Uniqlo – Known for their colourful, cost-friendly t-shirts and puffy down jackets, Uniqlo (www.uniqlo.com/ca/en) has arrived in Vancouver and brings with it a deep understanding of quality in the fast fashion clothing and apparel industry. This Japanese fashion brand has opened its first British Columbia location at the Metropolis at Metrotown shopping centre, with a 20,630 SF retail space that is a true example of Uniqlo’s slogan – ‘Made for all’ – housing casual clothes that are made for everyone, irrespective of age, gender or ethnicity. With more than 1,900 stores across 18 markets (with a new store opening somewhere in the world every week), Uniqlo is the third-largest fashion retailer in the world, with some analysts forecasting that it could become the number one fashion brand if it continues its explosive global growth.

Uniqlo store in Metrotown (Source: Uniqlo Twitter)

Granville Island revitalisation – A long-term master plan for the revitalisation of this famed Vancouver shopping district and tourist spot was recently unveiled (granvilleisland2040.ca). Intriguingly, it includes the construction of an elevator to the Granville Street Bridge, the public market expansion, a streetcar connection and a conversion of parking lots into a mew multipurpose performance theatre. This proposal marks the first time major improvements have been put forward since the Island was converted into a culture and arts hub, back in the 1970s.

Sketch of Granville Bridge Elevator (Source: granvilleisland2040.ca)

Canada’s 1st Pod Hotel – Next year, Whistler Village will be the home of the first pod hotel in Canada, the Pangea Pod Hotel (www.pangeapod.com)! This affordable yet boutique hotel is offering private pods in the heart of Whistler, with communal spaces like the Rooftop Patio (on the third floor and a rooftop bar), The Toy Box (a storage space for ski/snowboard equipment) and the Living Room (a café and bar). The pods themselves will be stacked on top of each other, two high, replete with air circulation, white noise system, integrated LED lighting and power outlets.

Pod accomodation (Source: Pangea Pod Hotel)

The Amazing Brentwood – Metro Vancouver will soon have a brand new mega mall in the shape of The Amazing Brentwood (www.theamazingbrentwood.com). This colossal retail and residential development of Brentwood Town Centre will have a mall retail area of over a million square feet – boasting 250 stores and restaurants, as well as a whole host of tenant anchors, which have yet to be confirmed. The immense residential development in and around the site will also add 11,000 residents within 11 towers, mimicking downtown Vancouver’s skyscraper horizon. Its opening date of Spring 2019 is much anticipated and even rumored to be ahead of schedule.

Shops, restaurants and boutiques at the Amazing Brentwood (Source: Shape Properties)

Lonsdale Waterfront – Construction has officially begun in North Vancouver’s Lower Lonsdale waterfront with the purpose of enhancing the area as a new public vent and commercial space (www.cnv.org/parks-recreation-and-culture/city-waterfront/foot-of-lonsdale). The 1.6-acre waterfront next to the Quay will feature a 12,000 SF wintertime outdoor covered ice rink, an 8,000 SF summertime water play area, waterfront walkways and the building of 84,000 SF of mixed-use commercial and community amenity space. Scheduled for completion in late 2018, this is the final phase of the Shipyards redevelopment which has focused on revitalizing the area and creating new structures.

Rendering of the Lonsdale development (Source: City of North Vancouver)

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