Catfe – a Cat Cafe in Vancouver


Tucked into the corner on the second story of a shopping mall between Gastown and Chinatown in Downtown Vancouver, there sits a cat cafe fittingly called Catfe.

Catfe opened its doors as Vancouver’s first cat cafe back on December 14, 2015. According to their website, “Catfe is part cafe, part foster home for cats, and a community gathering space for cat lovers of Vancouver in need of some quality kitty time.”

Since opening about a year and a half ago, Catfe has already adopted out nearly 400 cats! All cats at the cafe are from the BC SPCA.

photos of adopted cats from Catfe
Look at all of the adopted cats!

A Delayed Visit

As Olive and Sophie so kindly let readers know, Ross and I recently went to Vancouver for 11 years (or eight if you ask Olive). And while planning our trip, of course I had to check for any cat cafes. And we were in luck! After learning about Catfe, I quickly made a reservation for the Wednesday we would be in town.

But while in Vancouver, I received an email and voicemail that one of their cats wasn’t feeling well and they would be closed for cleaning during our reservation day. They wanted to adopt out all of the cats, close down and perform a deep cleaning before bringing in a new crew of cats.

cat cafe closed for cleaning

We happened to be in the mall when they were cleaning (after visiting a nearby attraction), and the Catfe staff was hard at work sanitizing the cafe. While I know they may not be thrilled to have photos shown of them cleaning, I was happy to see them doing such a thorough job.

staff cleaning cat cafe

A “Quiet” Catfe Experience

Another thing that Catfe did well was to communicate with us. As I mentioned, the staff both emailed and called about the closure, and I was easily able to make another reservation for Friday.

Then, they called and emailed again later in the week to tell us that it would be a “quiet” week with only three cats in the cafe and asked if we wanted to reschedule again. Usually there are eight to 12 cats in the cafe.

Obviously we couldn’t reschedule, so we went with expectations that it wouldn’t be a typical visit to the cat cafe. They also gave us a discount on the already inexpensive entrance price. But I definitely appreciated their efforts to keep us informed all along the way.

Let’s Meet the Cats

We had the first slot of the day on Friday, something I’d learned to do from visiting another cat cafe. The cats are “fresh” and not tired from other visitors yet. The three cats at the cafe that day were…

Toby

Toby is a one-year-old male with lots of energy! And guess what, Toby has already been adopted!

Jojo

This sweetie is a three-year-old female who knows how important it is to keep clean. Obviously that paid off, as Jojo has also already been adopted as well!

Phoebe

I don’t recall Phoebe’s age, but she was a little shy and would retreat to a safe room periodically. But if called, she would come back out and roll over for pets. While not adopted yet, Phoebe does have someone who just filled out an application. So, fingers crossed for her!

More Photos!

In this photo, you can see Toby looking out into the mall. There is a room up front where they can watch the goings-on, and of course mall visitors can see the kitties, too.

tabby cat at Catfe

Inside the cafe, here is the view the cats have. Looks pretty nice to me.

View from Catfe

While not a great photo, you can see the cat door where the cats are able to escape to privacy if too overwhelmed. Phoebe went in there a few times but always came back out. There’s another cat door to this same room on the adjoining wall.

cat sign at Catfe

Lots of places for kitties to lounge and climb.

cat wall at Catfe

Here I am with Jojo. (Don’t tell the Three Chatty Cats!)

Catfe in Vancouver

Some cute items from the gift shop. Many of the items were designed or made from local artists.

A Very Nice Cat Cafe

Although there were only three cats at the cafe during our visit, we still had a nice time. We didn’t eat at the cafe, but I did buy a cat-shaped cookie to take with me, which was yummy.

We met two other tourists who were at Catfe getting their kitty fix (they were all the way from Australia). There was also a group of three ladies who I think were regulars. They were simply enjoying their drinks and snacks at a table and were admiring Jojo as she groomed in a cubby hole. One of them commented how she likes that she only sees cats there, not kittens, since kittens are adopted quickly from shelters and it’s the adults who often get overlooked and need to be in the cafe.

If you ever find yourself in Vancouver, I highly recommend checking out Catfe!


Have you been to a cat cafe? What did you think of it?

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32 thoughts on “Catfe – a Cat Cafe in Vancouver

  1. I love the idea of cat cafe’s! It’s such an awesome way to have visitors sit down for a bit and mingle, and I can definitely see how it would benefit adoptions!

  2. What a wonderful cat cafe! They’ve been quite successful in finding homes for their kitties, I do hope Phoebe gets adopted soon, she’s so beautiful & sleek! The cafe is so gorgeous, what a great view they have. I love cat cafe’s and I’m dying to visit one soon.
    Love & Biscuits,
    Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them

  3. What a lovely cat cafe. Such a wonderful idea. I hope all of those kitties get adopted.
    Yael from PlayingInCatnip.com

  4. When I’m ever out in the West I have to visit Catfé, after all I follow them on Instagram! I’ve only ever been to the one in Montreal where I attended their opening in 2014, Café Chat L’Heureux. I really have to get back there this summer as I was impressed by the decor, the staff and the menu!
    So glad you enjoyed your Catfé experience, looks like the cats have some nice views. I love that they’re popping up everywhere.

  5. I’ve never been to a Cat Cafe … I wish my talents lay there so I could start one here! Catfe sounds like such an amazing place – that truly caters to the cats more than the people who come to see them (that sounds bad … but I mean that they are about the cats’ wellbeing more than staying open under less than ideal circumstances).

  6. We must go and see this cat café when we’re in Vancouver. Between Gastown and Chinatown you say….which street? We have been to the café in London….Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium. Lady Di’s was the only cat café we were in and enjoyed it immensely.

    Jean

  7. That sure looks like a great place for cats to hang out in while looking for a home. They sure have lots of success finding them homes and it is neat that the cats get to interact with people. Thanks for this great post.

  8. I absolutely love that cat cafes are gaining in popularity! One is opening in a nearby town. Since my husband is allergic to cats and I can’t have another one, I plan to go and have my kitty love there regularly. Catfe looks like a beautiful establishment. I hope Phoebe is adopted soon- black cats are the best!

  9. Catfe looks and sounds awesome. I love that they obviously take really good care of the kitties, and take their health so seriously. Thank you for sharing!

  10. Sounds like they are super responsible. I love that they have an area where the cats can get some privacy if they need it. That’s definitely quite a view, too!

    I have never visited Vancouver or a cat cafe (in any city) but hope to soon.

  11. What a great spot! It would be so much fun to visit these cats. It looks like you were able to meet some really nice kitties.

  12. This sounds like such an awesome place. I love that cat cafes are popping up all over now. Over 400 cats adopted?? WOW! That’s amazing! I hope that Phoebe’s adoption application goes through and that she has a loving family of her own in no time!

  13. Even though I’m a dog person at heart, I really want to go to a cat cafe. This one looks like it is run really well, and I love that they were so conscientious of your time and let you know that they would be closed.

  14. I love the idea of a cat café, we have one in San Francisco also and now that I am on holiday am planning to go there for a coffee one of these days without Layla of course LOL,

  15. It’s absolutely shameful that I am local to Catfe and haven’t made it there yet. I’ve been meaning to since the day it opened, but somehow? It keeps getting pushed off. Perhaps I’m subconsciously afraid Kol will shank me in my sleep? Thanks for the sneak peek of what I’m missing!

  16. What a wonderful concept, I’ve never experienced a cat cafe. Hopefully one day I can! Hopefully this will catch on and well get one in our area. Thanks for sharing, love how many have been adopted!

Any thoughts to share?