Holiday magic is in the air with festive trees twinkling, the aroma of hot spiced drinks wafting from cafés citywide, and picture-perfect gifts taking centre stage in shop windows. The countdown to Christmas is on, and shoppers will be relieved to learn they can find showstopping decorations, hosting necessities and presents for everyone on their list all from one enchanting neighbourhood: Yaletown. This season, Yaletown Kissmas encourages consumers to buy local – and in return, merchants are giving the gift of extended store hours to ensure holiday shopping is easier and more efficient than ever.
There’s nothing more stressful than frantically searching for meaningful gifts as the clock ticks toward Christmas. Yaletown shop owners are encouraging locals and visitors to get a head start on shopping. The neighbourhood’s bevy of merchants have stocked their stores with seasonal goodies guaranteed to impress, and for the duration of the Yaletown Kissmas campaign (December 1 – 24), visitors will benefit from longer store hours so they can browse and ponder at leisure. Locals who work or live downtown can easily walk or bike to Yaletown from the downtown core, or hop aboard a mini-ferry and cruise over from Granville Island – and once they’ve arrived, a wonderland of top fashion and design stores, spas, cocktail bars and tea shops await.
Shoppers seeking to relief their deepest fashion crave on perfectly original items can visit HerSociety for women’s clothing, shoes and accessories that are personally hand-selected by stylists that bring new inventory on a regular basis. Gourmands will adore Bake 49, a Japanese bakery located in the heart of Yaletown that attracts locals with its savoury aroma and decadent Japanese pastries. Pick up the perfect hostess gift at Skoah, where you can find a wide variety of skincare products that do what they say will do.
For holiday entertaining, head to The Cross, a gorgeously outfitted home décor shop that’s every Instagrammers’ dream – here, stock up on fairy lights to cast a holiday glow, find a cozy throw for cold winter nights, and add pops of greenery to centrepieces with beautiful pots and planters. On the next block, peruse one of the biggest selections of B.C. wine in the Lower Mainland at Swirl Wine Store, where guests can buy local and international bottles of red, white and bubbles as well as accessories. Across from the Yaletown Marina, Urban Fare is the ultimate holiday meal-planning destination: the upmarket grocery emporium features an interior laden with gourmet and organic foods alongside a bustling cafe. For a staycation in Yaletown, visit the Opus Hotel, one of Vancouver’s best boutique hotels where you’ll experience lodging with a little more flavour.
Visitors are also encouraged to indulge in the ‘Kissmas’ spirit; neighbourhood lampposts and signs will be adorned by mistletoe under which visitors can take selfies smooching their loved ones. Post a photo to social media with the hashtags #YaletownKissmas so the Yaletown BIA can repost and share the love.
“Yaletown is truly a one-stop holiday destination – not just for shopping, but for an all-encompassing seasonal experience,” says Annette O’Shea, executive director of the Yaletown Business Improvement Association. “Yaletown Kissmas is intended to show shoppers that Yaletown offers all they need for the holidays: gifts for loved ones, décor, food and ready-made desserts for entertaining; and plenty of great spots to linger over coffee, a glass of wine or gelato. And the mistletoe hanging throughout the neighbourhood is a perfect opportunity to capture and spread the love – and isn’t that what Christmas is all about?”
- Santa is coming early this year! St. Nick’s Picks is back between December 1 and December 13 (weekdays) on CityTV’s Breakfast Television; enter to win prizes on-air daily, valued at over $150. Click here to learn more.
- The Yaletown Business Improvement Association has also partnered up with Vancouver Is Awesome to give one reader a $750 gift basket from some of the neighbourhood’s most popular shopping and dining spots; enter online here by Thursday, December 12.