The West End (not to be confused with the West Side, south of downtown, or West Vancouver, on the north side of the harbor) lies west of the Central Business District, between Burrard Street and English Bay Beach, the gateway to Stanley Park . Wander down Robson or Denman Streets and you’ll soon see the appeal of the urban lifestyle afforded by life in the West End—endless outdoor cafés, a wide range of dining choices, fashionable boutiques, the sandy beaches of English Bay, and, of course, the proximity of Stanley Park.
If you like to shop in trendy boutiques, sample European delicacies, and sip cappuccinos at sidewalk cafés, saunter along this colorful and exciting street linking downtown to the West End. Once the center of a predominantly German neighborhood, Robson Street is also known as “Robsonstrasse.”
At 1610 Robson (the west end), Robson Public Market occupies an impressive atrium-topped building filled with meat, seafood, dairy products, fruits and veggies, nuts, flowers, craft vendors, fresh juice and salad bars, and an international food fair.
Most of the West End’s turn-of-the-century buildings are long gone, but a precinct of nine homes built between 1890 and 1908 has been saved and is preserved as Barclay Heritage Square, which looks much as it would have when the homes were first built around the turn of the 20th century, right down to the style of the surrounding gardens.
The only one of the nine open to the public is Roedde House (1415 Barclay St., 604/684-7040). Built in 1893, this Queen Anne Revival-style home is a classic example of Vancouver ’s early residential architecture. Tours of the house are conducted Tuesday–Saturday noon–4 p.m. and cost adult $5, senior and child $4.