As the third largest city in Canada, Vancouver is an important stop on international tours for the hottest musical superstars in every genre. On a scaled down level, the city boasts an impressive range of cool cabarets, swinging nightclubs, and hip lounges that feature live music played by local bands. When you're in Vancouver on business, unwind at the end of a long day to the sound of some of your favorite beats.
The Big Venues
It takes some planning in advance, but if you’re a concert goer, check out the band schedule for Rogers Arena or BC Place Stadium to see if your favorite artists will be performing while you're in town on business. Rogers Arena is home to the Vancouver Canucks hockey team, but when they aren't on the ice, it's where you catch stars like Bruno Mars, Bob Dylan, Neil Diamond, and Lady Gaga.
BC Place Stadium hosts sporting events, too, and is the home of the BC Lions Football Club, Vancouver Whitecaps FC, and the BC Sports Hall of Fame. It's also where to find major touring acts, such as Guns 'n Roses and Coldplay, in the heart of downtown Vancouver.
The Vancouver Theatre District centers around Granville Street in downtown Vancouver. Located less than a block apart, Commodore Ballroom and The Orpheum are two of the city's outstanding live entertainment venues. Built in 1929, the Commodore is an Art Deco wonder that provides entertainment for more than 120,000 guests each year at more than 150 public events. Past acts include Talking Heads, Paul Oakenfold, Tina Turner, The Police, Snoop Dogg, and Dr. Dre.
Considered one of the most beautiful concert halls in North America, The Orpheum hosts Canadian and international musicians, lecture series, and an assortment of unique events. Built in 1927 and refurbished in 2009, the opulent hall is a Canadian National Heritage Site. Originally a vaudeville theater, it's also home to the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra.
For a night out on a smaller scale, check out the calendar of events at the Vogue Theatre on Granville. Easily recognized by its large neon sign, the venue hosts upwards of 200 events a year and prides itself on its first-class hospitality.
Also on Granville, small clubs with DJs, such as Venue and The Roxy, feature local bands performing a mix of rock, country, and blues music. Celebrities Nightclub is a block or so away and is a top spot with international DJs and those who love theme nights like drag bingo. To catch your favorite hip hop beats, head to Fortune Sound Club in Vancouver's Chinatown.
Clubs and Lounges
At Calabash Bistro, the downstairs lounge hosts musicians playing everything from reggae, jazz, and blues to Motown and funk and admission rarely has a cover charge. Another favorite spot with locals, the Revel Room is a supper club with live entertainment in the heart of Gastown. Enjoy live boogie piano five afternoons a week (Tuesday through Saturday), or take in a dinner show that features everything from roots to rockabilly and soulful jazz with no cover charge.
On the jazz front, Guilt & Co. offers up swing, cabaret, and band showcases that are sure to get you on your feet. Head to the Biltmore Cabaret for a wide variety of ground breaking musical performances at one of the city's most well-known independent music venues.
Vancouver offers a diverse range of live entertainment options throughout the city, meaning there's no reason to ever be bored in your downtime. Visit our Facebook page to look for other great ways to fill free time on your business travels.