Category Archives: Vancouver Events

Vancouver Events Guide: check out the best things to do during your stay in Vancouver BC! Curated & crafted by the Victorian Hotel in Downtown Vancouver!

 Lodging for travellers has been around for millennia. From the thermal spas the Romans used to accommodate government travellers to the caravanserais that existed along the famed Silk Road, hotels have come a long way. And boutique hotels represent the next generation of accommodation.

Today, the word “hotel” is synonymous with travel, and there are options for every preference and budget, from barebones hostels to deluxe resorts. More recently, boutique hotels have become the answer to those looking for something new and unique. Unlike their big-box counterparts, boutique hotels distinguish themselves through intimacy and idiosyncratic design choices, which are often centred around a theme—like the lovely brick ensconced Victorian Hotel in Vancouver.

Although there’s no cut-and-dried definition of a boutique hotel—they come in many shape, sizes, and forms—here are some telltale signs that distinguish these properties.

Five Characteristics of Boutique Hotels

Individualityboutique hotels, like the Victorian Hotel in Vancouver, are often individually owned and have a distinct vibe that separates them from the cookie cutter vibe of their big-box counterparts.

Size—boutique hotels are often smaller in size and tend to range from 10 to 100 rooms.

Location—due to their smaller size, boutique hotels are often found in lively, upscale areas or even high-end residential neighbourhoods. They are often centrally located with good access to public transportation.

Culture—as locally owned properties, boutique hotels often incorporate locally-sourced materials and art. For example, amenities at the Victorian Hotel include Purely SALTspring soap, shampoo, and conditioner as part of their toiletry kit.

Service—personalized attention is the true hallmark of a boutique hotel. For people who prize a high quality, individualized experience, get ready for a staff that takes an interest and caters to personal needs.

For those seeking out accommodation as individual as they are, boutique hotels are a great alternative that features luxurious service, creative design, and distinct character. If you’re looking for a boutique hotel in Vancouver, the Victorian Hotel features 47 beautifully appointed rooms that evoke the romance, craftsmanship, and elegance of the Victorian era.

What do you imagine when you think of New Year Parties? Is it sparkling fireworks or champagne-filled evenings overflowing with starry-eyed revellers? Perhaps it’s simply cozying up in the warm with loved ones? If you plan to be in Vancouver, there are some great celebrations close to the Victorian Hotel downtown, and we’ve listed some of the best right here.
1)         NYE 2018 Waterfront Gala Ball: Starting at $120

Unless you’re going on a yacht it just doesn’t get any bigger than this. Located at the Fairmont Waterfront, this venue will have a magnificent view of the Midnight Countdown Fireworks at Canada Place. Two rooms with DJs will keep you dancing all night long, along with party favours, balloon drops, well-prepared appetizer stations and a champagne toast.

2)         Concord’s NYE Vancouver 2018: Starting from $28

Vancouver’s largest all-ages celebration, Concord’s New Year’s Eve party offers a range of experiences, with something for everyone. With several stages, a bunch of DJs and dancers, a family zone, and more, you’ll be guaranteed to have a good time. Located at Vancouver Convention Centre West, you’re just 10 minutes away by bus from the Victorian Hotel.

3)         Magic Spirit Yacht: Starting at $115

Looking for an evening with style? This amazing 1920s themed yachting experience will be the Bee’s Knees. This speakeasy prohibition style party cruise features Roaring 20s themed party favours, an amazing 3-hour cruise, DJs playing hits from Today’s music, EDM, Top 40 and more. It promises to be the most memorable experience you can have. The fun launches from the Magic Spirit Yacht down by the Plaza of Nations Marina near Rogers Arena.

4)         Telus World of Science: Starting at $80

About 10 minutes away at the iconic World of Science, you’ll join an intimate crowd of 1100 at one of Vancouver’s signature celebrations. Spread over two floors, with two rooms featuring eight of the city’s top DJs, this event is all about the effects, sound, and lighting. In addition, there’s a champagne toast and VIP ticket options, with plenty to eat and drink.

5)         Cirque Gala NYE 2018: Starting from $50

Ring in the New Year in style at Vancouver’s premier nightlife venue, located at the Imperial Vancouver on Main Street. This event will feature the city’s best EDM, Top 40, and Hip Hop DJs, stunning Cirque performance artists, 2 rooms of music plus an exclusive VIP mezzanine level, and a countdown you won’t forget! Toast the memories of 2017 and look forward to the great times to come in 2018.

Of course, if you want to stay inside, the Victorian Hotel has you covered. With plenty of luxurious amenities, you can spoil yourself rotten in preparation for 2018!

Remember to plan your New Year’s celebrations in advance before the venues fill up. And don’t forget, the streets will be crowded, so make sure you have a plan to get back safe and sound. After a bit too much good cheer, having a hotel downtown really helps.

Have a safe and Happy New Year from the staff at the Victorian Hotel.

With its Euro-style heritage charm, the Victorian Hotel in Vancouver is a great destination for anyone visiting the city in the holiday season. For those who delight in glossy hardwood and soaring bay windows, the hotel’s vintage-y vibe makes it hard to beat in any season. However, Christmas affords Vancouver-bound holiday goers with a special opportunity. With the gourmet epicentres of Gastown, Robson, and Yaletown just 5-10 minutes away, this is the ideal base for exploring the local Christmas culinary scene.

Food and Christmas have always gone hand-in-hand. Think rich gingerbread, candied nuts, decadently spiced cider, thick holiday hams, thin crispy cookies, seductive chocolates  and, of course, that perennial North American favourite—turkey! Of course, in Vancouver many restaurants will put their own inspired Westcoast twists on classic dishes. With fresh ingredients and fresher ideas, there is an endless bounty of creations designed to delight your inner gastronome. So, if you’re ready to explore a bevvy of seasonal eats and treats, read on!


Located about 5-10 minutes away on 1300 Robson Street, Forage always puts the best of BC on your plate. This restaurant connects diners to local fishers, foragers, and farmers. They also offer the best from the local craft distilleries, breweries, and wineries. Every December, this restaurant trots out their rustic holiday decor, a nod to their sustainable dining approach, and serves up a four-course family-style lunch or dinner. Last year, this included grilled kale salad, a charcuterie board, a choice of roasted Fraser Valley turkey or hay-smoked pork rack roast, and a sticky toffee pudding. Stay tuned to see what’s being served up this year. Just remember, reservations are a must in this intimate space.

Le Crocodile

Located at 100-909 Burrard (about 10 minutes away), this restaurant puts a fancy French twist on its seasonal specialities. Be on the lookout for rare delicacies like smoked and candied salmon. For the main course, tuck into Roasted Fraser Valley Duck Breast served with Pan-Seared Foie Gras and an Apple Cider Reduction. Follow that up with a chocolate cake, featuring an orange reduction that lends a seasonal fruity flair to this traditional favourite. As a bonus, Le Crocodile will be offering a New Year’s Course this year, so make your reservations early.


Just a brief trot away at 2881 Granville Street, West offers a modern space bathed in natural light thanks to an assortment of skylights, perfect for holiday conviviality. Guests can choose from options ranging from a three-course meal to simple à la carte selections like West Coast oysters with elderflower mignonette or an albacore tuna salad. Don’t forget to follow up with a decadent chocolate parfait sandwich, featuring a white chocolate sour cream mousse, which works perfectly with its crisp hazelnut wafers and sour-sweet raspberry compote.

After all that food, you’ll be grateful for the luxurious pillow-top mattresses, raindrop showers, and flat-screen TVs that add dimension and comfort to your stay at the Victorian Hotel in Vancouver. To top it off, the complimentary continental breakfast, which is included in your stay, will provide a light and refreshing start to the day next morning.

Deck the halls and light up the streets! Every year, all around the Victorian Hotel, Vancouver transforms itself into a wintery wonderland full of holiday cheer. Even if the streets are snowless, what Vancouver lacks in white it more than makes up for in light! The city is full of great exhibitions and events that are sure to engage and delight visitors to our fair city.

For those staying at the Victorian Hotel, not only will you get to enjoy a renovated turn-of-the-century guesthouse that features both Victorian design and modern comforts, the centralized location also means you have easy access to wonderful holiday inspired events all around the city. Here are just a few of our favorites to check out:

Bright Nights and the Stanley Park Christmas Train ( 10 minutes by bus)

For younger kids, it’s hard to beat the appeal of a train. Over 3 million twinkling lights transform the forest and its famous miniature train into a winter wonderland. Best of all, Santa’s always on hand to greet young guests.. This runs from Nov 30th to Jan 6th, and is only closed on Christmas Day.

Peak of Christmas at Grouse Mountain (22 minutes by car)

If you need a snow fix and Vancouver isn’t cooperating, Grouse Mountain is the perfect destination. In fact, it does a pretty good imitation of the North Pole! Kids can have breakfast with Santa, check out some reindeer, or go on a sleigh ride! There’s also ice skating, sledding, and other glorious winter-inspired events. Don’t forget to take a walk through the Gingerbread village. The event runs from Nov 24th to Jan 7th.

Rogers Santa Claus Parade, Downtown Vancouver (5 minutes by foot)

Saved at the last minute, the Santa Claus Parade promises to be bigger and better than ever. This year, the parade will include 60 marching bands, dance troupes, floats, and more. Expect hundreds of thousands of spectators, so get there early if you’re planning to attend and make sure you book a room ASAP.

Festival of Lights at VanDusen Botanical Garden

If you love Christmas sparkles, this is not to be missed. VanDusen has more than a million lights on display, covering 15 acres of its botanical garden. There’s a  gingerbread walk and more whimsical displays that you can shake a candy can at. Santa will likely make an appearance, and there’s always plenty of holiday-themed treats and entertainment, which will run from Dec 1st to Jan 7th, except for Christmas Day.

‘The Nutcracker,’ Downtown Vancouver (7 minutes by car)

For those who love the classics, the  “The Nutcracker” by the BC Ballet is a holiday staple. Dress up in your holiday best and get ready to make some memories. Performances run from Dec 14th to 19th at the Centre in Vancouver for Performing Arts, and at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre from Dec 28th to Dec 30th.

If you’re coming to Vancouver, The Victorian Hotel is the place to be. With 47 beautifully appointed rooms, you’ll find yourself enveloped in a Dickensian feel right in the heart city.

Vancouver boutique hotelAs a Vancouver boutique hotel, the Victorian combines casual elegance with historic design to provide guests with a comfortable and convenient stay in the heart of Vancouver. Housed in a beautiful Victorian-style building that dates back to 1898, the hotel sets you in the perfect location to explore the city in any season.

For those wondering what Vancouver has to offer in the pumpkin spice season, the marvellous answer is foliage and festivals. The city is simply awash in fall colours, which makes even a simple walk a lively and beautiful outdoor adventure. However, for those wondering what else to do, there are two holidays (Thanksgiving and Halloween), the VIFF (Vancouver International Film Festival), and plenty of events and activities.

While evergreen trees dominate most of BC, Vancouver does have its fair share of deciduous, which show off a rhapsody of colour this time every year. For the best fall viewing, catch a bus and ride over to Stanley Park, which is about 10 minutes away from the hotel. As a designated World Heritage Site and one of the most beautiful parks in the world, it’s worth seeing in any season!

September is a particularly fine time to indulge in some outdoor adventures. Whether it’s kayaking on the harbour front or zip-lining through the trees, Vancouver has a veritable smorgasbord of outdoor activities to choose from. One of our favourites is bicycling along the Seawall. You can rent bicycles from vendors all around the city or try Mobi, the City’s own bike share system.

For cinephiles, fall is THE time to visit. The acclaimed Vancouver International Film Festival (VIFF) just keeps getting bigger and better. Last year, the festival screened more than 300 films from more than 60 countries and attracted a star-studded audience of industry insiders, celebrities, and movie-lovers from across British Columbia.

Thanksgiving & Halloween

Thanksgiving is a family-oriented holiday, but it’s also harvest season. Look beyond the succulent squash, turkey, potatoes, and pie, because Vancouver is a culinary haven full of innovation. Many restaurants will roll out their own interpretations of this delicious tradition.

Of course, the biggest event of the month is Halloween, which is probably only second to Christmas in terms of activates and attractions. There are always plenty of corn mazes, haunted houses, and parties to celebrate at during this spooky time. Remember to do your research and make your bookings early, because events like these tend to sell out fast.

With so much to see and do, this is definitely the season to fall in love with Vancouver. And if you’re staying at the Victorian Hotel, you’ll be in the middle of it all. As a Vancouver boutique hotel, you’ll need to make reservations, and don’t hesitate to ask our staff for their recommendations, because the locals always know the best haunts.

Vancouver is a swoonworthy city with tons to see and do, but sometimes you’ve only got a day to spare. The good news is if you’re staying at the Victorian Hotel, you’ll be perfectly positioned to enjoy some city highlights before returning to your comfy boutique accommodations at night.

The Victorian Hotel is located at 514 Homer Street, which places it right in the heart of downtown Vancouver. Four of Vancouver’s trendiest districts—Gastown, Yaletown, Robson, and Chinatown are within walking distance of the hotel, which features 47 beautifully appointed hotel rooms.

If you have just one day to spend in Vancouver, begin with breakfast at a local café. Vancouver is a big coffee town. Venture over to touristy Gastown for a jolt of java at their one-of-a-kind cafes. One of our favourites is Buro, which is conveniently located at the entrance to Gastown. Overflowing with natural light, the artfully poured espresso punctuates the fresh French pastries, banana bread, and house-baked muffins, which are always fresh and delicious.

After breakfast, you’ll be positioned to do a little shopping. Gastown has evolved as an epicentre for fashion and style. From fabulous Fluevogs to your new favourite t-shirt, Gastown is known for procuring some of the most interesting, well-made and genuinely beautiful items to wear and to hold.

Next, head downtown for some cuisine and culture. You could swing by the hotel to drop off your wares and then head off to Robson and the Vancouver Art Gallery. Spend the afternoon exploring a highly acclaimed collection of national and international contemporary art. Don’t miss the permanent collection on display by the legendary BC artist Emily Carr. The Satellite Visitor Centre on the south-west side of the gallery is a great source of great information and tips.

Next, for a casual west coast lunch, try the Smokehouse Sandwich Company, which is just a short walk on 700 Georgia Street W. Indulge in premium quality smoked meats and delicious sandwiches sourced from local farms. The restaurant has developed their own specialty meats, spice rubs, and sauces, resulting in inventive fusions such as Sarah—which consists of pulled Tamarind Chicken with Aioli, Sesame Ginger Oil and Asian Slaw.

After lunch, you’ll want to walk off those calories. Cab or bus to Stanley Park, a 400 hectare (1,000 acre) jewel right at the end of the downtown peninsula. For a close-up experience, rent a bike and ride the 9-kilometre Seawall path. For the less actively inclined, the park has regular horse-drawn tours that let you meander in comfort through the natural beauty of Stanley Park. A professional guide fully narrates the tour, which highlights Deadman’s Island, Vancouver Harbour, Lions Gate Bridge, a Coastal Red Cedar Forest, and includes stops at the iconic Totem Poles, the Girl in a Wet Suit Statue, the S.S. Empress of Japan Figurehead, and the Rose Garden.

For dinner, head back to Vancouver to take in the eclectic nightlife of Vancouver’s famous Chinatown. As a neat bazaar overflowing with live music, noodles, and bubble tea, it’s a gastronome’s paradise wrapped in an eclectic fusion package.

End the night close to the hotel and venture back to Gastown as the nightlife really kicks off. Vancouver is famous for its hot and cold brews, and the Steamworks Brewing Company exists among some of the city’s best watering holes. Other points to check out include the Alibi Room and Gringo, an upbeat but inexpensive taco bar.

When you’re done, your hotel will be within walking distance, so you can get back safely to the soaker tubs, pillow top mattresses, and bask in the comforting glow of the room’s LG flat screen TVs.

The Victorian Hotel in Vancouver boasts a long and illustrious history. But while keeping its vintage-y vibe intact for twenty-first century visitors, the centralized location also offers some unexpected perks for those who are keenly aware of Vancouver’s glitzy alter ego—aka Hollywood North!

For those who don’t know, the Victorian Hotel is comprised of two buildings. The first building at the went up in 1898 to house the explorers, prospectors, and newcomers who were compelled by the possibilities of life on the frontier. The second building, constructed 10 years later, was a reaction to the rapidly growing economy. Both these beautiful buildings offer a historic flavour, without sacrificing the amenities that are essential for modern day guests. Large flat-screen TVs, wireless internet, and luxurious bedding that even Kate Rockwell, the queen of the Klondike gold rush, would envy.

As a hotel with a centralized location in the downtown core, The Victorian Hotel offers fans of the big and small screen alike unique opportunities to visit the locations of a number of famous movies and TV shows that are filmed all around Vancouver. For fans of the CW original show Riverdale, staying at the hotel just might afford you a peak at America’s most famous redhead, since the set of Veronica’s Lodge’s home is just next door at The Permanent Building.

For those interested in other sets and locations, Atlas of Wonders has a list of all the known shooting locations from Season One. Organize your own set location tour, starting with Veronica’s mansion and then work your way out. Atlas of Wonders also shares shooting locations for other movies and TV shows, so there’s no telling what (or who) you might find.

From sophisticated boutiques to high-end cuisine, Vancouver is a city of wonders. Just the sight of the mountains peeking between the skyscrapers is enough to take your breath away. But rather than exploring the city on your own, sometimes a more organised approach can yield a more relaxing and memorable experience. For guests interested in organized tours, we’ve put together a list of the best based on our own experiences and feedback.

By Bus – The most obvious choice, and Vancouver has plenty of options when it comes to bus tours. The Vancouver Trolley Company is perhaps the most recognizable, with its bright red trolleys that evoke images of San Francisco in their design. They offer a ‘hop on—hop off’ loop tour with 23 memorable and convenient stops.

By Train – While there are no train tours of the city, there are opportunities for those who wish to travel out of the city during their stay. Rocky Mountaineer Vacations offers luxurious train rides through British Columbia, including a breathtaking daily trip between Vancouver and Whistler, called the Whistler Mountaineer.

By Boat – Being a coastal city with a number of deep inlets, one of the best ways to experience the city is by boat. Harbour Cruises offers a one-hour scenic tour around the Burrard Inlet, where you’ll get to see such sights as Stanley Park, Gastown and the famous skyline from a whole new perspective!

By Air – For a truly unique experience it’s hard to beat taking a tour of the city by air. eJet offers half-hour helicopter rides around the city, as well as trips out to Whistler and locations along the lower mainland. And Harbour Air offers float plane services and tours as well.

By Foot – If you prefer to hoof it, there are plenty of guided walking tours at your disposal. For a personal experience, John Atkin is a published historian who offers two-hour walking tours to various locations within the city.

It’s worth mentioning that these tours are highly accessible from the Victorian Hotel, making it the ideal launching point and return destination for your vacation adventure. No matter what kind of adventure you have in mind, we’ll be ready with the recommendations to help you make the most of your stay in Vancouver.

Located in downtown Vancouver, the Victorian Hotel offers a unique boutique experience that draws tourists from around the world. From the pillow top beds and flat screen TVs to the super speed Internet and continental breakfast, the hotel provides a cozy nook for tourists traveling in the fall, winter, and spring. However, there’s a whole new appeal when summer rolls around. That’s because the centralized location of the Victorian Hotel puts guests within walking distance to all of Vancouver’s greatest patios.


Whether it’s brunch, a romantic tête-à-tête, or a late night brouhaha with fellow sports fans, we’ve listed some of the coolest patios for the hot weather. Check them out on your next visit.


Chill Winston

Located near Gastown (not far from CRAB Park at Portside), this eatery, which features an eco-friendly menu and urban chic décor, has close to 100 outdoor seats on Maple Tree Square. This palate-teasing view, meant for a mingling kind of excursion, will only be elevated by the street facing patio, which doubles as a fabulous solution for boosting those depleted vitamin D levels.



Not far from Chinatown and Yaletown, Chambar’s patio occupies a cool tree-lined street. Open from 8 till late (weather permitting), this is a terrific opportunity to leave your day at the door and indulge in the unpretentious fine dining experience that has defined this award-winning restaurant.  Chambar is a beautifully designed restaurant with quality and elegance in the service, ambiance, and food creations.


Joe Fortes

If you’re en route to Stanley Park (or heading back), try stopping at Joe Fortes on Thurlow and Robson. As an award-winning steak and seafood house, this is already a local favourite, but seeing the rooftop patio in full bloom definitely adds an extra dimension to this urban escape.



Located on 801 West Georgia, this chic outdoor hotel lounge is centred around a fire-pit, making it more reminiscent of the trendy outdoor spaces that dominate high profile cities like LA, New York, and Miami. Tuck into fruity cocktails and Spanish-style plates after a tiring day of sightseeing. And don’t worry if the location seems hard to find, just ask the friendly staff and they’ll be glad to point the way to the rooftop.


The Keg Steakhouse & Bar

There’s nothing cookie cutter about the fabulous patio at The Keg’s Yaletown location. As one of Vancouver’s most sought-after open air spaces, this patio is comfortably furnished and generously staffed to ensure guests have a great time while partaking in the classic steak and seafood dishes that have made The Keg a mainstay of the chain restaurant scene.


Lift Bar & Grill

Sometimes called “the best patio in Vancouver,” this is another great place to check out if you’re in Vancouver. As a sleek eatery, the upscale Pacific Northwest fare is further enhanced by water and mountain views from the bustling rooftop patio. With brunch, lunch and dinner served fresh and hot, Lift elevates the senses with its tongue tingling steak, seafood, and sushi creations.


There’s a whole world to discover outside the Victorian Hotel, which is conveniently located within walking distance of Gastown, Yaletown, and Robson. Try a few of our recommended spots—or let us know if you find one of your own, because Vancouver is a city full of hidden treasures.

What does a light bulb, telephone, artificial pacemaker, Robertson screw, Wonderbra, and a jar of peanut butter all have in common? They are all Canadian inventions. This year, Canada celebrated 150 years of Confederation. It’s an exciting time, and the staff at the Victorian Hotel in Vancouver have decided to celebrate by publishing a little article on what makes  Canada so awesome. Spoilers—there’s plenty of back patting ahead, so get ready.


Canada has long enjoyed a celebrated international reputation. From acting as brand ambassadors for universal healthcare to undertaking peacekeeping missions around the globe, much of the world sees The True North Strong and Free as a compassionate and welcoming country where the goodness is wrapped in Canadian bacon and drenched in maple syrup.


Being Canadian is synonymous with qualities such as friendliness, caring, freedom, honesty, health, and good governance. It’s the 7th highest ranked in the 2017 World Happiness Report, which assesses economic, health, and polling data, and averages it out over three years.


Naturally, as members of the tourism industry, everyone at the Victorian Hotel knows that this is outdoor land. The abundance of natural beauty is one of Canada’s greatest resources, and it spills into the city in the form of cool tree-lined sidewalks and glorious green spaces. Oh, and since the World Health Organization recently ranked Canadian air quality as the third cleanest on the planet, feel free to gasp in delight as you take in the city’s sights and sounds.


As one of the most multicultural countries in the world, Canada stands as an example that people from different backgrounds, ideologies, and belief systems not only have the ability to live together, but to thrive together. In fact, Canada was the first country in the world to adopt multiculturalism as an official policy in 1971.


Of course, like all countries, Canada still does have its challenges. For example, there’s the conundrum of trying to reconcile its status as an oil producer with sustainability practices, serving the medical needs of an aging population, and governing a nation of people that are increasingly diverse and complex.


However, the important thing is that Canadians have never stopped trying. This outstanding attitude often manifests itself in little ways, from a willingness to help a stranger on the street, to the super-friendly staff at the local watering holes and hangouts—including, of course, the Victorian Hotel!


It will be interesting to see what the country can accomplish over the next 150 years. And for anyone still wondering who needs more Canada, the answer is simply everyone.