One of the few businessmen prepared to brave Gastown before it became the haunt of Vancouver's newly minted hipsters, Sean Heather is now sitting pretty. The Irishman's empire has been growing steadily, most notably with the arrival of the Salt Tasting Room. But it all started with a pub. Not to be confused with the ubiquitous shamrock-coloured Irish theme bars, this was to be the real McCoy, with good draft Guinness and pub grub. Imagine, then, the dismay when in 2007, it was announced that the buildings in the block that housed Heather's was to be completely renovated. Rather than take compensation for an extended closure, Heather opted for a more radical solution and moved into new premises across the road. He then employed local impresarios Evoke, known for their sleek, trendy rooms, to come up with a design concept that would remain true to his cultural heritage, but still recognise that Ireland is part of the 21st century. As we went to press, the new venue was poised to open.