Kao Crew – From YYC to YVR – Where to Visit with Rover!

Family March 2014 144

Me and my boys at Sunset Beach in Vancouver

Whenever I get the chance to travel with my dogs – I will.  (video here)  Over the years – I am finding more and more quality pet friendly accommodations.  Unfortunately with that as well – I have also found it harder to find pet friendly accommodations that:

#1.  Allow dogs over 40lbs or;

#2.  Allow breeds that Shogun, Bourbon and Bella fall under (Shogun is an Amstaff, Bella and Bourbon are Rottweilers); and

#3.  Allow more than 2 dogs.

Over the last 3 years – I have made a pact to document my pet friendly travels – in hopes that photo proof of my dogs – would be enough for hotels, resorts and rentals – to allow my dogs.  I decided for this trip, to take as many dogs as I was allowed – and decided to take Shogun, Bourbon and Thor.  If you do not follow my blogs, Mei Mei, my husky X coyote old lady – hates travel.  She would pant and not sleep if we ever left our home and on top, growl all night, at every little sound.  After taking her to a few trips – we decided to save her the stress, and allow her to have some social time at Sleep Rover with her friends.  We left Bella our other Rottie with her, not only because they both are each other’s comfort – but we were not allowed more than 2 dogs at all the accommodations.  Thor was just a ‘throw in’ because he was small and noone has ever said no to Thor!

This trip – I found it difficult to find accommodations in British Columbia, due to the recent Breed Specific rules that certain towns and cities have implemented when it comes to “pitbull type’ breeds.  I was even declined rental options in Kelowna due to ‘condo strata’ rules that do not allow ‘pitbull type’ breeds.

At one point – I felt like giving up – but with persistence – I found a property owner – who had a rottie x mastiff, that would allow me to bring all 3 of my dogs.  For every 10 no’s, there is bound to be one special yes!  This was at the La Casa Resort

La Casa Resort in Kelowna

La Casa Resort in Kelowna

which also had a section of their homes, that had a ‘pitbull type’ ban on some of their homes.  I was happy to hear that it was individual owners – and not the whole community.

For my other overnights, I stayed at The Sutton Revelstoke and The Sutton Place Vancouver.  The Sutton Revelstoke was my 4th time.  Recently I noticed on their website, that there was a size ban (40lbs and under) – but after communicating with the Central Reservations – they reassured me that my 3 dogs were allowed to return, being repeat clients.

The Sutton Place Revelstoke

The Sutton Place Revelstoke

I was so smitten when I got the go ahead and proud of my dogs for always being on their best behaviour.  I was disappointed when we arrived that an owner had let his two yorkshire terriers run offleash in the lobby.  I did not have my dogs with me at that time, but it gives dog owners an irresponsible image – and if persay I did come in with my dogs and these dogs were running around – would they be scared?  Would they charge them?  How would this man control his dogs?

One thing I do always keep in mind is, control my own dogs first – before worrying about others.

As a responsible dog owner – always leave your dogs ON LEASH in public areas that are not deemed offleash.

This includes around your neighbourhood, lobby’s of hotels, down the streets of busy roads etc.  PS:  DOGS ARE NOT ALLOWED IN CHILDRENS PLAYGROUNDS.

We had amazing service as always here – and the food was fantastic.  The snow continued to fall (we arrived March 25th) and the runs were packed with amazing powder.  Too bad this stop for us, was just an overnight zzzzz before our long drive to Vancouver.  We usually try and come every year for snowboarding due to the awesome ski in/out set up.

On Day #2 – our next 7 hours consisted of  blowing snow in poor driving conditions that closed part of the highway behind us.  We made a quick stop in Kamloops – at the Peterson Park Offleash – which is an easy park to get to off the highway.

Peterson Park Offleash, Kamloops

Peterson Park Offleash, Kamloops

It is a smaller park with lots of poop all over – not the most cleanly.  It had a great trail to walk your dog – but not much field if you enjoy throwing balls like we do.

A few hours later, we arrived in Vancouver and headed to The Sutton Place in Vancouver off of the busy Robson Street and Burrard – downtown Vancouver.

The Sutton Place Vancouver

The Sutton Place Vancouver – 11th floor is pretty high for Shogun

We were nervous, as this hotel is quite ‘swanky’ – and we were not far fetched when we pulled into the entrance surrounded by Mercedes and Bentley’s.  Our Honda Odyssey definitely stood out.  Were we treated with poor service?  Surprisingly no!  The Valet’s were very welcoming, and were not alarmed when we brought out our 3 dogs.  Most people do not know what to do when they see a Rottie and Staffie jump out of a vehicle.  Throughout our two night stay, all the staff in the hotel always said ‘hi, how are you’ and greeted our dogs with respect.  We loved walking out the front doors as they opened them for us, saying ‘time for a walkie’.  HAH!  We only scared one resident when he hopped on the elevator to find our dogs staring at him.  He literally said ‘holy sh!t, you guys scared the sh!t out of me’ – but I am sure he soon realized, that maybe that should have been his inside voice.  He quickly straightened up his posture and pretended nothing happened – as Jimmy and I smiled and our dogs sat in the elevator nicely.

Relieving our dogs was not the most convenient, being that we were downtown Vancouver – big city= lack of public green space.  We were 6 blocks from an offleash park, but amidst the busy sidewalks and rain – it was not a convenient place to take our dogs – as the hustle and bustle of the Vancouverites – were not as welcoming of our dogs.  Luckily beside the hotel was a gravel area – and was quickly our go to place to let the dogs do their business.

 Always remember to pick up after your dog, whether at an offleash, on leash and especially on someones lawn and public areas.  Be a responsible dog owner!


Our room at the Vancouver Sutton was more dated – compared to the brand new Revelstoke – however it was clean, quiet and well maintained.  If I needed to stay downtown Vancouver again, this would be a hotel I would come back too – especially due to service.  Important things to note, parking was a painful $40-50 per day (depending on how much you wish to tip the Valet) and internet is another $15 per day.  Unfortunately this is the norm for Vancouver!

In Vancouver – I finally got to tick off one thing on my “TO DO LIST” – which is to take my dogs to the beach – especially one by the ocean.

Sunset Beach Offleash - Vancouver

Sunset Beach Offleash – Vancouver

We decided on Sunset Beach (check Release the Hounds Recommendations), which was not far from Downtown Vancouver – in Haddon Park.  It was a small area – and super muddy due to the rain (it is spring afterall) – but the boys had a blast.  The park was quiet when we went due to the colder 10 degree weather – and of course the drizzle of rain.  It did not stop me from taking my boys there!  Note to self – bring extra towels – and be prepared for all the sand in your shoes (and Rover’s fur!).

We also met my family (it was our first family trip with my nephew who is 3) at Fisherman’s Wharf in Richmond.  I did not know there was such a place – as I thought it only existed in San Francisco!

Fisherman's Wharf in Richmond

Fisherman’s Wharf in Richmond

The place is pet friendly – but of course, due to low season – it was not active.

Our last leg of the trip was in Kelowna.  It is a 4-5 hour drive from Vancouver.  It was my first time at La Casa Resort – and was surprised when the 20km drive from Kelowna ended up taking 25 mins – as the roads up the mountain were narrow and steep!  Once you arrive tho, the drive is definitely worth the view.  Perched atop the mountain are rows of gorgeous homes – and a full serviced resort, including store, dock, tennis courts and pools.  All of course which were not in service due to our time of year.  Would we ever stay here again?  Most definitely.

The only offleash park we visited (find more at Ty’s Guide), was Knox Hill Offleash.  The offleash park was super disappointing.

Knox Hill Offleash - Kelowna

Knox Hill Offleash – Kelowna

It was literally a fenced off strip of side road that barely was 1km in length.  The view yes, of Kelowna was gorgeous.. but I would not come back for the offleash purposes.  The park however was full, not the offleash – and it is because it is a great hiking location for joggers, walkers and of course – for you and your furry friend.  If we were to come back, we would definitely take the pet friendly hike up the  mountain.

What was a first for us and the dogs – was visiting a vineyard.

My boys at Quails Gate Vineyards

My boys at Quails Gate Vineyards

The friendly staff (Wendy and Pete) at Quail’s Gate welcomed our dogs around their property for a walk – and Jimmy and I had our first ever wine tasting and learned how wine was made.  We had an amazing lunch at the Old Vines Restaurant – a must if you are in the area.  The service and food is impeccable.

I hope you enjoyed our trip documenting – and hope you are able to have fun with your dog at these amazing locations.

Dog Friendly Resorts make us smile!

Dog Friendly Resorts make us smile!

We are looking forward to our August Road Trip to Whistler and Tofino – and will document that as well – maybe even with a GoPro – from the dogs perspective!

Please enjoy our video we took during our trip!




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