Valentine’s and Anti-Valentine’s Day Events Around Vancouver

A few of our favourite lovey-dovey ideas for the committed, semi-committed, those on the prowl and even the anti-Valentine.

Credit: Malloreigh

Valentine’s Day events around Vancouver

Whether you are in a couple or single, there are plenty ways to take part in the only day of the year you officially need to show your love


If you’re the kind of person that likes to keep with tradition and celebrate Valentine’s Day, but Hallmark cards, over-priced roses and heart-shaped chocolate boxes aren’t your style, there are plenty of interesting ways to celebrate cupid’s arrow leading up to February 14 in Vancouver.


We have compiled a few of our favourite lovey-dovey ideas for the committed, semi-committed, those on the prowl and even the anti-Valentine. 


Pre-Valentine’s Day events around Vancouver


Love Hotel: A Shopping Event for Valentines – Waldorf Hotel, February 11–13

Skip the Love Shack and head right on over to Vancouver’s only tiki-themed Love Hotel for a little shopping with cupid. The Waldorf Hotel is throwing a Valentine’s shopping extravaganza where you can peruse hotel-rooms-turned-shops for candies, toys, intimates, jewelry or whatever else might tweak your lover’s passion.


Participating local brands include Sleep Standing Up, Shira Laye, Else Smith, Anita Simka, Dutch Girl Chocolates, Cocolico by Wendy Boyes, Honey Gifts, Gravity Pope Tailored Goods, Lake and Stars and Erin Templeton.

In-room love boutiques are open Friday, February 11, 2011, from 6–10 p.m., Saturday, February 12 from 12–5 p.m. and Sunday, February 13 from 12–5 p.m.

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Jo Hater Annual Haters Ball Anti Valentine’s Party – Joseph Richards, February 10

We know that not everyone turns warm and fuzzy at the sight of the rose petals, fluffy stuffed animals and sweets that pop up in store windows as soon as Christmas ends, so here is an event for the anti-valentine, aptly titled the “Jo Hater Annual Haters Ball Anti Valentine’s Party.” This pre-Valentine’s event gives you plenty of time to get your hate on, and then find true love over the weekend.


Dedicated to those who are single or who “hate the relationships they are in,” this super uplifting event is on Thursday, February 10 at Joseph Richard Nightclub on Granville. Doors open at 9:30 p.m. Drink specials include $3.50 highballs, $4 coronas and $4.25 tequilas. Students and ladies are free before 10:30 p.m.

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Hot Chocolate Festival – Various locations, through February 13

I don’t know many women who aren’t wooed by chocolate… especially of the melting variety. The first annual Hot Chocolate Festival is currently underway at seven participating chocolatiers:  Bella Gelateria, Campagnolo Caffe, Chocolaterie de la Nouvelle France, Cocoa Nymph Chocolates & Confections, Mink Chocolates & Mink, A Chocolate Cafe, Schokolade Artisan Chocolates and Cafe and Thomas Haas Chocolates & Patisserie.


Each place offers a special daily concoction spiked with wildly delicious flavours that are sure to arouse the senses. Think organic French lavender-infused Grand Marnier, honey nougat and hazelnut; black pepper with salted caramel marshmallow; and white chocolate with mango and coconut. You still have a few days left to squeeze in as many tastes as possible!


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Lesbian Speed Dating – Lick, February 12

Looking for a date on Valentine’s Day? Head down to Lick (I wish that pun was intended!) for girl-girl speed dating on Saturday, February 12, 7–10 p.m. The $17 charge gets you a trip around the room, one drink and admission to Lick club afterward.





Sin City Fetish Night – Club 23, February 12

Kinky and freaky? Read on. Club 23 West is throwing one of its notorious Sin City Fetish nights on V-Day weekend. Instead of flowers and candy, think rubber, straps, feathers and chaps. Not for the prude, this is one to bare all. Dress code is in full affect. No street clothes allowed. Only the vinyl, leather, bondage or lingerie clad may attend. There will be two dance floors, a dungeon and sexy visuals to tantalize. Burlesque performances by Mistress Maggie Pie and Lita La Coeur.


Doors open at 8 pm. Tickets cost $12.


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Love in the Time of Andulusia – W2 Storyeum, February 12

This event, named after the Andalusian region in the south of Spain, will take you back to a time and place where sensual arts like music, painting and sculpture blossomed amongst the existence of different cultures and religions. Nibble on tapas and sip sangria or mint tea while watching live performances by Flamenco Alacala, Tzimmes and the Serwan Yamolky Trio.


Mediterranean grooves will flow in a separate room with DJ Azura, DJs Marc Fournier & Michael Laycock from Electropical. Tickets cost $30 and are available online or at the door.


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Vegan Valentine brunch

Since February 14 falls on a Monday this year, why not plan a special brunch on the weekend? Last year Granville Online featured a vegan Valentine menu for two. Why not avoid the reservations, stay in and cook together? For more tips on romantic noshing, check out Michael Robertson’s story on how to get laid on Valentine’s Day.


And, if vegan brunch is not your thing, Aphrodite’s Cafe on West 4th in Kitsilano has some unbelievably delicious organic turkey sausages on the menu. You can’t go wrong eating at a place named for the Greek goddess of love, beauty and sexuality.



Valentine’s Day in Vancouver


Spanish feast & piano concert by indie composer Todor Kobakov – Waldorf Hotel, February 14


For the music-loving guy or gal, why not surprise them with a meal in the Waldorf Hotel’s Leeteg Room, followed by an indie/classical solo piano concert in the Cabaret Room. The hip hotel is cooking up a Spanish four-course menu (Spanish anything = sexy) available in vegan, vegetarian or carnivorous options. Slip into a food coma while listening to tunes by Canadian composer-producer Todor Kobakov. The pianist has collaborated with local artist Dan Mangan and east coasters Metric, Stars, Emily Haines and the Soft Skeleton, Broken Social Scene and TV on the Radio. It’s an indie music lover’s wet dream.


Seatings begin at 7 p.m. with the last one at 10 p.m. Call 604-253-7141 to make reservations. For guests planning to attened Kobakov’s performance, it is recommended that you begin dining between 7 and 8 p.m.


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Feb 14th annual Women’s Memorial March – meet at Main & Hastings, 12 p.m.

Maybe your Valentine is of a political bent and gets all hot ‘n bothered from solidarity and community action. Then join the 20th annual Women’s Memorial March. The first march was held in honour of a woman who was murdered on Powell Street as a way to express compassion, community and caring for all women in the Downtown Eastside, Coast Salish Territories. Keeping with tradition, the annual march continues to honour the lives of missing and murdered women (more than 3,000 since the 1970s) and to show love for the thousands of women living with violence every day.


Families, friends, DTES residents and anyone else can meet at 12 p.m. at Carnegie Theatre; march begins at 1 p.m.





Ongoing romance around Vancouver


Ice skating – Robson Square, through February 28

Put on your mitts and toque and hop down to the Robson Square outdoor skating rink for a few cozy hand-holding laps. Cuddle close to keep warm or impress with your fancy footwork. It’s free to get onto the ice and the $3 skate rentals make it an inexpensive night out. Follow it up with a warm cuppa at nearby Wicked Café on Hornby Street. Robson Square is open 9 a.m.–9 p.m. Sunday to Thursday and Friday/Saturday from 9 a.m.–11 p.m. Other rinks around town…





Film: ‘Blue Valentine’ – Tinseltown and the Ridge theatres, various showtimes

This may be more of a warning than a suggestion, unless self-inflicted torture on this Hallmark holiday is kind of your thing. Don’t let the name fool you into thinking you are taking your date out to a romantic flick. This Oscar-nominated movie tells the tale of a marriage falling apart. Sad, painful, but well acted.


Blue Valentine is playing at Cineplex Odeon International Village Cinemas (yes, Tinseltown) and the Ridge on Arbutus.