Vancouver Travel & Trade File – April 2018


NHL Vancouver Canucks 2019

VANCOUVER (Feb. 28, 2018) – The Vancouver Canucks® will host the 2019 NHL Draft™ at Rogers Arena, the National Hockey League, Canucks and City of Vancouver announced today. The 2019 event will mark the third time the Canucks and the City of Vancouver will host the NHL Draft, having previously hosted in 1990 and 2006. The 2019 NHL Draft™ will help the Canucks launch their 50thseason in the NHL in 2019-20, which will include other special events to commemorate their historic milestone. Vancouver also will play host to the 2019 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championships, where some of the top draft-eligible prospects will get a chance to play in Rogers Arena, where they hope to hear their name called on stage in June of 2019.

The 2019 NHL Draft™ will be held over two days – Friday, June 21 (Round 1) and Saturday, June 22 (Rounds 2-7). NHL club executives, scouts and coaches will be present on the NHL Draft floor while thousands of fans and hundreds of media are expected to attend.

“Returning the Draft to Vancouver allows the entire NHL family to meaningfully participate in a highlight of the Canucks’ 50-year anniversary celebration,” NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said. “The 2019 NHL Draft will provide another memorable moment for the Canucks and their fans while shining the spotlight on one of the world’s most scenic cities and serving as the starting point for so many NHL careers.”

“Vancouver will be centre stage in 2019 for hockey’s brightest future stars,” said Francesco Aquilini, Vancouver Canucks Chairman and Governor. “With the World Junior Hockey Championships, the NHL Entry Draft and the launch of Vancouver’s 50th season in the NHL, it will be a very exciting time for hockey fans in British Columbia. It is our honour to welcome the hockey world back to the West Coast in 2019.”

“Congratulations to our home team, the Vancouver Canucks, on being selected to host the 2019 NHL Draft, one of the most highly anticipated events in hockey”, said Mayor Gregor Robertson. “The City of Vancouver looks forward to welcoming athletes and their families, international media and representatives from nearly every league worldwide to our city for this exciting event and to cheer on many young players as they start their careers.”

The NHL Draft offers the opportunity for hockey fans to witness the beginning of the careers of the latest NHL® stars. Recent No. 1 overall picks include Alex Ovechkin (Washington, 2004), Sidney Crosby (Pittsburgh, 2005), Erik Johnson (St. Louis, 2006), Patrick Kane (Chicago, 2007), Steven Stamkos (Tampa Bay, 2008), John Tavares (NY Islanders, 2009), Taylor Hall (Edmonton, 2010), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (Edmonton, 2011), Nail Yakupov (Edmonton, 2012), Nathan MacKinnon (Colorado, 2013), Aaron Ekblad (Florida, 2014), Connor McDavid (Edmonton, 2015), Auston Matthews (Toronto, 2016) and Nico Hischier (New Jersey, 2017).

Stanley Park’s New SKOOKUM Festival Announces September Festival Lineup

Skookum Festival

The inaugural SKOOKUM Festival, a brand-new music, art, and food festival, is set hit Vancouver’s world-famous Stanley Park from September 7-9, 2018. The stunning 1,000-acre urban park offers picturesque views of the surrounding ocean, rainforest, and mountains, and is only a stone’s throw away from downtown’s hotels, restaurants, and neighbourhoods. The highly anticipated Festival recently released its lineup of local and international musical artists, including headliners The Killers and Florence + The Machine.

Hosted on the shared territory of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations, the newly announced lineup includes Indigenous powerhouses like Kelly Derrickson, Crystal Shawanda, Buffy Sainte Marie. Local offerings also include Said The Whale, Hey Ocean!, and The Carnival Band, with performances from internationally renowned artists like the United States’ St. Vincent, Mexico’s Rodrigo y Gabriela, and the UK’s Stereophonics.

The full list of confirmed artists include:

The Killers, Florence + The Machine, Metric, Arkells, The War On Drugs, St. Vincent, Father John Misty, Blue Rodeo, Mother Mother, Chromeo, Bahamas, Stereophonics, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Cold War Kids, Greta Van Fleet, Dear Rouge, Buffy Sainte Marie, Matt Mays, Current Swell, Black Pistol Fire, Whitehorse, Matt Andersen, Said The Whale, Yukon Blonde, The Zolas, Hey Ocean!, Midnight Shine, Delhi 2 Dublin,  Barney Bentall, The Julian Taylor Band, Crystal Shawanda, The Matinée, Belle Game, Little Destroyer, The Boom Booms feat. Ta’Kaiya Blaney, William Prince, Shred Kelly, Snotty Nose Rez Kids, Kelly Derrickson, Murray Porter, Mob Bounce, daysormay, Bitterly Divine, The Carnival Band and Zynth & Co.

Set to be one of the hottest events of the year, SKOOKUM will bring over 50 stage performances on three stages, live and multimedia art installations, gourmet culinary experiences, while showcasing some of the best BC wines, craft beer, and offerings from local craft distilleries.

Two New Boutique Hotels in Vancouver

Boutique Hotels in VancouverVancouver has two new boutique hotels slated to open in 2018.

SeaSide Hotel, North Vancouver

SeaSide Hotel, North VancouverUnder development, the exciting new boutique hotel by Executive Hotels & Resorts on the North Vancouver waterfront called the SeaSide Hotel. The waterfront high-end boutique hotel is located in The Shipyard development at lower Lonsdale (Lolo), with 71 spectacular oceanfront rooms and suites complemented by an ocean facing spa suite and lobby bar offering breathtaking oceanic panoramas and refined design inspired by the North Shore’s seaside ambiance. Opening late 2018.

EXchange Hotel, Downtown Vancouver

EXchange Hotel, Downtown Vancouver

Currently under construction by Executive Hotels & Resorts, the EXchange Hotel at the corner of Howe St and Pender St in the heart of Vancouver’s Central Business District will be a 202 room 4-star boutique hotel occupying the first 11 floors of the world-class Exchange Tower being developed by Credit Suisse. The Exchange Tower boasts 31 storeys, 372,000 square feet and has been designed to LEED Platinum with a unique heritage restore concept designed by Harry Gugger Studio with Iredale Group Architecture. The Exchange is the winner of the 2017 American Architecture Prize for Heritage Architecture (LEED Platinum). Opening Summer 2018.

And of course, the Parq Vancouver urban resort opened in late 2017 with two hotels: a JW Marriott and The DOUGLAS Autograph Collection.


Pop-Up Bar Created With One Million Lego Blocks

Proving that you can really make anything out of Lego, Vancouver will be hosting a fun, pop-up ‘Legobar’ this summer – constructed from over a million Lego bricks! Organized by the same team behind the upcoming Hot Tub Cinema Club events, the pop-up Legobar will be appearing in Vancouver for a select number of days this June.

This pop-up event is the first of its kind and will consist of over 1 million blocks, transported and assembled in each city it visits. The bar will feature sculptures made completely from building blocks as well as an abundance of blocks for people to shape into their own creations. There will also be local DJ’s spinning tunes all day.

The event was previously referred to as the “Legobar”, but has since been changed to “One Million Bricks” or “The Brick Bars”. Perhaps because they are not actually associated with Lego®…

One Million Bricks

Few details about the event have been released, but the buzz from local blogs reveals that the event will take place in a secret location in Vancouver in June.

Tickets to this unique bar will be sold on a first come, first serve basis with limited mounts. So it is a good idea to register your interest by signing up on the Brick Bars website for pre-release tickets.

As this is a bar serving alcohol, the event will only be 19+, so those younger than the drinking age will have to satisfy themselves by visiting their closest Lego store!

Describing itself as the “ultimate nostalgia trip”, the Brick Bars will be visiting several Canadian cities including Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal as well as other places around the globe. If you’ve been yearning to play with lego again, make your inner child super excited by pre-registering for tickets today!

Vancouver is the only Canadian Stop on Jay-Z and Beyonce’s OTR II Tour + Your Concert Day Itinerary!

Jay-Z and Beyonce's OTR II Tour

Hip-hop’s power couple Beyoncé and Jay-Z announced their On the Run II tour, a reprise of their sold-out tour in 2014, and are hitting 15 European and 21 North American cities this summer and fall. The best part? The tour’s grand finale will be in Vancouver’s BC Place on October 2nd, and is the duo’s only Canadian stop.

BC Place is Canada’s largest multi-purpose exhibition, entertainment and sports facility with exhibit space with seating for 60,000 people. The renowned venue has seen the likes of Queen Elizabeth II, the Pope, and was the venue for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games and Paralympic Games. The perfect venue to close out the tour with a bang!

While we wait (impatiently) for October to arrive, here are some False Creek and Yaletown neighbourhood spots to add to your pre- and post-concert day itinerary:


Yaletown and False Creek are great for a celebratory seafood dinner, a relaxed bistro meal, or a family-friendly feast; there are lots of dining options making it easy to stroll the area first before choosing a restaurant, all within minutes of the concert venue.

BC Place | 777 Pacific Boulevard

BC Place | 777 Pacific Boulevard

Not only is the concert venue the home of the BC Lions and the Vancouver Whitecaps FC, but BC’s largest stadium also has a host of restaurants to tuck into pre-show including The Thirsty PigeonBeast on FireVij’s, and Oak & Vine Wine Bar.

Chambar | 568 Beatty St

Chambar Restuarnant, Vancouver

Described as Belgian themed with a North African influence, Chambar is a delicious choice for when you’re looking for fine dining without the formalities. Open late, this award-winning restaurant is also a delicious post-concert choice.

Fayuca | 1009 Hamilton Street

Fayuca Hamilton Street, VancouveraTreat your tastebuds at this Mexican joint, great for lunch, dinner, or late night. Tuck into local seafood, grilled cactus with halloumi and salsa verde, and much more.

Blue Water Cafe + Raw Bar | 1095 Hamilton Street

Blue Water Cafe with Raw Bar, Hamilton Street

One of the city’s best spots for seafood, Blue Water is known for innovative and brilliantly executed West Coast plates that showcase the freshest and most sustainable local fish and shellfish.


There are plenty of hotels near B.C. Place that offer picturesque views of the city’s surrounding ocean, rainforest, and mountains, and is only a stone’s throw away from downtown’s restaurants, neighbourhoods, and attractions.

Parq Vancouver & the DOUGLAS 

JW Marriott Parq Vancouver & the DOUGLAS Hotel Just right across the street from BC Place, JW Marriot’s Parq and DOUGLAS hotels are perfect for getting some shut-eye after dancing the night away. The hotels feature two floors of casino gaming and beautiful views of Vancouver. Be sure to grab a bite to eat at one of Elizabeth Blau and Canadian chef Kim Canteenwalla of Blau + Associates’ 8 award-winning restaurants, straight from Las Vegas.

Hotel Blu | 177 Robson Street

Hotel Blu Robson Street, Vancouver

Located at one of Vancouver’s most famous thoroughfare, Robson Street, the Hotel BLU is ideally located in the heart of Vancouver’s sports and entertainment districts. With Hotel BLU’s focus on sustainability—with green roofs, electric vehicle charging stations, and plastic-bag and bottle free—this is a great choice for environmentally conscious concertgoers.

Georgian Court | 773 Beatty Street

Georgian Court Beatty Street, Vancouver

This boutique hotel is just steps from the venue, Yaletown’s chic restaurants, and the False Creek Seawall. The hotel also welcomes pets, so there’s no need to leave your pet at home.

Make sure you book now—tickets are set to sell out fast!

Star Chefs to Launch Restaurant in Repurposed Shipping Containers on Vancouver’s Granville Island

Star Chefs Launch Restaurant on Vancouver's Granville Island

Once an industrial stomping ground in the 1900s, Vancouver’s famous Granville Island was transformed in the late 1970s into a hotspot for food and culture that now draws over 10.5 million visitors each year. Home to some of the city’s best distilleries, breweries, grocers, artisans, theaters, and restaurants, the island expects a creative new addition as early as summer 2018: Popina Canteen.

This gourmet counter-service restaurant will be housed in three re-purposed shipping containers, hearkening back to the island’s industrial past, and is the brainchild of four award-winning chefs: Angus An (Maenam, Freebird Chicken Shack, Sen Pad Thai, Longtail Kitchen), Robert Belcham (Campagnolo, Campagnolo Roma, Upstairs at Campagnolo, Monarch Burger), Hamid Salimian (Earls Kitchen + Bar, Diva at the Met), and Joël Watanabe (Kissa Tanto, Bao Bei).

“We have been playing with the idea of a collaboration project for years,” says Angus An, co-founder of Popina Canteen. “Popina Canteen is a project that distills our years of fine dining experience into something that is casual and fun. To be able to share and launch this concept on Granville Island, an iconic Vancouver landmark, is a dream come true”.

The menu is yet to be announced, but expect everything from falafel to lobster rolls to ice cream. Think quick, delicious food and drink in an outdoor venue with an exceptional view of False Creek and Downtown. The official opening date will be announced late spring.

New Food Tours in Vancouver This Year

New Food Tours in VancouverVancouver is every foodie’s dream destination and there’s always something new and delicious to try in the city. Going on a food tour is one of the best ways to keep on top of constantly evolving food trends and check off multiple boxes on your restaurant bucket list. Here are two new and updated foodie tours to dig your teeth into in 2018:

Off the Eaten Track Gourmet Ice Cream and Pizza Tour

Off the Eaten Track’s Gourmet Ice Cream tour has received an upgrade and now pizza is on the menu! This 2 hour guided tour serves up 5 samples of gourmet ice cream (including an ice cream sandwich and soft serve) and 2 pizza samples. Between stops enjoy a guided walking tour (including insider tips) of the historic Railtown and Gastown neighbourhoods. New pizza additions include the Heirloom Caprese Pizza at the Belgard and a Roman-style slice at  a popular Gastown spot, with stops at Railtown Cafe, Cadeaux Bakery, and Soft Peaks, where you’ll enjoy decadent frozen treats.

Vancouver Food Tours, Vegan Food Tour Vancouver Food Tours, Vegan Food Tour

The newest addition to Vancouver Food Tour’s repertoire is their Vegan Food Tour, where you’ll munch your way through the hottest vegan joints in Gastown. The tour’s roster could include stops at Meet in Gastown for cauliflower wings, pizza at Virtuous Pie, a Coastal Macro Bowl at Kokomo, and vegan gelato at Umaluma, among other possibilities. Tours happen at least once a day.

August 2018: International Ornithological Congress and Vancouver International Bird Festival!

International Ornithological Congress and Vancouver International Bird Festival!
Photo credit: Stephen Hui

This August bird lovers from around the globe will flock to Vancouver for the biggest bird extravaganza the city has ever seen.

The International Ornithological Congress (IOC 2018) kicks off on August 19 and will include a stellar line up of speakers and workshops covering the latest research findings and conservation achievements in the world of ornithology. Registration for the congress is open now.

Vancouver International Bird Festival (VIBF) will coincide with IOC 2018, running August 19-26. Enjoy a full week of birding tours, art exhibits, a parade, and many more exciting bird-related activities open to the public. Tune in for VIBF’s Bird of the Week to learn more about local species in the lead-up to the festival.

While we wait for August to roll around, grab your beanie and binoculars, khaki attire optional, and check out these birding hotspots around Vancouver:

One of North America’s largest urban great blue heron colonies is in Vancouver. Did you know that one of the largest urban great blue heron (Ardea herodias fannini) colonies in North America can be found at the entrance of Vancouver’s Stanley Park? The lush urban park is Vancouver’s crown jewel, spanning 1,000 acres and easily accessible by bus, bike, and on foot from downtown, and these birds have been nesting in various locations around the park since 1921. The diverse forest and seashore landscape makes it the ideal home for 230 other bird species over the course of the year. In addition to blue herons and bald eagles, you’ll also find songbirds, owls, shorebirds, wading birds, warblers, birds of prey, and many other species. Check out the Stanley Park Ecology Society website for fun facts about herons, how to adopt a heron nest, and even tune in to the bird cams.

New bird garden unveiled at VanDusen Botanical Garden. There’s a new destination for birds and birders in Vancouver! Set to be a hit for visitors and families during the festival and congress in August, VanDusen’s Backyard Bird Garden offers an enhanced habitat for the city’s resident and migrating birds. Dotted with trees like the deciduous vine maple, perfect for perching and providing food, and salal shrubs, perfect for nesting, the 85 recorded species of birds in VanDusen are sure to flock here.

British Columbia is home to 573 species of birds!  Many of these species can be found in and around Vancouver. From the North Shore mountains to the Fraser River delta, the Greater Vancouver region has a variety of wooded and wetland habitats that support hundreds of resident and migratory bird populations. Popular birding spots include Stanley Park, Reifel Bird Sanctuary, Maplewood Flats, Queen Elizabeth Park (including the Bloedel Conservatory), Boundary Bay, Iona Island, Colony Farm, Tsawwassen Ferry Terminal, Burnaby Lake, and Grouse, Seymour, and Cypress Provincial parks.

Scenic Mountain Biking Coming to Vancouver’s Grouse Mountain This Summer!

Scenic Mountain Biking, VancouverOne of the best places to get a spectacular view of the Vancouver’s mountains, rainforest, and sea, is at Grouse Mountain, also known as the Peak of Vancouver. This June Grouse Mountain is set to launch their Scenic Mountain Biking experience, where guests can rent a bike on the top of the mountain and either enjoy a 2-hour guided tour to scenic viewpoints or access two marked trails on a self-guided excursion.

Focusing on a cross-country style experience, this adventure includes rentals of state-of-the-art pedal assist bikes and is the ideal excursion for those experiencing cross-country mountain biking for the first time. Non-pedal assist bikes are also available for those bikers who like a bit of a climb or want to earn that post-ride meal. For more information on tour and rental rates, and more activities at Grouse Mountain, visit their website:



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