Mark Brand

Mark owns several popular Gastown businesses within a two-block radius, including Boneta, The Diamond, Peckinpah, Save-On-Meats and Sea Monstr Sushi.

He says he fell in love with Gastown the first time he set foot in it, in 2006, and calls it his favourite neighbourhood not just in Vancouver, but the world.

Some have accused Mark of gentrifying the area – an idea he calls “not only ludicrous, but borderline insane.” His goal, he says, is to help it thrive by maintaining unique, one-off businesses, locking down long-term rents and keeping chain restaurants and stores at bay.