What You Need To Know

How To Book The Event Hall

  1. Read through the Event Hall & Facility section of the website to learn about our venue and check the online calendar to see if the date you are interested in is available.
  2. Contact our main office to book a tour or put a date on hold. Please note tours are held weekdays only.
  3. Once you are ready to book the space, please be sure to have the following information ready:
  • Main contact’s full name, address, contact numbers and the email address you wish to use for all communication
  • Secondary contact’s full name and contact numbers
  • The rental date you wish to book and the start and end time for your booking. Please remember that your start and end time will need to include your set up and take down time. Events typically need a minimum of 2 hours of set up and 1 hour of take down. Meetings typically need 1 hour of set up and 30 minutes to 1 hour of take down.
  • Estimated number of guests that will attend, including yourselves
  • Purpose of the booking ie. Meeting or Event – if it is a wedding, are you booking a ceremony, reception or both?
    • A valid credit card to provide the non-refundable rental deposit ($1000 for 8+ hour events, $500 for 5+ hour events, $250 for meetings)
  1. To complete your booking, you will receive a contract via email. This contract needs to be signed and returned to the UBC Boathouse within 30 days of making your booking in order for your booking to be considered confirmed.

Renters “To Do” List

Download Link: (Download PDF)

Please complete and provide the items on this list no later than 30 days prior to your rental date. If your booking takes place within 30 days of your rental day, these items will need to be completed and provided immediately:

  • Name of preferred caterer being used (or external caterer if paying the galley fee)
  • The final number of event attendees and the final list of additional rental items to add to your rental.
  • Provide damage deposit of $600.00 on a valid credit card.
  • Pay remaining balance of rental booking.
  • Obtain Special Event Liquor License (provide a copy).
  • Obtain special event insurance permit (provide a copy).
  • You must provide UBC Boathouse with a contact person for your event that will be onsite for the entire event, and is not the bride or groom in the case of a wedding. Please provide the person’s full name and cell number
  • Complete list of all vendors that will be involved in your event as well as main contact names and numbers
  • Ensure that your dock ceremony time has been approved by the Facility Manager

Special Event Liquor License

Instructions for UBC Boathouse event hall

  • Our hall is not a liquor establishment nor is it licensed.
  • Client must obtain a Special Occasion liquor license for their event.*
  • License is for one day only.

Who can apply for the license?

  • Person must be 19 or older.
  • Person must be a resident of BC.
  • Person must be a Canadian Citizen or permanent resident (or have been approved for exemption by the Ministry of Justice)
  • Person must have a Serving It Right or Special Event Server

How do you get a liquor license?

  1. With the new streamlined system, you can now apply online, obtain approval, and pay for your liquor license in one place! (Most online applications will be instantly approved!)

*“If the event is catered by a licensed caterer, the event host does not need to obtain a SOL if the catering agreement includes the provision of liquor service. The caterer’s liquor service will be governed by the terms of the caterer’s liquor license.” – Special Occasion License Policy Manual, Section 2.4.3

Special Event Insurance Instruction

Special Event Insurance has been quoted in your contract with us. We are authorized to purchase this insurance on your behalf through our insurance provider, All Sport Insurance. Should you wish to purchase this on your own, please provide us a copy of your own coverage and we will remove the coverage from our insurer.

Event Reminders

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Book Ceremony Dock Time (4 months in advance)

Please book your Ceremony Dock Time 4 months in advance to your event or prior to sending out your guest invitations. As per the event contract the dock space is a shared space with UBC athletes and we need to approve your ceremony time around rowing and paddling schedules.

Book Viewing Appointment (30-90 days in advance)

Please book your Viewing Appointment 30-90 days in advance to your event, having your final guest number is key for this process. This appointment with the Facility Manager or Rentals Assistant will include finalizing your floor plan, time line, and vendors list. Please invite your caterer and any other key vendors or family members. Please ensure your main event contact has received a copy of the “UBC Boathouse Event Need-To-Know: for Renters and Day of Contact” form.

Book Ceremony Rehearsal (Confirm 2 weeks in advance)

You are welcome to pencil in a Rehearsal for your wedding ceremony with the UBC Boathouse 60 days prior to your wedding date; however, the Rehearsal is not confirmed until two weeks prior. Please contact us to confirm your Rehearsal time two weeks in advance. Rehearsals are not guaranteed, as they are booked based on UBC Boathouse availability. Rehearsals are complementary if during UBC Boathouse business hours and can be booked for a maximum of 1 hour; otherwise, they may be booked at $150/hour.

Event Need-To-Know: For Renters and Event Day of Contact

Download Link: (Download PDF)

In order to have your special day run with ease, there are a few things we would like you to know:

Upon Arrival

We have a facility event staff on site for you on the day of the event who will be your main contact for the facility throughout your event. They will also check in with you periodically to ensure things are running smoothly for you. Please introduce yourself to our staff upon arrival.


We encourage you to decorate the event hall to your liking; however, we do not allow any tape, nails, tact’s, or staples on our walls or flooring. If you want to hang anything from our light fixtures we suggest fishing line. For any furniture brought into the facility, we require felt or soft bottoms in order to prevent scratching of the floor. Please note that the facility manager must be informed no later than 30 days before your event if using any outside furniture. Everything brought in for décor, or by vendors, needs to be removed by the end of the rental block time. The only thing that should be left is the facility’s product.

Candles are permitted within the space, but they must be drip-less and in holders that will prevent wax from dripping or spilling onto the tables or floors.

Rental Block Time

The earliest arrival time for setup is the start of the rental block that the bride and groom have set. This is in order to ensure that our staff has all of their set up finished and ready for you to have full use of the hall space.

The bride and groom have also agreed to an end time. At the agreed rental block end time, all vendors and family need to be vacant of the facility; otherwise there will be a charge to the bride and groom for extended time spent and use of the facility. In order to ensure that this time is met for the bride and groom, we strongly suggest beginning your take down one hour before the end of the set rental block time and for last call to be a half hour before that.


We have a dike way out front of the facility available for 15 minute unloading upon arrival and re-loading at the end of the night for all vendors and decorating product. Please note that all vehicles MUST be pulled off onto the dike apron area and no vehicles may stop on the drive path for any reason. All cars need to be moved down to the street during the event and all guest parking is along the street. Please note the 3 hours signs are not applicable for your event. We cannot authorize any exceptions to parking on the dike way as it is city property. Drop off and pickup on the dike way is also okay so long as there is no stopping on the drive path. If there are any elderly or disabled guests attending the event, they may be dropped off and picked up via the dike way. Please inform our staff so that the gates are left open for them. The bride and groom are also welcome to be dropped off and picked up as well.

Please note there will be an area of the apron that will be marked with a “No Parking Beyond This Point” sign. This is to ensure that the rowing shell trailer can always get in or out of its designated parking space. Also, note that if a cook tent has been approved on the dike, it must be located away from the main entry stairs, behind the bench area. Caterers who wish to use the apron for cooking must gain approval no later than 30 days in advance from the facility manager and must bring with them their own tarp to protect the ground space, tent and any required table product. Facility product is not approved for dike way use.

Other Key Points

No glassware is authorized on the lower dock.

If dock space is booked for your event, dock access is restricted for the evening once dinner is served or cocktail reception begins in hall, as it is not a supervised area. If dock area is not booked for your event, the dock is closed. Exceptions can be made for bridal parties wishing to have photographs taken – please consult with facility event coordinator to make this possible.

As per BC Liquor Laws, alcohol is not to be consumed on the gangways or dike way. Any beverage containers are not allowed to be taken outside of the approved liquor consuming areas.

The UBC Boathouse is a smoke free facility and is situated in Richmond’s Fraser River dike way trail. This includes all inside and outside spaces including patios, dock and dike way. Smoking is permitted only on street level (the gravel shoulder along River Road), 25 metres from the playground and 9 metres from any other businesses. Please ensure that you have provided a bucket on the gravel shoulder for your guests to put their cigarette butts in when they are finished. If you suspect a large number of guests to be heading out to smoke, please let us know so we can place a tall cocktail table near the door leading outside as a drink drop station.

We will provide a list of key announcements for the MC to read out when all guests have arrived and settled. It is important that this list is read and it is the responsibility of the event day of contact to ensure this happens. The boardroom is available for storage, a kid’s room, or anything you might need it for. It is a lockable space. Please note that the athletes lounge is not included in the rental. The change rooms are also included in the rental if the rental has been booked outside of rowing hours and a pin pad code can be provided to you to share with the wedding party, please ask our staff on site for this code.