Browsing Tag

Granville Island

North America, Reviews, Travel Advice, Trip Reports

The Foodie’s version of Heaven: The Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts

December 19, 2010 • By

I first heard about the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts (1505 2nd Avenue West , Vancouver, BC V6H 3Y4) while watching Rachael Ray’s $40.00 a day show on The Food Network’s channel back in 2006.  Rachael was tasked to buy Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner for under $40.00.  This particular show had her searching the city of  Vancouver for those elusive restaurant deals and P.I.C.A. was one of her choices.  My daughter and I were planning a trip there because we had frequent flier miles to redeem and we were fortunate enough to get a crazy deal for a great hotel on Priceline.  So, we thought it might be a good idea to check it out.   Besides, P.I.C.A. is located right outside the entrance to Granville Island which was convenient since that was another stop on our itinerary.

Founded in 1996,  P.I.C.A.’s cooks are actually students who are training to become chefs of fancy restaurants that I will never be able to afford.  Seriously, Bistro 101 is a teaching restaurant that provides real world experience for up and coming culinary masters.  Students work in every position of the restaurant: from the cook to the host to the server to the bus boy…..they get to experience all aspects of running a restaurant.READ MORE


City Views, North America

Pictures of Vancouver, British Columbia Canada

November 1, 2009 • By

Vancouver, British Columbia Canada

We visited during their rainy season, but that didn’t drench our spirits. Vancouver is one of the friendliest cities in North America and you can practically eat off the ground it’s so clean. Their transportation system is very user friendly and great restaurants abound.

Take a trek to Granville Island to enjoy their top notch farmer’s market and be sure to grab a bite at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts right at the Island’s entrance and don’t forget to take the ferry to Lonsdale Quay where you can take the bus as soon as you dock to the Lynn Canyon Park where you can traverse their cool suspension bridge.

Click here to view these pictures larger


Canada, Reviews, Trip Reports

My Vancouver Trip Report

March 15, 2006 • By

Our Vancouver Trip

Our flight to Vancouver was scheduled to depart Atlanta at 8 am on March 3, 2006; the reasoning was that it would allow us to have a large part of the day remaining to see Vancouver when we arrived since they are three hours behind us. However, our flight was delayed and we were fortunate enough to be re-routed on another (United) flight (that one left at 7:00!!) that would have a stopover in SFO rather than Chicago. During our flight, we were treated to the film “The Family Stone”. I had carefully avoided it in the theaters, so I was none too pleased that it was my only choice for in-flight entertainment. Ironically, it turned out to be a pretty good movie…who knew? We brought snacks along with us since we’d left too early to stop anywhere and we were only offered beverages and pretzels during the flight…no real food unless you were in first class.

We arrived in SFO in five hours and had a one hour layover until we caught our flight to Vancouver. Our transfer gate happened to be in the same terminal only a few gates down. We took that opportunity to buy lunch at the Subway sandwich shop in the short time that we had…it’s amazing how the mind clears when hunger is satisfied. lol Our flight finally touched down in Vancouver two hours later. We had to get cleared through customs and proceeded to the baggage claim area. I stopped by the ATM to get some Canadian cash and my $300.00CAN withdrawal converted to $264.00US…not a fantastic exchange rate…but oh well.

Right outside the door to the ground transportation area we were able to get round trip tickets on the Airporter bus (departs from the International arrivals level curb every 20 minutes from 8 am to 7 pm every day) that would take us to our hotel. We paid $18.00CAN pp and were issued tickets that resembled cash register receipts. I guess our hotel was too far because we were let off at the Marriott to transfer to a smaller shuttle bus (we waited roughly 10 minutes) that took us to the entrance of the Westin Bayshore Resort and Marina Hotel (http://www.westinbayshore.com/home.asp).

We were quickly checked in and after nicely refusing assistance with our bags, we were on our way to check out our room. Now, we booked our room via Priceline….we were not expecting anything grand and suspected that our room would be sub-par given that we only paid $60.00US per night. Luckily, for the most part, we were wrong. The room was a standard consisting of two double “Heavenly” beds, night table, three lamps, armoire with television set, a desk and two cushioned chairs, phone, in-room safe, hairdryer, ironing board and iron, umbrella, two comfy bathrobes, toiletries, lots of thick thirsty towels, coffee maker with complimentary coffee, minibar and a full length mirror.READ MORE