While I am generally not an advocate of chain stores, and most especially MEGA chainstores, I mention the Virgin Megastore in Vancouver because of it's cool and eclectic selection of books. While they did not have as many books as a bookstore might the ones they did have were great, ranging in subject from all types of music to obscure and cultish topics such as the history of Absinthe and pictoral studies of the Burning Man festival. They also sell Cd's, as you probably already know.
Robson Street is a shopping paradise, full of every kind of stores, bars, cafes and restaurants you can imagine, from the most expensive to the average price stores. It crosses all downtown and its lights at night offers a great view. Walking along this street was one of my favorite things to do while visiting Vancouver.
What to buy: Whatever you want
What to pay: as much as you want
Vancouver's most popular shopping area is Robson Street downtown, between the Art Gallery (Granville St) and Denman st. Most concentrated in the blocks immediately on either side of Burrard St, there is all sorts of clothing, shoes, jewellery, art, crepes, cappuccino, cheesecake, tourist memorabilia, books, CDs (I almost said records - oops!), and anything else.
At the extreme East end of Robson is the spectacular colliseum-like vancouver public library, also worth a browse to architects or bibliophiles.
Vancouver is often referred to as Hollywood North, due to the amount of movies filmed here, and over time, I have seen several 'stars' walking downtown, usually around Robson or Granville Island. Anna Paquin (Rogue on X-men), Pamela Anderson, Jean-Claude VanDamme (yah, I know - who? He's actually only about 5'6" and 140 lbs!), Patrick Stewart (Jean-Luc Picard), Kirstie Alley, that chick from 'Can't buy me love', Famke Janssen (Jean Grey on X-men), David Arquette, and plenty more whose names escape me at the moment.
What to buy: Grab a latte at any of the Starbucks (just about every block, sometimes 2 per corner!) and browse or shop to your heart's content.
Robson Street is the main shopping street in Vancouver. Fashion stores such as Guess, Armani, Frech Connection, Hilfiger, Holt Renfrew, American Eagle, Roots, etc. line this street for blocks. In addition to the fashion stores, there are other stores for pretty much anything you want, as well as a number of restaurants, cafés, and on one corner, two different Starbucks.
What to buy: Check out the HMV Megastore on the corner of Robson and Burrard. Vancouver has some of the cheapest prices in the world for CDs and DVDs, and this place has a huge selection.
What to pay: Depends on where you shop
The place to see and be seen in Vancouver, energetic Robson Street boasts over 200 shops, cafés and services.
Spend a day on the strip - spoil yourself in trend-setting fashion boutiques or sip a latté as you relax and people-watch from a sidewalk café. With a weekend average of some 80,000 streetgoers, there are plenty of people to watch!
If you prefer less jostling among crowds, head to the Vancouver Art Gallery. Housed in a former early-20th-century courthouse, the VAG is a haven for art lovers.
Finish the day with dinner at one of Robson Street's many fine restaurants.
Robson Street runs east-west through downtown Vancouver, from Yaletown to the West End.
There is also, a excellent indoor market I believe and cant remember exactly where it is...
A word or two on your visit:
• Parking on Robson Street can be a challenge - there are several parkades located within easy walking distance
What to buy: In modern times, as its popularity has soared, the character of Robson Street has continued to evolve. 'Robsonstrasse' has passed into history, but the eclectic mix of shops and restaurants has become even stronger and more appealing.
Today, one finds along Robson and its side streets fine dining, premier fashion stores and services, and an opportunity to 'people watch' as the world shops the street.
They call it "The street that makes the city!" This vibrant shopping and dining district has been attracting thousands of people to the heart of Vancouver for more than 100 years. The eclectic mix of chic boutiques, high-end retailers, unusual and artistic goods, hip cafes and casual to exquisite dining draws a large diverse group of individuals to one of the city's famous hot spots. (Back when the European flavor was denser, the street was called 'Robsonstrasse'.)
What to buy: uPTO You?
Several Designer shops in Robson Street, too many to remember. Ladies Particularly, but mens and sportswear on every corner
What to buy: Sports wear - such a collection
Ladies wear especially the designer shops
Shoes to die for, handbags too
What to pay: Average for Canada
Cheap for England
There is a little of everything on Robson Street, from great fashion boutiqes and restaurants to t-shirt shops and cafes. The stores are all unique unto themselves and if you can't find anything that you want to buy, watching the fashionistas stroll past is almost as much fun as a new pair of Franco Sarto sandals (almost).
Alot of people think that Robson Street is where it's at when shopping in Vancouver. As a tourist it's definitely worth a stroll, if only to people watch. Many people come here to see and be seen. It's very entertaining. But basically most of the shops here can be found in the malls. SO, if you are looking for cool and interesting clothes I would recommend heading off to Main street around Broadway, or even Commercial Drive.
What to buy: Clothes and shoes
Not really a shp so much as a street. On weekendsRobson street is easily the biggest avenue in all of Vancouver. Alot of interesting stores along here wig shops, many clothing outlets (aritzia, roots, gap, banana republic etc.), sushi restaurants, a creperie, ice cream stores, Lush, the uber popular Virgin megastore and oh ya and starbucks, boy are there starbucks. It is quite a site to see one giant Starbucks directly kiddie korner to another giant starbucks! And two blocks down the street is another starbucks!!! Apparently the starbucks pictured here is the most profitable one in the World! It is kind of riduclous how trendy downtwon has become actually!
What to buy: Along here clothes and a frappucino seems to be the standard. But why not stop in and buy some fridge magnets (there's a whole store dedicated to them) or a wig!
What to pay: Trendiest places - expensive ($80 canadian and up) and down the line from there (average at roots might be $40?). I can tell you that a grande caramel frappucino will run you 410 plus tax, what a deal...
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