The Roof at Hotel Vancouver Re-Opens as a Pop Up

The Roof, Hotel Vancouver, Tim Pawsey photo

The Roof is back! Martinis too, Tim Pawsey photo

UPDATED, March 25th, 2014…

From the announcement:

“…It’s official – The Roof is now open!   After several unexpected delays, the doors swung open this morning.   Thank you for your patience and on behalf of the team at The Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, we look forward to welcoming  you.”

Open for Breakfast, lunch, dinner, bar snacks, martinis and more!

Check their website for hours and menu details:


The Roof—formerly known as the Panorama Roof—at the Fairmont Hotel Vancouver (900 West Georgia St., Vancouver) has now reopened… 

The storied room on the 15th floor has been pressed back into service while dining and lounge renovations are underway on the main floor.

In its heyday, The Roof was the Place to Be in Vancouver: you could find half of Howe Street up there after (or during) work, enjoying the odd Martini, making deals and also drinking in the view. Even if the panorama has changed somewhat, today those views are still impressive, the sunsets just as dazzling—and the Martinis likely better.

The roof, Hotel Vancouver

On the Hotel Vancouver roof itself, with Charles Heidsieck CEO and president Trevor Bell,(Jack Wong photo)

Everyone (of a certain age!) has their own special memories of The Roof. My foremost is the night before we left on our round the world adventure with Charles Heidsieck Champagne, when the hotel saw us off in style.

The sunken bar (to maximise the view) has been entirely refurbished along with the rest of the room. My guess is it won’t be long before it’s just as popular as it always was! The renovated kitchen is under the command of recently appointed executive chef Cameron Ballendine,  a Victoria native who always aspired to be at the helm of such a historic properly.

The Roof sunset

Sunsets from The Roof, still pretty impressive

The Roof: classic plates reborn

The Hotel Vancouver appointment is a dream come true, says the chef, whose stops along the way have taken him to China, Egypt, United Arab Emirates, and France. He’s thrilled to be home and utterly unfazed by the thought of reopening on Valentine’s Day.

Look for a blend of classic and contemporary cuisine along the lines of a “Grill Room” says Ballendine. One the menu: oysters, French onion soup, tempura morels, superb herbed lamb chops, the long-running signature prime rib and Yorkshire pudding, and plenty more. Even though it’s a protein focused list, there will be plenty of vegetarian options, promises the chef.

The Roof Dickens Buffet poster

From by-gone times, a poster for The Roof’s celebrated Dickens Buffet

However, if you have your heart set on reopening The Roof on Valentine’s Day with 100 other close friends, you’d better hurry: the room (as of February 3rd) is already half booked!

The Roof enjoys a special place in the hearts of Vancouverites, who will no doubt flock to check out its polished new persona. Rumour has it, at some point, you’ll even have a chance to catch the inimitable Dal Richards, who played his first Hotel Van gig there on May 1st 1940, in a six week booking that lasted 25 years!

Yes, they’re calling the “new” Roof a pop up restaurant—a none too subtle warning that this revival is temporary. However, the good news is: The Roof has been raised again and new life breathed in, with a smart new look. And it will be available for special events even after the restaurant re-closes later this year.  

For reservations or info call: 1-800-441-1414 or visit

The Roof reflected

The Hotel Vancouver’s roof is reflected on a downtown office tower, Tim Pawsey photo

By | 2018-01-21T15:05:18+00:00 February 4th, 2014|Belly's Best Bites, Travel|0 Comments

About the Author:

Tim has been covering the food and wine revolution for about 20 kilos. Count 15 kg alone thanks to the blossoming cuisine and wine culture of British Columbia, Canada. Tim’s hallmark is seeking out and recommending value wines from BC and around the world that offer quality at every level. He also scopes out noteworthy restaurants that live up to their promises—and often over deliver. Readers depend on the Hired Belly for his “Belly’s Best” and “Belly’s Budget Best” picks to help them find the right wine for the occasion. He writes, tweets and shoots his own images for columns in the Vancouver Courier and North Shore News. He also contributes to WHERE Vancouver magazine, as well as to several other publications. They include Taste magazine, Tidings Magazine, and Montecristo. His columns are frequently picked up by major newspapers across Canada. Tim is a frequent judge for wine competitions, such as Vancouver Magazine International Wine Awards. He is a founding judge of The BC Lieutenant Governor’s Awards for Excellence in Wine. He is frequently invited to judge at The BC Wine Awards, and others. Tim has traveled to taste in many of the world’s leading wine regions, most recently in Burgundy, Argentina and Chile.

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