This fall, you’re invited to step inside an exceptional new build in the Champlain Park Community as part of this year’s Homes for the Holidays in November house tour in support of Hospice Care Ottawa. Come and see how one multigenerational family balanced modern design to create a true family home, inside and out.
The breathtaking 3,700 square-foot house, custom built by CanSwede Homes and designed by O’Keefe Fiorenza Design Group, blurs the boundaries between the indoors and outdoors, with its use of clean lines, generous windows and calming connection to the outside world.
With four grown children coming and going from their more traditionally designed home along the waterfront in Alymer, the homeowners were ready to make a change, but experienced some difficulty in finding a house that would accommodate family, guests and grandparents. “We had already sold our house and we were looking, but there wasn’t much on the market at that time,” explains the homeowner. “But then, on a cold January day, we went to see this house—the light was breathtaking, even in the winter! I was no more than a few feet inside, when I realized just how special a home it could be for our family.”
In fact, this is exactly the effect architectural designer Dylan O’Keefe intended to achieve with the use of unique sightlines both inside and out. Dylan and his team began by deconstructing the layout of the home and capitalizing on the length of the original property on Cowley Avenue overlooking Champlain Park. They installed floor-to-ceiling window walls along the perimeter of the main floor to allow the natural light to flow and frame the views of the backyard and the interior courtyard.
“As soon as you walk into the home, you see straight through to the other end, with huge windows creating a courtyard in the centre of the home,” explains Elizabeth Young, owner of Flowers Talk Tivoli in Westboro. Along with her team of florists, Elizabeth will be donating her time and expertise to decorate two homes as part of this year’s holiday tour.
Inspired by the home’s minimalist palette of white-washed oak, concrete and marble, the holiday decor will be infused with natural elements including wood, succulents and greenery. The florist will also create a suspended installation in the dining room and accent the space with a large, natural holiday tree visible from the kitchen.
Sleek, modern and bright, the kitchen is the ultimate room for family living and entertaining. The juxtaposition between the delicate marble backsplash and rose-gold faucet against the rugged, almost utilitarian-looking concrete countertops establishes a play-in-contrast of materials that normally would not be paired together. “The kitchen is truly the heart of the home,” explains Dylan, who used colour and tones to accentuate key areas, including the black cabinetry in the kitchen and the black aluminum window frames.
The homeowners then layered textures and patterns across the main living space with the addition of Persian rugs, original art and David Trubridge pendants from Arevco Lighting.
Upstairs, Dylan continued with his signature use of glazing, this time with low-floor windows and transoms throughout the four bedrooms and bathrooms. Guest and childrens’ bedrooms are in the front of the house, while a spacious master bedroom area in the back of the house offers both respite and retreat. A true oasis in a busy home, the master contains a private balcony, walk-in closet and dressing area, and a stunning ensuite that’s in a league of its own. White marble, matte-black porcelain tile in a classic chevron pattern and white-washed oak on the vanity combine all of the elements found throughout the home into this key space.
The new home’s interior has been carefully designed to be largely open, while providing ample opportunity for family interaction in delineated zones, as Dylan describes them. From movies in the lower-level theatre room, to holiday dinners and summer parties by the pool, the home is truly a family space that shines light on the importance being together.
The tour of Homes for the Holidays runs from November 17-19, with eight elegantly decorated homes across Ottawa, showcasing decor that will inspire holiday season imaginations. For more information on this year’s tour, visit: hospicecareottawa.ca.