Dining with canines in Vancouver
August 2, 2010 8:34 AM   Subscribe

Help us dine with doggies in Vancouver!

My husband and I will be staying in Vancouver, BC for a week, with our two large but well-mannered older dogs in tow. It would be nice to take an occasional break from cooking in the hotel kitchenette, but obviously we can't go out and leave unattended pets in the room. 

So can anyone recommend tasty places with, say, patio seating that might allow furry four-footed friends? Or any other ideas that might work in this situation, especially in the evenings? The closer to Stanley Park the better, but we're open to anything.

posted by bunji to Travel & Transportation around Vancouver, BC (9 answers total)
I don't know Vancouver, but in NYC the patios have railings and a lot of dogs sit on the sidewalk outside the railing while the owner sits in the patio on the other side of the railing (restaurant side), so pretty much anywhere with a patio works.
posted by cestmoi15 at 8:52 AM on August 2, 2010

I don't know anyplace where you could have dogs *on* the patio. I've seen people do the outside the railing thing at the restaurant where Adesso is now, but I don't know if the new owner would be amenable.

What kind of dogs? We could probably babysit one evening; we live in that area.
posted by timeistight at 9:17 AM on August 2, 2010

this might be a derail (sorry) but I've left the dog at a b and b while going out for dinner - might want to check with the hotel if the dogs can be there alone for a few hours (and put out some chewtoys and the "do not disturb" sign).

In addition to patios, in nice weather you can get takeout anything, bring it to the park and have a picnic with the animals, yum!
posted by Joad at 9:20 AM on August 2, 2010

Basically, the rule here is no pets inside (including within patios) unless they're service animals. I've never heard of a specific dog-friendly restaurant. I'm pretty sure that would violate just about every health code there is. (which is unfortunately, because you might be onto something here...)

I definitely seen dogs tied to the sidewalk side of patios next to their owner. However, this is usually small dogs; I'm not sure restaurants would be exactly happy with two large dogs blocking the sidewalk in a high-traffic pedestrian area (I'm just saying. I love dogs, but some people really get freaked out about large ones).

I think your best bet would be takeout and then meandering to the park or the beach to eat it. What time of year will you be here? (Obviously, this is a much better idea before the rain starts up again...)

Alternatively, you might be able to find a dog walker on craigslist (or heh, on preview, mefi!) who will take your dogs out and essentially babysit them while you're gone out for the evening.
posted by cgg at 9:59 AM on August 2, 2010

Most of Denman, which is the closest main street by Stanley Park, as well as Davie and Robson Streets which run perpendicularly to it, is a fairly high-density pedestrian area and don't have a great deal of patios available because the sidewalks are fairly (or too, in my opinion) narrow; this, coupled with the pretty strictly zoned neighbourhoods of Vancouver complicates things somewhat, since it relegates most of the restaurants to the main streets where there is a want of space for patios.

That being said, I can think of a couple of patios that might meet your needs.

One is Central Bistro, which has a patio that wraps around the side of the restaurant and would be a good out-of-the-way place to tie up the dogs. It's at the corner of Denman and Comox and has great food.

Another place might be Hamburger Mary's (terrible website, sorry), which is up into the west end/Davie village somewhat at the corner of Bute and Davie.

All in all, most places that have patios will probably be okay if you tie your dog up to the outside of the railing, as long as it's not bothering other patrons or in the way; Vancouver is a pretty dog-friendly city and lots of the coffee shops have bowls of water and dog treats if you ask.

Other than that, the takeout recommendation is a good one. This is particularly a good idea because there are some Vancouver restaurants that are extremely popular and difficult to get a table at (ie Stepho's, which is a super cheap and tasty Greek restaurant on Davie that has hour-long waits at most times), but you can call ahead and get takeout and skip the wait.

Enjoy your trip!
posted by urbanlenny at 10:38 AM on August 2, 2010

Large dogs or small dogs, you can wrap their leash around the patio railing and sit inside the patio. Most restaurants with patios have dog water dishes as well. Big dogs are just fine - really. I see them tied outside patios every Saturday and Sunday along the seawall's restaurants.

Suggestions: Provence at marinaside near the False Creek seawall area (good brunch on weekends served til 2pm), Subeez, Granville Room and most other places with patios on Granville between Robson and Davie, and most places with patios along the seawall are also perfectly happy to have dogs tied nearby. Bonus points for the False Creek seawall area - there's a large off leash dog park just north of the Cambie Bridge along the seawall.
posted by kirstk at 12:21 PM on August 2, 2010

Few suggestions closer to Stanley Park: The Mill, along the seawall by the float plane terminal. Stanley's Bar and Grill near the Rose Garden. Or besides Denman, you could walk down Robson, there are a few patios there as well.
posted by kirstk at 12:43 PM on August 2, 2010

You will see dog's on the outside of most patio fences in Yaletown. They are usually pretty hospitable there. I would say most patios in the city are amicable, the challenge would be to find a free seat near the fence; They are usually quite busy.
posted by dobie at 3:20 PM on August 2, 2010

Not sure if Commercial Drive is too far for you, but when I lived near there, most of the restaurants had sidewalk patios, and in the summer it seemed like there was always at least one dog leashed to every railing.

Also, are you by any chance staying at the Sylvia Hotel? I ask because I know it's dog-friendly and near Stanley Park. Anyway, we stayed there this past Christmas, and on a couple of nights the front desk staff were looking after guests' dogs (they just kept the dog behind the desk with them). I don't know if this is a paid service, or if they just sometimes do it as a special favour, but I have seen it done.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 4:18 PM on August 2, 2010

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