Vanpooper – Log #3: Rating the best (and worst) of Vancouver’s public toilets

Monday 15th, December 2014 / 14:57
By Michelle Hanley

Tinseltown Mall: First floor bathroom


Tinseltown Mall

Rating: 1/5

Nowhere in the world is there a place like Tinseltown. Officially named International Village it is an absolutely bizarre mall located in the Downtown Eastside. Its shops are largely unoccupied and the ones that remain open include a questionable tattoo shop, a Japanese import dollar store, and a shop called Faeries, Vikings, and Dragons, which holds an annual steam-punk festival in the mall’s atrium.

There is a consistent awful stench coming from these toilets that never seems to subside. The stalls here are cramped and narrow, and the bathrooms are often crowded with people who always seem to be yelling at each other. The sign in the bathroom reminding people not to brush their teeth, shave, or do laundry in the sink is largely ignored.

Needless to say these toilets had no redeeming qualities. But if you are in Tinseltown and need to drop a deuce, I’ve come to realize that the second-floor toilets past the Bubble Tea shop in the food court are much nicer.

Holt Renfrew

Holt Renfrew

Holt Renfrew

Rating: 4/5

Holt Renfrew is a Canadian chain of high-end, designer department stores and it is my own personal hell. Every time I walk into this place I feel judged and pitied. I’m sure the sales associates can just smell my poverty and the mothballs on my $4 second-hand sweater.

The best thing about these toilets is that they are located just outside the entrance to Holt Renfrew, so you don’t even have to go inside. The stalls in here are individual rooms, which is a major plus when it comes to taking a poop. The stall I chose happened to have its own sink and mirror: great for reapplying makeup in privacy.

I did have one major concern. The soap was that horrible, cheap, pink slime. The kind you find in elementary schools and Tim Hortons. And it was in a used Purell Hand Sanitizer bottle. Are you kidding me, Holts? For a place the sells socks that cost more than my rent, I demand luxury! Despite that, these toilets are a terrific place to drop a deuce and a great alternative to the crowded Pacific Centre Toilets.

Budgies Burritos

Budgies Burritos

Budgies Burritos

Rating: 3/5

I love Budgies Burritos. I’ll say it again, I love Budgies Burritos! Located in the heart of Mount Pleasant, this terrific vegetarian eatery might be my favourite place in all of Vancouver. It’s open late, has great margaritas, funky velvet paintings and is staffed by some of the coolest and nicest babes ever.

They’ve recently renovated their bathrooms and it looks fly as hell! Colourful Jackson Pollack inspired paint splatters cover the walls, and the pink accents bring the whole space together. Admittedly, I was sad to see the paper towel dispenser painted over because it had been graffitied with one of the last remaining Mohinder tags I’ve seen in town, but the new look is well worth it.

As much as I adore Budgies, the bathroom here is not the best for taking a number two. The close proximity of the toilet to the till and food preparation areas makes it embarrassing if there are any odours involved. Despite that, it is the perfect bathroom for Instagramming mirror selfies and wondering to yourself how they still haven’t made a burrito emoji.

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