Posted by: liv | March 16, 2009

Joint Birthday Trip to Canada Review

So I stated a while back that I was going to Vancouver for a joint birthday trip with Shawn. That trip occurred this past weekend. We took an early train from Seattle straight into Vancouver. The train made at least 2-3 stops, but I wouldn’t have known because I was asleep. We arrived around noon. After going through customs, we hopped into a cab that took us to our hotel. It wasn’t that far actually. It was less than 10 minutes, if that.

View from the train

View from the train

We stayed at The Listel Hotel on Robson Street. I found a pretty decent deal on Orbtiz, and I also found an online promotional code which averaged our stay around 70ish USD per night plus taxes for a hotel that was being ranked as a 4 star hotel by users. We dropped our bags off in our room and headed out for the rest of the day. The hotel was a less than 10 minute walk to Stanley Park…our at least the outer part of it. We had to walk a little further to get to the Aquarium which was really nice. We’ve been to aquariums before, but this one was pretty nice and definitely had some crazy looking fish that I have never seen. After a couple hours at the Aquarium, we continued through one section of the park before we turned around and headed back to the hotel. For dinner, we were referred to a steakhouse called The Keg. It was pretty nice and they were very accommodating to Shawn’s gluten allergy. Dinner was delicious and we headed back to the hotel for the night.

Skyline view from Stanley Park

Skyline view from Stanley Park

Saturday, we rose bright and early to head to the hotel a block away, which had the shuttle that would take us to the Capilano Suspension Bridge. The day was cold and rainy, but not too bad. We hung out for a couple hours and took in the rainy/steamy views and walked around the entire park. After that, we headed to Davie Street for a bite and then back to the hotel. We got too cold to go back out and ended up chilling until dinner, when we headed downstairs to the restaurant attached to our hotel, O’Douls. Even though we ate around 7ish, we were still too early for the Jazz music they played so we had a peaceful dinner and headed back upstairs to cap off the night with a little pay-per-view of Slumdog Millionaire. (Excellent movie by the way). We left the next morning and hopped on the bus back to Seattle.

Capilano Suspension Bridge

Capilano Suspension Bridge

1-The train/bus to and from Vancouver – excellent choice by Shawn. I was debating driving there, but relaxing on the train is probably nicer than driving and dealing w/ customs yourself. If we wanted to take the train back, we would’ve gotten in pretty late, so we opted for the bus that got us in mid-afternoon.
2-The Listel Hotel – Very nice. Even though we got a decent deal on Orbitz, it was worth the money. We had a nice King sized bed, there was pretty art all over the hotel, and we also made use of the hot tub in their fitness center (the fitness center is a little small, but no one was in there when we got there so we didn’t care). The downside was that our internet was SLOW. Free…but SLOW. We also got other free perks, but didn’t use that much of them. We would definitely stay there again though.
3-The Aquarium – To me, most aquariums are the same, but this one was worth a visit. We caught the Beluga whale show. I don’t know THAT many aquariums that have Belugas, so it’s always worth visiting a place that has something others don’t.
4-The Keg – Not bad. We both happened to have prime rib, and they were excellent. As stated before, they were really nice about suggesting foods without flour for Shawn’s gluten allergy. The Creme Brulee was also excellent.
5-The Suspension Bridge – a suggestion from a friend, and a great one at that. The bridge is over 150ft over the ground and to hear the history of the bridge’s evolution and how it is now was really neat. I wished it wasn’t raining that day, but you can’t have everything.
6-O’Douls – Really nice. Expensive. I chose the 3 course meal for their stated price. It was delicious. Small portions for big money, but I didn’t mind since the quality was good. They were also helpful in making sure any sauces for Shawn’s steak didn’t have flour in it. We were also given a free Amous bouche, which was an added bonus.
7-The weekend in general – since I’m still in a long-distance relationship, it is always nice to see Shawn. We had a great time sightseeing and just being together. I always cherish time like that, so I’m glad we came here. I also like going to places I’ve never been before, so that was also cool. My birthday was yesterday and Shawn’s is this weekend. Happy birthday to us 🙂



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