48 Hours: Dog-Friendly Weekend in Whistler
Leave no man—or pup—behind on your next trip up the mountain
No matter the season, we covet the opportunity to plan a Whistler vacation, whether it’s a week-long adventure or a weekend escape. But the relaxation you so desperately need can lose its luster if you’re distracted by a loved one left behind… especially if that loved one is your furry best friend. Luckily we have the perfect game plan for you and your pup to hit the mountain together, without a shred of guilt.
Where to stay
While there are plenty of properties that welcome canine companions, from the more affordable Tantalus Lodge, to the luxury lodgings at the Four Seasons Resort Whistler, the Summit Lodge and Spa situated in the heart of the village charges no extra fee for pets. Catered specifically to those who prefer to travel with their animals—the boutique hotel even employs a gentle Rottweiler named Talitha to greets all guests who come through the doors—the rooms come packed with everything to keep you and your pet comfortable, including plush dog beds, treats, toys, and bowls, along with plentiful amenities to keep you relaxed. Duck down to the sauna after a long day of adventure, or treat yourself to a spa day at the Taman Sari Spa. The hotel can also connect you with dog daycare or walking options for those hours you spend on the slopes: Whistler Dog Sitting provides one-on-one time with your pup while Alpine Dogs can arrange a group hike of up to seven happy hounds.
Where to eat
With a bevy of restaurant options, there are plenty of prestigious spots that are often at the top of the “must eat here” list. For something a little more removed from the rowdy village square, duck into The Green Moustache, a health-conscious, gluten-free spot with a focus on ayurvedic foods (a diet based on the holistic principles of Ayurveda, which recommends foods that include 6 basic tastes—sweet, salty, sour, pungent, bitter, and astringent—in every meal). The organic juice and live food bar offers an impressive selection of cold pressed juices, like the Verve, packed full of carrot, apple, beet, and ginger, or its gracious grain oatmeal bowl that will seriously put your Quaker oaks to shame.
If you’re looking for something that’s a little more family friendly, stop by Caramba Restaurante, a village staple that’s taking on a new culinary direction. New owner Jay Pare is looking to shift the menu while staying true to the laid-back atmosphere and menu staples. This shift is made easier with his executive chef (who just so happens to be his nephew) James Pare, whose turn as executive chef of Kaspar’s Seafood Bar and Grill at the infamous Savoy London informs his refreshingly unpretentious take on Mediterranean fare. Nightly features often include mouth-watering rotisserie porchetta and hand-made pasta, but you can never go wrong with fresh from the wood-oven pizza like their pesto, roasted garlic, goat cheese and pine nut pie.
Don’t be afraid to bring along your furry friend while you dine—Whistler’s dog-friendly vibe means that animals are welcome on most patios in the Whistler village. Better yet, pamper your pooch with a visit from the Shampooch, a mobile service that offers door-to-door grooming, from baths and nail cuts to ear-cleaning and hair-cutting.
Where to play
If you’re aiming to hit the slopes in the snowy season, or take a spin on one of the many mountain bike trails in the off-season, don’t forget that your canine companion needs a little adventure too. Within reasonable walking distance of Summit Lodge, you’ll find Lost Lake Park, the perfect place to spend the afternoon exploring endless trails and the specially designated Canine Cove, an off-leash area dedicated for dogs that just want to stretch their legs.