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Vancouver Real Estate Blog

Thursday, January 29, 2009
Loving Lower Lonsdale

Vancouver city and surrounding metropolitan area is blessed by a diversity of neighbourhoods, cultures and geography. From the fertile farms of the Fraser Valley to the hip and happening urban enclaves of Yaletown, Granville St and Kitsilano. Few cities enjoy such a variety of lifestyle experiences within such a compact and visually stunning landscape. Although not exactly a secret to those of us who live on the North Shore but the recent developments at the foot of Lonsdale are changing the face of the North Vancouver’s waterfront and luring many new residents to the base of the north shore mountains.

The Lonsdale neighbourhood stretches from lower Lonsdale at the harbours edge, through the business district of Central Lonsdale to the lofty heights of Upper Lonsdale where suburban view homes meet the giant cedars of the north Shore Mountains. The Lonsdale corridor is a hub of activity that truly represents all that is great about living in and around Vancouver.

The majority of new development and building activity is happening near the waterfront of Lower Lonsdale where the City of North Vancouver is embarking upon multiple residential and commercial developments, with plans to include shops, restaurants, galleries and museums. New community amenities such as the John Braithwaite Community Centre, new urban park space, and expansion of the North Shore Spirit Trail, are all making Lower Lonsdale one of the most sought-after neighbourhoods in the Greater Vancouver area in which to live and work and play.

This community is only a 12 minute scenic commute from downtown Vancouver via the SeaBus and accessibility to the TransCanada highway brings the rest of metro Vancouver within easy reach. Sometimes compared to Sausalito in San Francisco for its panoramic views of the city skyline and bustling Lonsdale Quay market attracting tourists and locals for an abundance of fresh produce, crafts and seafood.

Careful planning and public consultation have resulted in approval of numerous residential and commercial developments totaling over 2.5 million sqft. Check out the Pier Development and the City of North Vancouver’s Water Front Project to view the exciting plans for creating a sustainable and vibrant community where the mountains meet the sea.

Greg Paddy
Vancouver PowerSearch Team

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Saturday, January 24, 2009
Have a beer and window shop in Granville Island
Granville Island is nestled right in the middle of Vancouver, underneath the Granville Street Bridge, one of the bridges which connects Downtown Vancouver and Vancouver West. Sure it's a tourist destination, but locals (especially the artsy bunch) also love to go there and stock up on fresh produce and fruits from the Public Market and cruise through the different buildings packed with specialty stores, most of which are arts&crafts stores (I found a wicked bead store...you can actually sit there and make your own jewelry, something that I might drag a girlfriend there to do with) and custom designs stores.

The Public Market really never gets old. Enter through the doors and what's an old, industrial building from the outside turns into a bustling, exciting (and delicious-looking) world of every food product you can think of, from fresh veggies & fruits to seafood to candy to meats to pasta to a variety of teas to much much more. The strawberry and cherry baskets are stacked like pyramids and the flowers are beautifully assorted, the whole place is like an art gallery! You can't get away with just walking by the variety fudge and desserts section...especially if you're with kids. I also found a pasta place that held tortellinis with different kinds of filling...one word: mmmmmmm!!

I also took a full virtual tour of Granville Island some time ago, take a look at it here.

In the back end of the Market, past the food court is an exit that will pop you out at the dock right on False Creek. On a nice day it's a perfect spot to set up a picnic...across the water is Yaletown, one of Vancouver's trendiest neighborhoods, which is very nice on the eye. We caught it right when the sun was starting to set, casting a gorgeous orange-ish ray on the futuristic highrises, an ongoing trend in Vancouver.

The island also has it's own brewery, Granville Island Brewing. Since we were there of course we stopped in for a drink and some snacks...this time we tried the sampler, which gives you four options worth 6 oz each. We were served with the Winter Ale, some seasonal darker one, a Pale Ale and a Honey Lager. My personal favorite was the Winter Ale...very smooth and very yummy!

As I mentioned before Granville Island is full with art & craft stores...Emily Carr, the university for art and design, calls Granville Island home, and there is also a large theatre where different groups perform (the Arts Club Theatre Company).

Never been to Granville Island? You can read more about it's history and venues on their website. If you're from out of town, it's a destination you really shouldn't miss.

Amy Kizaki
Vancouver PowerSearch Team

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Saturday, January 17, 2009
DINE OUT Vancouver 2009
Last night I got to enjoy a DINE OUT dinner at Joe Forte's in downtown Vancouver with CEO Glenn Sanford and fellow Vancouver/ Seattle Powersearch team member Amy Kizaki.

Dine Out Vancouver is where numerous food loving locals and tourist dine at participating restaurants featuring three-course menus. This is annually held from Mid- January to the beginning of February. This is one of Vancouver's premiere restaurant events that showcases some of Vancouver's top restaurants at very reasonable prices. The three course menus are set at $18, $28 and $38. The menus will be highlighted with a BC VQA wine pairing, that compliments each restaurant's culinary expertise.

Joe Forte's has been a institution in downtown Vancouver for almost 25 years and one of its best Oyster bar and grill restaurants. Regularly packed with people waiting, last night was no different.

Forte's had a $38 three course meal. We all had their famous Oyster's to start, and then the Surf and Turf (Steak and Prawns) as our main course and Creme Brule for desert.

The food was totally worth it in my books. All three courses were quite delicious.

Recommendation: Food was excellent. Highly recommend it to anyone who likes seafood. Excellent Value. Two thumbs up!

Edison Chua
Real Estate Consultant
Vancouver PowerSearch Team
Sutton Group West Coast Realty
604-728-1939 direct

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