Most Vancouverites know the Bob Rennie of Rennie Marketing Systems, the largest real estate marketing firm in town.
But do you know the Bob Rennie that happens to own the largest personal art collection in all of North America? Yeah, wow. The first piece of artwork Bob ever bought was a Norman Rockwell print at the age of 17, which goes to show he had a love for arts and culture right from the get-go. Both his new office headquarters and adjoining personal gallery in the historic Wing Sang Building call Chinatown home — plus sometimes Bob gives gallery tours on Sundays and he has an Expo Ernie! — all of which we think is totally, totally awesome. –May Globus
What neighbourhood did you grow up in and where do you live now?
I grew up in East Vancouver. Maybe that’s why I have a comfort with the downtown eastside. Now I live just off Granville Island; it works out really central for us.
Why did you pick Chinatown for your new office and gallery?
The city has been good to me. I’ve sold real estate here for 35 years, and I want to help balance out the downtown eastside. I represented Woodwards for the developer, and I couldn’t afford to [build the offices] on Granville or on Burrard, though probably after this I may as well have! I wanted something to balance off the art, and [since the Wing Sang Building] is the oldest building in Chinatown, it just seemed to be a really nice, civil fit for a museum to be housed, culture within culture.
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