Photo Credit: Vancouver Club
915 W HASTINGS St, Vancouver BC
The Vancouver Club was built by Sharp and Thompson in 1914 to resemble a substantial British townhouse and was inspired by 17th and 18th century English classicism. According to Parks Canada, upon completion the club was described as an example of “modern Renaissance” design “due to its symmetrical appearance, harmonious proportions, Palladian-style attic type windows and ornamentation in the classical manner.”
When the Vancouver Club was built, it was located on a cliff that faced the railway tracks and the port. Today this area north of West Hastings Street has changed drastically, with the infill of bridges and roads built over the old railroad tracks.
The Vancouver Club is a long-time establishment of Vancouver. Founded in 1889 by local businessmen, it has served Vancouver’s elite for over 100 years as one of several gentlemen’s clubs, hosting prominent business executives and politicians. Prior to operating out of 915 West Hastings St., the establishment was located in a building on a lot immediately to the east, which is now known as Lot 19 and serves as a public gathering space. The Vancouver Club is significant in being one of the few original private social clubs that continues to operate in Vancouver. It no longer restricts membership to men.
While the building has a historical façade, it was renovated in 1993 and is an early example of a modern, reinforced concrete superstructure. Inside, the club has up-to-date ventilation, heating and electrical systems and all-modern conveniences in the way of kitchens, refrigeration, a central vacuum, electric lifts and dumbwaiters.
City of Vancouver Heritage Plaque Program, Parks Canada, Changing Vancouver Blog