Detours: Vancouver, B.C.



Few places in the world intertwine urban and outdoor splendors on such a grand scale as Vancouver, British Columbia. Surrounded on three sides by water and spread beneath the soaring Coast Mountain Range, the city boasts a mild climate and a rich archaeological history.

Coastal Indians settled the area some 2,500 years ago. Hudson’s Bay Co. set up a network of trading posts in the 18th century, with fur its first commercial enterprise, followed by salted salmon. After British naval captain George Vancouver’s explorations, the town was founded as a sawmill settlement called Granville and incorporated in 1886.

Vancouver’s scenic location makes it a prime tourist attraction. Visitors to the largest city in the province enjoy its cosmopolitan nature and world-famous Stanley Park, one of over 180 city parks set in fingers of forest and parkland nuzzling the city center.

MUST SEE

Open Spaces
The inaugural Vancouver Sculpture Biennale: Open Spaces 2005/2006 begins in June with an official launch in September. Works from internationally renowned sculptors — including Dennis Oppenheim and Yoko Ono (United States), Bernar Venet (France), Magdalena Abakanowicz (Poland), and Bill Reid (Canada) — will be installed for 18 months on city walkways, waterfront parks, and street medians. Information: (604)   682-1289, www.vancouverbiennale.com

Museum of Anthropology
Don’t miss Canadian architect Arthur Erickson’s renowned design of the Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia. Based on traditional Northwest Coast post-and-beam structures, the building brings  the natural mountain and forest landscape inside. Massive doors carved by native Indian artists at  the entry offset soaring glass walls and enhance a  display of towering totem poles. In the rotunda, view The Raven and the First Men, an enormous and evocative native-carved wood sculpture. Information: (604) 822.5087, www.moa.ubc.ca

LUXURY LODGING

Listel Vancouver offers two “gallery floors,” with guest rooms displaying original and limited edition art curated by Buschlen Mowatt Galleries. Also partnering with the Museum of Anthropology, Listel pays tribute to things distinctly British Columbian on the Museum Floor, where guests sleep with furniture crafted from native woods and Northwest Coast art curated by the museum.  Information: (800) 663-5491, www.listel-vancouver.com

FINE DINING

Vancouver’s cosmopolitan population demands a diverse and exciting food scene.

Credit John Bishop of Bishop’s for starting the search for Vancouver’s culinary roots. Here you’ll find rotating menus based on local organic ingredients: duck consommé with morsels of confit, Fanny Bay oyster stew, and sablefish with truffle brandade.  www.bishopsonline.com

Salmon House on the Hill serves Pacific Northwest cuisine served with a stunning native view. www.salmonhouse.com

Cin Cin Ristorante on Robson Street features a wood-fired oven, grill, and rotisserie to deliver contemporary dishes inspired by local ingredients and Italian inspired techniques and recipes. www.cincin.net

Lumiere serves classical French dishes. A creative tasting bar offers “12 things for $12.” www.lumiere.ca

Hapa Izakaya New offers Osaka-style hot pots and inexpensive negitoro. (604) 689-4272

Vij’s, perpetual Best Indian award winner, features Punjabi dishes and Bengali curry. Montri’s Thai features chicken “swimming angels.” www.vijs.ca

Bandi’s offers garlicky, paprika-driven Hungarian country specialties in a pretty house. (604) 685 3391

And there’s always Morton’s, the power-dining haunt with its parade of steaks matched by good seafood offerings. www.mortons.com

Or return to O’Doul’s at the Listel and enjoy live jazz in the warm-wooded bar with a glass of very good, Spectator-approved wine.

Palm Springs Life

Related Articles

Modernism Week's Fall Preview Tickets on Sale Starting Aug. 1

Tickets go on sale Aug. 1 for Modernism Week's Fall Preview, Oct. 10-13, in Palm Springs over the Columbus Day holiday weekend.

Color Play

In the tony Thunderbird Heights neighborhood of Rancho Mirage — which has counted Gerald Ford, Anne Rice, and Michael S. Smith among its residents — sits a decidedly down-to-earth classic 1960s ranch house.

Home of the Month: Palatial Retreat

Sitting on 1.23 acres in The Renaissance at Clancy Lane in Rancho Mirage, the 9,500-square-foot home boasts picturesque, 360-degree mountain views.

15 Getaways to Beat the Heat

When the mercury remains in the hundreds for months at a stretch in the Palm Springs area, a relaxing oceanside escape can really hit the spot.

Getting Back on Track

Housing prices continued to inch up in May for the seventh consecutive month, even as sales continued on a year-over-year decline.

Promotions + Contests

90 Days of Summer Romantic Palm Springs Getaway 2014

90 Days of Summer Romantic Palm Springs Getaway 2014

Experience the beauty, romance and excitement of the Palm Springs area when you enter to be the lucky winner of this romantic couple’s getaway
90 DAYS OF SUMMER Instagram Contest 2014

90 DAYS OF SUMMER Instagram Contest 2014

Win a fabulous Palm Springs weekend!

Win a fabulous Palm Springs weekend!

Each month, a first place winner will be selected to win a fabulous Palm Springs weekend!And, each month, three additional runners up will be selected to win a wonderful Palm Springs area Dining certificate!
2013/14 Best of the Best

2013/14 Best of the Best

Palm Springs Life’s annual Best of the Best. Readers tell us who their choice is for the “Best of the Best” of the Coachella Valley in over 40 categories.
Cartoon Caption Contest

Cartoon Caption Contest

Each month, we provide a vintage 1950’s cartoon illustrated by Alice Rovinsky. You are invited to submit a caption or vote for your favorite caption.
Pets on Parade 2014 Photo Contest

Pets on Parade 2014 Photo Contest

Enter your “Cutest Pet” photo in the Pets on Parade 2014 Photo Contest. Online users will be able to like the Cutest Pet photos from six (6) categories.