09.27.18 / Community

Vancouver feature businesses

The Commercial Drive and East 1st Avenue business district is one of the most vibrant and unique in Vancouver. While natural gas line upgrade construction was underway on East 1st Avenue, and road and lane closures were in effect, all of the area businesses remained open.

Now that gas line construction along East 1st Avenue is complete, you can travel your usual route to access your favourites again. Here’s a quick snap shot of five of the local businesses that were previously featured on our community page during the closure of East 1st Avenue.

Pacific Laptop

Pacific Laptop owner Artem Voropaev says the best part about doing business in East Vancouver is the way his clients keep his team on their toes. Artem and his team sell, repair and offer a wide range of support for all brands of desktop and laptop computers, smartphones and tablets. Services include data recovery, screen repair, virus removal and hardware and software upgrades. Artem says their prime East Vancouver location helps attract clients, but it’s his team’s dedication to solving clients’ computer challenges that keep them coming back.

Visit Pacific Laptop at 1687 Nanaimo Street, Vancouver or Pacific Laptop

We opened our business to serve the community. We do that by offering quality service for all of our clients’ computer needs.

Artem Voropaev Owner, Pacific Laptop

Red Burrito

When first-time customers come in to the Red Burrito and can’t decide what to order, general manager Marcela Nielsen always recommends their signature red burrito with grilled chicken. The locally owned and operated restaurant chain is best known for its fresh, made-to-order burritos, and other authentic Mexican dishes. Marcela explains their simple recipe for success: “We use only quality local ingredients. By keeping it simple, we make a meal that’s healthy and affordable.”

Red Burrito has five Lower Mainland locations, including their original restaurant at Commercial and 1st. Visit the Red Burrito at 1700 Commercial Drive, Vancouver or Red Burrito

We love that we’ve contributed to the diversity of food that’s available on ‘The Drive.’

Marcela Nielsen General Manager, Red Burrito

Appliance Outlet

Store manager Anil Kumar says the employees of the family owned Appliance Outlet are proud their store offers great prices on General Electric products. Both the Vancouver and Edmonton stores specialize in the sale of new “out-of-the-box” and new “scratch and dent” General Electric appliances.

Before the Vancouver store opened, they searched for a central location. The East 1st Avenue location they eventually settled on, close to the entrance to Highway 1, has worked out well.  “Most of our business now comes from repeat customers and referrals,” says Anil.

Visit Appliance Outlet at 3618 East 1st Avenue, Vancouver, or Outlet

We wanted to serve the entire Lower Mainland and make it easy for everyone to get here.

Anil Kumar Manager, Appliance Outlet

The Drive Coffee Bar

The name says it all. The Drive Coffee Bar is a fully licensed coffee bar located in the heart of Commercial Drive. Owner Kenny Vannuci says when he opened three years ago, he wanted to continue serving the many long-time customers who had been buying their drinks there for decades.

To encourage a sense of community, the bar is rented out for events such as celebrations and musical performances. The work of local artists and photographers is also showcased on the bar’s walls for free.

Visit The Drive Coffee Bar at 1670 Commercial Drive, Vancouver or The Drive Coffee Bar

We want to provide a safe and fun place where neighbours can gather—to be a central part of ‘The Drive’s’ community.

Kenny Vannuci Owner, The Drive Coffee Bar

EXP Bubble Tea

Tony Jiang and his partners combined their passion for Asian hip hop culture with classic bubble tea when they opened EXP Bubble Tea & Lifestyle—a unique shop where Chinese hip hop artists, and anyone interested in hip hop, can gather.

The “EXP” in the store’s name is short for exposure. Tony explains, “The store is a bridge for hip hop artists who want more exposure for their art and their lifestyle. It’s a hot spot for them to express themselves and find others to collaborate with.”

Visit EXP Bubble Tea & Lifestyle at 1706 Commercial Drive, Vancouver, or EXP Bubble Tea & Lifestyle

We’ve enjoyed introducing bubble tea and Asian hip hop culture to people who previously had no understanding of it.

Tony Jiang Owner, EXP Bubble Tea & Lifestyle