PNE prize home has come a long way

Hun­dreds streamed through dreamy abode worth $1.6 mil­lion at fair­grounds Wed­nes­day

The Province - - NEWS - CH­ERYL CHAN chchan@post­media.com

In Van­cou­ver, where home own­er­ship can seem like a fairy tale, a chance to win a fully loaded dream home was too good to pass up.

“Wow, we could win that?” asked seven-year-old Mia John­son with won­der, pulling her mom’s hand to go into the two-storey West Coast mod­ern home.

“Yes, we could,” said mom Jen John­son, who then tem­pered her daugh­ter’s hopes with a dash of re­al­ism. “Many peo­ple could win. Some­one’s gotta.”

The Fair at the PNE had just been open an hour Wed­nes­day and close to 700 peo­ple had al­ready streamed through the open door.

Maiya Cal­lis­ter was one young PNE worker giv­ing tours of the prize home. Her do­main was the deck, where she got to be out­doors and tell vis­i­tors about the pa­tio set, the shiny bar­be­cue and six-per­son hot tub.

“I like talk­ing about all the fur­nish­ings,” she said. “Most peo­ple don’t know they come with the house.”

Go­ing through the house tour were Me­lanie Lin and her boyfriend Phil Man. They live in a small one-bed­room condo in Van­cou­ver and “we wanted to check this out and dream a lit­tle of liv­ing in a big house,” said Lin, who mar­velled over the gen­er­ous stor­age in the kitchen, the abun­dant nat­u­ral light, and the “laun­dry room the size of our liv­ing room.”

“But think of all the clean­ing we’ll have to do,” joked Man as they trooped up­stairs, past the glassedin wine cel­lar. Any hes­i­ta­tion Man might have about clean­ing the 3,100-square foot home evap­o­rated when he saw the bar and pool ta­ble.

The PNE’s 83rd prize home, de­signed and built by Freeport In­dus­tries, is much dif­fer­ent than the one of­fered in 1934, when me­chanic Leonard Frewin cashed a 25-cent ticket and won the first prize home — an 800-square-foot bunga- low worth $5,000 that boasted of a “state-of-the-art” elec­tric stove.

This lat­est home, with its gourmet kitchen, has a nice stove, but also a built-in espresso ma­chine in the mas­ter bed­room, elec­tric fire­places, and LED light fixtures. It’s worth about $1.6 mil­lion.

Once won, it will be re­lo­cated to Nara­mata on a perch over­look­ing Okana­gan Lake.

Pat Flett can al­ready imag­ine the sweep­ing vista. Her favourite part of the house is the view, as well as the theatre room equipped with a 92-inch TV screen be­cause their grand­kids would love it.

Flett said if they win, they’ll likely keep the place.

“It would be nice as a fam­ily get­away,” she said. “But we’ll have to rent it out, too, fig­ure out how to make it make money.”

Prize home tick­ets sell for two for $25, six for $50 and 15 for $100. They’re avail­able at the PNE, at pneprize­home.ca or at 604-2523688 or toll-free at 1-877-946-4663.

PHOTOS: GERRY KAHRMANN/PNG

The model prize home was draw­ing big crowds ea­ger to walk through and dream a lit­tle Wed­nes­day at the PNE.

Emily Wong sold tick­ets for the PNE prize home draw out­side the dis­play home Wed­nes­day.

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