Mi Casa es su Casa
Calgary family finds cabin-on-the-lake retreat in La Casa Cottage Resort
Acabin at the lake means a lifetime of memories. Calgary couple Jeff and Raelene MacKenzie wanted a special place to build a wealth of fun with their twin boys, Aidan and Evan.
When they happened on La Casa Cottage Resort on the west side of Lake Okanagan in British Columbia six years ago, they bought a cabin “on impulse.”
“When I was a kid, we used to go to the same resort year after year,” says Jeff MacKenzie, a financial planner in his 40s. “Those are some of my fondest memories. I think that’s certainly the case with our kids. Going to the same resort every year is like having a second neighbourhood.
“We know everybody; we know the kids of the other owners; we get together for barbecues. We meet lots of new people, too, because there are always guests and renters. It’s a very familyoriented resort, so it’s a lot of fun for the kids.”
La Casa is proving a popular draw for Calgary families, says Patricia Cecconi, La Casa sales director.
“Between 55 to 60 per cent of buyers over the years have been from Alberta and a good portion of that from Calgary,” Cecconi says.
“Calgary families absolutely love the Okanagan. It’s a great place to come. We also get a few people who may want to retire to the Okanagan in the next five to 10 years and want to get their foot in the door to test the waters.”
The resort has about 470 lots, of which 23 are available, ranging from $49,000 to $124,000.
Owners can build cottages up to 1,076 square feet of total living space — decks and garages don’t count in the square footage.
The remaining lots are in a variety of locations, including three closer to the water. Most are at the top of the resort in the third and final phase, which backs onto Crown forest.
“What’s nice about that area is that it’s much more peaceful and quiet,” Cecconi says. “There’s nothing but the forest behind you, and you’ve got this gorgeous view (of the lake) in front of you.”
The MacKenzies bought about six years ago, when their boys were four years old.
“We were looking for a place that was warmer than Calgary, near a lake because my wife loves water, and with lots of stuff for kids to do,” says MacKenzie.
There are plenty of activities at La Casa to keep kids occupied, with a large park, volleyball courts, mini golf, two pools and water trampolines in the lake.
“The kids love all of it. On a long weekend, we’ll hit everything twice,” MacKenzie says. “As (the boys) get older, we’ll probably get a boat, too. There’s a sizable marina with quite a few slips.”
The MacKenzies bought a Barcelona model, a three-bedroom, 1,100 square-foot cottage that can
Csleep eight, for a price in the low-$300,000s. It’s large enough for their needs, and more. They often rent out the cottage during the weeks they aren’t using it.
“It happens to be a way of keeping it filled when we’re not out there,” says MacKenzie. “We’ve generally had very good guests. If you have someone using it, it offsets some of the costs.”
Because the resort is still developing, there are new things to look forward to every visit.
“What I like about it is it is still a growing resort,” MacKenzie says.
“Last year they put sundecks
Visit our website for more photos. down at the lake, which makes it a lot more relaxing to watch the kids.”
Mostly, though, the family sees La Casa as a great place to spend time together, he says.
“We love going someplace where the kids always have something fun to do. They have lots of people to play with and we’ve got good friends. It’s nice to be able to get the kids together and the adults and have a glass of wine on the deck. It’s a very relaxed place to be.”
The Waterfront cabin has a breathtaking view of Lake Okanagan.
Resort residents can have fun on Lake Okanagan.
The view of Lake Okanagan from the resort.
The La Casa Cottage Resort’s Waterfront cabin’s living area.