The Sylvia was built in 1912, and added to in the 80s. My wife and I prefer the old part just for flavour: the furnishing may be plain and unchanged since the 50s, 60 or 70s, but the beds are good and there is no musty smell or other odes to the past you might prefer not to experience.
In fact, I have not stayed in the new part but would not hesitate - you are there because it is the BEST spot in town.
English Bay and Stanley park are right out the lobby door. When you cross the street you are on the "sea-wall" which encircles Stanley Park. Even better, it is the part that is not a wall but English Bay beach, with a sidewalk. Robson St., for shoppers, is 6 blocks away. Going the opposite direction, a beautiful stroll along the ocean for 10 minutes (20 if you take in the air and view, which you will ) brings you to the water taxi stand, going to Granville Island.
I have stayed there 5 or 6 times since the '80s, and having travelled much of the world, can honestly say it has genuine character, history, an unrivalled location and reasonable prices. The Sylvia is clean, charming, and not "luxuried up" to the detriment of a budget. I would recommend reservations, but I have got lucky on short notice - in August no less. One of my favourite places on earth.
1154 Gilford St;
tel: 604 681 9321;
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