Is­land dream now re­al­ity

Al­berta cou­ple move into town­home at Paci­fica within Nanaimo, B.C.

Calgary Herald - Calgary Herald New Condos - - New Condos - JOSH SKAPIN

When David Inkster bought a high-pow­ered zoom for his cam­era, it was for shots of ex­otic an­i­mals and scenery on the other side of the world.

He and his wife, Jan, took a trip to Africa last year — but th­ese days, they con­tinue to put that zoom to good use.

Late last year, the Al­berta cou­ple moved into a town­home at Paci­fica in Nanaimo, B.C.

The Van­cou­ver Is­land pro­ject faces the ocean, where wa­ter­d­welling wildlife are known to make an ap­pear­ance.

“There’s a dock in front of our place, and we have three ot­ters in and out of the wa­ter,” says Inkster, who worked as a busi­ness pro­fes­sor at Red Deer Col­lege and lived in Calgary for six years.

“It’s just lovely. We get seals oc­ca­sion­ally and we have an ea­gle ap­pear ev­ery day.”

Paci­fica is a lux­ury condo com­plex with town­homes and apart­ments in a con­crete and steel build­ing.

It opened three years ago and con­sists of 169 units.

David Inkster and his wife, Jan. AGES: David is 62, Jan is 51. BACK­GROUND: For about three years, the Al­berta cou­ple has been in search of a home to head to af­ter re­tire­ment. They’ve al­ways been fond of the scenic West Coast and found what they were look­ing for at Paci­fica in Nanaimo on Van­cou­ver Is­land. They are in the process of sell­ing their home in Al­berta and aim to live in Nanaimo full-time.

About half of the de­vel­op­ment’s res­i­dents are from Al­berta.

Units in the pro­ject start in the $399,000s. Most of the homes are roughly 1,200 square feet, with one left at 1,650 square feet. They have two bed­rooms, two bath­rooms, a fire­place, and gran­ite coun­ter­tops in the kitchen.

List­ing agent John Lovelace says the top draw for the pro­ject is its lo­ca­tion.

“Once th­ese are gone . . . you can eas­ily build a build­ing any­where but you’re never go­ing to get that lo­ca­tion again,” he says, adding the pro­ject’s on a deep­wa­ter, pro­tected port.

“You take this beau­ti­ful, gleam­ing high­rise tower and put it right on this har­bour. I’ve been deal­ing with properties all across Canada for many years and I have never had an­other prop­erty that has treated the en­vi­ron­ment of the lo­ca­tion any bet­ter.”

Lovelace says Nanaimo is a


“funky city,” with eclec­tic res­i­dents, in­clud­ing artists, ed­u­ca­tors and med­i­cal staff.

“On any given week­end, there’s maybe 5,000 peo­ple down there do­ing some­thing,” says Lovelace of the har­bour.

“It’s on the ocean, yet it’s like it’s on a lake. You can go out there in a ca­noe usu­ally ev­ery day of the sum­mer,” he says.

Since 1967, the har­bour has also been the site of an an­nual in­ter­na­tional bath­tub race.

Inkster and his wife had been look­ing for a sec­ond home for about three years as they tran­si­tion to re­tire­ment.

“We re­ally liked what we saw here, and the pric­ing as well,” says Inkster.

“You get way more value here and as you get down the coast it gets a lot more ex­pen­sive, so we were quite thrilled to find the place.”

The cou­ple is cur­rently split­ting their time be­tween Paci­fica and their home in Red Deer. They plan to move to Nanaimo full-time af­ter sell­ing their home.

Their town­home has nine­foot ceil­ings, a rooftop deck and floor-to-ceil­ing win­dows on the lower lev­els.

“When we wake up in the morn­ing, we lit­er­ally look out into the har­bour,” says Inkster. “One of the things we like about this par­tic­u­larly is that it’s a work­ing har­bour, so there is al- ways stuff go­ing on.”

Inkster says the pro­ject is sur­rounded by ameni­ties that can be ac­cessed on foot.

“One of the big things that we love is that you can walk every­where,” says Inkster.

“I look at the sea walk. We have a three-and-a-half kilo­me­tre sea walk right in front of us that we walk out to, so we can walk to gro­ceries, med­i­cal care, about 12 restau­rants and bars, the li­brary, and the theatre. All that is walk­ing dis­tance from this de­vel­op­ment, so it’s pretty spe­cial.”

Cour­tesy, David Inkster

Buyer David Inkster en­joys the view over­look­ing the har­bour in Nanaimo, B.C., from the deck of his town­home at Paci­fica on Van­cou­ver Is­land.

Pho­tos, Paci­fica

Paci­fica is lo­cated on a deep­wa­ter, pro­tected port in Nanaimo, B.C.

A view of the har­bour from a bed­room within the devel­op­ment.

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