Life doesn’t come with a manual, it comes with a mother.

This Sunday May 14th is Mother’s Day. It’s a day to celebrate how awesome our moms are, an opportunity to spend some quality time together and a chance to create lasting memories.

When’s the last time you told her you loved her? Or had some real fun where your bellies ached with laughter?

Sometimes the best way to make your mom feel special is to set aside the distractions and worries of life and just be present with each other. Is that not the best gift?

Gastown makes Mother’s Day easy with the wonderful amount of options we have available here in the neighbourhood of possibilities.


Brunch & Special Menus

Brunch is a classic option and one that’s probably the most popular for Mother’s Day. Many of our restaurants take bookings but it’s best to always call ahead. Gastown has a tremendous amount of variety when it comes to dining out. French, Mexican, Irish, Jewish, Pub fare, casual and higher up cuisines are all here to enjoy. Here you will find a current list of 11 Gastown restaurants offering brunch.

Bauhaus will be offering a special menu just for Mother’s Day and will be donating 5% of food sales on Sunday, May 13th to the BC Women’s Hospital Foundation. Treat Mom and help women and babies across British Columbia. Bauhaus’ Co-Executive Chefs will be serving a stunning 3 course menu for the event, available only this Sunday.

Regardless of the order of the day’s events, might we suggest that mom and yourself take time to enjoy a fine Gastown cocktail? We have many reputable establishments that know how to mix and pour.

The Diamond is an intimate hideaway on the upper floor of an aged building on Powell. Looking over Maple Tree Square and watching the world go by, choose from their extensive and creative list of cocktails. From there you can see Chill Winston – a Gastown favorite, with one of the best patios in the neighbourhood. Choose from an intriguing list of cocktails with  mysterious names like Cloak & Dagger, Elysian Fields and The Covenant. And what would a Gastown fancy drink crawl be without some quality time spent in The Pourhouse. They have live music on Sundays starting at 5.30pm and their cocktail list is made up of top shelf liquors using old world fusion recipes.

Dessert & Sweets

Mosquito is offering a dessert duo special that brings together their ‘Éclair à la Fraise’, and the unexpected flavours of ‘Green’, their latest vegetal dessert, on the same plate.

Pairing with a floral sparkling cocktail or Veuve Clicquot Demi-sec will easily turn her radiant smile into uproarious laughter. The special will run both Saturday and Sunday; reservations at [email protected]

Or perhaps it’s local organic ice cream and a stroll through the neighbourhood that you’re after. Head to Soft Peaks for some downright delicious cold treats. Made with Avalon organic milk, choose a paper bowl or waffle cone and load up on premium toppings, like a fresh piece of Okanagan and Fraser Valley honeycomb.

If Mum has only a tiny sweet tooth then East Van Roasters is the perfect place for individual  handmade chocolates. Made in house from organic fair trade single origin beans, pick out a chocolate and they’ll put it in a cute wee brown paper bag. Pair with a cup of hot drinking chocolate and you’ll be as happy a pair of butterflies on a warm spring day.

Mom probably walked you through the mysterious Birds & The Bees when you were old enough and now it’s your turn to take her to Gastown’s Birds & Beets. It’s an idyllic and dreamy sort of a place where you can enjoy great coffee or tea and have a nice chat. Order some of their fresh brioche and sweet preserves and if you feel drawn to the flower arrangements at the front of shop, purchase a bunch and say “thanks” for all Mom has done for you.

Over at the lululemon lab, the gang will be teaming up with their friends at @eastvanroasters to bring you a complimentary treat at their pop-up coffee bar. Also – with the purchase of the lab’s limited edition lab bag, you will receive 20% off your transaction. The dollar amount off will be donated to the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre.

Photo Opportunities

Gastown is one big beautiful backdrop for photos. Essentially, anywhere in the neighbourhood is great to take pictures in. There are a number of special places that are perfect to capture that moment with mother.

Looking east towards The Europe Hotel presents an iconic setting, as does the Steamclock. Over at the Water Street Garage building, the open-air atrium has good lighting.

On the north side of Water (21 Water Street) above Secret Location is the blue neon sign: “Time is Precious”. Popular and interesting, the sign makes for a memorable and appropriate background.

The spring sun is slowly appearing and with it, the opening of our neighbourhood patios. Weather permitting, there’s an opportunity get a nice shot of mom enjoying brunch and having a good time.

Worth checking out is the Picture This! Mothers Day Event at Nicole Bridger – Friday May 12th, 3:00-7:00pm. Bring your mom or children into the Gastown shop and get a beautiful photo taken by the fabulous Sutton + Grove that you’ll get to keep! Email [email protected] to reserve your spot.

Fortune Telling & Fun

There are always plenty of alternatives to the norm in Gastown. If you’re looking for a bit of fun,
grab mom’s hand and take a leap into the spirit world. There are two places to get your fortune told: The Good Spirit on Cambie Street and Salmagundi’s on West Cordova. The tarot card readers are highly intuitive, friendly and are full of character – an experience definitely worth sharing.

Did you grow up with the classic family ping-pong table in the basement? Perhaps there’s that score that you’ve always wanted to settle or maybe you just want to watch mom try her hand at table tennis? Newly opened Back & Forth Bar on Columbia Street is like a community games room where you can play ping-pong or video games and enjoy food and drink all in a casual rec room style setting.

Over at the Lamplighter Pub they have a ton of pinball machines and the fun never stops. Wager a side bet with mother to get the highest score. No tilting!