Support heritage sites and buildings across Vancouver while enjoying a glamourous evening in a unique historic venue. Meet others with a passion for local history and heritage while enjoying music, hors d’oeurves and drinks. Discover the history of the space with a tour and bid on a wide selection of silent auction items to raise funds that support VHF’s educational programs and special projects.
We look forward to welcoming guests to a new historic venue again in the future. In 2020, due to the ongoing public health situation, VHF presented an online fundraising auction and this unique event will return again this year. Find out more here.
2019 – City Drinks at the Panorama Roof
When the hotel opened in 1939, the Panorama Roof ballroom quickly became a special night spot with its views over the city and weekly CBC broadcasts of the big band dance music of the Dal Richards Orchestra starting in 1940 for a record run of twenty-five years. The evening was hosted by emcee Fiona Forbes, TV host and producer. Historian John Atkin shared stories of the hotel, the Panorama Roof ballroom and its live radio broadcasts. A selection of wines and beers, along with a sparkling wine reception, a feature cocktail and hors d’oeuvres were included. Guests enjoyed swing era favourites and songs from the great American songbook from local musicians James Danderfer (clarinet), Oliver Gannon (guitar), Paul Rushka (bass) and Jesse Cahill (drums). Guests embarked on mini tours of historic areas in the landmark hotel and took part in exciting live and silent auctions of art, experiences and unique items generously donated by local businesses, organizations and individuals all which helped VHF reach our fundraising goal.
2018 – City Drinks at Seaforth Armoury
The recently restored mess halls of the Seaforth Armoury, designed in Scottish Baronial style by architects McCarter & Nairne and completed in 1936, served as our venue in 2018. Generously hosted by the Seaforth Highlanders of Canada, guests enjoyed music from violinist Rosemary Siemens and saxophonist Eli Bennett, wine, hors d’oeuvres and of course lots of history, including the opportunity to view artifacts from the Seaforth Museum and hear from archivist James Calhoun about the regiment’s long history in Vancouver. The Seaforth pipe major offered a traditional welcome and both live and silent auctions offered an array of items to bid on and help VHF achieve our fundraising goal. The live auction was presented by Fiona Forbes, TV host and producer.
2017 – City Drinks at the Vancouver Club
2016 – City Drinks at Casa Mia
City Drinks 2016 featured an exclusive evening at one of Vancouver’s most well-known heritage mansions, Casa Mia. Built in 1932, the Ross A. Lort designed home is a fine example of Spanish Colonial Revival architecture with the special addition of a children’s nursery hand-painted by Disney artists and a lower level ballroom with ties to an impressive list of performers. Guests toured parts of the home during the evening and also enjoyed wine, hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction. Music from Canadian instrumentalists Roy and Rosemary set the scene with their internationally renowned cinematic style.
2015 – City Drinks in Shaughnessy
In 2015, we enjoyed an elegant evening at the impressive Disher House in First Shaughnessy. Built in 1912 for John Binns Johnson, Disher House is one of the only homes in Vancouver to be attributed to Architect Paul Phipps. The home served as a stunning backdrop for an evening of conversation about heritage in our city. A very special private piano performance by Vancouver Symphony Orchestra Music Director Bramwell Tovey, a talk about the history of the home, music from local artists, wine and hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction of local items were all included in the event.
2014 – City Drinks at the Sun Tower
The inaugural City Drinks fundraiser was held at the Sun Tower. Attendees enjoyed the opportunity to visit an upper floor in the tower, freshly restored while retaining original radiators, windows, floors and fittings, which was not open to the public. There was a raffle with great prizes including a chance to visit the roof of the Sun Tower, or a personalized photoshoot of your home with architectural photographer, Martin Knowles. Tickets included wine and canapés, a special cocktail inspired by the 1930s from Bambudda bar manager Buck Friend, musical entertainment by local jazz musicians James Danderfer and David Blake, and a short talk by special guest, author and historian Daniel Francis.