Unlike Whistler, Vancouver doesn't really have any public festivities at NYE. No fireworks, sadly, and no public square to collectively celebrate. (Drunk on Granville Street doesn't count.) But it's often cold and rainy anyway - not so fun to be outside then.
Saying that, almost every restaurant has a special dinner promotion and most night clubs, lounges, and hotels host massive parties. You typically have to purchase tickets or make reservations well ahead of time.
Here's a good list of some of the New Year's Eve parties happening around Vancouver:
And here's a quick glance at what some of the city's restaurants are doing for NYE:
As I mentioned, it's hard to recommend an actual NYE party because every year the venues host something different, and many locals just go to house parties on NYE anyway. This year I'm heading to Chambar (fantastic Belgian restaurant) with a group of friends which I'm looking forward to.
What are you doing for NYE?