NANAIMO — Nanaimo General Regional Hospital will offer a unique sensory experience in time for next week’s city-wide Public Art Week.

“This year, we really wanted to help patients who couldn’t get outside to experience Nanaimo in all its olfactory glory,” said hospital spokesman and former turret mechanic Torbjörn Lindholm. “So we’re bringing the smells of the city right to them.”

Starting this Sunday, Nanaimo’s hospital will be divided into six “scent zones” which provide an authentic take on the smells from various neighbourhoods around the city.

The Nanaimo Beacon has been leaked a copy of the walking-tour brochure that will be used next week:

The brochure reads:

  • Emergency: There’s no smell better to match the chaos of our Emergency department than the nuanced aroma of downtown, with its primary garbage overtones and light breezes of body odour. Just beautiful.
  • Paediatrics: North Nanaimo comes alive in our childcare department, where you and your child will be surrounded by the light scent of Nuanced Incense and Medicinal Bioactive Ylang Ylang (NIMBY).
  • Endoscopy: Enjoy the rich, earthy scent tones offered in Harewood. As you are guided gently through your colonoscopy, you’ll be relaxed by smells carefully crafted to match your procedure. Bowel prep has never smelled so alive!
  • Internal Medicine: Virtually visit Departure Bay with our special blend of subtle scent reminders of the ferry terminal. You’ll walk through fine fragrances of diesel fuel, stale coffee, and employee derision.
  • Cardiology: As you lie strapped to our comfortable steel tables awaiting your procedure, breathe in a lovely mixture of common University District smells, none of which can be disclosed owing to provincial privacy legislation.
  • Obstetrics and Gynaecology: Our aromatic tribute to Cedar is simple and strong — clinical levels of patchouli and cannabis will coat the entirety of your nasal passages.

Lindholm says the art installation was made possible thanks to a $941-million dollar grant which came from the City’s recent property tax increase.

The Scents of Nanaimo art installation joins ten other pieces of temporary art installed in City parks and public spaces, as part of Public Art Week. Over the course of the week, residents are encouraged to explore and celebrate the collection of public art found throughout Nanaimo.

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