Vancouver’s compact Gastown neighborhood is home to some of the best shopping in the world.
You may think Robson Street, home to upscale department stores Holt Renfrew and a newly opened Nordstrom, boasts the best shopping in Vancouver. But the local boutiques lining the cobblestone streets of Gastown, situated a short walk from the downtown core and cruise ship district, just may change your mind.
Here are six independent Gastown clothing stores for men and women that, alone, are worth a trip to Vancouver. And don’t forget that the very favorable exchange rate makes it a great time to power shop up north.
True to its name, One of a Few carries a limited selection of carefully edited and easy-to-wear clothing by emerging and established designers.
And what the charmingly tiny, white-walled boutique lacks in physical space, it makes up for in high style. Think artfully designed feminine silhouettes, like silky tops tucked into high-waisted trousers and crop tops paired with full skirts gathered at the waist.
Look for brands such as Objects Without Meaning, Luisa et la Luna and Samuji. The shop also houses a selective shoe section, with sandals from Maryam Nassir Zadeh and slides from The Palatines. 354 Water St.
One of the first boutiques to open up shop in Gastown, the wares at The Block are hip-meets-heritage, and are just the kind of easy, breezy pieces that complete the perfect date-night look.
The shop stocks not-to-be-missed labels such as Ulla Johnson, A.P.C, and Steven Alan. Don’t overlook the well-stocked selection of No.6 clogs and timeless, handcrafted leather satchels by J.W. Hulme. The store also caters to men. 350 W. Cordova St.
Vancouver cool-girls flock to Oak +Fort to achieve a minimalist look without maxing out their credit cards. Unlike some neighboring Gastown boutiques, the brand’s in-house line is much less spendy.
Think uncomplicated and effortless pairings like trusty tunics and tailored trousers. With locations across Canada and three newly opened locations in the U.S., the Vancouver-based design powerhouse is not to be overlooked. 355 Water St.
The Gastown mainstay Neighbour offers a well-curated mix of European designer looks crafted in high-quality materials.
The clean and minimalist shop is a go-to for raw denim by Acne, Danish leather goods by Mismo, rain jackets by Stutterheim, and more cult-like labels such as Gosha Rubchinskiy’s normcore-inspired fashion. There’s a well-edited selection for women, too. 45 Powell St.
Housing in-demand designer clothing from Japan and Europe, Roden Gray attracts those with an eye for fashion and a disposable income to spend. An elegant mashup of casual and distinctive dress attire and streetwear, this men’s shop carries looks from high-end brands you won’t find anywhere else like oxford shirts by Thom Browne, outerwear by Ami, and dress shoes by Alden. Water St
Filled with everything a style-minded guy needs, Haven is a standout shop for the latest in men’s streetwear. The level of curation here attracts cult-level fashion fans, especially when it comes to the shoes.
The shop’s current roster includes Yeezy, Hender Scheme and Common Projects. Shop here to score the latest version of Visvim’s iconic (and spendy) FTB moccasin sneaker. 52 E. Cordova St.