Credit: Tourism Vancouver / Clayton Perry
Formerly known as “Theatre Row,” Granville Street has been the heart of Vancouver’s entertainment district for many years. As one of the founding streets of Vancouver, the Granville strip holds great historical relevance to the city – in fact, Granville Street used to have the highest concentration of neon lights in the world just behind Shanghai. Many of these neon signs can still be seen lining the streets today alongside several heritage buildings and historical theatres like the Commodore Ballroom and the Orpheum.
Over the last few years, Granville Street has transformed itself into a centre for business, fashion, accommodation, and celebration. With the introduction of Microsoft and several other business operations, Granville Street has seen a shift in demographics and has had to adapt accordingly. More and more iconic Granville bars have added brunch and all-day menus for the business crowd, including Cinema Public House who just recently underwent an interior and menu transformation. The local pub's new additions showcase nuances from other Donnelly properties but still serves its unique Granville feel.
With a new day crowd comes a new night crowd – Granville has seen a shift away from nightclubs and a shift towards trendy and funky bars for millennials. The space formally known as Caprice Nightclub has recently been transformed into one of Vancouver’s hottest new bars, Colony. With locations on Main Street and North Vancouver, Colony’s third and largest bar can be found in the heart of the entertainment district. The former nightclub now features sports, beer, music, games, and of course, delicious pub-style eats.
Another notable Granville addition is Hotel Belmont, a newly renovated property that has stood at the corner of Granville and Nelson for more than a century. Hotel Belmont offers modern guest rooms in an Instagram worthy environment with food, drinks, and entertainment. “The Basement,” located on the hotel's lower level, has quickly turned into a nightlife hotspot for Vancouverites, featuring roller ball, arcade games, a designated area for Nintendo, a dancefloor, cocktails, and a dessert window.
Granville’s redevelopment is not all ‘out with the old and in with the new’ – Vancouver classics like The Roxy Cabaret, Cabana Lounge, and the Commodore Lanes remain open and ready for business as usual.