Andy Wirth, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Steamboat Ski and Resort Corp., travels often to Vancouver, British Columbia, for work. Here are some of Wirth’s must-see things while there.
Located in Squamish, British Columbia — about halfway between Vancouver and Whistler along the Sea to Sky Coastal Highway — the First Nation community boasts the largest gathering of bald eagles in North America.
Lift Bar Grill View
Right on the harbor in the northwest corner of downtown Vancouver, the Lift Bar Grill View offers great food, great scenery and great service. With the rowing club right next door, take in a meal and enjoy the view. “Incredible,” Wirth says.
Granville Island Public Market
Just south of downtown Vancouver, the market is the hub of the island. It includes breweries, shopping, fresh seafood and many locally made items.
Richmond Olympic Oval
Home to the speed skating events, the Richmond Olympic Oval is an architecture marvel. Just minutes from the airport and along the banks of the Fraser River, the Oval has been recognized with a plethora of awards.
Ski Whistler Blackcomb
Although it might seem the Olympics will draw huge crowds to the world-renown resort, Wirth said it’s actually the opposite. Only 5 percent of the resort will be used for the Olympics, and Wirth said that during the games, it actually will be relatively free of people. With 8,000 skiable acres and more than 380 inches of snow this season, Wirth said a day at Whistler Blackcomb “will be nothing short of spectacular.”
Watermark on Kitsilano Beach
The restaurant and lounge features the best sunset viewing and outdoor dining the town has to offer.
With temperate weather in February, Stanley Park features 1,000 acres and is regarded as one of the great parks in the world. There always is something happening in the park, from art events to cricket matches. Just 10 minutes from downtown, it’s a great area to take in the culture or just go for a run.
Grouse Grind Trail
Probably Vancouver’s most popular hike, the trail climbs 2,800 vertical feet in just 1.8 miles. Wirth described it as climbing two miles of stairs. But get to the top, and the views are near unbeatable.
Take a trip to Tofino
Have a couple of days? Take a seaplane or take a ferry and drive. Tofino is a great surf spot and has a laid back, surfer feel. It’s a small, hip and vibrant town. Stay at the lavish Wickaninnish Inn and enjoy beachfront views.
Featuring Belgian cuisine, it’s a can’t-miss spot. Somewhat of a hidden locals spot, Wirth boasts that Chambar has the freshest seafood and best mussels he’s ever tasted.