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zen 8

You Are Here: 4 Avenue SW

This stretch of downtown is in the thick of it: skyscrapers obscure the skyline, and the lunch hour is a mad rush. Not surprisingly, it has a high concentration of quality restaurants, but there are also retail gems and access to the picturesque Bow River Pathway.


Royal India's expansive buffet, available seven days a week from 11 am - 2 pm. Photographer: Blair Hill.

Lunch crowds flock to two of the best Indian buffets in Calgary: Glory of India and Royal India Cuisine. Glory is owned and operated by Jassie Bakhshi, a chef with more than 25 years experience and a Delhi-style menu. Royal India’s lunch buffet is known for its size, with 12 entrees to choose from—including some of the city’s yummiest butter chicken. Over at Zen 8, high-end Japanese cuisine is the specialty; standard choices are augmented by novelties such as seafood cakes wrapped in noori and a Fujiyama steak.

Supreme Men’s Wear excels at customer service: attentive staff, roomy dressing rooms, complimentary parking, personal appointments, tailoring and delivery. Brands include designer names such as Versace, Belstaff, Savile Row Co. and Biedermann, and for women there’s a small area with items from Hale Bob.


Hemp soap from The EcoStore, which unveiled its newly renovated store in October.

The EcoStore is a labour of love for the Clean Calgary Association, which has been promoting the eco-friendly lifestyle since 1978. The store itself is much younger, but benefits from the association’s expertise. Items range from necessities such as rain barrels and compost bins to jewellery and greeting cards. Many of their brands are made locally—look for body products by All Things Jill and laundry powder from Claudia’s Choices.

J. Vair Anderson Jewellers is a family run business that has been selling jewellery since 1925. Their specialty is Canadian diamonds, and the selection boasts “ideal” cuts—a certification that can be applied to less than one per cent of the world’s diamonds. Coloured stones are also on hand, as well as pieces from Bulgari, Wellendorff and Georg Jensen and watches by Rolex, Omega and Tag Heuer.


The interior of Caesar's Steakhouse, in business for more than 30 years. Photographer: Jason Dziver.

Caesar’s Steakhouse is a Calgary institution. They’ve been serving Alberta beef for 37 years, and their décor maintains an old-world charm with dark woods, crimson leather, Ionic columns and white tablecloths. Charbroiled steak is their mainstay, served with stuffed potato, baked potato, french fries, rice or cottage cheese. Inside the Westin, The Keg offers dishes such as AAA steak and proscuitto-wrapped shrimp. Their lounge is a trendy spot to sip and be seen, with fireplaces and a central wraparound bar.

Fans of comfortable, worn-in pubs head to the intersection of 4th Avenue and 4th Street, where Fourth & 4th Restaurant & Pub has made its home for four years. The restaurant serves favourites such as roast beef and fish & chips, while the bar offers ten beers on tap (503 – 4 Ave SW).

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