Nova Cannabis, off Whyte Avenue, opened for business on Oct. 17, 2018, the very day cannabis became legal in Canada. It was one of five Nova Cannabis locations that opened in Alberta since the first day of legalization, ushering in a wave of rapid expansion.

The burgeoning chain of cannabis stores is owned Alcanna, an Edmonton-born business with 25 years of experience retailing wine, spirits, beer, and cannabis. The company is also responsible for familiar stores such as Liquor Depot, Wine & Beyond, and Ace Liquor.

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Quick Hit

This Nova Cannabis store on 104th is situated in a shopping complex at the centre of the city’s historic district, inclusive of Old Strathcona and Whyte Avenue. The trendy area has become a magnet for restaurants and delightful shopping, meaning this recreational cannabis outlet could become a top attraction during block parties and festivals.

The Vibe

Situated in a shopping plaza removed from the bustling foot traffic on Whyte, the outside of this cannabis outlet does its best to blend in with neighbouring businesses like Shoppers Drug Mart and Planet Organic.

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The store windows are covered in opalescent vinyl, which gives the interior a futuristic look that casts candy-coloured light across an otherwise neutral room, outfitted with warm woods, gallery lighting, and a grove of birch branches.

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Customer Service

Aside from select oils and capsules, there’s not much cannabis on display at this store. There’s not a nug or sample anywhere in sight.

Nova Cannabis EdmontonJesse Milns/Leafly

A system of postcards offer shoppers an introduction to each strain and a chance to read-up on specifics. On one side of the store, find strains grouped by cultivator, organized by highest to lowest THC content. The opposite side of the store is dedicated to capsules, showcasing a collection of staff picks.

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Friendly staff are on hand to provide guidance while current menus are printed and available on clipboards in front of the cash.

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Products & Price

While the selection in store can vary from day-to-day, find the usual assortment of LPs represented, including products from Tweed, 7ACRES, Edison Company Co., and Alberta-grown faves from Sundial and Aurora, to name just a few.

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While only written descriptions of cannabis products are on display, at least there’s an array of accessories to stand in as eye candy. Pipes, bongs, grinders, papers, and other ancillary items pepper the room.

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What You Should Know

Be sure to bring valid ID—those who appear under 25 can expect to be carded. There’s loads of free parking in the lot out front, and the store is wheelchair accessible.

New shipments of cannabis are delivered on Thursdays, which tend to be the busiest day.

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