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Smack in the middle of a sprawling city park, the Vancouver Olympic Centre sits halfway between the recently revived Cambie Village to the north and still-trendy South Main to the east. Purpose-built for the Olympics, the centre holds its own, an angular glass structure that hosts curling events during the Games and becomes a multipurpose community hub with a library, ice rink, and curling club after. Designed by green-minded architects Hughes Condon Marler (the firm behind Whistler’s stunning new public library) the best views are inside, beneath the soaring wood beams.
Olympic curling Olympic Centre is home to medal and non-medal Olympic curling games. See a schedule of Olympic curling events here.
Walrus focuses on warmth and local design this winter season, stocking refined scarves and toques by Stansborough and jewellery cast from pinecones, twigs, and leaves from Justine Brooks. 3408 Cambie St., 604-874-9770. Walrushome.com
Shop Cocoon showcases clothing, jewellery, and crafts from up-and-coming Vancouver designers. Snag a handmade gift like Toodlebunny’s asymmetrical necklaces featuring horn, bone, and semiprecious stones. 3345 Cambie St., 778-232-8532. Shopcocoon.comCambie Cycles has a superb selection of classic city bikes, recumbents, and futuristic-looking velomobiles. Rent a bike for the day (from $20) and cruise up Cambie Street to view-friendly Queen Elizabeth Park—or to catch some curling action. 3317 Cambie St., 604-874-3616. Cambiecycles.com
EiO! stocks children’s toys and accessories at a variety of price points. Wooden toys by Melissa and Doug and Plan Toys are top sellers; we like the ride-able Trunki luggage—perfect for travel or playtime. 3404 Cambie St., 604-873-4543. Eiokids.com
Three words: premium Belgian beer. Stella’s has them listed by the page, with new arrivals outlined on the fresh sheet. Imbibe with an order of poutine, and mussels done eight ways. After-dinner cheese courses are sourced across the street at Mount Pleasant Cheese, the city’s first all-Canadian fromagerie. Stella’s: 3305 Cambie St., 604-874-6900. Stellasbeer.com. Mount Pleasant Cheese: 3432 Cambie St., 604-875-6363. Mountpleasantcheese.com
Firefly Fine Wines and Ales is a destination for Canadian wine, beer, and spirits. B.C. is particularly well-represented with hard-to-find Okanagan Valley wines like Blue Mountain and specialty ales like Merridale Cider. 2857 Cambie St., 604-875-3325. Fireflyfinewinesandales.com
Andrey Durbach has mastered the casual French bistro with Pied-à-Terre. All the trademarks are here: an understated 30-seat room, gracious service, and classic dishes like steak frites, bouillabaise, and duck confit. Table d’hôte menus offer great value ($25 per person at lunch; $45 at dinner). 3369 Cambie St., 604-873-3131.Pied-a-terre-bistro.ca
Oakridge Station and King Edward Station are a stone’s throw from Olympic Centre, connecting passengers to the all important Canada Line.