We recently spent some time exploring Ottawa, our first Kine City, and were eager to discover all it had to offer in the ways of cannabis. This historic city is host to a handful of beautifully designed, quirky shops that all have their own sense of style and offerings. And getting from shop to shop was a breeze with easy access from main city streets and ample free parking (Toronto – take note!). We set aside the day to navigate through our nation’s capital, with our first stop set to HOBO Ottawa.
Hobo has chill down pat, with a soft colour palette that is captured throughout the store, from the hanging rugs to the fresh, wooden accents. Every corner of the store is a social media dream with well-thought out photo opportunities and modern decor touches throughout. The sensory tables accent the surroundings perfectly, and this was our first time seeing the oils, capsules, and flower all displayed in handy groupings that highlighted ways of consumption – a great visual for new customers.
Bonus – we found a used Jefferson Airplane record for sale which we were kind enough to leave for someone else, but highly recommend Embryonic Journey from Surrealistic Pillow as a great tune to smoke and chill to.
On the sensory tables we found cannabis offerings organized by phenotype, with a nice selection of dried flower, sprays, pre-rolls and oils to choose from. You could also use their easy-to-navigate tablets allowing you to find the perfect strain by intended effect, from Lift, Balance, Calm or Rest. You can also shop from a variety of accessories, of which we particularly liked the ceramic pipe made to look like a crushed soda can – part art, part function, part memory of being 18 and MacGyver-ing a pipe out of anything available.
What a great place to visit first on our adventures through this city. The relaxed, bedroom vibe of Hobo put me at ease as soon as I stepped through the door. The store had vignettes throughout that painted a picture of where one might relax and have a toke, from chilling on the couch with a magazine, to choosing the perfect record and enjoying some tunes; I felt like I was at a friends home where I could sit back and unwind.
I especially appreciated being able to search for my perfect strain according to the mood I was in or wanted to achieve. I know exactly what CBD levels work for me, but am still learning about THC and my body, so to have an intent in mind and then be provided appropriate options was very handy. Overall the mood of this store was suuuuper chill and I could easily see this being my go-to stop if I lived in Ottawa.
Hobo’s downtown Ottawa location is in a prime spot for those customers who’r enjoying the Centertown neighborhood. The area has a great vibe akin to some of the renewed neighborhoods in Hamilton (Corktown/North End) and Toronto (Queen East/Parkdale) we’ve visited.
I liked the sense of privacy provided by the wooden walls at the front of the store. I’m not worried who might see me perusing the local cannabis supply but I can see why others might so it’s a nice touch at Hobo. The salesperson we talked to was funny and enthusiastic and made our visit smile filled and memorable.
Turns out Hobo is the ideal location for having your hand photographed with cannabis magazines like Gossamer and Broccoli. I enjoyed the sitting area at the back of the store (where these magazines were found) while K took photos of rugs and neon signs.
Thanks Hobo, we did enjoy our trip. We’ll be back soon for more of your fine offerings and to take a picture or two in your storefront spotlight (that we’re kicking ourselves for not taking while we were there).
Hobo – 391 Bank St. Ottawa, Ontario
*Note: Since visiting Hobo, the store has had to cut down on hours due product availability from OCS. Be sure to call or check their website for new store hours.