Posts Tagged ‘Granville Island’

Spring in Vancouver

Wednesday, February 18th, 2015

As the rest of Canada is still locked in the deep cold of Winter, it is looking and feeling more like the end of April in Vancouver. The rains have cleared away and we anticipate that the Flowers, trees and wildlife are going to be waking up from the slumber of the long nights of Winter.

Here we want to show you what Vancouver has to offer during the Spring time – it is one of the most gorgeous seasons as the city erupts in Colour and life!

WHALE WATCHING
Wild Whales Vancouver offer great trips to watch the majestic Whales as they swim through the Georgia Strait. The Whales will be migrating sooner than April when Wild Whales begins its operations so if you travel between Vancouver and Victoria you may catch them.
Beginning in April and departing from Granville Island in downtown Vancouver, the Wild Whales experience allows you to observe Killer Whales and the diverse wildlife of the Pacific Coast in their natural habitat. It is an unforgettable, trip of a lifetime!
Board one of our three vessels at Vancouver’s unique and historic Granville Island. Keep your cameras ready as you travel down False Creek and into English Bay, where the views of Vancouver, the Coast Mountains and Stanley Park are unparalleled. From English Bay, we pass the Fraser River estuary into the Strait of Georgia.
Trips and Rates: http://www.whalesvancouver.com/trips-rates/

GRANVILLE ISLAND
If you visit Vancouver you must visit Granville Island – it is famous for its world renowned Public Market, Artisan Shops and entertainment that includes Theatres, Live buskers and more.
The Granville Island Public Market features a farmers’ market, day vendors, and artists offering local Vancouver goods. There are fifty permanent retailers and over one-hundred day vendors in stalls throughout the market selling a variety of artisan cottage-industry foods and handmade crafts on a rotating schedule – a true jewel in the crown of Vancouver
Website: http://granvilleisland.com/

CHERRY BLOSSOM FESTIVAL
This annual festival for us heralds the fact that Spring is well and truly here, the city looks absolutely incredible once the Blossoms are in full bloom, it is impressively bright and really tells us that the gloom of Winter becomes a distant memory.

Best Places to View Cherry Blossoms in Vancouver
“This is why I live here!” is a phrase many Vancouverites exclaim during cherry blossom season. Each spring, as the rainy season fades, city dwellers pack their sweaters away and are rewarded with one of the world’s most cheerful sites: 40,000 cherry trees bursting with pink and white blooms.

The West End is flush with the Blossoms, Harwood St which is one block South of us becomes quite an impressive site, also, check out Bute St the architecture and the trees make this street look very romantic.
Vancouver’s many parks and gardens are ideal showcases for the beloved trees, but there are also a number of urban places to view these pink beauties.
Queen Elizabeth Park touts several varieties of cherry trees, which bloom at different intervals throughout early March and late April
Stanley Park also has rows of blossoming trees near the formal rose garden and the Japanese Canadian WWI war memorial
VanDusen Botanical Garden boasts more than 100 cherry trees, representing 24 varieties.
Vancouver international Cherry Blossom Website: http://www.vcbf.ca/

BIG BUS CITY TOURS
This is an excellent way to sight-see around the city and to take in all the major attractions. Big Bus have an excellent reputation and the Big Bus staff are incredibly knowledgeable and fun! They offer 1 day and 2 day passes where you can Hop on and Hop off at your leisure. Tickets can be purchased directly at the Hotel, ask the staff about discounts!
Website: http://bigbus.ca/home/

SEAWALL, STANLEY PARK AND VANCOUVER WILDLIFE
The Vancouver Seawall is absolutely breathtaking and circles the majority of the Downtown Peninsula and encircles Stanley Park. This area is great to walk around during the Spring as there is no shortage of incredible Trees, Flowers and wildlife to stun your senses. We recommend that you look all around you as there will be Racoons, Geese, Herons that nest in the Spring in the Park and plenty of Birds of Prey and more. We are very lucky to have such stunning nature within this busy metropolis.
Stanley Park Ecological Society Website: http://stanleyparkecology.ca/

We also recommend Cycling around the Seawall and Stanley Park, you can get a great deal with a selection of Bikes to choose from using English Bay Bike Rentals – we have discount vouchers at the Front Desk.
English Bay Bike Rentals: http://www.englishbaybikerentals.com/

SHOPPING FOR THE SPRING SEASON ON ROBSON ST
Robson Street is Vancouver’s main shopping district that connects the West End to the downtown area and is a little over a 10 minutes walk north of the Sunset Inn Hotel.
If you are really up for a good old fashioned spending spree why don’t you go on a Shopping tour? Posh Shopping Tours will help out you out with exactly that, taking you to some great brand named stores and other major Shopping areas that Vancouver has to offer.
Robson St Website: http://www.robsonstreet.ca/
Posh Shopping Tours: http://www.poshshoppingtours.com/

For further tourism information click here Tourism Vancouver: http://www.tourismvancouver.com/

Vancouver Events February 2015

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015

Here are some great events to watch out for this month.

2015 CHINESE LUNAR NEW YEAR CELEBRATIONS
Thursday, February 19, 2015 – Thursday, February 19, 2015
Venue: River Rock Casino Resort
Time: 7:00PM

2015 Chinese Lunar New Year Celebrations Join us for our 11th Annual Grand Lion Dance performance on Lunar New Year Day February 19th, 2015 at 7:00PM! River Rock is bringing in this special Year of the Goat with a spectacular FREE EVENT with an 80 member performance team of 9 lions and a dragon to ring in the New Year!

Website: http://www.riverrock.com/

CHUTZPAH! FESTIVAL
Thursday, February 19, 2015 – Sunday, March 15, 2015 (Recurring daily)
Venue: Norman Rothstein Theatre
Location: The Norman Rothstein Theatre

2015 Chutzpah! February 19 to March 15 Music-Dance-Theatre-Interdisciplinary Tickets: chutzpahfestival.com 604-257-5145 (pronounced: ho’ots-pä) Chutzpah! is the quality of impudence.

Website: http://chutzpahfestival.com/

37TH VANCOUVER INTERNATIONAL WINE FESTIVAL
Friday, February 20, 2015 – Sunday, March 01, 2015 (Recurring daily)
Venue: Vancouver International Wine Festival
Time: Varied
Location: Select restaurants and other venues across the Lower Mainland

The 37th Vancouver International Wine Festival 1,750+ wines • 14 countries • 170 wineries • 53 events • 8 days Canada’s Premier Wine Show Engaging, Educational, Entertaining The Vancouver International Wine Festival welcomes the world’s greatest wine producers and wine drinkers to an annual weeklong celebration of wine and food.

Website: http://vanwinefest.ca/

AFTER HOURS AT THE VANCOUVER AQUARIUM
Thursday, February 26, 2015 – Thursday, February 26, 2015
Venue: Vancouver Aquarium
Time: 6:00PM -10:00PM
Location: Vancouver Aquarium

After Hours at the Vancouver Aquarium Escape the winter chill for an evening and tour the tropics as the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre opens its doors on Feb. 26 for its next adults-only* After Hours event. Explore the galleries with a beer or glass of wine in-hand, and learn about the fascinating, colourful animals that call the warm waters of the tropics home.

Website: http://www.vanaqua.org/experience/events/annual-and-upcoming-events/after-hours

WINTERRUPTION 2015
From: February 19, 2015 – February 22, 2015
Location: Granville Island
Address: 1661 Duranleau St., Vancouver, BC V6H 3S3

Welcome to Winterruption on Granville Island, our 10th annual, truly unique Vancouver winter festival! It’s been a decade since the first ever Winterruption Festival on Granville Island, when Vancouverites and visitors alike take a February break from the cold, grey winter for a burst of colourful art, music and dance! Art is at the heart of Winterruption, and this year, it’s bigger than ever – literally!

Website: http://granvilleisland.com/winterruption

YUK YUK’S PRESENTS JUST FOR LAUGHS SHOWCASE
From: February 12, 2015 (Recurring every 7 days)
Address: 2837 Cambie St, Vancouver, V5Z 383

Yuk Yuk’s presents Top Talent Showcase Check out Vancouver’s next top comics as they develop their craft. Thursday Night is a Showcase of talented comics vying for the coveted weekend spots and a development ground for new material for the already seasoned comics. Most Thursdays at 8pm. Just $10, tax incl

Website: http://www.yukyuks.com/

VANDUSEN BOTANICAL GARDEN: VALENTINE’S PICNIC
VanDusen Botanical Garden: Valentine’s Picnic Treat your Valentine to a Picnic at VanDusen Garden! Take a romantic stroll through the beautiful 55 acres at VanDusen Botanical Garden, enjoy classic tunes, snap a sweet selfie and dine al fresco amongst the trees or overlooking one of our picturesque lakes.

Website: http://vancouver.ca/news-calendar/vandusen-garden-valentine-s-picnic.aspx

COME SOAR OVER CHINA – FlyoverCanada
From: February 2015 – March 05, 2015 (Every Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday)
Address: 201 – 999 Canada Place, Vancouver, BC V6C 3E1

COME SOAR OVER CHINA SEE BOTH FLIGHT OF THE DRAGON AND FLYOVER CANADA BACK-TO-BACK FlyOver Canada is proud to bring back the popular flight ride experience “Flight of the Dragon” for a second season! After the success of the first season of Flight of the Dragon in 2014

Website: http://www.flyovercanada.com/

FAMILY DAY AT THE BLOEDEL CONSERVATORY
February 09, 2015 – February 09, 2015
Location: The Bloedel Conservatory at Queen Elizabeth Park
Address: 4600 Cambie Street, Vancouver, BC

Family Day at the Bloedel Conservatory Enjoy a fun-filled day with family and friends at the lush paradise inside the dome of Bloedel Conservatory! Discover exotic plants and tropical birds on our guided tours, get your own specialty herbs to plant at home, watch a release of butterflies and ladybugs, challenge yourself to a scavenger hunt and check out our birds and botany tattoo station! All activities are free with regular admission. Monday, February 9, 2015 @ 10:00am to 5:00pm

Website: http://vancouver.ca/news-calendar/family-day-at-the-bloedel-conservatory.aspx

List compiled courtesy of Tourism Vancouver http://www.tourismvancouver.com/

Tips on what to do in Vancouver if you are visiting on an Alaskan Cruise.

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015

It maybe the middle of Winter but we can see that the reservations are coming in thick and fast for the upcoming Cruise ship season to Alaska. Once the Cruise ships arrive the city gets pretty busy and of course that means we generally have full occupancy.

The Cruise Ships dock very very early at Canada Place http://www.canadaplace.ca/ so we find that the majority of our Cruise Ship guests will arrive at the hotel between the hours of 7 and 8am. Our check in time at the hotel is guranteed at 4pm as our guests are allowed to stay in their rooms until 11am which is the Sunset Inn and Suites regular check out time, this of course means there is still the majority of the day to occupy your time, so follow our lead and we will help you maximise your stay if you are here for just a day or two, we will make sure you get to see the major sights even if the stay seems short. We will strive to get the rooms ready earlier but that is dependent on the volume of occupancy at the hotel.

Getting to the Sunset Inn and Suites Hotel from Canada Place
The cruise ships usually dock around 6am and we get many people asking us what is the best way to get to the hotel and how much does it cost?
We do not have a shuttle that connects us to Canada Place, however, there are plenty of Taxis ready and waiting to get you to your destination, and if you feel a little lost there will be lots of Agents from Tourism Vancouver http://www.tourismvancouver.com/ on hand to help guide you to the nearest Taxi, these guys and girls will be wearing Sky blue jackets so you know who they are and will be extremely helpful!

Taxis in Vancouver
A taxi ride between Canada Place should cost around $12 and will take around 10 minutes or so to reach the Sunset Inn and Suites hotel. Within Vancouver, the taxis are only allowed a maximum of 4 persons per Car and you can pay by Debit, Credit Card or Cash. Any taxi can be picked up anywhere on the streets if the yellow light is on, this signals that it is unoccupied and ready to take you to your desired destination.

Checking in and Luggage storage
Once you arrive at the hotel – we will make sure that we complete the check in process and will be ready to answer any questions you have on the city, we will then help formulate a plan on what to do to occupy your time in Vancouver that day, you are more than welcome to enjoy our Light Continental Breakfast even if you are are unable to check into the room, so grab some fruits, croissants and yogurts which we sell for 50c and you can start the day fed, energised and happy.

BIG BUS HOP ON HOP OFF City Sightseeing tours.
The Big Bus city tour is a great way to to see all the major sights of the city and will give you excellent information and insight of the city, they are fun, informative and have plenty of experience, all the while you will see the very best attractions within the city of Vancouver and can Hop On Hop Off at anytime so you can take your time to enjoy the sights.

Big Bus Video Clip Hop on Hop Off city Tour

The Big Bus stop is literally a 30 second walk away from the hotel on Thurlow Street and you can purchase your ticket directly with us at the front desk, we do encourage this as there are plenty of hotel deals for you to enjoy. http://bigbus.ca/home/

BIG BUS TOUR Highlights include:
Granville Island http://granvilleisland.com/
Stanley Park http://www.tourismvancouver.com/do/explore/stanley-park-complete-guide/
Gastown http://www.gastown.org/
Chinatown http://www.vancouver-chinatown.com/
Robson St – Shopping District http://www.robsonstreet.ca/

Davie Street and Davie Village
We are situated one block South of Davie Village which is one of the gems of the West end, here there is a wealth of restaurants, bars and cafes for you to enjoy and it is located right in the heart of Gay District of Vancouver – so naturally it is awash with colour and a vibrant atmosphere. West End Business Association – Davie Village http://westendbia.com/neighbourhood/davie-street/

We hope that this advice is helpful and will go to some length on being able to plan what to do when you arrive!

We look forward to seeing you all in the Summer.

Vancouver Writers Fest 2014 October 21st to 26th

Friday, October 17th, 2014

This looks to be a great festival for anyone who loves to read and let their imagination run away with themselves, we love this kind of festival especially as we have many authors, writers and playwrights of various notoriety stay with us at the hotel.

Book sharing and library at the Sunset Inn and suites hotel.
As a side note we will like to encourage our guests who have books that they wish to donate to do so, we have a small little library in our lobby and there is always room for more books, and do not hesitate to take a book from the shelf as they are there for your reading so pleasure so go for it!

2014 Vancouver Writers Fest.
The Vancouver Writers Festival (previously the Vancouver International Writers & Readers Festival) is one of North America’s top literary events & attracts some of the world’s best writers. For the past 27 years, the Writers Fest has enriched our imaginations and the culture of our city and has touched and inspired thousands of lives by creating a forum for authors to connect with readers and by offering a vibrant exchange of ideas and conversation.

Internationally renowned & undiscovered authors mingle with readers of all ages in intimate & informal settings. The festival features a variety of conversations, panel discussions, on-stage interviews & musical collaborations. Whether you attend an author reading, poetry bash or passionate writers’ debate, you can count on stimulation & inspiration.

Special events in connection with the festival during November 2014
There are some very big names in attendance this year at their own special events, these include legendary Canuck singer and songwriter Bruce Cockburn Monday, November 10th at 7:30pm, St. Andrew’s-Wesley United Church
Burrard at Nelson Street which is very close to the hotel. Newfoundland singer-songwriter and front man of Great Big Sea – Alan Doyle, Thursday, November 13th at 7:30pm, Waterfront Theatre, 1412 Cartwright Street, Granville Island, and finally the acclaimed biographer and historian Conrad Black, Thursday, November 13th at 7:30pm, St. Andrew’s-Wesley United Church, Burrard Street at Nelson st.

Check the website for schedule updates & news: http://http://www.writersfest.bc.ca/

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving Day on October 13th

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

The Canuck Thanksgiving occurs every second Monday during the Month of October it is the annual celebration of giving thanks to the celebration of Harvest and for many others there other blessings and meanings to what this celebration is to the individual. The Thanksgiving day in many respects is similar to the US Thanksgiving Day which occurs every November and was officially announced in Canada on January 31, 1957 by the Parliament of Canada.

Thanksgiving in Vancouver is a great place to be, it really puts into perspective at what we have around us and that many others around the world do not have the lifestyle that we are accustomed too, it is quite a humbling moment to really see that it is a gorgeous place to reside in. It is multicultural, it has amazing scenery and an environment that can be the envy of the world. It has food and festivals from all around the world at any given time of year and the lifestyle is generally more health conscious and holistic which cannot be a bad thing!

At the Sunset Inn hotel we see a major transition from from visitors of a more transient nature to more familiar faces from the years gone by who stay at the hotel on longer term basis. The Thanksgiving period really highlights the fact that we ourselves give thanks to all the guests that like to stay here and have been loyal to us over the years – it seems unbelievable but there are many guests that have been coming back to visit us for the past 30 odd years – which is incredible and very very touching. We are thankful and grateful that we do have such a loyal following and it is not lost on us that we are part of a bigger family – which is exactly what this hotel is all about!

Traditionally as many of you know Thanksgiving is not really Thanksgiving without enjoying a hearty meal with good friends and family and of course for many of us this is a Turkey Dinner much like at Christmas time. If you are coming to stay with us next week and would like to cook a Thanksgiving Dinner at the Hotel there are lots of options of where you can buy the Turkey and all the fixtures for a perfect Thanksgiving meal.

On Davie street which is the main village behind us there is a wealth of Restaurants, Bars and Grocery Stores to choose from, here are a few choices if you wish to create your own meal or would rather dine out.

Grocery Stores.
The Independent Supermarket – 1255 Davie St, Vancouver, BC V6E 1N4
(604) 688-0911
These guys have great prices and are open from 7am till 3am in the morning, they are just a little over a 5 minute walk from us and have a great selection of grocery items that will surely work for a great meal.
Website: http://www.yourindependentgrocer.ca/en_CA.html

Safeway – 1641 Davie Street, Vancouver, BC V6G 1W1
(604) 669-4229
A very popular Supermarket that is just a 15 minute walk away from the hotel heading West on Davie Street to English Bay, traditionally you can find some very very good deals here if you are buying a Turkey at the last minute.

Dining Out.
The Upper Deck Kitchen & Taphouse – 1239 Davie Street,Vancouver, BC. Canada V6E 1E4
604-685-5761
This is a popular bar that is located next door to the Independent and has a great Food and Drinks menu, on the Sunday and Monday of the Thanksgiving long weekend they will be offering this!
Roasted turkey breast with home made cranberry sauce, sausage and apple stuffing, celeriac and potato puree, maple glazed green beans…$16.95
Butternut squash lasagna…$12.95

It is highly recommended that you make reservations, we really hope you do as this place is great and has been frequented by our guests on a regular basis with very very good reviews.
Website: http://www.upperdeckondavie.com/

The Sandbar – Granville Island, 1535 Johnston Street #102, Vancouver, BC V6H 3R9
(604) 669-9030

If you are in Vancouver during this long weekend there is a high chance you will be visiting Granville Island, if so check out the Sandbar as well, a hugely popular restaurant to dine in and they will be doing a Turkey dinner on the Sunday and Monday.
Website:https://www.vancouverdine.com/sandbar

If you are wondering if anything shuts down over the long weekend the answer in short is not really! However as it is a Government holiday that means of course all that kind of business is shut down as are the banks, but take note, that also means the popular BC Liquor stores will be closed too – Oh the horror we hear you cry, well our advice is stock up a little earlier or ask the front desk where the Independent liquor stores are, all is not lost!

September 2014 Events in Vancouver

Friday, September 5th, 2014

Here are some cool events to look out for during September.

Fairview Pub – Every Thursday Nights Jazz
One of Vancouver’s best venues for live Jazz, Rhythm & Blues entertainment. This legendary Vancouver pub is popular with locals and guests alike and features live music and drink specials at the full-service bar. Our popular Thursday Night Jazz features John Nolan Jazz trio followed by the house band. Visit us online for schedule of upcoming shows.

http://www.fairviewpub.ca

Forbidden Vancouver Presents Prohibition City Walking Tour – Every Saturdays and Thursdays
On Prohibition City you explore the strange, corrupt and colourful history of prohibition-era Vancouver. Hear of the unlikely alliance of temperance campaigners and anti-saloon activists who together convinced the province to go dry back in 1917. Discover what life was like under prohibition, with stories of blind pigs, private members clubs, corruption, bootlegging, and free-flowing medicinal liquor. And learn the stories of the city’s most notorious mayor, LD Taylor, its most beautiful showgirl and its greatest rum-runners.

http://forbiddenvancouver.ca/home/prohibition-city/

The Richmond Night Market
The Richmond Night Market 2014 event is located at No. 3 Road & River Road, Richmond, just 1 block from Bridgeport SkyTrain Station. It runs from May 18 to Oct 8 on every weekend starting at 7:00 pm. This outdoor event offers 88 food booths (the largest international food court ever), over 200 merchants & corporate sponsor booths, more than 1,700 on-site parking stalls, free admission, free live entertainment nightly on a top-notch performing stage, games, contests & hundreds of give-away prizes. Come & spend your summer in this fun-filled shopping & eating paradise with us!

http://www.richmondnightmarket.com

Backstage Lounge – Live Band Karaoke – Every Tuesdays
Rock out on stage with a live band and sing your favorite songs!
Every Tuesday night at the Backstage Lounge, Sami and Reuben will take your karaoke experience to the next level! Come choose from hundreds of songs. Posts your requests and confirm attendance via Facebook

Doors at 8:00pm

http://www.thebackstagelounge.com/

The PNE at Playland open until September 20th
Vancouver’s largest outdooor fairground is a must for all the thrill seekers that enjoy the fun of the fair!

.http://www.pne.ca/index.html

Vancouver International Fringe Festival – September 4th to 14th
Over 550 performances by more than 80 different groups for 11 days make the Fringe Vancouver’s most diverse source of entertainment in some of Vancouver’s best theatre venues.

http://www.vancouverfringe.com

Vancouver International Film Festival – September 25 – October 10, 2014
One of the most popular film festivals in North America & one of the largest cultural events in Vancouver. More than 150,000 people attend approximately 575 screenings of 350 films from 50+ countries. Check website for the 2012 Schedule of Films.

http://www.viff.org/

Experience the gorgeous transition from Summer to Fall in Vancouver

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2014

The last day of August in Vancouver was greeted with some serious Monsoon type rains which in our eyes is a taster for things to come as Summer make the gradual transition towards Autumn. It was a welcome relief for the area as we have somewhat been a little parched in this parts of the world, but of course, we know that it could be much much worse as our neighbours to the south have been experiencing a real deal drought.

It is fairly typical for August to be one of our drier months. It also seems to be a regular occurrence for the rains to make a visit at this point of the Summer, why is that? Well it is the Labour day long weekend of course and the weather seems to only perform on time with the rains when a bank holiday rolls around, but hey, such is life!

Interestingly enough, as much as September tends to see a little increase in the inclement weather it can be one of the most gorgeous months in Vancouver, the weather tends to be much more tolerable as the humidity starts to wane and the nights are noticeably much more comfortable, with the days seeing a healthy amount of sunshine -the temperatures in September give or take average out around the 20C mark (to our friends who work on the good old Fahrenheit system that is 68C).

The leaves have just started the process of changing colours so on that note we will like to tell you how to maximise your stay in Vancouver well embracing the gorgeous transition between Summer and Fall. Vancouver and this area of the world does show off some spectacular falls colours – granted it is not anything like out in the East where there are predominately Deciduous trees, but saying that, we do pull of a great show here especially when visiting the stunning Stanley Park.

Not only can you see some incredible fall colours in Stanley Park, we also highly recommend that you head down to Queen Elizabeth Park and the Van Dusen Gardens which is a stunning location no matter what time of year. If you happen to be visiting Victoria be sure to check out The Butchart Gardens which is a great alternative.

Van Dusen Gardens: http://vandusengarden.org/

The Butchart Gardens: http://www.butchartgardens.com/

Queen Elizabeth Park http://vancouver.ca/parks-recreation-culture/queen-elizabeth-park.aspx

For further information on what to expect with the Fall colours, please click on this link courtesy of Tourism Vancouver http://www.tourismvancouver.com/do/explore/fall-colours/

Over the next couple of months we do see the Summer tourist Season wind down, but that does not reflect on the entertainment scene in Vancouver, first of all, during the first few weeks of September there is the final big hurrah of the Summer festivals which is the Vancouver Fringe Festival – this is the perfect way to end the Summer with some Quirky comedy, music and live theatre with something for everyone to enjoy no matter the age, this is located down at Granville Island which is a cultural must see hub in Vancouver.

You can read more about the Vancouver Fringe Festival here… http://www.sunsetinn.com/blog/?p=5803

Granville Island Website: http://granvilleisland.com/

Once September winds down you will then notice that the entertainment start to focus on the more thrilling and ghostly elements as the Vancouver area and most of North America start to gear up for the Halloween season – and trust us it is fun scary and there are lost to write about but that will be for a future blog in the not too distant future……

So for now, we encourage you to come by and embrace this season of change and get out to explore nature in all its Summery to Fall glory!

Vancouver Fringe Festival 2014

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

Over in the Scottish capital of Edinburgh the original and biggest International Fringe Festival is drawing to a close and will end with a spectacular fireworks display that lights up the gorgeous castle and night sky. This is by far one of the biggest performing theatre/comedy Arts festival in the world and if you are a person that is quirky and likes anything that is alternative, then you will enjoy everything that is the Fringe – this is the crowd for you!

Short History
Vancouver also has its own fringe Festival that comes to Granville Island every September – it is modeled after the Edmonton International Fringe Festival which came to Canada in 1982 (which in turn was modeled and influenced by the Edinburgh Fringe Fest).

The first Vancouver Fringe Festival was held in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood. In 1995, the festival relocated to Commercial Drive. At that time, the festival introduced “bring your own venue”, in which performers stage performances at places other than those provided by the festival organizers. As of 2013, the Vancouver Fringe Festival runs 11 days in 25 venues, centred on Granville Island, with other performances around the city.

So what to expect at the Fringe, well in all honesty a little bit of everything – there will be no shortage of Theatre that is full of comedy routines, lots of Music and dance that is quintessentially all in the flair and style that is to be expected from the Fringe.

When will the Festival occur?
The Festival runs from September 4 – 14. Tickets are already on sale – Over 80 shows will be performing in just 11 days – so plenty to see all day everyday day. For Ticket information click here – http://www.vancouverfringe.com/ticket-info/

Where is the Festival held?
Predominantly at Granville Island which is huge culural hub in Vancouver and is home to many performing Arts locations, there is no shortage of theatre and comedy at any given time of year – but of course this is when it really all comes together and is really a great time of year to see out the final few weeks of Summer!

For a full guide on the Full Festival Program click here http://www.vancouverfringe.com/pdfs/2014ProgramGuide_web.pdf

Visit Victoria, Whistler and more with Westcoast Sightseeing.

Monday, August 4th, 2014

Westcoast Sightseeing offer some amazing tours that will directly pick you up at the hotel and will guide you to your destination such as Victoria on Vancouver Island, Whistler and the North shore area of the North Vancouver city district including Capilano Suspension Bridge and Grouse Mountain. Westcoast Sightseeing work in conjunction with Big Bus City tours who we feel are one of the best in the sightseeing business.

VANCOUVER CITY TOUR AND LOOKOUT
Explore Vancouver’s downtown landmarks including Canada Place, the Olympic Cauldron, and bustling Robson Street on your way to the 40-hectare wonderland of Stanley Park. The journey continues through panoramic English Bay, vibrant Granville Island, historic Chinatown and Gastown. Then, board a glass elevator and whisk skyward to a 360-degree observation deck atop the Vancouver Lookout for another perspective on the city’s attractions, history and fascinating facts.

8:30am (May 1 – Sept 30) – 10:00am (Year Round, Daily) 1:30pm (May 1 – Sept 30)

Tour Length: 4 hours
Price Starting at $74 per adult $45 per child (3-11)

VANCOUVER CITY AND CAPILANO SUSPENSION BRIDGE
If the combination of city sights and a forest escape is your idea of an ideal day-trip, this is the tour for you. Relax and learn with our unique, guided commentary through Vancouver’s vibrant downtown. See spectacular waterfront landmarks including the sails of Canada Place and the bustling Robson Street shopping strip. Then soak in the view over Lions Gate Bridge as we venture to the adrenaline-pumping Capilano Suspension Bridge Park. Next up are the sandy shores of English Bay on the west side of Stanley Park, then Granville Island, and a cruise though Chinatown and Gastown.

11:30am (Apr 1 – Oct 31)

Tour Length: 5 to 5.5 hours
Prices starting at $99 per adult $54 per child (3-11)

VICTORIA AND THE BUTCHART GARDENS TOUR
It starts with 90 cruising minutes aboard BC Ferries, and just gets better. With scenery so jaw-dropping you won’t want to blink, relax and enjoy the voyage through Juan de Fuca Straight and the Gulf Islands. From exploring the inner harbour of BC’s capital city Victoria–named after British monarch Queen Victoria–to Butchart Gardens 22 breathtaking hectares of meticulously manicured beauty, this tour delivers a royally spectacular day-trip experience.

7:00am (May 1 – Sep 30) - 8:00am (May 17 – Sep 15) - 9:00am (Apr 1– May 16, Sep 16 – Nov 3, Dec 6 – Dec 29)

Tour Length: 12 to 14 hours

Price Starting at $195 per adult and $99 per child (3-11)

WHISTLER AND SHANNON FALLS TOUR
Home to the 2010 Olympic Winter Games and award winning for a reason, Whistler is an internationally renowned, year-round resort nestled in the Central Mountain range. The journey up the Sea-to-Sky Highway is just like it sounds–a winding spectacle of ocean and mountain scenery including the roaring Shannon Falls and cultural Squamish Adventure Centre. As the majestic backdrop of Whistler and Blackcomb Mountain unveils before your very eyes, the adventure at Whistler Village is yours to create.

8:00am (Year Round, Daily)

Tour length: 10 hours

Price Starting at $135 per adult – $75 per child (3-11)

There are more tours to look at and of you go to their website you can find more information on the details of each and every tour that they offer.

Westcoast Sightseeing Website: http://www.vancouversightseeing.com/

Big Bus Hop on Hop off City Tours Website: http://bigbus.ca/home/

Granville Island and Vanier Park

Wednesday, July 9th, 2014

Granville Island and Vanier Park are the areas that you can see from across the hotel if you happen to be staying in one of our Executive Suites, especially from the vantage point of our largest rooms (Called the Executive Large Suites) which are South facing. Check these rooms out! http://www.sunsetinn.com/suites/executive

What you can see from here is the beginnings of False Creek water way, Granville Island and Vanier Park which is home to the Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival during the Summer, The Maritime museum, H.R Macmillan Space Centre and Museum of Vancouver.

GRANVILLE ISLAND
This is a must see destination when you are visiting Vancouver and at the height of Summer there is plenty to see and do for all ages. Even if you are here for just one day, it is something that we recommend you visit if you do nothing else at all!!!
The Island is home to the popular Public market which is open everyday from 9am to be 7pm, outside of the Public market there are plenty of cute and quirky shops, lots of fantastic restaurants and plenty of live entertainment from Buskers to live theatre and comedy. Granville Island Public Market: http://granvilleisland.com/public-market

Some places we feel you should check out down at the Island….
Dining out: The Sandbar Restaurant
By far one of the most popular restaurants to dine in on the island – The Sandbar offers something for everyone and has a great ‘pub’ like food, plenty of Seafood and if you like Asian style food more specifically Japanese you will also notice that many dishes are Asian fusion, which is very typical of this part of the world. So if you want Seafood, Burgers, chicken or Sushi, this place has it all!!!!
Website:https://www.vancouverdine.com/sandbar

The Backstage Lounge – Nightly Live Music and great food.
Live Music, theatre and more can be found here at the backstage lounge – it also functions as a restaurant too with a cute patio located right on the Creek itself under Granville Bridge.
Website: http://www.thebackstagelounge.com/

Granville Island Broom Co – The Broom Shop!
Among many of the quirky shops to peruse on GI you should check out this Broom Shop. They make the Brooms on site and can be really cool and funky, and whats more you are invited into the Studio to see how they are made right in front of you!!!!
Website: http://broomcompany.com/

VANIER PARK
Vanier Park is not too far away from Granville Island – you can walk there in around 15 minutes or so along the far reaches of the Sea wall that joins all of the downtown city to False creek and the district of Kitsilano Or you can simply catch the False Creek Ferry to the Maritime museum.

What you can see at Vanier Park….
H.R Macmillan Space Centre and Museum of Vancouver
Looking across False Creek from Sunset Beach you will see a funny looking building that looks quite literally like a large Decanter for Wine. Well Wine lovers we are sorry to disappoint you but this building is actually the Vancouver Museum and H.R Macmillan Space Centre.
If you have a love for everything that is cosmic and have little ones in tow that love anything to do with the stars and beyond then this is the place for you, it is educational and fun for all the family! Website: http://www.spacecentre.ca/
The Museum of Vancouver is one of the largest civic museums in Canada and has events and exhibits that change on a regular basis, for some reason it is not too much on the radar within tourism which we feel is a shame, as this museum should be on the agenda – its main focus with all its exhibits is that it concentrates on Vancouver with history, artifacts and the future – please go check it out! Website: http://www.museumofvancouver.ca/

Bard on the Beach
A hugely popular event that shows no sign of stopping, if you love the works of William Shakespeare you will be sure to love watching the plays at the Park with a gorgeous city back drop to heighten the senses.
Website: http://www.bardonthebeach.org/

Kitsilano Beach
While you are down at the Park, keep strolling along and eventually you will end up at Kitsilano Beach – which to some of us Vancouverites we see this as our little piece of California! Tell us if you agree….
This beach is gorgeous and has some incredible views of the North Shore mountains, Stanley Park and the downtown core of Vancouver itself. http://vancouver.ca/parks-recreation-culture/kitsilano-beach.aspx

Yelp Reviews on Vanier Park: http://www.yelp.ca/biz/vanier-park-vancouver

False Creek Ferry Schedule: http://www.granvilleislandferries.bc.ca/schedule.htm