphere to catch up with friends over after-work drinks or dinner. It features an Euro-Asian fusion inspired menu with a focus on chilled and hot snacks, selected lunch and dinner items and a traditional Afternoon Tea. The traditional afternoon tea set on their famous Blue Willow China would please any die-hard, pinkie-crooking afternoon tea traditionalist. This elegant and upscale lounge features live performance daily. $$$
Located in the Granville Island Public Market, this small, cozy Vancouver restaurant, is purveyors of the best teas in town. If you visit in the morning, you will notice the shop by the long line-up of tea-loving regulars, many of them with their own mugs and chatting with owners Deborah and Mark, waiting patiently to order their heavenly tea brew of choice from the friendly and knowledgeable staff. One of the Company’s specialities – and their most popular tea – is the Masala Chai. The chai paste is mixed with piping hot water and a ‘secret ingredient’ (butter), and it is by far the best chai you will ever have. A must for the ubiquitous rainy Vancouver days. $$
Since its founding in 1958, Vancouver Opera quickly moved to the centre of the city’s and region’s cultural life and has remained there ever since. In recent years, the company has intensified and broadened its role as a major creative, educational, and collaborative resource in the community. Vancouver Opera productions take place at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. For year round performances schedule visit their website by selecting the VO picture or call 604-683-0222.
Follow in the footsteps of the millions of visitors who have crossed Capilano Suspension Bridge since 1889. Voices from Vancouver’s past mingle with the sounds of nature, beautiful gardens skirt time-worn British Columbia First Nations totem poles and Capilano Suspension Bridge takes you to the serenity of a West Coast rainforest.
Stanley Park is a 1,000 acre metropolitan oasis and only a 15 minute walk from the Shangri-La Hotel Vancouver. The 8.8 km sea wall and numerous park benches offer stunning ocean and city views are only a small sample of the various natural beauties the park offers its visitors. The Vancouver Aquarium is home to nearly 70,000 marine and mammal specimens and is also one of the world’s largest marine research centers.
The late Bill Reid's contribution to the preservation of West Coast Salish art and culture was pivotal in introducing to the world the great art traditions of the indigenous people of the Northwest Coast of North America. The Museum show the Haida art of Bill Reid including his "legacy of magnificent works of art from the most intricate to the monumental - many wood carving, jewellery, print and sculpture". Other First Nations art will also be featured in the Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art. The totem pole that graces the center of the gallery is carved by Haida artist Jim Hart in dedication to Bill Reid.
What began as a basalt quarry is now a stunning, one of a kind arboretums with some of Canada’s greatest gardens and one of Vancouver’s greatest city views. Its restaurant, Seasons in the Park was host to Boris Yeltsin and Bill Clinton during the Vancouver summit in late 1993 and comforts its guests with breathtaking city views and inviting West Coast cuisine. Within the Bloedel conservatory one will find both exotic wildlife and foliage including birds, butterflies and tropical plants.
Few neighbourhoods in Vancouver embody the city’s history, diverse cultures and vibrant future like Chinatown. Located on the eastern side of downtown Vancouver, the bustling district is North America’s third largest Chinatown. Its roots trace to the late 1800s, when early Chinese immigrants, who arrived to work on B.C.’s railroads and in the mines, were settled in a ghetto on the edge of the city. With time, the neighbourhood grew into a proud centre of Chinese culture, home to traditional restaurants, markets, temples and gardens, as well as a booming business district. Today, Chinatown reflects this rich heritage but is also in the midst of a renaissance, with trendy bars and restaurants reclaiming historic spaces.
This gorgeous classical Chinese garden is the first of its kind outside of China; it is an authentic representation of an age-old garden tradition which found its roots during the Ming Dynasty (1368AD-1644AD). The design of the garden is based upon the harmony of four elements; rock, water, plants and architecture, they strive to achieve a perfect sense of harmony symbolized by the ying and the yang. The Garden is a 15-20 minute walk from downtown, you know you’re close when all the street lamps are red and topped with dragons!
Named after "Gassy" Jack Leighton, who opened the first bar here in 1867, this historic area of downtown Vancouver is now home to many trendy restaurants, shops, bars, and nightlife. The area has cobbled streets, interesting lighting, a steam clock, shops and restaurants. It was designated a Provincial heritage site in 1971. Don't forget to check out the unique steam powered clock while you're there.
If Granville Island is the king of Vancouver destinations, then the Public Market is the jewel in the Island’s crown. A fascinating assortment of colourful stalls, showcasing unique homemade products and the very finest in gastronomic delights. All fresh from the ocean, the oven or the field. Try closing your eyes right now and imagine the rich aromas permeating from the lavish displays. Shimmering seafood, warm baked goods, plump fruit.
Just a short 15-minute drive from downtown Vancouver, guests will find the spectacular mountaintop adventure of Grouse Mountain. During summer, enjoy helicopter tours, the world famous lumberjack show, the Grouse Mountain refuge for endangered wildlife, birds in motion demonstrations, and much more. In winter, discover a snowy wonderland renowned for skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, ice skating, and sleigh rides. Whatever time of year you visit guests will always savour the great tastes at one of the many restaurants from casual to fine dining, all while enjoying the most spectacular view of Vancouver.
Situated on the North Shore of Vancouver offering a panoramic view of the skyline and harbour the Lonsdale Public Market is a multi-leveled complex supporting over 90 shops and other services including a fresh market, international cuisine, eat-in or take-out, a play area for children and specialty shops for kids, boutique stores and a first class hotel. The fresh market level contains over 60 vendors providing fresh caught fish, local and imported produce and home made pastries as well as 20 international food bars.
This is Canada’s principal maritime museum, located in the heart of one of the greatest ports of Canada and our gateway to the Pacific Rim. It has been Canada’s premier link to maritime history for 45 years exhibiting its rich history, culture, industry and technology.
Located at the University of British Columbia, the Museum of Anthropology is renowned for its collections, research, teaching, and public programs. The architecture of the building itself is simply spectacular uniquely situated on the cliffs of Point Grey. The Museum expanded its facilities in 2010 further creating opportunities for the public, research, teaching, and employment.
In the three block stretch between Burrard and Jervis you will find a commercial mecca which includes premier fashions stores, fine dining, services and all the amenities a tourist or local might need. Robson-goers may spend their day people watching and sipping coffee on an outdoor patio; they may start off shopping at unique boutique stores before being pampered at a day spa and then relaxing at a hotel. At night, the streets come alive with colorful buskers and performers. Visitors enjoy delicious drinks and fine foods at some of the city's most celebrated restaurants. The street is recognized both on a worldwide level as well as locally as it remains Vancouverites' favorite shopping destination. Robson is undoubtedly the street to see and be seen on.
In a gigantic shiny dome built over the Omnimax theater, this hands-on science center encourages children to participate in interactive exhibits and demonstrations about the natural world, the human body, and other science topics. Exhibits change throughout the year, so there's always something new to see. Adjacent to the museum, the Ken Spencer Science Park is an outdoor exhibit area focusing on environmental issues. It's an easy walk (and mini-ferry ride) from Yaletown; the Main Street/Science World SkyTrain station is on its doorstep, and there's plenty of parking.
Home to more than 200 exclusive stores, services, galleries and live theatre, South Granville is the ideal spot for smart, serious shoppers. The tradition of the carriage trade which took place here resonates with the now high end boutiques and vibrant atmosphere. This area prides itself as being unparalleled by any other shopping district in Vancouver.
Established in 1916, the mission of the UBC Botanical Gardens has expanded itself to include research, conservation and teaching. Its gardens are host to temperate plants from all areas of the globe but in particular Asian, alpine and native plants of British Columbia. The Nitobe Memorial Garden houses approximately 8,000 different plants in 12,000 living accessions. It is a beautiful classical Japanese Garden where visitors are free to meander through or relax with a cup of traditional green tea and bask in its peacefulness. The newly integrated canopy walkway is 308 metres long and allows visitors and researchers to experience the true biodiversity of the canopy sitting approximately 17.5 metres off the garden’s floor, an experience not lost on anyone who ventures to the tree tops.
The Vancouver Art Gallery is set in a majestic building, this landmark was designed by architect Francis Rattenbury (the architect of Victoria's Empress Hotel) and later renovated by BC's leading late-20th-century architect Arthur Erickson. The Gallery is
an excellent stop to see what sets Canadian and West Coast art apart from the rest of the world. Along with an impressive collection of paintings by BC native Emily Carr are examples of a unique Canadian art style created during the 1920s by members of the "Group of Seven," which included painter Lawren Harris who moved to Vancouver in 1940. The Gallery also hosts rotating exhibits of contemporary sculpture, graphics, photography, and video art from around the world.
The 2009-built West Building of the Vancouver Convention Centre is among one of the most spectacular and greenest convention and exhibition buildings in the world. It’s one of the Vancouver’s most prominent and photographed landmarks, and boasts one of the city’s largest and most architecturally stunning designs. The 1.1-million sq. foot building is usually closed to the general public due to the private events that take place inside. However, the convention centre’s incredible staff are nice enough to schedule regular free guided public tours. Learn more about the rooftop bee hives, the art exhibits inside, the wood used to build the interior, the massive green roof (wild grassland), other green building features and more.
Astronaut Neil Armstrong, the first man on the moon opened the Vancouver Lookout in 1977. The glass elevators which lift you to the 130 meter high observation deck in a mere 40 seconds elevate you to an exquisite 360 degree view of downtown Vancouver. The building also houses 28 floors of offices, the downtown campus of Simon Fraser University, shops, a liquor store and of course the top of Vancouver revolving restaurant.
The architecture of the Vancouver Public library alone warrants a visit. Built by Moshe Safdie it resembles the Roman Coliseum and is a splendid blends of old and new. Located at Homer and Robson Street, the inside provides complimentary computer stations with Internet access and a plethora of literature for every single taste possible.
The Vancouver Seawall extends along 22 km of the city's waterfront, including the 8.8 km loop around Stanley Park. Each year it plays host to many running and walking events and is the perfect venue for race organizers. While most known for its loop around Stanley Park and presence in downtown Vancouver, the Seawall has continued to expand and now follows the waterfront south of downtown along False Creek west to Kitsilano Beach. The seawall is divided into two paths, one for walkers/runners and the other for inline skaters and cyclists, and passes by a number of Vancouver sporting venues and attractions making it appealing and practical for a variety of events.
Yaletown is Vancouver’s trendy and upscale renovated warehouse district. This fresh urban neighbourhood is just an easy walk from the centre of downtown Vancouver or a quick ferry ride from Granville Island. Yaletown’s converted heritage buildings are home to some of the city’s top fashion and design shops, as well as cutting edge restaurants and bars. Old loading docks act as giant sidewalks and create a unique setting for wandering, shopping, or lounging at one of the many outdoor patios.
This 22-acre garden in the heart of Vancouver has grown to international stature since its creation in 1975. The Van Dusen Garden boasts over 255,000 plants representing more than 7,300 varieties from around the world. The ecosystems represented range from tropical South Africa, the Himalayas, the Canadian arctic and of course the Pacific North West. Vancouver’s mild climate means these gardens are a site to see at any time of year and promises not to disappoint.
Boboli's answer to a younger audience who has their mommy and daddy's credit cards. The clothing selection also reaffirms the L.A. look with True Religion, J Brand, Single and Vince among its collections. While some of the aforementioned brands may not sound like anything new to town, don’t get the idea that Blubird is any common crow. The selection of Marc by Marc Jacobs accessories, Pucci scarves and M Missoni knitwear, not to mention the array of excessively cute Hello Kitty products are sure to impress. $$$$
This worldwide leading luxury brand for elegant women is condensed into an appropriately elegant store. The crisp, white, airy space is a perfect canvas to show off the classic clothing's opulent details--like real fur collars and buttons plated with gold. It houses everything from skinny suits to colorful cruisewear with a modern look while remaining uncompromisingly classic. To say this stuff is glamorous and elegant would be like saying Bill Gates is well-off. $$$$$
Tory Birch's third foray into Canada, on Alberni street, will delight all urban ballerinas. They can now snap up the trendy Reva flat, emblazoned with the ubiquitous double-T medallion, in enough colors to put a crayon box to shame. Tory Burch knows her customers well, and they throng to her tangerine-walled boutiques to get a piece of the action—that blend of preppy-chic and boho bling that many of them will want to wear for a lifetime. $$$$
Located in Vancouver’s colourful West End, Marquis Wine Cellars is a neighbourhood wine shop that is anything but typical. Owner John Clerides – who CBC radio’s Jurgen Gothe deems “the country’s most astute buyer” – scours the globe to find the best toast-worthy selections for local and visiting wine aficionados to enjoy. His team are relentless in exceeding their clients’ expectations by providing them with wines that consistently over deliver. $$