Updated: May 30th, 2018
A fluorescent-lit, ceiling stained, carpeted room… Is anyone else tired of the same old event venues? BORING!
The venue is the first thing your event attendees will judge your event on. This is your first impression. You have 7 seconds to make your mark.
With an abundance of parks, galleries, and event spaces, Vancouver gives you every opportunity to wow your attendees from the moment they step onto the premises. We also released the ultimate event venue checklist if you’d like to nail down the best venue for your next event!
(This post has now been updated to share 20 of the most baller, badass Vancouver venues out there, as of May 30th, 2018. It is in no particular order. All of them are awesome for one reason or another!)
1. The Vancouver Lookout
There’s nothing like the view from the top. The lookout offers some of the best scenery Vancouver has to offer. While you will pay a pretty penny to rent this beauty, the Lookout is an ideal venue for corporate parties, fundraising events, product launches, and press conferences. Come for the view stay for the party.
2. The Rickshaw
Formally known as the Shaw Center, this old cinema theater was once home to the kung-fu movie scene in Vancouver (can’t get much cooler than that). It has since been recreated into one of the hippest live-music venues this city has to offer. Located in the Downtown Eastside, the reopening of the Rickshaw marks an important step in the revitalization of the neighborhood. If your band is looking for a kickass venue to rock in, The Rickshaw must be considered.
3. Dr. Sun Yat Sen Chinese Gardens
Who says nature can’t be badass? If you’re looking to get your “Qi” back on track, this is the perfect place to get centered. Dr. Sun Yat Sen’s Chinese Garden is a contemplative urban oasis (big words for “this place is a chill-zone”). When your team needs a break from the hustle, bring them here for some energy renewing, morale boosting, activities.
The Beaumont is an art gallery, studio, and event space all in one. The walls of this venue showcase the work of local artists and are continually changing and evolving. Along with its art, the Beaumont provides a unique venue for receptions, book launches, and intimate music showcases.
Another remodeled Kung-Fu movie house, District 319 was renovated and opened by Oscar-nominated film producer Bill Vince. It is now one of the best boutique theaters in the city hosting music, film, and corporate events. The theater’s unique design consists of miniature Qin Dynasty replicas of the terracotta warriors. This venue has hosted red-carpeted events, fashion shows, corporate parties, and even a promotional skateboard event. KAPOW!
6. Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre
What? An aquarium? That’s RIGHT. The Vancouver Aquarium is an intriguing location to host your next special event. Voted one of Canada’s favorite attractions and considered one of the top aquariums in the world, the Vancouver Aquarium can fit up to 2400 people inside for cocktail receptions. Guests will enjoy their time at your event as they come face-to-face with the fascinating creatures that live underwater.
Hosting an event in Vancouver’s trendy Gastown neighborhood is a compelling reason to go with Brix Studio, an event venue and webinar studio that hosts a variety of events. Combining vintage charm and modern amenities in an epic swirl of class and functionality, Brix Studio is a great spot if you’re looking for a stress-free location to share with your event attendees.
8. Vancouver’s Salt Building
This Southeast False Creek landmark is brimming with interesting history and amazing architecture. Owned by the City of Vancouver and managed by the City’s Real Estate Services Department, this venue offers over 13,000 square feet of space and plays host to a huge variety of events and functions. If you’re on the lookout for a grand heritage building that entirely captures all of its former glory, look no further.
This location will have you dropping your jaw when you step through its doors. Built a century ago for the BC Permanent & Loan Company (which inspired their current name), this location was also home to the Bank of Canada in 1935. Now it’s been restored and acts as an event space that’s available for private and public bookings.
Coworking spaces are perfectly suited for hosting events and workshops, and Suite Genius is no exception. Their Mt. Pleasant location can seat up to 30 guests, while their space can hold 50 people if they mix it up with seating and standing. Their space has a café sort of feel to it and is an ideal setting to speak on a personal level.
With five unique venues, Simon Fraser University’s Downtown location offers some stunning facilities for you to host your events. From the Asia Pacific Hall for an open-dialogue event format to their dedicated boardrooms, there’s something for everyone who’s planning a meeting, an event, or a conference. When you step in, prepare to have your mind blown.
This gorgeous venue opened in the Fall of 2015 with the ability to house 233-seated guests in its studio theatre. With state-of-the-art sound and lighting LED systems in place and a flexible seating arrangement, this is an event planner’s dream come true. You can also use the additional 4 studios and a VIP boardroom as breakout rooms!
For more intimate events or workshops where you’d like smaller group sizes of around 15 people, we’d suggest checking out The Profile. They have three different locations (Downtown, Gastown, and North Vancouver) and all of them are equipped to host meetings of various sizes. Call them to make an appointment and check out their venue!
The Deeley Motorcycle Exhibition is “the largest privately-owned collection of vintage and new motorcycles in Canada”. What’s also cool about this place is that they are also a unique meeting and conference venue! With 1,800 square feet of conference space that overlooks a gorgeous courtyard. Impress your attendees with an all-in-one experience that’s both entertaining and educational.
The Makeshift Space is a transformable space that offers 1050 square feet, WiFi access, a gallery track, and more. It’s the perfect location to host themed events and the support from their team is top-notch. If you want a Vancouver venues location that lets you customize its appearance to your heart’s content, this is the place!
Who doesn’t know about UBC? Canada’s largest university conference facility is the perfect place for your conference or event. The campus boasts a ton of picturesque spots and affordability. With the ability to accommodate up to 4,000 guests (Yeah, that’s right), UBC is an excellent spot for both weddings and professional conferences.
This elegant ballroom venue is an amazing historic building that features a gorgeous color scheme and high ceilings. If you want an event venue that has an almost fantasy-like appearance, this is a great spot. (as long as you have less than 200 people). There’s really not much more you could ask for from a venue like this!
Waterview is one of the newest waterfront event spaces in Vancouver and offers an amazing unobstructed view of False Creek, Granville Island, and the surrounding cityscape. The open flexible interior space caps out at 3,250 square feet and has a nice, open aesthetic that can really captivate your attendees. Private parties, corporate events, festive galas and more, are all welcome at this location!
19. Bill Reid Gallery of Northwest Coast Art
Named after the acclaimed Haida artist Bill Reid, this gallery is a gorgeous venue that is perfectly tailored towards corporate events, galas, fundraisers, and more. Just a short walk from major hotels in Vancouver, this public gallery will leave attendees wanting more at the end of the night.
This award-winning entertainment venue has a longstanding reputation for delivering awesome service in a memorable venue space. It’s got an old-school feel to it without looking old. Impressing your attendees at this location will not be a problem!
So there you have it: 20 Vancouver venues that will help you nail that all-important first impression. These are just a few of many, many great event spots. If you have a venue you’d like to add to this list, let us know in the comments section below.