Hotel Georgia, an iconic Vancouver landmark, opened in 1927. It played host to some of the world's biggest celebrities in its heyday: Elvis, Princess Diana, the Beattles, John Wayne and even Queen Elizabeth. Nowadays, because of the immediacy of information and the potential for fans swarming the grounds, the guest list is kept more confidential, but it is not uncommon to see celebrities and billionaires convening at Hawksworth, their world renowned, ground-level restaurant, or Reflections, their New York inspired rooftop garden bar.
We were fortunate enough to be met at Reflections by their new Director of Sales and Marketing, Brad Simmons. To say Brad is a nice guy is like saying summer is hot and water is wet. An incredibly amiable, charming, transplanted Londoner recently moved to Vancouver to bring the Rosewood Hotel Georgia to the forefront of Vancouver's hotel scene. And why shouldn't it be?
In 2011 they re-opened after an extensive renovation that saw them consolidate their 300+ rooms into 156 luxury rooms and suites. The finishes are top notch and vacancy is scarce which means the high-end rooms are well sought after. The market has spoken and with Mr. Simmons on board to nudge it along expect to start hearing more about Hotel Georgia in the coming years. Did you know you can host your conferences there? Your charity fundraisers? A birthday party?
Reflections is an oasis in the middle of a concrete jungle. It's lush foliage and babbling waterfall lend itself to a very serene experience. In the past year their kitchen and bar area has doubled, tens of thousands have been spent on a variety of beautiful trees and plants and their menu was firmed up into more concise, tapa-inspired selections.
Our experience started, as all sunny, rooftop patio experiences ought, with a couple of cocktails. We tried the Hotel Georgia which can be bought around the world under the name... The Hotel Georgia. Crafted in-house in 1945 it is a delightful mixture of gin, lemon juice, orgeat and egg white. An international award winner for a reason! We also ordered the Green Thumb Margarita which, though it hasn't won any cocktails awards yet, is destined to be on the menu for years to come!
As a lifestyle blogger sometimes you have to order a dish you wouldn't otherwise because you need a variety to photograph or maybe it's something the establishment would like to feature, but protocol went out the window when all 3 members of our party opted for the Albacore Tuna Poke for our appetizer. The tuna was of a quality that sets it apart from your chain restaurant or mom and pop spots. It was seasoned to perfection and simply melts in your mouth! Go now!
We managed to agree on 3 different entrées and went with: Lobster & Prawn Brioche, Rye Kernel Salad with Huli Huli Chicken Breast and a lovely Grilled Flat Iron Steak. The brioche was very fluffy and it was clear the lobster had been de-shelled only minutes earlier, this isn't your canned lobster that can be found on some similar sandwiches! The salad looked very fresh and, though I didn't want to impose upon our host to try it, I was told it was exquisite and the uniquely spiced chicken is worth a visit all on its own; Huli Huli y'all! The steak came out a perfect medium rare, first box ticked, was a healthy AAA grade of beef, so far so good, and was masterfully seasoned. I give it a solid A rating and I have yet to give a perfect A+ score on steak because there are simply too many variables.
Though I hesitate to mention it the majestic blue roof of Hotel Vancouver constantly drew my gaze. It is a view that I happily also enjoy from my own balcony and one that gives me a deep sense of calm and a feeling that I'm home. The lush garden setting, punctuated by some 20 foot Japanese Maple trees craned into place only months before, the unique architecture of the adjoining tower, the Residences at Hotel Georgia, and the stunning Hotel Vancouver coupled with the soothing sounds of the waterfall make the ambience second to none in the city. A perfect place to relax for lunch with colleagues, stop in for a drink after work or grab an elegant dinner. You will start to hear more and more about Reflections going forward; trust me.