The following post was contributed by Tourism Vancouver’s own Wendy Surkan, Manager, Meeting & Convention Sales, Eastern US. Born and raised in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley, Wendy has lived in Vancouver for the past 22 years where she and her husband enjoy all the excitement the city has to offer. Read below for Wendy’s guide to the perfect date night:
Vancouver may be known for its scenic splendor and great food, but what animates the city is the annual 10-day jazz festival leading up to Canada Day. In its 25th year in 2010, from June 25 – July 4 from noon to the wee small hours, a rich tapestry of jazz, blues, Funk, Latin, fusion and world music fills the air at venues big and small, indoor and outdoor across the city. By taking the music to parks, community spaces, concert halls, clubs, public plazas and neighbourhood streets, the Jazz Festival electrifies the city with over 400 concerts – 150 of them free – and moves the souls of more than 500,000 people each year.
With so much going on simultaneously, it always comes down to choices and my husband and I were looking forward to hearing and seeing featured saxophone colossus Sonny Rollins and Al Di Meola last year, one of the world’s great guitar players who has toured with Chick Corea and Carlos Santana. Click here for information, concert schedule and details coming up in March 2010.
My hubby and I plan on treating ourselves to a west coast dining experience prior to the Sonny Rollins concert. We live a 5-minute walk away from Granville Island, our 15-hectare (37 acre) mini-district of boutique stores, artisan workshops, theatres and restaurants – as well as the famed Public Market, complete with its irresistible pyramids of produce, fresh food selections from butchers, bakers, fishmongers and a hopping food fair.
At Granville Island we will take an Aquabus ferry docked at Granville Island for a quick 5-minute ride across scenic False Creek to downtown. The Aquabus ferries are rainbow coloured foot passenger ferries that continuously criss-cross False Creek, carrying both foot passengers and cyclists.Our favourite Vancouver restaurant is “C”, a perennial Wine Spectator magazine award winner; The New York Times? Love it. Vanity Fair? Ditto. Executive chef Robert Clark’s menus are a testament to local abundance with a focus on our coastal waters and rich soils. Almost every product used is caught or harvested in our province of British Columbia (even the balsamic is local). The cellar boasts an excellent selection of award winning B.C. wines. We always seem to order the signature dish which features seared scallops wrapped in octopus bacon paired with a glass of Blue Mountain Brut from B.C.’s Okanagan Valley (Condé Nast Traveler refers to the Valley as “Napa Valley North”). “C” is situated right on the waters edge at False Creek with ambient views of Granville Island, the seawall, boats, glorious sunsets and passerby’s.
Now it’s on to the historic Orpheum Theatre to savour the lively rhythms of Sonny Rollins . . .
About Wendy: Wendy has been a Sales Manager with Tourism Vancouver for the past 12 years overseeing the Eastern US market. An active member of Meeting Professionals International (MPI) and the New York Society of Association Executives she is thrilled MPI’s largest conference, the World Education Congress will be held in Vancouver next year, July 25 – 27, 2010.