Vancouver: Blubird on Alberni

The inane rhetoric of Vancouver being a style straggler seems especially false in light of all the new shops popping up around town, notably along Vancouver’s new high street, Alberni. Home to Betsey Johnson (1033 Alberni St., 604-488-0314), Agent Provocateur (1020 Alberni St., 604-258-7943) and, my personal favourite, M0851 (1035 Alberni St., 604-688-9575), Alberni now offers us Blubird (1055 Alberni St., 604-257-0700,, a fresh new lifestyle boutique whose general manager, Sophia Koumbis, was part of the Boboli team for 15 years.

While the name may conjure a folkloric feel, Blubird’s ultra-modern decor follows the West Coast contemporary (read: L.A.) aesthetic more than the modern-day Little House on the Prairie style I’ve come to expect from so many burgeoning boutiques. The clothing selection also reaffirms the L.A. look with Juicy Couture, True Religion, J Brand, Single and Vince among its collections.

While some of the aforementioned brands may not sound like anything new to town, don’t get the idea that Blubird is any common crow. I was impressed by its selection of Marc by Marc Jacobs accessories, Pucci scarves and M Missoni knitwear, not to mention the array of excessively cute Hello Kitty products it carries for all you Tokyo street-style enthusiasts.

So if you have a minute or an hour, bring your friends to Blubird to lounge around on its comfy sofa, or to share your favourite new FASHION Magazine blog. (Blubird has a handy, high-tech computer kiosk for your mid-afternoon style-inspiration surfing.) And should you find yourself in a last-minute fix, you can add the finishing touches to your evening ensemble at Blubird’s swank Stila beauty bar. With all this in store, Blubird is sure to take off.

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