The Burrard Hotel has recently undergone a complete renovation, overhaul, re-branding, and everything else associated with bringing this 1950s style motor hotel up to Vancouver’s world-class city standards. Tipping their hat to their roots, you can find retro charms like plastic patio furniture in the swinging garden courtyard mixed with modern amenities like complimentary WIFI and a guest iMac in the lobby.
The Burrard fell into disrepair for decades, sporting the same heavy, smokey 1970s decor until new management tore it apart in 2010. Over a year later, it re-opened last fall with more than just a fresh coat of paint. Walls were torn apart to upgrade wiring and plumbing, carpeting was completely re-done, and the antiquated furniture was replaced, and a re-branding was in order. Playing a bit with their old image, the new branding incorporates a sharp font, bright colours, and hip activity ideas for your visit.
I don’t envision The Burrard as an ideal destination for large families spending a week-long vacation in the city as it doesn’t have things like a restaurant or a pool and the rooms have just one bed. However, its appealing price point, value, location, and amenities are perfect for a grown-up weekend downtown for an event or concert, conference or corporate getaway. It’s close to the Granville entertainment district, walking distance to shopping on Robson, and right along the bus line that will take you to Kitsilano, Granville Island, and much more that the city has to offer.
I liked that the WIFI was included (pay WIFI is a common hotel guest complaint), the parking was gated (accessed using your room key-card), there are complimentary rental bikes, and the rooms were cozy with a pod coffee maker, iPod dock/clock radio, and a large flat-screen TV. I’m not a huge fan of the cheeky quotes found in the stairwells but that could be appealing to others. However, playing my web-developer nerd card, I am a fan of the font used for the messaging.
Right now one night at The Burrard runs from $93 to $119 – which is a pretty great deal for downtown. With the “old Burrard” behind them, they have already climbed up to be #16 on Trip Advisor’s list of hotels in Vancouver (as of March 2012). After having breakfast with General Manager Dani Pretto, and learning more about the dedicated staff, I see a bright future for The Burrard. Follow them on Twitter @TheBurrard for news and updates.