Winnipeg’s newest neighbourhood village is the St. James Village. Located along Portage Avenue, St. James Village is a cluster of boutiques, restaurants, cafés and specialty stores. It is also home to the city’s largest shopping mall Polo Park, as well as numerous other big box retailers. While here, sample gourmet chocolates by Chocolatier Constance Popp, shop for stylish surf and snow gear at King’s Skate, Snow and Surf or stock up on Asian delights at Arirang Oriental Market. The greater St. James area was one of Winnipeg’s original districts, with the Royal Canadian Air Force 17 Wing base located in the heart. Be sure to visit the Historical Museum of St. James. This two-storey Red River frame house, built in 1856, displays furnished rooms with period pieces from 1860-1890. Here, you will also find the 1911 Municipal Hall Building, which houses exhibits from the St. James-Assiniboia area and surrounding parishes.
Location: The approximate boundaries of this large area are on the north by the rural municipality of Rosser and the Canadian National Railway’s Oak Point line. It is bounded in the south by the Assiniboine River, on the west by the rural municipality of Headingley and on the east by St. James St. The “Village” of St. James is located between St. James St and Ferry Rd. Located 3.5 km from downtown. The airport is located in this neighbourhood.
Top Places to Eat:
- The Burger Place is a no-frills joint with exceptional house-made deluxe chilli cheeseburgers and savoury poutine. 1909 Portage Ave, 831-7967.
- Serving authentic German cuisine in a chalet-style setting, Gasthaus Gutenberger is a carnivore’s paradise. The menu has traditional dishes from six types of schnitzel to bratwurst to Bavarian pork hock. 2583 Portage Ave, 888-3133. http://www.gasthausgutenberger.com/
- With its charming celestial charts, chimes and other-worldly atmosphere, Star Grill is a unique dining destination. Tarot card and tea leave readings are offered alongside a globally influenced menu. 2069 Portage Ave, 837-7827. http://stargrill.mb.ca/
Top Places to Shop:
- Using Manitoba ingredients and exotic single-origin chocolate, Chocolatier Constance Popp’s artisan chocolates make sweet souvenirs. This quaint boutique is well-stocked with bon bons, bars, barks and specialty moulded chocolate. 1853 Portage Ave, 897-0689. http://www.artisanchocolates.ca
- Die-hard skateboarders, trick cyclists, surfers and snowboarders frequent Kings: Skate, Snow, Surf for the latest apparel and specialty sports gear. 1769 Portage Ave, 897-5464.
- Shop till you drop at the city’s largest mall, Polo Park. More than 200 shops and services are housed in this vast complex, including a SilverCity Cinema, the Bay, Sears, and Canada’s largest Forever 21 store. 66Q – 1485 Portage Ave, 784-2500. http://www.polopark.ca/
- Located across St. James St from Polo Park, the 270,000 sq. ft. St. James Station is home to a cluster of big box retailers, including Old Navy, Future Shop, Canadian Tire, Home Outfitters and more.
Top Things to See and Do:
- Get swept up in live horse racing from May-September and year-round simulcast races at Assiniboia Downs. A gaming lounge and tiered dining room overlooking the track makes this a popular entertainment destination. 3975 Portage Ave, 885-3330. http://www.assiniboiadowns.com/
- While it is technically located in Tuxedo, Assiniboine Park is accessible from St. James by a pedestrian bridge over the Assiniboine River. This beautiful green space features a zoo, duck pond, two restaurants, a new children’s adventure playground area and Qualico Family Centre, trails, fields, English gardens, restaurants, pavilion and stage. 55 Pavilion Cres, 927-6000. http://www.assiniboinepark.ca/
- Learn about the history and development of the historic parishes in St. Francis-Xavier, Headingley, St. Charles and St. James at the Historical Museum of St. James-Assiniboia. Three buildings house approximately 2000 artifacts, including textiles, glassware, ceramics, metals, artwork and photographs among others. 3180 Portage Ave, 888-8706. http://www.museumsmanitoba.com/dir/winnipeg/145.html
- Located just outside the west Perimeter, Red River Exhibition Park is a multipurpose facility home to exciting major events, such as the Red River Ex and Canad Inns Winter Wonderland. Hundreds of thousands of visitors flood the park each June for the EX, where a midway, live entertainment, hands-on exhibits and vendors set up. From December to early January, Canad Inns Winter Wonderland features more than one million lights and more than 29 themed areas available for viewing during a 2.5 km drive. 3997 Portage Ave, 888- 6990. www.redriverexhibitionpark.com
(Information provided through www.winnipegtourism.com)