Balancing act: form and function
Oak Bluff beauty has everything you need
WHEN it comes to new-home design, balance must be present in two key areas in order for the design to be functional. First, the floor plan must make sense. Second, the different finishes must be applied in such a way that they complement the functional floor plan in tasteful fashion. Go even slightly over the top with finishes and a well-conceived floor plan can be lost amid all the glitz and glamour. That’s not the case with Artista Homes’ latest show home at 8 Orchard Gate in Oak Bluff West, said Artista’s sales representative, Royal LePage Alliance’s Jennifer Gulay. “The first thing that strikes you as you walk through the home is that the floor plan is really well-thought-out,” she said. “Not only does this home have everything you need, it’s been placed exactly where you need it.” Because the walk-out bungalow measures in at 2,300 square feet on the main floor and 1,600 square feet downstairs (the home is 62 feet wide) — making for 3,900 square feet of total livable space — there’s plenty of room for all kinds of different spaces, from dens to laundry rooms to dining rooms and dinette areas. However, the key is that there’s a reason why each space has been placed where it is. It all starts with the home’s layout, said Gulay. “It’s actually a split plan, with the master suite on one side of the home, while the den, two secondary bedrooms, a four-piece main bath and laundry room are on the opposite side,” she explained. “Everyone who’s viewed the home has really liked it because it has all the different spaces you need to make the home livable on a day-to-day basis. It’s basically divided up into thirds, which works really well with the great room in the middle and bedrooms on either side. It’s a home that is very functional and private.” First comes the privacy. Placed to the right of the generous foyer with a glassified, front-oriented den, the master suite is tucked away in (you guessed it) a private spot. Clearly (as should be the case), the intent of Artista’s design team was to create a secluded retreat that was serene, functional and beautiful. The serenity, it turns out, is delivered via a large, three-piece picture window that provides a near-panoramic view of the lake that runs behind the home. Function comes from the bedroom’s size (13.5 feet by 14 feet), which makes it large enough to contain a reading space, yet intimate enough to feel cosy. It includes a walk-in closet with oversized transom window the size of a small bedroom. Gulay said the beauty comes from the spa-like ensuite’s wonderful collection of finishes and top-drawer amenities. “The finishes — light grey tile floor, grey vanity, quartz countertop and earth tone colour palette — are modern, yet warm. At the same time, the amenities — six-foot jetted soaker tub, five-foot custom (tempered glass/tile) shower with rain shower head and two body washes — provide a real feel of luxury. It’s also a bright space, with lots of light coming in from a large window over the tub and an oversized transom in the walk-in closet.” A short hallway takes you to the great room, which, not surprisingly, features a well-balanced design that’s at once bright, yet warm and open, yet defined. “All kinds of light comes in from all the windows on the great room’s back wall, windows that are larger than normal because the ceiling is 12 feet high,” said Gulay. “That makes an already roomy area feel that much more spacious. Flow between spaces is excellent, yet even though the great room is very open, each space is still defined. The fireplace divides the family room and dining room and the island defines the kitchen, which also comes with a huge dinette area next to a pair of large windows.” Even though the great room comes with space aplenty, it’s not a cold space. Finishes such as medium-brown engineered oak hardwoods, which run through most of the main floor, light grey maple cabinetry and off-white quartz countertops — not to mention the fireplace with its cultured stone surround — combine to create a modern warmth that draws you into the area and compels you to stay awhile. Head downstairs to the home’s walk-out lower level and, as is the case on the main floor, you immediately feel at home. Light floods in from a series of large windows placed along its rear wall, while dark taupe carpeting provides a warm, plush counterpoint. As is the case upstairs, the rec room is divided into distinct areas that feature a perfect balance between style and utility. “Again, like the great room, the rec room is open, yet defined,” she said. “There are two games areas, a wet bar and beautiful home theatre area with huge window and gas fireplace. The wall next to it has gorgeous cultured stone trim around the windows of the room next door, an exercise room where you can go to get in a workout at any time of day. There’s also a (huge) fourth bedroom, four-piece bath and tons of storage space.” Overall, 8 Orchard Gate is a well-balanced design that’s equal parts livability and style.