This is our guide to shopping in one of The Island’s coolest districts – the Net Loft Shops! From clothing and jewelry to offbeat artisan goods, you’re sure to find something special. Skip the long lines, the malls and the impersonal gifts, on Granville Island, there are enough one-of-a-kind and locally made gifts for everyone on your holiday shopping list! Come browse the shops, studios, workshops, boutiques, alleyways, markets and restaurants to take in everything The Net Loft shops have to offer.
Getting to the Island
Granville Island is centrally located and easily accessible. As part of their Zero Waste Island initiative, Granville Island supports using public transit, car share programs, biking, and carpooling with friends. Get ahead of the curve and bring your reusable bags for this year’s shopping list.
Adjacent to The Net Loft, located just inside The Public Market, is Vancouver coffee staple JJ Bean. They boast some of the best coffee in the city, helping you start your day on the right foot. Also, consider purchasing one of their locally roasted bags of coffee for the coffee lover on your list.
Heading across the street to The Net Loft, you’ll find tons of stores to choose from. For the writer in your life, check out The Postcard Place. They have a postcard for every occasion you could imagine. Frame them, write on them, keep them, share them and give them! Paper Ya is paradise for anyone that loves carrying a journal, notebook, sketchbook or nice stationary and writing utensils. This is also a great place to find unique gift accessories like greeting cards and wrapping paper. For the maker in your life, head to Beadworks and get lost in their bins of beads, pearls, shells, and glass. They have everything an aspiring or established jewelry maker needs to work on their craft. For the textile lover, pick up some hand-woven, block-printed, embroidered, and naturally dyed textiles from Maiwa. Made using silk, linen, and cotton by by artisans in India, you can find everything from shawls and wraps to garments and bedding. Maiwa also carries an assortment of jewelry and books.
There’s no doubt that one of the best places to dine on The Island is The Public Market! Head back across the street from the Net Loft to experience all the market has to offer. A true feast for the eyes and the belly, The Market has nearly every type of cuisine imaginable. For the vegetarians, try Chau Veggie Express. For authentic and refreshing Mexican food, check out La Tortilleria. Once your sweet tooth kicks in, head to A La Mode for pie and Bon Macaron Patisserie, for you guessed it, delicious macarons. If nothing else, you can pick up some incredibly fresh produce for those very important holiday dinners.
On your way back to the Net Loft shops, check out The Granville Island Hat Shop. Every style, make, color and texture is available here. For the music lover in your life, check out Gandharva Loka World Music Instruments. It’s the only store in Vancouver that offers a wide range of unique, handmade, modern and traditional musical instruments and accessories from around the world. With their selection, you can easily find gifts for the seasoned musicians or beginners. For the fashion lover in your life, stop by Little Dream Apparel. Since 1993, Little Dream has been stocking a diverse collection of Vancouver-and-area designer fashion. From casual wear, to the avant-garde, to one-of-a-kind designs, jewelry and accessories – they have it all! If you have wine on your list, check out Liberty Wine Merchants. With an incredible selection of high quality, unique wine and a staff that boasts over 100 years of combined experience, you’re sure to find something tasty for all those holiday dinner parties.
Once you’re feeling peckish, just pay a visit to the Net Loft Café for snacks, coffee, tea and whatever else you need to keep shopping!
After your long day of shopping, it’s time to take a seat and indulge in the incredible food The Island has to offer. Check out mainstay, Bridges, or grab a seat in the dining room at Edible Canada. Celebrating all the different cuisines this country has to offer, Edible Canada offers delicious meals ranging from Chilliwack Pork Chops to Northern Alberta Elk Tartare. They also host food events, and sell gift baskets, which means you can do a little more shopping as you eat.
You can’t leave The Island without experiencing what it’s known for… entertainment!
Check out what’s happening at the Improv centre. From Wednesday to Saturday you can enjoy the hilarious theatrical and musical antics of new and seasoned actors, whose quick wit and talent are sure to keep you on your toes. If you’re looking for a production to get you in the festive spirit, check out Christmas Queen 3: The Bachelorette Edition. There are also tons of great shows happening at the Backstage Lounge. Jazz, blues, rock, and folk – this venue has it all.
And, if after all that, you’re too wiped to make it home, the lovely Granville Island Hotel would be happy to accommodate you. This boutique hotel merges comfort and elegance, ensuring a very restful sleep.
Granville Island is home to tons of shops, restaurants and businesses. Make sure to head to the Granville Island website to confirm holiday hours and product availability. Also, don’t forget to enter the Granville Island Giving Contest to win a $250 shopping spree! Granville Island will also be donating $250 to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank for every winner. To enter, follow Granville Island on Instagram @granville_island then show them what giving means to you by posting a photo with the hashtag #GIgiving. The contest closes December 16, 2016.
Ready to explore more? Check out Granville Island’s Railspur District HERE.