Old friendships are worth the trip. Recently one of my dearest gal pals and I stayed at The Burrard Hotel, in Vancouver, B.C., to kvetch and eat donuts. It was a low-key ending to a high glam, big chillax girls weekend – a chance for this mama to take a break from adulting and bond with some besties while my little man was spoiled by grandparents.
A third in a series of British Columbia/Washington area getaways, my gal pal and I were stoked to nab a room at the colourful and mega central hotel, The Burrard.
Last fall when I travelled to Vancouver for some much needed mama solo time (Read more here and here). One of my not-so-often travel opportunities became available: a hangout with one of my fave Torontonians: my pal Elly, writer of books, traveller of the world, eater of things and third time running platonic honeymoon** buddy.
Elly and I love to rendezvous, usually in somewhere in the Pacific Northwest for fun times, good food and sleepovers at fun boutique hotels. Last fall the local we reunited – me from Haida Gwaii and her from Toronto at the neon-signed The Burrard Hotel in Vancouver’s WestEnd. We enjoyed a brief getaway full of our favourite things: fun nosh, a comfy hotel room and lots of time to kvetch, ogle trashy reality television and swap writing war stories. Elly is the kind of gal you want to travel with – she’s witty, in the know and easygoing. Case in point – she always knows which bad, new reality TV shows to steer this non-cable bumpkin towards and is okay with chowing down on tacos even if she’s craving poutine.
Our stay at The Burrard was the ideal end to a weekend that spent with a large group of ladies on Friday and Saturday. From the moment you walk into The Burrard, you’re transplanted back in time to when the Mod Squad was de rigeur and Don Draper was still slinging saucy ads.
Upon checking into The Burrard for our palm treed platonic honeymoon, we explored it’s emerald green oasis of a courtyard, complete with cruiser bikes, Acapulco chairs and soaring, city skyline views. If Elly was a hotel she would be The Burrard: hip, bright and witty. Watch for the daily quips the Burrard folks post in the elevator, the Omer Arbel light fixtures in the lobby plus the urban, pop art throughout. Also, like Elly, the Burrard is connected and on-trend.
You can order cold-pressed juices from The Juice Truck for your hotel mini-bar or make yourself a Nespress coffee any time of day. For comfort food lovers, there soon will be a Burgoo moving in and for fitness buffs The Burrard offers free Brodie cruiser bikes to explore the seawall or Steve Nash Fitness passes to get your sweat on. Since we were only there for one night, Elly and I chose to explore the hood on food, the oasis-like hotel courtyard and reminisce about the old days when both of us lived in Vancouver in our 20s.
While The Burrard has a retro vibe, much like my relationship to my travel buddy, it’s brand new again thanks to recent renovations and creating a locals-only experience with their service and location. Whether you want to end or start at trip in Vancouver, The Burrard is worth the stay. I can’t wait to go back for another palm treed honeymoon – platonic or not.
** We coined our travels together ‘platonic honeymoons’ because the first trip we took together was to a super swish Seattle hotel complete with champers and Seahawk-ish vistas. **