O Canada House Vancouver Bed and Breakfasy History
Becoming the Bed and Breakfast
O Canada House was saved from the wrecking ball in 1995 by its history, architecture, and notable heritage home restorers, Jim Britton and Mike Brown. If Ewing Buchan had not penned one of the first English versions of the National Anthem, or O Canada House’s architecture was less exceptional, the City of Vancouver may not have placed the property on its Heritage ‘A’ List of buildings to protect. When Britton and Brown, two Vancouverites with over ten years of experience restoring Vancouver homes, learned of O Canada House and its architectural and historical importance, they jumped at the chance to restore such a noteworthy home.
To restore O Canada House to its natural glory, the wrap-around porch and original roofline were replaced; 40 double-hung windows were rebuilt; period doors were sought out and installed; and exterior siding and trim replaced, repaired and repainted. For the interior, custom-made Victorian carpet was imported from France, turn-of-the-century tiles were bought for the kitchen and bathrooms, and the house was filled with a stunning collection of Victorian antiques.
Britton and Brown sought to maintain the original late Victorian ambiance, charm and warmth of Buchan’s era while introducing the conveniences required by modern travellers. A beautiful, large kitchen was installed in the rear of the house, complete with espresso machine and breakfast station. Every suite had private baths installed, tailored to O Canada House’s signature architecture but with a serene, modern update. Each suite received compact TV/DVD units and mini-fridges. Wireless internet access was added as soon as it was introduced, creating a Wi-Fi haven for Guests in downtown Vancouver.
The Dining Room and Parlour are exceptional testaments to Britton and Brown’s restoration skill. Grand fireplaces form the focal point for each room. A full wall of windows in each room keep both the Dining Room and Parlour naturally lit. Having breakfast as the sun blossoms in the Dining Room is a truly fantastic start to your morning.
O Canada House was recognized by the City of Vancouver, earning the 1997 Top Heritage Award for Interior and Exterior Restoration thanks to Jim Britton and Mike Brown’s outstanding dedication. Come stay at O Canada House and experience Victorian splendour for yourself.