Ready for another catchy neighbourhood acronym?¬† Metro Vancouver is already home to PoCo (Port Coquitlam), PoMo (Port Moody) and SoMa (South Main Street).¬† Now let me add one more to the list: LoMo (Lower Mount Pleasant).
Actually, LoMo sounds really annoying – so let’s just stick with Lower Mount Pleasant.¬†¬† This funky area wedged between Broadway and False Creek and bounded by Main and Cambie Streets (also known as Southeast False Creek) is home to a ridiculously diverse mix of old heritage homes, industrial buildings, new high rises, one-off bars and restaurants and art studios.
If you’re looking for a unique neighbourhood on the cusp of cool to explore on foot or for a night out, this would be it.¬† A great article in the Vancouver Sun picked out some of the hidden gems in Lower Mount Pleasant.¬†¬† I’ve included a few of their suggestions below, as well as my own.¬†
In terms of things to do, the big draw is the waterfront.¬† The new section of the seawall along Southeast False Creek is beautiful, winding from Science World to glitzy new Olympic Village and even skirting a neat man-made island in False Creek that you can explore.¬† But the leafy streets climbing the hill toward Broadway are also worth a stroll – Look carefully and you’ll notice a hive of artist studios as well as a hub of graphic design workshops.¬† And – of course – there’s always Main Street for boutiques and second-hand shops.
Restaurants in this area can be hard to find but are worth hunting down.¬† Raw food enthusiasts should definitely stop by Organic Lives (1829 Quebec St.).¬† All of their dishes – from macaroons to lasagna – are uncooked and organic and much tastier than you might expect.¬† A few blocks north, another gem for a fresh, bistro-type meal is Eight 1/2 (151 E. 8th Ave.), which occupies a historic heritage home.¬†¬† Nuba, the Middle Eastern place, has a branch (146 E. 3rd Ave.).¬† And for a truly old school diner with cool murals, check out the Argo Cafe (1836 Ontario St.).
There are also some really unique nightlife options in this area.¬† The Narrow Lounge (1898 Main St.) is located in a windowless, underground room roughly the size of a shipping container.¬† It has no sign and is packed most nights.¬† Nearby, the ANZA club (Australia New Zealand Association) (3 W. 8th St.) hosts funk nights every Wednesday and the Celluloid Social Club for aspiring independent filmmakers once a month.
There’s a lot more going on in Lower Mount Pleasant: art and design, boutiques, even the province’s largest private liquor store (Legacy Liquor; 1633 Manitoba St.).
Got a favourite bar/restaurant/boutique in Lower Mount Pleasant?¬† Let us know below.¬†
Want more updates on Vancouver and beyond?¬† Follow me on Twitter @RemyScalza.¬†