Name: Saager Dilawri

Title: Owner and Curator

Organization/Business: Neighbour

Social: @shopneighbour

What do you do and how did you get here?

I own two clothing stores here in Gastown and both are called Neighbour. One is a men’s store (since 2011) and the other, is a woman’s store (here since 2015). I came to Gastown because I love the area. It seemed fitting for what I wanted to do, with so many like-minded businesses and shops. 

If you only had 15 minutes here in Gastown, how would you spend it?

Just walking down Water Street and popping into the different shops that I admire. Then a quick beer at Six acres. I would chug it!

If you had a few hours?

There are so many great cafés here to meet people and to hang out in. I would do that and then walk through the neighborhood’s unique streets. I would spend the time catching up with old friends and going shopping at Neighbour, of course.

What do you love about the neighbourhood?

I love the fact that there are a lot of independent businesses here. I like the idea that many store and restaurant owners want to be different. We don’t just want to be the best here in Vancouver, but rather more so on a global level. I think that’s the goal of many businesses within Gastown. Stores like Roden Gray and Inform; restaurants like L’abattoir and coffee shops like Nelson The Seagull and Birds & Beets. They are all independent businesses that have started in Gastown and have grown and evolved and have brought influential people to the area along with being featured in major media sites, guides and publications. That’s what I love about this area; that it’s not cookie-cutter and has like-minded businesses striving to do something different. And of course, the architecture and layout here is unlike anything else in Vancouver.

Anything interesting we should know about you?

I love to play hockey. I hit the ice at least 3 times a week. Other than that, I don’t really like to go out much. I enjoy sitting at home, reading and watching lots of Netflix.

What’s your philosophy for a good life?

Be happy with what you do. Be good to people and hopefully, people will be good back to you. Try to do something different, sometimes. Even though it may be challening,  try to do that which will differentiate you from everyone else. Money isn’t everything. If you have intrinsic rewards, you most likely will live a happy life.