Downtown Vancouver is home to the business, shopping and nightlife districts. Although a major city, Vancouver is spread over a relatively small area, which makes getting around the city a breeze. Downtown you can find Robson and Granville Street, popular outdoor shopping drags. Head North of Robson Street and you will find yourself heavily immersed in Vancouver's financial district. Mixed amongst the concrete and glass you will find many cafés and perfect spots to stop and have lunch at. Hotels are abundant in Vancouver's downtown core and they range from high end extravagant stays, to budget friendly, yet comfortable rooms.
See & Do
The Vancouver Art Gallery is a beautiful building and lovely to look at, even from just the outside. Step inside and you will be in awe of the talent that decorates the walls inside. There are pieces that stick around, while other exhibitions call the VAG home for a short period of time. Year-round memberships can be bought and if you plan on going regularly to catch the different shows, it's definitely worth purchasing. If you find yourself getting peckish, or in need of something to drink, the Gallery Cafe has the best patio in town and a number of items to nosh and sip on.
The food scene downtown is quite varied and ranges from high-end culinary experiences, to sumptuous street food found scattered around street corners. If you're looking to impress your date, Hawksworth is your go-to place. The chic atmosphere, paired with perfect plates of goodness, and washed down with a nice glass of wine and lovely service, it's more than a triple threat; it's got it all. At the other end of the spectrum is Vancouver's street food scene and you will find a number of carts surrounding the Vancouver Art Gallery. Make sure to get there early because they often sell out.
Granville Street is buzzing when the sun sets, more so on the weekend, but it's still lively during the week. Dancing, grabbing a few drinks, or checking out a concert can all be done within a few blocks, which makes it easy to go with the flow. The Commodore Ballroom and Vogue Theatre are popular venues where some of the best music artists hit the stage when they're in town. Should beer, sports and good food be on your mind, Ensemble Tap (eTap) will satiate all of the above. It's a large space that can easily accommodate a larger group, especially if you book in advance. If you prefer your night to be easy on the eyes, Ginger SixtyTwo and Caprice Night Club, and are places where you can look fabulous and put those dancing shoes to good use.
The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver is a staple to Vancouver's skyline, and hotel network. Built in 1939, it's full of old world charm and has stood the test of time. The Fairmont brand has four properties in Vancouver and each location serves guests with impeccable customer service, beautiful rooms and beds so comfortable, you may never want to leave. If you prefer smaller hotels, the Wedgewood and Loden Hotel are lovely choices, and a stone's throw away from the Hotel Vancouver.
If you're traveling on a budget, the Hampton Inn and Georgian Court are centrally located off of Robson, and the price per night will leave you with some extra pennies to throw in the wishing well.
Robson Street and Granville Street have stores, upon stores for you to peruse through and find that special something to wear out on the town, or run around the Seawall in. When the weather is nice, it's a real treat to walk outside, take in the fresh air, look at mountains in the distance and sip a coffee while you walk in and out of shops. Well-known stores like Zara, The Gap, Lululemon, Urban Outfitters, Aritzia, French Connection and BCBG, to name a few, can all be found on Robson and Granville. If the weather is dubious, the Pacific Centre and Holt Renfrew will provide you with plenty of indoor shopping.