- Category: Travel
- Published on Wednesday, 30 July 2014 10:44
- Written by Joe "Tesla" Kennedy
- Hits: 2982
By Joe “Tesla Manifestor” Kennedy The future Mrs. Kennedy and I just spent an epic few days in Vancouver, BC and stayed at the luxurious Westin Bayshore Vancouver while in town. It was a great, albeit short visit and we really did not want to leave. We both agreed that we are really looking forward to going back very soon. Leaving from Bellevue, we made it to the Peace Arch at the Canadian border in just over 90 minutes. After a relatively short 15 minute wait at the border, in another 30 minutes or so we were in Vancouver and the crazy downtown traffic. Once we got to the Westin Bayshore it was like being in a quiet oasis on the edge of the busy metropolis. We left the car with the valet, quickly checked in and headed to our deluxe guestroom on the 18th floor of the Westin Bayshore tower. After the porter dropped our luggage, we made the ‘mistake’ of laying down on the Heavenly Bed that is well known to everyone who has stayed at any Westin Hotel …
Two hours later, after waking up from an unanticipated and super comfy afternoon nap, we made it down to the in house Seawall Bar & Grill for some dinner.
I was really looking forward to trying the famous Seawall Seafood Chowder and it was delicious! It was made with a cream base and had Manila clams, bay scallops, shrimp, some type of fish, corn, and potatoes. Definitely recommended - as well as the other appetizers of crab cakes and sesame crusted albacore tuna that we had to try. As we continued on to dinner, I enjoyed the roasted wild pacific salmon, with a glass of Sandhill Cab Merlot, while Stacia really loved the seared scallops with a side of prawns, paired with a Dr. Loosen Riesling. For the wine aficionados out there, you may have noticed that I chose to pair a red with my salmon - but I prefer red wine and wanted to drink a local blend - and it was one of the better BC wines. Stacia is not big on wine, but does like a good Riesling - and I don’t think that she had ever had the opportunity to try one made in Germany, where Rieslings originated. Though the apps were probably as much as we should have ate, we took our time with the wine and dinner and thoroughly enjoyed it all. Stacia finished up with a blueberry tart dessert, while I enjoyed a ‘Toasted Almond’ after dinner drink made with Disaronno Amaretto, Kahlua and milk.
After dinner, we stepped out onto the seawall boardwalk and took a nice long walk enjoying the peaceful evening and the views of downtown Vancouver’s skyline, the marinas and waterfront. We considered taking a late dip in the indoor pool at the Bayshore (the outdoor pool closes at dusk), but decided to retire back to the Heavenly bed and get up early the next morning. After a really great night sleep in the king-sized Heavenly bed, Stacia ‘Soon to Be’ Kennedy and I were planning to get in a work out in the Westin Fitness Centre, but the weather was much nicer than forecast so we decided to try something different.
Just a few blocks away from the Westin are a plethora of bike rental shops who cater to tourists and local alike. They rent bikes by the hour or the day and most also provide helmets and bike locks as part of the rental fee. We decided to rent bicycles for a couple of hours and take a leisurely ride around the world famous Stanley Park, which is located adjacent to the marina in front of The Westin Bayshore. There are a few different possible routes to take around Stanley Park, but the main bike path travels in a counter clockwise direction and is about 9 km or 5 and a half miles. It took us just over an hour to complete the complete lap, with a couple of short water breaks. With some time left on the bike rentals, we considered riding down the seawall path toward the convention centre, but Stacia needed to head to an online business workshop for our Awesome Lifestyle Design business and we wanted to grab breakfast first. After returning the rental bikes, we walked back to the hotel feeling great and well exercised after a great start to the day. It got even better when we reached the Westin and found that they had a full on buffet breakfast hot and ready for us (and quite a few other hungry guests). Normally as ‘clean eaters’ we would have chosen something from the Westin Currents at Bayshore’s ‘Superfoods Breakfast Menu’, but shoot, we were out of town on a semi-mini vacation and had already got in our exercise for the day, so we decided to indulge ourselves in the breakfast buffet instead and enjoyed fresh fruits, juices, pastries, and cooked meats, as well as cooked to order eggs and waffles. I have to admit, I did eat a lot more than I usually would and some of the foods (juices, pastries and waffles) I rarely eat - so I figured I would need some more exercise later in the day.
After breakfast, a shower and a fresh change of clothes, we jumped into the car and drove up town to the Vancouver Lookout Tower (think ‘Space Needle’ of Vancouver). Stacia’s workshop was to be held in a conference room of the Tower, so that’s where I dropped her before heading back to the Bayshore.
Once back at the hotel, I jumped online for a bit of work and then spent some time taking photos and videos (did I mention we had AWESOME views from our room on the 18th floor?). Before long, I found myself back down on the seawall boardwalk, strolling toward the convention centre. Along the way, I was very tempted to jump on one of the harbor cruise boats or see about taking seaplane tour, but I resisted temptation as I was really interested in checking out the super green Vancouver Convention Centre which is world famous for it’s green design - including a 6 acre ‘living roof’ that houses thousands of indigenous plants and collects rainwater to use to water them. There was a lot going on at the Convention Centre, including a bustling restaurant, an outdoor market and a number of food trucks. After taking some more photos (including a ‘selfie’ with a ‘digital Orca’) I headed back to the hotel.
On the way back, I walked a couple of blocks into downtown and had a huge number of places to choose to have lunch. I found a very busy take out sushi place and ate some spicy tuna rolls in the community park just blocks from the Westin. After reaching home base and checking email again (a habit I’m trying to break), I decided to relax by the huge heated outdoor pool before I went back to the Lookout Tower to pick up the future Mrs. Kennedy from her workshop. Despite the busy Friday afternoon traffic downtown, I was able to get a parking place across the block from the Tower and wait until Stacia was ready to go.
When we got back to the hotel, we decided to park the car and walk southwest up Denman Street about 10 blocks to English Bay Beach where we enjoyed some great buskers and even better people watching. Lots of people out on a nice Friday evening and it was extremely laid back and totally relaxing. We thought we might wait to check out the sunset, but decided that we were too hungry for that and after about an hour decided to walk back down Denman Street and find a place to have dinner. Denman Street was very busy with lots of people walking on both sides of the street - many either going to or from the beach - or to or from one of the many dining and drinking establishments that line the street.
Although there are many different choices for foods in the area and I ate sushi for lunch, we happily decided we would have sushi for dinner too (I can never eat enough sushi). After a very nice and fairly light sushi dinner with salad and miso soup we meandered back to the Westin Bayshore to retire for the evening. We had one last super ‘Heavenly’ sleep in our deluxe tower room and a light, ‘Superfoods’ breakfast at the Westin’s Currents at Bayshore restaurant before Stacia went to the in house Vida Spa for a relaxing facial and massage and I headed to the Fitness Centre for a quick cardio session. We met up afterward and relaxed by the pool for awhile before packing up our room, checking out and heading back toward the border for home. All in all, it was a fantastic, although too short, visit to Vancouver and The Westin Bayshore. We fully expect to be back soon and next time hope to try a seaplane tour and maybe rent a boat for a day. There is so much to do in Vancouver, we could not possibly hope to get it all in during such a short visit.
About The Westin Bayshore: The Westin Bayshore is a resort hotel in downtown Vancouver that has been listed on Condé Nast Traveler’s Gold List. Because it is downtown, in addition to being a resort property, it is also able to offer guests the activities and events of the City – easy access to so many things to do in Vancouver. Guests are also able to enjoy views of Stanley Park, distant mountains and the coastline from this luxurious property. If you are looking for an amazing venue in Vancouver for your business meetings and conferences, Westin Bayshore is always a winning choice. With 40 separate meeting rooms and over 70,000 square feet of meeting space to choose from, the Westin Bayshore can accommodate your group whether large or small. Included in the available conference space is the Bayshore Grand Ballroom, which at 15,521 square feet is the largest ballroom in North America (not located in a convention center). This property was originally built in 1961, last renovated in 2009 and now has 511 luxurious guest rooms. It is also known for it’s great service from the front desk to the super helpful concierges to room service and beyond. We found all of the staff to be extra friendly and helpful. The Westin Bayshore is also a great place to hold the wedding of a lifetime, with full catering and other services available. The Bayshore is also very proud to be the Official Partner Hotel of the National Hockey League’s Vancouver Canucks.
The Westin Bayshore Vancouver
1601 Bayshore Drive • Vancouver, BC V6G 2V4 • Phone: (604) 682-3377 • Fax: (604) 687-3102 · Hotel Reservations: 888-627-8634