Dense, eclectic, discordant, vibrant: The Gastown/Chinatown area is a hip and buzzing centre of art and business, as well as being a hub spot for tourists, locals, and business owners alike. Ventures of sartorial boutiques, culinary destinations, lively bars, and innovative startups are housed in old, storied architecture. Despite being one of the oldest neighbourhoods in the city, Gastown exudes a modern vibe with its palpable zeal of community and creative energy. Combined with Chinatown’s eateries (note: ask any local to point you in the direction of a lunch spot to discover flavours like you’ve never tasted before), colourful history, and old-school architecture, both neighbourhoods are currently walking the line between gentrification and retaining the historical character somewhat lacking in some of Vancouver’s newer ‘hoods.
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The economics of your local restaurant depend on skyrocketing commercial rents—and the bottom line doesn't look good.