Vancouver Trip 2015: I’m Coming Home

And since this is a short post – I can sneak this in-between the car show posts 🙂

Just a few quick snaps of whatever I remembered to take a picture of before we left. I kind of wish we stayed a bit longer just to relax a bit more but there’s always next time.

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While we were there, it was me and Diana’s 1 year wedding anniversary but we didn’t really plan anything since we were going to be out with everyone. Instead, the crew all got us a little mango cake for a mini celebration. Legit though guys – that was awesome and Diana loved the gesture, she still mentions it. You guys are da real MVP’s.

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Everyone hanging out for the last night.

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The kitchen with a lot of potential that we did not use.

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On the way back, we all sort of split our own separate ways. JC, Aldo and I took Highway 1 back which, coincidentally happens to also be the long way back… Adding a good hour and a half onto our trip back when we were planning on making it back quicker than when we came. Punit and Jackie took another route while Gopesh and Nikhil took yet another.

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This gas station was one of the stops along the abandoned long way…

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You can tell Diana just wanted to go home lol

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The view from the gas station was awesome – nothing but dry, barren hills and mountains. Vancouver is under a water ban currently because they haven’t seen rain in months – which calls for an unfamiliar yellow/orange scene. It’s usually lush and green most of the year.

 

 

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Almost ready to roll out again.

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Right after we left that gas station we made our way through the outer parts of the main Cocchiola highway, it was literally like a scene from Top Gear where they just drive – no oncoming traffic, no slow seniors in front of you – just wide open road to drive your car the way it was intended. I would say we had about 50-60km of road like that.

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And then this happens… Anyway, that’s pretty much the end of the trip for us. Once we entered city limits, the rain hit us HARD. I think it was the hardest rain I’ve ever really driven through in Calgary – you could barely see in front of you. Maybe we’ll be nicknamed Rain City and Vancouver can have our weather and snow.

Back to car show stuff shortly…

Hot Import Nights 2015 – Vancouver

OK I am going to have a lot of content coming your way over the next few days/weeks… I’m a little behind mainly because I’ve had no time to actually edit any of the photos I’ve taken. I’ll put the photos on the computer and we’ll have to go out to the next show or something. It’s been crazy but I’m glad that I’m able to get all of this stuff up since I’ve had no photoshoots lately.

To continue with the Vancouver trip, one of the first stops we made when we got there was Hot Import Nights. The HIN name was announced some time ago that it was coming to Canada with little details. The HIN we know of is a huge car show that consists of huge booths, lots of good quality cars, music, beautiful models, DJ’s, lights, a nightclub feel and other forms of entertainment. Everything that you think a crazy car show would be is under the Hot Import Nights name. Of course, with that type of reputation – you are bound to have to live up to it. Unfortunately – and not through any one’s fault – the scene in Canada just isn’t there. There’s a lot of things still missing – vendors/shops with the money and clientele that can bring good game and money to these types of events. If there’s one thing that Canada lacks – it’s still the fact that there is little recognition to what Canada has to offer. There is without a doubt, amazing builds but they are so far and few between all the other noise that it often goes unnoticed.

While the Vancouver scene does indeed have its hard hitters, the venue, the location, the number of cars, and the set up in general didn’t live up to the HIN name. This was on par with Driven to Perform a few years back and in my opinion it’s still a great show. The Vancouver scene is just so rich in diversity and the attitude towards tuning and the automotive culture in general is right and it’s thriving. I’ve talked to a few Vancouver friends and the consensus was that the scene is built around competition and who has dumped the most money into their cars. While it’s not the best way to describe the automotive scene, it’s painfully true and it makes everyone want to push that bar higher. This is what creates the richness that you’ll see in my coverage of HIN Vancouver when you compare it to HIN Calgary.

That is what I love about Vancouver. Quality over everything (for the most part).

Anyway – sorry for the long blabber. It always seems to come up whenever I compare Vancouver to Calgary’s scene and it makes me want to move so bad. Let’s just get on with the coverage…

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The show was in a Casino parking lot, so we parked across the street. The first car that caught our attention was Kevin Yong’s ITR. I’ve been a big fan of Kevin’s ITR since I saw it on Instagram a few years back and it’s still as good to look at as the first time I saw it. Bravo sir.

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The show itself wasn’t tremendously big as we were expecting, but I’ve mentioned it a few times during our trip – although the quantity is not there, quality definitely is. You’ll see as you scroll through.

Above is a very clean VIP Nissan President.

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This brought back some nostalgia. A full VIP’d out Lexus LS460 aired to the ground. This was perfect.

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The inside was blinged out – exactly like you’d see in Japan… From bling air fresheners, to bling cup holders.

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One of my favourites of the VIP builds was this Nissan President/Cima tucking with flared rear quarters.

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Over on the other side – a Fiat Abarth and wide flares. Looks clean in white on white. Not sure if this car was with AJ-R or not…

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This black on black 370z on Volks was super clean.

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GTR on Advan GT’s

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Ben’s GTR on Volk TE37 Ultra. Beastly.

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A widebody C-West FRS on Advan’s. The Voltex wing fitted on this is 1900mm. FYI – that is MASSIVE. Looks crazy.

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Reggie’s Varis x Rocket Bunny FRS. Looks very good all together.

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This reminded me of a Civic that would come from Stickydiljoe’s blog. lol

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Clean EK on Meisters

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A two toned engine bay with a fuschia tone going on.

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Ben’s other race car – BRZ fitted with Arise Sport, Voltex, and TRD goodies.

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Another angle…

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A fairly simple STI on Volk ZE40’s in the diamond dark gunmetal.

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Dicken’s freshly Varis widebodied Evo X on bronze TE37’s

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Immaculate Mugen RSX on bronze CE28’s.

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It was then that Jackie decided it would be funny to photobomb my shot. At least you can somewhat see the engine bay if you ignore the right side enough…

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And of course, none other than the internet sensation himself – Jackie’s S2000. It’s been a long ass time since I’ve seen this. It’s been under the knife for a while getting a whole bunch of new things fitted. The first thing you’ll probably notice is the Voltex bumper…

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And the big reveal of his newly boosted setup. We did end up meeting with Jackie in Victoria a few days later, so I’ll have better shops up after I get through all these shows!

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A slammed Chevy Avalanche. This was dope haha

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Another one of my show favourites was this eggplant/plum Varis widebody STI Sedan.

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Another view of it to see the colour a little better. I apologize – the sun wasn’t working for me this day and it was super harsh. But the best thing about this is that it’s not wrapped – it’s been re-sprayed properly. The interior is also gutted and the dash wrapped with grey alcantara.

Not sure what the guys are doing in this pic…

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A simple Rocket Bunny V1 FRS

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An R34 GTR on Volk TE37’s is always right.

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Another very clean Nissan President.

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And another. The VIP force is strong here.

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And forgive me if I’m mistaken – but I believe this is an older model Toyota Crown? The dude was taking forever to clean the car – it’s like he knew I wanted a pic so he took longer…

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This Infiniti G37 was absolutely gorgeous. Tommy Kaira goodies.

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Tommy Kaira engine cover.

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An interesting 350Z on Work VS-KF’s. Well executed.

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Over on the other side was the Stage Five crew – starting with this yellow ITR on Mugen MF10’s

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Chris’s J-swapped Civic you may remember from my photoshoot from last year

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Another C-west FRS sans the widebody.

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and a clean NSX on Advan RS’s

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Another car that I seem to see all over social media was Monique’s BMW Z4 aired out. Extremely clean in person.

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Now we move over to the MBN area…

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A Liberty Walk GTR aired out and wingless. Crazy in person.

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An up close of the fitment under those massive fenders.

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And from the back. I’m used to seeing LB cars with crazy GT wings but this looked really good with just a duckbill.

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One more…

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A Liberty Walk Ferrari 458. Again… So crazy. If you have the money… Why the hell not…

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And a Liberty Walk Lamborghini Aventador.

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One more… It’s absolutely amazing seeing LB builds in person.

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And a RWB Porsche – also very awesome in person. Check that rear dish.

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This LS swapped Silvia was immaculate as well and I believe this thing is driven hard…

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The aeromotions wing on the rear is massive.

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Another LB GTR but this time with a GT wing on the rear… Which I kind of prefer more… I’m biased though 🙂

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Back to the beginning was the G106 crew – starting off with this S2000 fitted with a Sorcery bumper on very aggressive Volk ZE40’s.

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Another S2000 sporting Spoon.

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A rootbeer S2000 sporting Voltex and ASM fenders

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Steezy_GD7’s STI on red TE3’s

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And none other than Benji’s TSX. Benji has literally been traveling across Canada and into the States for multiple shows to get his car exposure. That is dedication.

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One more shot of the Cima from down low.

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One car I missed beside the Cima was this GS. There were lots of people blocking it earlier but I had to come back and get a shot. Check that rear… So perfect!

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2JZ swapped and the engine bay was clean as hell.

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A very mint Mini.

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This Honda Fit may be familiar to some of you if you have been kind of following the Vancouver scene over the last 5-6 years. It was one of the first with a full custom metal widebody Fit that caught a lot of attention back in the day.

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He’s now K-swapped and boosted… Very clean.

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Rare to see clean Genesis’ but this one was proper on VIP Modulars.

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As I was circling back, I took a few more shots. Reggie’s FRS is now boosted too.

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A rear shot of Ben’s BRZ

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We were walking down to the lower level where apparently there were more cars but lots of them had rolled out before we could see them all. There was a huge crowd near this so I went to go see why…

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Inside – there were TV’s galore. From this picture alone: 2 in each of the Recaros, 2 in the floor, 2 in the sun visors, 2 on the side of the doors, 2 on the passenger dash, one where normal humans would put it… We’re at 11 TV’s so far. I think it’s bad ass as hell but the floor TV’s would make me so paranoid of cracking them. Imagine an accident in this thing… God forbid it ever happens to the owner.

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And moving to the back, he’s got more I.C.E…. Another 2 on the backside of the Recaros and three more larger units on the backs of the rear seats. That’s all I could see – I wouldn’t be surprised if I missed more but that’s a total of 16 TV’s. Insane.

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And he’s got the awards to back it up too. Not my slice of pie but I can dig it – props to the owner. There’s a ton of money in I.C.E. and doing it right and he’s done it.

That’s a wrap for HIN Vancouver. As you can see, there is a lot of great quality builds here and there are plenty that weren’t in the show at all, too. It was a quick trip but it’s definitely refreshing to see something different.

Cherry Blossoms & Selfies

Next stop on the list was to get some sick shots of Cherry Blossoms. Admittedly, this was the first time I’ve ever really seen them in person and in full bloom like this. I was adamant that we find the BEST spot for these so we searched Google and surprise surprise – one of the links was something like “25 best spots to see Cherry Blossoms in Vancouver” LOL. I ended up settling on Burrard Station where they were everywhere! Tons of good ops for pics too… First of all, I apologize because this post lacks car content but contains lots of awesome pink flowers.

Here we go!

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The entrance to Burrard station. You can already see how awesome this is.

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The best view.

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Diana and Shereen taking selfies

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Cherry blossom petals everywhere

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Some random shoes hanging up on one of the branches

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A cool shot I got of Diana with a petal falling.

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Some jumping shots

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Rare shot of Diana and I lol

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Thought this was a cool shot… Matched her scarf perfectly.

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The next stop was Stanley Park to check out the view

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This dude chilled with us for a bit

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Then we stopped at the hollow tree…

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If you’re interested in the history…

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A full on shot. It doesn’t look like it here, but people used to back their cars up into the trunk for pics and stuff but there is a big rock in place of that entryway to prevent that now…

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More big trees with cool looking moss all over…

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The next day, I hopped on the ferry to Victoria bright and early to meet Jackie and crew for some photoshoots!

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A cool little 1.5 hour ride. It was cool for my first time in about 20 years…

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Hipster shot.

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As I was walking around the ferry, I went into one of the shops and had to get a shot of this lol

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The next posts you can look forward to include Ben’s NSX… Which is SUPER mint btw. Looks like it came right off the showroom floor.

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And finally, Chris’s J-Swap Civic… Stay tuned!