9 new spots to check out at the Shipyards, including the biggest outdoor skating rink in Metro Vancouver

The waterfront space near Lonsdale Quay in North Vancouver is home to restaurants, coffee shops, eateries, a boutique hotel, and more

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      If you haven’t been to the Lower Lonsdale in a while, you might not recognize it. The waterfront neighbourhood has gone through massive redevelopment lately, and it’s not just condos that are going up.

      Adjacent to the Lonsdale Quay Market, the Shipyards is a public space with a slew of new dining options and other attractions.

      We previously shared news about some of them: the Polygon Gallery, for instance, and Larry’s Market.

      Now, several other ventures are up and running. Here’s what you can find while strolling around the historic area that once produced World War II combat ships and that’s a 12-minute SeaBus ride from downtown Vancouver.

      We’ll keep you posted on other LoLo and North Shore news, too, including the forthcoming opening of Nook Restaurant at the Shipyards (slated for any day now).

      Skate Plaza at the Shipyards

      Move over, Robson Square: Shipyards’ Skate Plaza is Metro Vancouver’s largest outdoor skating rink, a 12,000-square-foot venue covered by a retractable roof. If you have your own blades, skating is free; rentals are available for $7 for adults or $5 for kids. Helmets and those things you lean on while attempting not to face plant are free. The rink is open from noon to 7 p.m. daily until mid-March.   cnv.org

      Seaside Hotel

      There’s a dearth of hotels on the North Shore, so the newly opened Seaside Hotel is sure to be a hot spot among visitors or locals looking for a luxe staycation. The boutique hotel has a top-floor spa and views of the water, Burrard Dry Dock Pier, and Vancouver skyline. Among the amenities in the rooms--which have ocean blue-, sand-, and silver-hued accents--are soaker tubs, heated bathroom floors, Illy espresso machines, and suspended birdcage seats for reading or relaxing with sway. seasidehotel.com

      The Seaside Hotel and JOEY Shipyards are among the establishments that adjoin the public skating rink.
      Gail Johnson.

      Nemesis Coffee

      A hip purveyor of micro-roasted coffee and coffee culture, Nemesis recently unveiled its second location (and its flagship) within the Polygon Gallery. (A third outlet is coming soon next to the Emily Carr University of Art and Design campus on Great Northern Way. (Look for the giant red “tulip”.) The North Van serves as the home base for its scratch Dope Bakehouse, which makes pastries, bread, and brunch items fresh daily. Check out the pour-over bar, Modbar machines built right into the counters, and cool record collection. nemesis.coffee

      Seaside Provisions

      Inside the Seaside Hotel, Seaside Provisions has a raw bar as well as freshly sliced ARC Imports Iberico ham. Dinner highlights include whole fish topped with clams; free-range game hen with avjar, a Serbian red-pepper relish; and gnocchi with mushrooms, crispy sage, and burnt butter sauce. Sourdough bread from nearby Lift Breakfast Bakery Ltd, a locals’ fave, is served with house-made garlic-tamari butter. seasideprovisions.com

      JOEY Shipyards

      The stunning two-level restaurant has two patios complete with fire bowls facing the water. Find plenty of seafood on the menu, including prawn-and-salmon ceviche, sushi, yellowfin tuna salad, oven-roasted wild pacific cod, herb crush salmon, prawn and lobster ravioli, and more—but there’s also everything from hot wings to bowls to steaks.  joeyrestaurants.com

      JamJar Canteen

      Where else can you eat Lebanese food by an outdoor skating rink next to an international harbour? You guessed it. Find falafel, mujadara (organic lentil and bean stew), makanik (house-made lamb sausages), muttabel (roasted eggplant dip), and other delectable Middle Eastern dishes. jamjarcanteen.ca

      The Main Street Honey Shoppe runs an urban bee program in Vancouver.
      Gail Johnson.

      Main Street Honey Shoppe

      Hooray for honey—especially when it’s pure and natural! Storefront #2 for this sunny shop features honey from our own backyard (through its Bees in the City program, which has colonies in various locations from East Van to Kits) and select specialty honey from places abroad like Spain, Italy, and Greece. Then there are honey-based treats, salves, ointments, and body-care products; beeswax candles; gifts; and more. mainstreethoney.com

      Welcome Parlour Ice Cream

      The new home of the North Van shop has a rotating menu of freshly made, natural ice cream and milkshakes as well as a wall of retro and now-popular candy for kids and bigger kids. welcomeparlour.com

      Caffe Artigiano

      The latest in the chain’s outposts backs onto the skating rink and fronts the harbour, for scenic latte sipping. caffeartigiano.com