City Cigar - Vancouver

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canadianbacon

Member
Jul 7, 2013
102
0
I am visiting family in Vancouver for the holidays and me and the wife decided to go full tourist on the city by deciding to go to Granville Island by foot. Typically, I didn't look at the directions. I essentially just walked towards the Arena downtown when I realized I was going the wrong direction. I pulled up google maps on the phone and it gave me some round about direction to get to Granville. While on the way, I saw a sign for City Cigar. Well I am a bit a of mess, as we are walking two labrador retrievers, and we both have coffee in our hand. As we try to hook them on outside, the end up swinging their gate open and knock over their sign.
And this is where the review begins...
Derek, the gentleman who was working that day, came out and invited both us humans and dogs into the store. The store was large for an inner city lot, having a couple of walls worth of cigars, a room for accessories and humidors, and another room for pipes and hookahs. Derek was pleasant throughout and very helpful. Although the pipe area was small, there was a descent selection of pipes with Peterson's and Bringhams owning most of the real estate. I picked out a cheap mini meerschaum with an old man's face on it (I might get around to a picture). I did not bring my travelling cob, and I needed an excuse to try out my first meerschaum. They had a few tins, and a small selection of locally blended tobaccos. I told him what I liked, and he helped me choose a couple blends to bring home. The one I have tried thus far was very pleasant when I smoked it by the bay on Granville Island.
I found this spot by mistake, but it was no mistake walking in there. It was a pleasant atmosphere, nice layout and good selection considering that the shop was selling cigars, pipes, hookahs and accessories. Even though my wife doesn't smoke cigars or pipes, she was also very happy with the experience and she ended up walking away with a couple packs of those flavoured cigarillos.
At the end of the day we walked away with a few grams of tobacco, a small meerschaum pipe, 2 packs of cigarillos, and to top it off, a Czech tool and a box of wood matches were thrown in. Best part of it all was that my dogs enjoyed the experience as well.
I highly reccommend City Cigar if you are in Vancouver.
Their credentials.
888 W 6th Ave, Vancouver

Website

 

northernneil

Preferred Member
Jun 1, 2013
1,390
0
Great review! Vancouver is a fun city. The gilrfriend and I end up out there once or twice a year because they attract some great live music that just does not make it to my city. I'll have to check out city cigar next time I'm there. Always nice to find a good tobacconist!

 

captvoodoo

New member
Jun 17, 2013
18
0
I too have found this to be an excellent business to deal with. Since I travel for work, I often try to take a few days tobacco with me. Several months ago I was in Vancouver and had forgotten to fill my tobacco wallet. I slogged across the city to find a good tobacco shop and was directed to City Cigar. I arrived about 15 minutes before closing, but the staff was incredibly accommodating. With a simple description of what I was interestedsted in, Derek directed me to some of the best tobacco I had ever smelled. He insisted that I try some (outside of course), and let him know what I thought of it. After a few minutes of savoring in my own pipe, I was so impressed that I purchased 3 50g bags. I managed to add a Brigham pipe to my collection as well. Excellent customer service and outstanding tobacco as well. The trouble for me is now I am out of their tobacco and won't be able to stock up until next trip to Vancouver (thanks to Canada's antiquated tobacco laws stating that no tobacco shall be shipped across provincial borders, but we can order from south of the border with little problem what so ever). If you are headed to Vancouver, do yourself a favor and visit the folks at City Cigar. Their hospitality and knowledge make the experience worth the time.

 

latbomber

Preferred Member
May 10, 2013
570
0
I too can attest to their good service. They will even order specific pipes tobacco in for you and their prices on pipes are inline with all the online stores.

 

shutterbug

Senior Member
Apr 12, 2013
306
0
I will have to disagree with the above posts. I have had nothing but bad results visiting City Cigar and I go to Vancouver quite often. In the last two visits, they have treated me with an attitude of pompous and arrogant shop staff. The store itself is beautiful, however every time I have entered, they seemed annoyed by me asking to see certain pipes. I have found that they like to cater to the tourist market (Americans buying Cubans), and those who are willing to spend the money on expensive pipes. If you look at some of the reviews on the net, I am not alone in this assessment.

When in Vancouver, I prefer to go to J.R. Tobacconist, as he is an actual pipe smoker, has an AMAZING selection of pipes, and will spend time with you talking about pipes, regardless of how you look and whether or not you are actually buying anything. In our Toronto meetup, I brought samples from both City Cigar (Virginia Flake) and J.R. Tobacconist (Dark Virginia Flake), and J.R. Tobacconist won out.

It goes to show why there is still a need for a local B&M. We all have personal preferences that are different from everyone else.

I personally will not step into City Cigar any more.
Shutterbug

 

shutterbug

Senior Member
Apr 12, 2013
306
0
Yes, RJ...my dyslexia has set in.

Regardless, I shouldn't have to ask for the manager every time I go into a tobacconist to enjoy my visit.

Richard had a huge selection of pipes (they are overshadowed by the big pen selection he has nowadays), and all of the pipes are in the back. After his move, it seems he can't make as much money off the smoking part, but the pens and such make him more money.

Every shop owner may want my business, but if they can't get their training right, then really they don't deserve my business. For me, City Cigar hasn't listened to many of the complaints, and therefore won't be getting my business in the future.
Shutterbug

 

canadianbacon

Member
Jul 7, 2013
102
0
If the cats away the mice will play
.
I would like to add that the cat was away. In fact, Derek had stated that if the owner was there that it probably would have been chaos, as the owner has his own rambunctious store dog. I may be biased on the topic, and I know not everyone is a fan of dogs, but I love going into shops that have a resident dog. Very few and far between these days however.
Shutterbug, it is too bad you had a bad experience. As I am well travelled in Canada, I tend to not look/act like a tourist, nor did I spend a lot of money ($88 between two customers), nor do I look classy/high end. Blue jeans, plaid and a shaggy beard is how I roll. So to say that
I have found that they like to cater to the tourist market (Americans buying Cubans), and those who are willing to spend the money on expensive pipes
may indicate isolated incidents. As well, a lot of people will only post a review if it is negative. We all have out own experiences and opinions however.

 

brent

New member
Dec 14, 2013
15
0
I would like to add a thumbs up for City Cigar and say that in many store visits in the last year, not once did I experience anything like shutterbug describes. I have found all the staff to be only courteous and helpful no matter how small or large my purchase.

I have bought $4 cigars, and on different occasions $12 to $15 cigars (not often) and have always been treated as a valued customer. I have gone in and been shown different pipes, smelled a few jars of their house blend tobacco, ended up buying only pipe cleaners and filters and been treated just as well.

I live near Vancouver and appreciate having them nearby, the tobacco prices are high but that has nothing to do with them, its our sky high BC and Cdn taxes.
PS -Richard at RJ Clarke is indeed a gentleman, down to earth and dispenses common sense with the tobacco. His selection is nowhere near that of City Cigar however, but his location by Oakridge Mall is much closer to me and so will pop in for the basics from time to time.

 

rockford

Member
Apr 4, 2013
112
0
I dropped by City Cigar last week. Service was fantastic and likely the best selection I have seen in Western Canada.