There are an unlimited number of sights and sounds to see in downtown Vancouver on any given day. Whether it’s views of snow-capped mountains and the majestic Stanley Park seawall in Coal Harbour, or fiery pink sunsets and sandy beaches in English Bay, the variety here is endless. In fact, so vast is the diversity in downtown Vancouver that it comes as a shock to most people when you tell them that the entire contents of the compact metropolis fit within a two to three kilometre radius.
Surrounded by sea on three sides, you can jaunt from shore to shore in record time, and likely, you’ll also notice that each exciting district has a completely different personality from the next. In addition, all of them are just brimming with stunning sights, cultural flavours, and, most importantly (for this time of year), shopping districts to enjoy.
Whether you are looking for chic brand name designers, hidden local gems or some of the best vintage finds around, this city has it all – and with the holidays just around the corner, we’ve compiled an insider’s list of the best stores, districts, and hideaways that money can buy.
Where to Start
Set in the heart of the city, it’s no surprise that The Sutton Place Hotel Vancouver has a keen eye for the best retailers around. All you need to discover these great areas is your best pair of shopping shoes and a taste for hot trends and sleek styles. Then, simply step outside our doors and begin the fabulous journey that is downtown Vancouver.
Crowned as Vancouver’s most popular shopping street, this colourful area boasts some of the most famous top-tier labels around, in addition to spectacular Canadian brands – perfect for visitors looking for Canuck couture to bring home. Some of the top highlights include Vancouver’s flagship Coach store, Louis Vuitton, Salvatore Ferragamo, Zara, Banana Republic, Aldo, and Camper.
For great Canadian buys, famous homegrown names here include: Roots, B2 (a trendy version of Browns), Aritzia, Lululemon, Club Monaco (founded by Canadians Alfred Sung and Joe Mimran) and La Senza.
The best part about this district, however, is the compact efficiency it provides for shoppers with limited time. All aforementioned stores exist within a three block radius, along with a host of other popular brands, restaurants, and ever increasing number of cafes (in case you didn’t know – Vancouverites love their coffee).
Historic Granville Street has been home to a whirlwind of changes over the century. From the heart of entertainment during the roaring twenties, to grunge central in the eighties, and now the center of Vancouver’s eccentric entertainment, arts and retro scene, you can definitely find unique finds here.
Among the most popular stores are: Urban Outfitters, Joe Fresh (also opened by Canadian style icon Joe Mimran), John Fleuvog (also Canadian), Bedo(also Canadian), Future Shop, Winners, and iconic shopping centre – Pacific Centre Mall – home to Holt Renfrew and a barrage of over 90 of North America’s most popular brands.
Not to be outdone, Granville Street also has a wide range of chic retro vintage and second hand stores including Cherry Bomb, The Hanging Rose and Used House of Vintage.
As Vancouver’s most historic neighbourhood, this district is home to some of the coolest shopping around. Imagine high-end independent designers that you can’t get anywhere else, housed inside historically preserved Victorian buildings and lofts, sitting upon cobble stone streets while being lit by old fashioned gas lamp posts (all fitted with modern-day light bulbs thankfully). Plus, the cherry on top? A real live steam clock that puffs away like it was built yesterday.
There are over 180 shops, restaurants, cafes, and bars in this community, and if you’re looking to find unique finds, then this is the place to go. Among some of the most popular stores are: Roden Gray, Dutil, New World Designs, Ego Closet, Haven, Hitz Boutique, Dream Apparel, Anti-Hero, Productions and, for the deal seeker, Army & Navy – famous for their annual shoe sale.
Much like Gastown, Yaletown has distinct elements of its history blended into its hip presence. Once Vancouver’s former industrial shipping yard, it used to be dominated by warehouses, rail yards, and shipping businesses. Then the area underwent a revolution with Expo ‘86, and has since transformed into one of the poshest neighbourhoods around. You’ll find in abundance here Concord Pacific high rise apartments, revamped warehouse lofts, original brick facades and glamorous young professionals from corner to corner.
Popular shopping picks include: Fine Finds, Atomic Model, Basquait, Mala Kuja Moda, Mavi, Babe Belangere Boutique and Revolucion.
Whatever fashion find you may be looking for this season, downtown Vancouver makes a great pick for all your shopping needs. Plus, if you’re brave enough to tackle all neighbourhoods in one day, rest assured that our Sutton Place Hotel will be waiting for you to rest your weary – but stylishly attired – feet.
For more information about The Sutton Place Hotel Vancouver’s Shopping Packages, click here.