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Updated: Mon, 14 Jan 2013 08:51:13 GMT | By CBC News, cbc.ca

Waldorf Hotel supporters stage 'love-in'



Waldorf Hotel supporters stage 'love-in'

It was a day of love for the Waldorf Hotel on Sunday as the threatened cultural oasis faces closure.

About 150 supporters rallied around the popular East Vancouver location Sunday in response to the operators’ announcement last week that they were being forced to shut down Jan. 20 after the building was sold to a developer.

But hope is growing that the Waldorf can be saved.

On Friday, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson said he’s asked City Manager Penny Ballem to prepare a report for Tuesdays' council meeting that would look at ways to protect the hotel.

Musician Tim Sars has been playing with the Carnival Band for a decade and has often performed at the Waldorf. Sars said without that venue artists like him and his bandmates would suffer.

“There are so many venues that have gone away and it's tough on the scene,” Sars said.

“There's a lot of people working in the music industry in Vancouver that rely on these venues to be playing. We can't all be playing the Vogue or the Commodore ballroom. We need in-betweens as well.”

Tiki lounge a hotspot

The hotel and its original Tiki lounge has become a trendy hot-spot in recent years, boasting live performances, art shows, and restaurants.

Sandy Garossino was inspired to create the Vancouver Loves the Waldorf group and stage what she calls a "love-in."

“This is what we want Vancouver to be. We want these venues, these teams to thrive and survive in this city. If they can't that's a terrible indictment of the city,” Garossino said.

The new owner, developer Solterra, says it currently doesn't have plans to demolish the building and the operators of Waldorf Productions say they're increasingly optimistic they can strike a deal.

With files from the CBC's Justine Ma

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