VANCOUVER – Many Vancouver eateries have finally got their wish, as city council voted in favour of extending restaurant liquor hours in an October 8 vote.
The new regulations will now allow liquor service until 1 a.m. weekdays and 2 a.m. on weekends at restaurants across the city. This is welcome news to some 38 per cent of operators who have been limited to serving alcohol until midnight or earlier.
“We’sve been waiting five-and-a-half years for this decision,” Tim Charter, who was previously barred from serving alcohol after midnight at his restaurant, The Beaver, told CTV News. “I get numerous complaints on a daily — weekly — monthly basis from the international clientele.”
Liquor service hours are set by Vancouver’s Liquor Control and Licensing Act, but each operator must apply to the city for the right to serve past midnight. That is where the inconsistency lays. According to media reports, some restaurants in the city were licensed until 2 a.m., while all requests to extend hours made since 2003, have been denied.
The hope is this move will level the playing field, perhaps alleviating some of the rowdiness downtown as patrons have more late-night, alcohol friendly, dining options. The bad news: according to CTV, the city is raising annual business license fees to pay for the bylaw enforcement.
For more info about the changes, click here.