Best of Vancouver 2011: Afternoon Activities

A Tailor-Made Suit

Have a bespoke suit made. Brooks Brothers is good enough for President Obama; it should be able to handle you. For its made-to-measure events, the Alberni store flies in fabric specialists and tailors from L.A. and New York. One such summit happens to take place March 4 and 5. 1026 Alberni St., 604-678-2260.

An Exquisite Cuppa 

It was originally crafted as a tributary gift for Japanese emperors, but now mere commoners can sip on the mellow, sweet notes of Yamato Kabuse tea. Money can’t buy that kind of satisfaction, but it helps: $221/100 grams. Urban Tea Merchant, 1070 W. Georgia St., 604-692-0071. 

A Barbershop Upgrade

The city is suddenly awash in better barber options. On offer: moustache manicures, real hot shaves, and vintage potions and pomades. Belmont Barbershop (111 E. Broadway, 604-999-0673) welcomes hirsute hipsters; Farzad’s (1208 Homer St., 604-408-0060) is for the downtown dandy.  

Succumb to Pressure

Recall those carefree backpacking days spent tripping between full-moon beach parties. The new Coal Harbour location of Sabai Thai Spa offers a range of treatments, but go for the traditional Nuad Boran Thai massage (focusing on pressure points and full-contact stretching). Sublime. 571 Cardero St., 604-568-6227. 

Walk Like an Iroquois

If words like “unique” and “bespoke” hold special meaning, nab a pair of leathergoods specialist Ken Diamond’s handmade moccasins with crepe soles and hand-braided laces. No two pairs are quite the same. 756 Powell St., 604-669-4179. 

A Revamped Wardrobe

Everything in your closet ill-fitting and covered in baby throwup? It’s time to call Jessie Carlson and Michelle Addison. Wardrobe consultants, stylists, and personal shoppers rolled into one, they rock a clear mission: rid closets of sartorial junk, fill in the missing pieces, and teach busy women how to shop like pros. One afternoon session will address a decade’s worth of mistakes. 604-614-9658. 

A Vintage Trove

A member of the old guard of Vancouver fashion, Ivan Sayers has the largest collection of vintage and costume clothing in North America. Score an invite to one of his private sales, held on the occasional Sunday in his home. Hunt down ’60s minidresses and 100-year-old lace, or catch a glimpse of Ivan’s monkey-fur-coat collection. Make first contact by showing up at an Original Costume Museum Society event (

Strike a Pose

Take your yoga practice outdoors this spring and fall at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen’s Classical Chinese Garden. Guided by yogis from Radha, become at one with the Zen flora. After working up an appetite, head to nearby Radha for all-vegan fare. 578 Carrall St., 604-605-0011.

A Shot Across the Fence

Report a new-money neighbour for bylaw infractions involving noise and/or an unkempt boulevard. Humph! Call 311. Or email (Really!)