Wednesday, July 2, 2014

My Trip To Vancouver Part #2

Vancouver Trip Report

Arriving in Vancouver

Touchdown –The airport was beautiful and distinctive, filled with artwork, statues and an enchanting aquarium. «

                                                         Aquarium In The Airport.
However, arriving in Vancouver well after midnight, I was surprised to find that all of the car rental 

companies were closed. FEH!With so many flights arriving and departing at that time, I will say that I found it a bit odd that there were no car rental companies available to assist travelers.

Public transportation also not operating at that time, there was only one option left – taxi cab, which we were happy to find and jump right into. Our cab driver seemed a bit foreign to us … by the way he was looking at us I believe he was thinking the same thing. However, in time, we began to talk and he soon offered a very warming and comfortable personality. Upon arriving at the hotel (the cab ride cost $35), finishing up with a very nice tipto the driver, I’m sure we left him with a great appreciation for the Jewish community.«««

Check-in We checked in at the Fairmont Pacific Rim. You will love this hotel - it was exquisite. From the luxury cars parked outside, to the gorgeous lobby and the breathtaking views seen from most areas of the hotel. Though exhausted, most of our senses were fully alert.«
Upon opening the door to our room we found a letter from the Hotel Manager personally addressed to us and welcoming us to the hotel (nice touch – you’d be impressed).The hotel room was superb, which is an understatement. Modern in style, including a modern crib, toys and diapers awaiting our infant.«After our long trip, stomachs were rumbling in hunger. We had brought kosher food from home, but there was no microwave in the room to heat it – so we called for the hotel staff, who gladly took our double wrapped food and warmed up our meal for us. Wondering what to do with the rest of the food we had brought from home, noticing that the minibar was too small to house all of our kosher foods, we contacted the hotel staff once again –and they graciously brought up a larger sized mini-fridge to keep for the rest of our stay. With our stomachs full, it was off to bed for a very comfortable and cozy good night sleep. For more information on this wonderful hotel please visit their website. Fairmont Pacific Rim                                                                                                               Fairmont Room                                                        Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel  
Check-in was a breeze. They were awaiting our arrival, greeted us by name, and swiftly showed us to our room.  The hotel porter, as well as the rest of the staff, were very helpful and extremely polite. «
Modern Restroom
Luxury Cars Parked And Washed Front Of Hotel..

Vancouver Trip Report

Vancouver Day 1

In the morning we walked to National car rental. The service was great and the people particularly polite and warm (you’ll find that this is the “norm” for nearly everyone in Vancouver«). Being an Emerald Club Member, we were offered a free upgrade for our rental car (a red convertible). Very cool yes, but while there was enough room for our family, there wasn’t much room for all of our belongings (pack light if you find yourself thrilled to be driving around in a convertible). Seated in our shiny red convertible,feeling as though “the world is mine,” we decided to drive to Stanley Park. We paid for parking then walked to the garden, inhaling the beautiful scent of the various flowers – at which point we decided to head to the aquarium, which was nice, but a bit overpriced. The aquarium didn’t offer more than most any other, including the show, but the one thing we didgenuinely enjoy was the 4D Black Bears Salmon Show … a nice experience on how Brown Bears live in the British Columbia area. A great show yes – but if you’ve been to any out of the ordinary aquariums in the past, you might want to skip this one to avoid disappointment

Continuing with our afternoon, we walked a few miles along the seawall, which was quite pretty, peaceful and very relaxing.

Then we continued onto the 9 O’clock Gun/Cannon. This gun goes off each night at 9 pm, which frightened my wife the first time she heard it (I found her fright a bit cute), though I quickly comforted her in explaining what it was.– Prepare your wives ahead of time–
After much walking, our feet were speaking to us in languages even we didn't understand – though we were sure it meant “OUCH” – so we headed back to the car, put down the roof and drove around the park to enjoy the rest of the beautiful scenery. We stumbled across a lookout point that was undeniably breathtaking and demanded we step out of the car to get a better look. A wise choice, as the sea standing below, with the mountains and cityscape above was a view not to be missed. «There’s too much to see and talk about at this park – so I’ll share this link with you to give you a better idea. – Remember to wear comfortable shoes– Vancouver Stanley Park

Stanley Park, Vancouver, BC, Canada

Stanley Park Vancouver BC Canada
Back to the hotel, now in need of parking, we realized that the hotel parking was $40. For a 4 day trip, I’m sure you’ll find that to be a bit expensive. Street parking was also difficult to find, so we parked at the Convention Center across from the hotel, where parking was only $25 for the night. «Cha-Ching«

On a side note, parking isn’t particularly necessary in Vancouver, as public transportation takes you anywhere you need to go, arriving often –cycling is also another option. The only time you might need a vehicle is when visiting Whistler, which offers a wonderful resort and spa.
Whistler Resort and Spa

Nearing dinner time, yet not quite ready to stop our sightseeing, we walked over to the Convention Center for FlyOver Canada,a 4D experience that’s a “must do” if in the area. This is an individual experience, consisting of 2 rooms (2 separate experiences), so you must go in one at a time and infants are not allowed. The first room was an all of the seasons in Canada experience. It was kind of cool, but nothing major. The second room was an awe-inspiring experience, a virtual flight simulator that brings you right into the entire experience … Flyover Canada. «««FANTABULOUS «««
To quote their site “See Canada like never before at Vancouver's new must-see attraction! At its core, FlyOver Canada is a breathtaking, all-ages, flight simulation ride like no other! You will take off into a huge dome screen with the latest in projection and ride technology creating a true flying experience (complete with wind, scents, and mist!). At FlyOver Canada you will spend approximately 30 minutes getting introduced to our great country. You will first enter the preshow area where you will be immersed in an audio-visual show of Canada "up close and personal" before heading to the boarding zone for your preflight briefing. You will then hit your flight deck and spend 8 minutes on the unforgettable Ultimate Flying Ride soaring east to west over some of the most spectacular scenery the country has to offer.”
It was an “all senses” experience like no other. It covered every part of Canada, skiing, country sides, farms, cities, land, water, different seasons, Niagara Falls and  so much more – very lifelike. There’s simply no way to fully describe the experience, other than to send you to their website to “Watch The New Flyover Canada Ad” – though keep in mind, while actually there, you are made to feel as though you are physically a part of the experience.  FlyOver Canada Website & Ad Video

After venturing about and experiencing so much in one day, we left the Convention Center,
which was near the sea, stopping to watch the beautiful sunset before going back to the hotel,
warmed our kosher meals and fell asleep after a Wonderful Day in Vancouver.
««« SCHLUFF «««

Please check back soon for Day 2 – 4 of the Vancouver Trip Report Vancouver Trip Report

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