Vanpooper – Log #16: Rating the best (and worst) of Vancouver’s public toilets

Friday 25th, March 2016 / 12:08
By Michelle Hanley


English Bay Bathhouse

English Bay Bathhouse.

English Bay Bathhouse.

The beaches in Vancouver are lovely and serene places where you can do stand-up paddleboard yoga in the middle of winter. English Bay is a popular spot for such activities. It was also was recently named one of the best beaches in the world by a bunch of misinformed people who never had the displeasure of swimming through goose poop, lemon wedges, and glow stick wrappers.

The bathrooms at English Bay are located in a beautiful, pastel-coloured, art deco bathhouse. Unfortunately the inside of these bathrooms are not nearly as pleasant as the outside. Instead of maintaining the beautiful 1930s look, it was renovated into another smelly, poorly maintained public park bathroom. I’ve also heard that the stalls in the men’s room are super short so everyone can see you poop. The Cactus Club is next door and they have award-winning bathrooms. Go drop a deuce there instead.

Two poops out of five.

Uncle Abe’s

Uncle Abe's

Uncle Abe’s.

Uncle Abe’s is a great new bar in Mount Pleasant, tucked away between a pizza shop and a falafel place. The sign outside proclaims that it is a “Super Great Fun Times Spot,” and I concur. It is delightfully kitschy and cozy, with funky 1970s decor. Its owners previously ran the Rumpus Room, which was torn down to make way for yet another condo development. Classic Vancouver!

This bar is quirky as hell and the bathroom is no different. Upon entering, the first thing one notices is the ATM in the bathroom, right across from the toilet. Finally! A place where you can simultaneously poop and withdraw an irresponsible amount of cash to spend on three too many cocktails. My favourite thing about this bathroom is the poster of the hunky, Speedo-clad scuba divers on the wall.  You Abe-solutely got to poop here!

Four poops out of five.

Belgian Fries

Belgian Fries.

Belgian Fries.

I suspect that there is nothing particularly Belgian about Belgian Fries. It specializes in the very distinctly Canadian dish of poutine and always has loud salsa music playing. Despite this, I am fond of the place because of my love of everything deep-fried. Did you know they have deep-fried ice cream on the menu? How is that even a thing?

The bathrooms here are surprisingly clean, despite the fact that the walls are absolutely covered in incredibly juvenile graffiti, mostly of inspirational quotes and teenage declarations of love. It easily rivals Bon’s Off Broadway as the most graffitied bathroom in the city. Some of my personal favourites included “Stop Trying To Empower Me While I’m Taking a Shit” and “The Fries were O.K.” Much like their fries, their bathrooms were just O.K.

Three poops out of five.

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