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2010 Where to Shop Awards

We asked. Where readers voted. Here are your top spots to shop

By Jennifer Patterson

'Tis the season for holiday chocolates at Purdys. Photo by KK Law

CHOCOLATE
Purdy’s Chocolates
For over 100 years Purdy’s has delighted sweet tooths with hazelnut truffle–filled Hedgehogs, Mint Melties and gooey Sweet Georgia Browns. Just in time for the holidays: decorative tins of assorted chocolates and peppermint bark. Yum!
Honourable Mentions
Thomas Haas Chocolates & Patisserie;
Chocolate Arts.

SHOPPING CENTRE
Pacific Centre
Downtown’s largest shopping mall houses some of the biggest labels: H&M, Teenflo, Aritzia, Harry Rosen and Sephora. It’s also home to high-end retailer Holt Renfrew.
Honourable Mentions
Metropolis at Metrotown;
Park Royal;
Oakridge Centre.

FINE ART
Heffel Fine Art
Head to the gallery to purchase works by Canadian, American and European artists, or visit the website to bid in the online auction house.
Honourable Mentions
Inuit Gallery;
Coastal Peoples Fine Arts Gallery.

DEPARTMENT STORE
Sears
The downtown location is hard to miss thanks to its bulbous white exterior. Inside find high-end cosmetics, apparel for the whole family, and small and large home appliances. There’s also a Starbucks on the main level.
Honourable Mentions
The Bay;
Holt Renfrew.

ANTIQUES & COLLECTIBLES
Vancouver Architectural Antiques
VAA specializes in 19th- and 20th-century lighting. Find everything from art deco sconces to early Victorian lamps. Sculptures, furniture and paintings, too.
Honourable Mentions
Guild House Antiques;
Antique Warehouse.

EYEWEAR
Sunglass Hut
Keep those peepers protected from harmful rays with a pair of quality sunshades. Fashionistas favour Fendi, Burberry and Ray-Ban, while sporty types pick up Oakley and Bollé.
Honourable Mentions
Art Face Optical;
Eyes on Burrard.

Colourful yoga mats and apparel at Lululemon. Photo by KK Law

ATHLETIC SPORTING GOODS
Lululemon Athletica
This local success story first opened shop in Kitsilano, and the yoga-inspired athletic apparel, which ranges from hoodies and jackets to pants and bags, has become a wardrobe staple for Vancouverites.
Honourable Mentions
Mountain Equipment Co-op;
SportChek.

LINGERIE
La Jolie Madame
Opened in 1971, this ooh la la lingerie shop carries high-end European intimates as well as daywear and nightwear. Sizes range from 32A to 46H.
Honourable Mentions
Dianes Lingerie;
Scarlet.

LADIES’ APPAREL
Aritzia
Fashion-savvy women head to Vancouver’s own Aritzia for edgy designs and must-have wardrobe staples. In-house lines include Wilfred, TNA, Community, Talula, Wilfred Free and Talula Babaton.
Honourable Mentions
Roots;
Wear Else.

MEN’S APPAREL
Boys’ Co
This hip shop carries everything for the stylish man. Brands include J. Lindberg, Hugo Boss, G Star, True Religion and Justin Timberlake’s line William Rast.
Honourable Mentions
Dunn’s Tailors;
Harry Rosen.

CHILDREN’S APPAREL
The Children’s Place
Find fashionable clothing and shoes for newborns, babies and kids size four to 14.
Honourable Mentions
Dandelion Kids;
Please Mum.

FOOTWEAR
Freedman Shoes
For over 75 years this Vancouver company has been helping locals on the hunt for the perfect shoe. Brands include Calvin Klein, Sam Edelman, Michael Kors and Frye.
Honourable Mentions
Ecco;
Sterling Shoes.

Brilliant baubles line the glass cases at Blue Ruby. Photo by KK Law

BOOKS
Chapters
Spend an hour—or two—exploring this palatial, multi-level bookshop. Everything from cookbooks to self-help to art to language has a dedicated section, as do the hottest best sellers and the multitude of magazines. Great gifts ideas such as candles, calendars, blankets and music complete the space. In-store Starbucks cafe.
Honourable Mentions
Barbara-Jo’s Books to Cooks;
Book Warehouse.

CHINA & CRYSTAL
Atkinson’s
Find the perfect hostess gift, such as timeless Waterford Crystal and delicate Fabergé eggs, or style your own abode with dinnerware by Versace and Wedgwood. Linens, pottery, home decor and fragrances, too.
Honourable Mentions
Chintz & Company;
Herzog.

JEWELLERY & WATCHES
Blue Ruby
This local shop highlights jewellery designers from around the world but focuses on both Canadian and Vancouver talent. Find items great for gifting at a variety of price points. Pyrrha talisman necklaces and sterling silver Tashi earrings are eye-catching additions to any outfit.
Honourable Mentions
Birks;
Spence.

SPAS & SALONS
Absolute Spa
A perennial winner, Absolute Spa continues to charm locals and visitors alike at its citywide locations. Let your mind wander during the relaxing aromatherapy massage, or enjoy the toning and hydrating rose and tonic facial. It’s a hot spot for celebrities including Jennifer Garner, Janet Jackson, Chris Rock and Megan Fox, so you never know who you might run into.
Honourable Mentions
Spa Utopia;
Willow Stream Spa.

To vote for next year’s winners, please click here.

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