• eat
  • shop
  • see
  • go
  • stay
  • daytrip
  • map
  • calendar
  • transport
  • weather
  • currency
  • tofrom

Jill Von Sprecken

Winterruption

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Warm up with live entertainment at Winterruption. (Photo: Granville Island)

Warm up with live entertainment at Winterruption. (Photo: Granville Island)

If winter has you feeling left out in the cold, don’t miss Winterruption. Back for its 12th year, this festival puts a freeze on the winter blues with a line-up of live music, theatre, dance and more. Grab a hot chocolate and watch artist Ola Volo’s mural come to life, take in performances by the Vancouver TheatreSports League, catch a pop-up dance or enjoy the laid-back jazz of Black Gardenia. Or simply wander Granville Island, pop into the Public Market (page 17) and start warming up to spring.

A Sweet Story

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Jackie Kai Ellis creates tasty treats at Beaucoup Bakery. (Photo: KK Law)

Jackie Kai Ellis creates tasty treats at Beaucoup Bakery. (Photo: KK Law)

Biting into a perfectly crisp, flaky pastry can certainly feel like a life-changing experience, but in the case of Jackie Kai Ellis, that indulgence actually helped the Beaucoup Bakery owner whip up a new life. When Ellis flew to Paris to study pastry making at École Gastronomique Bellouet Conseil, she left behind her life as a graphic designer with her own firm. The catalyst? A cookie. (more…)

Keep Cozy with Icebreaker

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Fend off the elements with gear from Icebreaker

Fend off the elements with gear from Icebreaker

The great outdoors are pretty great. But let’s face it: sometimes they’re cold and wet, too. Keep the elements at bay with gear from Icebreaker. The outdoor outfitter creates activewear from superfine merino wool, a fabric that’s warm, breathable and odour-resistant. Named the official base layer—and sock provider—of Whistler Blackcomb, Icebreaker crafts their clothes from the fibres of merino sheep, New Zealand’s true alpine extremists. Get outfitted from head to toe at Can-Ski (page 34) or Escape Route (page 34).

Go for Gold at Whistler Blackcomb

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Whistler Skier's Plaza

Whistler Skier’s Plaza. (Photo: Justa Jeskova/Tourism Whistler)

Whistler Blackcomb has never been afraid to think big. In fact, the ski resort’s foundations are built on the biggest dreams of all: the Olympics. In the 1960s, four Vancouver businessmen developed the area with the intent of bidding on the 1968 Winter Olympics. Three more bids and decades later, the town finally succeeded with the 2010 Winter Games. Along the way, the mountain resort accumulated its own accolades, including the number one rating overall by SKI Magazine—three years in a row. Add in awards for dining, après-ski and terrain, plus the record-breaking Peak 2 Peak, and it’s clear the resort never gave up its gold-medal bid

Skincare with Seoul

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

True Cream Moisturizing Bomb

True Cream Moisturizing Bomb

What do you get when you combine up-to-the-minute Korean skincare with a 150-year-old Scottish apothecary? Beauty brand Belif. The cult-favourite skincare products are infused with traditional herbal formulas from Scotland, but are free from synthetic preservatives, dyes, fragrances and mineral oils. To combat cold-weather concerns, try the skin-quenching True Cream Moisturizing Bomb, which contains hydrating comfrey leaf for up to 26 hours of moisture. Stock up at The Face Shop.

Due South

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Mamie Taylor's ham grenades

Mamie Taylor’s ham grenades

For the best down-home Southern fare this side of the Bayou, head to Mamie Taylor’s. The walls of this hip Chinatown eatery are adorned with a formidable collection of taxidermy, while the menu is decked out with classic American dishes. You can’t go wrong with the finger-licking-good fried chicken with chilli-honey drizzle, or the blissfully addictive ham grenades. The restaurant is named for a classic cocktail—and a turn-of-the-century opera singer—so don’t miss the namesake tipple or the Talladega Nights Julep. It’s southern hospitality at its best.

Restful Repast at Nita Lake Lodge

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

West Coast fare at Aura

Sustainable West Coast fare at Aura

Seeking serenity? Escape the bustling Village to tranquil Nita Lake Lodge, a timber-and-stone retreat perched at lake’s edge. After a day spent making tracks in champagne powder, settle into Cure Lounge for casual après-ski beside the enormous stone fireplace. Then head next door, where sophisticated Aura boasts a menu of sustainable, seasonal, West Coast fare. Picturesque and peaceful.

By the Numbers: Peak 2 Peak Gondola

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

The Peak 2 Peak Gondola. (Photo: Mike Crane/Tourism Whistler)

The Peak 2 Peak Gondola. (Photo: Mike Crane/Tourism Whistler)

The math is simple: two mountains and the record-breaking Peak 2 Peak Gondola all add up to one awesome experience.

1: The gondola is the first in the world to link the peaks
of two mountains, a feat that delivers truly one-of-a-kind views.

3: It’s one for the books: the Peak 2 Peak broke three
Guinness World Records, claiming fame as the world’s longest unsupported span, the highest lift of its kind, and the longest continuous lift system.

(more…)

Chocolate Chronicle

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Delicious Crunchetti clusters from Brockmann's Chocolates

Delicious Crunchetti clusters from Brockmann’s Chocolates

Once upon a time there was a chocolate-maker named Willy. Only in this particular story, his tempting confections were brought from Europe to Canada, where they were crafted with care for another 30 years. The third-generation chocolatiers now offer two locally made treats: the creamy Truffini truffles, which are available in 11 flavours, including Canadian maple; and the addictive Crunchetti clusters, with toasted almonds and cranberries. Indulge your sweet tooth with treats by Brockmann’s Chocolates at Urban Fare and Nesters.

On the Brink: PuSh Festival 2017

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Mess is showing at the PuSh Festival. (Photo: Edmund Collier)

Mess is showing at the PuSh Festival. (Photo: Edmund Collier)

Jan 16-Feb 5 Ready to bend your boundaries? Then head to the PuSh International Performing Arts Festival. Now in its 13th year, the annual fest celebrates groundbreaking theatre, dance, music and visual arts in over 27 works by artists from 11 countries. See works such as Mess, Sweat Baby Sweat or Macbeth: Third World Bunfight, a provocative piece that sets Verdi’s opera in the Congo, with machete-sharp results. It’s an evening spent on the edge—of your seat, that is.

Fine Lines

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

'Aquatic #2' by Pat O'Hara

‘Aquatic #2’ by Pat O’Hara

Jan 7-18 Some pull strings, others paint them. Contemporary artist Pat O’Hara uses energetic brushstrokes to apply strings of paint on canvas, finishing the super-saturated works with a glossy resin finish. The BC native, who now lives in Vancouver, often draws from her own environment and experiences to create her varied, layered pieces. She favours a bold, playful palette, using shades that evoke nature, from sunrise to seaside. See the artist’s abstract acrylic-on-canvas pieces in Linearity at Bau-Xi Gallery.

Of Love and Pasta

By JILL VON SPRECKEN

Delicious dining at La Pentola. (Photo: Daniel Burke)

Delicious dining at La Pentola. (Photo: Daniel Burke)

Indulge in rustic Italian dishes just like Nonna used to make—even if it was someone else’s Nonna—at La Pentola. The menu of traditional dishes matches the classic space, making it the ideal place to live la dolce vita over perfectly executed plates of house-made pasta, creamy imported burrata and hearty mains like Fraser Valley lamb. Order à la carte, or for a slice of Italian hospitality, order à la famiglia and share five or seven courses with the ones you love. Perfezione.