Snug Pub

A neighbourhood favourite retains its charm after a total teardown

When something isn’t broken, you don’t fix it. But the Snug Pub in Victoria’s Oak Bay Beach Hotel had no choice when the property was torn down and rebuilt to meet B.C. building code seismic provisions.

“We broke the news to our community,” says Oak Bay Beach Hotel president and owner Kevin Walker. “And they said an interesting thing: ‘Do anything you want to the hotel, but don’t touch the Snug.’”

The new pub gives a nod to history with modern touches such as floor-to-ceiling windows that capitalize on the oceanfront location. Original beams, boards, bricks and other elements made the transition to the new pub, as well as old menu favourites like the deep-fried dill pickles.

Local craft beer and homegrown ingredients—like lamb from the hotel’s own farm on the Saanich Peninsula—figure prominently in the new iteration of the Snug. “Our freezer is just now full of last year’s crop of lamb,” says Walker. “Shortly our chef will be announcing a lamb festival.” ■

—Kristen Hilderman