Ameni­ties at­tract buy­ers

Ev­ery­thing from com­mu­nal pa­tios to concierge ser­vices part of projects

Calgary Herald - Calgary Herald New Condos - - Front Page - DU­PLEX BUY­ERS HEAD TO SUN­SET CONDO OF THE WEEK CLAIRE YOUNG BUY­ERS GET HELP­ING HAND

As fea­tures that boost the at­trac­tive­ness of a piece of real es­tate, the value of ameni­ties is all in the de­tails — not to men­tion per­sonal pref­er­ences.

When it comes to con­dos, an amenity can in­clude a sim­ple com­mon space for en­ter­tain­ing guests, al­low­ing res­i­dents to save money on smaller-sized units while hav­ing ac­cess to rooms or pa­tios sim­i­lar to those found in a larger sin­gle-fam­ily home.

An amenity such as a concierge ser­vice, on the other hand, aims to give a touch of lux­ury ho­tel liv­ing to a condo devel­op­ment.

But no mat­ter whether the goal is af­ford­abil­ity or en­joy­ing an up­scale lifestyle, the point of ameni­ties is to help meet the needs of a given multi-fam­ily com­mu­nity.

Be­cause ameni­ties can add to the sale price, or to fu­ture monthly condo fees for op­er­a­tion and main­te­nance, buy­ers are con­scious about the com­bi­na­tion of ameni­ties of­fered in a po­ten­tial condo.

Peter Doel­man. AGE: 31. BACK­GROUND: Doel­man is a lawyer who en­joys his walk to work down­town and lives an ur­ban lifestyle. He found The Park meets his needs for a condo. He bought a two-bed­room, two-bath­room unit in the devel­op­ment, which will be near Cen­tral Memo­rial Park in the in­ner-city Belt­line area. He likes that cer­tain ameni­ties in the build­ing of­fer the flex­i­bil­ity for so­cial­iz­ing with larger groups of friends than could be ac­com­mo­dated in his own unit.

Lawyer Peter Doel­man chanced on The Park, an 18-storey, 156-unit condo com­plex un­der­way by Lake Placid De­vel­op­ments Inc., on his daily walk to work down­town through the Belt­line.

He loved the vibe of the neigh­bour­hood near Cen­tral Memo­rial Park, with its restau­rants, health food stores and wine shops.

The fact the lo­ca­tion is just a few blocks from work was im­por­tant to the 31-year-old, who doesn’t own a car. When it comes to ameni­ties, his needs are sim­ple.

“I wasn’t re­ally big on ameni­ties be­cause I have a 24-hour gym at work, but a gym is good to have in case I work some­where dif­fer­ent or for re­sale,” says Doel­man, who bought a two-bed­room, two-bath­room unit on the eighth floor of The Park com­plex.

“At other friends’ con­dos, I’ve had a re­ally good time on their com­mu­nal pa­tios, so I like the fact that The Park has a big com­mu­nal pa­tio. That could be nice with a big group of friends.”

Guest suites are an­other amenity pro­vided in condo de­vel­op­ments, pro­vid­ing a place to put peo­ple up for the night — an im­por­tant con­sid­er­a­tion for own­ers of the smaller units of­ten of­fered by condo tower projects.

“I used to live in Van­cou­ver be­fore Cal­gary and in Van­cou­ver, it’s re­ally pop­u­lar to have the suite that you can rent out for guests,” says Doel­man. “I didn’t feel that was an ex­tra cost to me as far as a condo cost — as a salary would be for a concierge — but it’s a re­ally nice op­tion. If I have guests, I’d like (them) to stay in the build­ing.”

For more in­for­ma­tion on The Park, visit liveon­thep­ark.com.

While Doel­man prefers a more stream­lined ar­ray of ameni­ties, there is a wide va­ri­ety of ideas on of­fer at tower con­dos in Cal­gary. Here’s a look at what some cur­rent projects have on of­fer for their res­i­dents:

3 Eau Claire

This strik­ing build­ing will of­fer a sky­lounge at the 41st floor that will act as a bridge be­tween the two tow­ers in the project.

Ini­tially known as 3 Eau Claire, the devel­op­ment will be re­branded as the new Shaw Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Inc. build­ing later this year. It will of­fer 12 floors of of­fice space in its podium, with the tallest of the two tow­ers reach­ing 50 floors.

“The idea be­hind it is that ev­ery­one who lives in the build­ing has bought a part of the pen­t­house amenity view,” says An­drew Lee of 3 Eau Claire.

“Our units are on the com­pact side. We al­ways en­vi­sioned our units as a bed­room and your liv­ing room is on the 41st floor. You can bring your lap­top there, have a cup of cof­fee, or if you have a vis­i­tor, you can bring your friends up there for a chat.”

Lo­cated in Eau Claire with its quick ac­cess to the Bow River as well as down­town, 3 Eau Claire will also have an ex­er­cise room.

Visit the web­site at 3eau­claire.ca for more in­for­ma­tion.

6th and Tenth

6th and Tenth is a 230-unit, 31-floor condo devel­op­ment in the Belt­line — the first foray into Cal­gary’s condo mar­ket by veteran Toronto real­tor and developer Brad J. Lamb and his com­pany, Lamb Devel­op­ment Corp.

“Our goal was to cre­ate a mag­nif­i­cent pub­lic space for all cit­i­zens of Cal­gary to en­joy,” says Lamb.

“We are creat­ing a land­mark. First and fore­most is ar­chi­tec­ture. At 6th and Tenth, the ar­chi­tec­ture is un­ri­valled from a res­i­den­tial stand­point in Cal­gary and, of course, our pub­lic pi­azza fea­tur­ing a stun­ning sculp­ture, wa­ter fea­ture and a restau­rant are in re­sponse to that.”

Chilean sculptor Fran­cisco Gaz­i­tua was re­cently an­nounced as win­ner of an in­ter­na­tional com­pe­ti­tion to pro­vide pub­lic art for the pi­azza. His sculp­ture, Land of Horses, will no doubt be­come an in­ner-city land­mark.

When it comes to en­joy­ing their home, res­i­dents will have ac­cess to ameni­ties of a stan­dard found at lux­ury ho­tels.

“We have also cre­ated a fa­cil­ity, the Sky Lounge, fea­tur­ing an in­cred­i­bly sexy out­door lap pool, out­door fire­place and lounge, a pri­vate club space, and fit­ness fa­cil­i­ties,” says Lamb.

Visit 6thand­tenth.com for more in­for­ma­tion.

Water­front

With its prime Eau Claire lo­ca­tion and views of the Bow River and Prince’s Is­land, An­them Prop­er­ties’ Water­front devel­op­ment added ameni­ties to re­flect the high-end feel of the com­mu­nity.

“The key as­pects of this de­sign are con­ve­nience, se­cu­rity and a level of ser­vice that is fit­ting of the lifestyle of our home­buy­ers,” says Peter Ed­monds of An­them Prop­er­ties.

These in­clude a concierge ser­vice that is avail­able to re­ceive de­liv­er­ies, book ameni­ties, send out dry clean­ing and co-or­di­nate ser­vice calls.

“The concierge ser­vice pro­vides a higher level of se­cu­rity, as it is pro­vided 24 hours a day,” says Ed­monds. “All of this al­lows for real lock-an­dleave con­ve­nience and peace of mind for res­i­dents.”

Water­front of­fers a va­ri­ety of other ameni­ties, in­clud­ing a fit­ness fa­cil­ity and yoga studio, whirlpool and steam rooms and a large multi-pur­pose lounge/party room with a kitchen, seat­ing and big-screen TVs.

“The 16-seat pri­vate theatre at Water­front is an­other unique amenity, with a 115-inch, spe­cially wo­ven and acous­ti­cally trans­par­ent frame. It is very pop­u­lar with res­i­dents for screen­ing movies and watch­ing sport­ing events,” says Ed­monds.

Visit wa­ter­front­cal­gary.com for more in­for­ma­tion.

The River

Cal­gary’s record-break­ing lux­ury condo project on the El­bow River in Mis­sion is un­der con­struc­tion by 26th Av­enue River In­vest­ments Inc., an af­fil­i­ate of Led­cor Prop­er­ties Inc.

The River is a col­lec­tion of 12 river homes and 26 tower homes. It will have a concierge and 24-hour se­cu­rity on site, a gym, meet­ing rooms and even a pet wash sta­tion.

Hav­ing bike stor­age on site is par­tic­u­larly res­onat­ing with the in­ner-city crowd, says Anne Clarke, direc­tor of sales for The River.

“The ameni­ties keep it like a home,” she says.

“(Buy­ers) don’t want ex­cess stuff; they don’t want the big pools.”

The level of au­to­ma­tion within the units prom­ises to set a new bar for high-end condo tower de­vel­op­ments, she adds.

“We are go­ing to be one of the most au­to­mated de­vel­op­ments in the en­tire city,” says Clarke.

“You’ll have the abil­ity to con­trol your lights, your mu­sic, your se­cu­rity sys­tem, even your tem­per­a­ture from across the room. You can ac­tu­ally do it if you were in China. Through an app on your phone, you can turn on your fire­place.”

In the units, own­ers can use touch­pads to fine-tune their en­vi­ron­ment. Visit theriver­cal­gary.com for more in­for­ma­tion.

East Vil­lage

FRAM+Slokker’s two new projects in East Vil­lage are Verve and River­house, each of­fer­ing a spe­cial twist on amenity spa­ces.

In Verve, a por­tion of the sixth floor spills out onto the rooftop of the podium, creat­ing a spot for com­mu­nal ameni­ties — such as a party room that makes so­cial­iz­ing easy.

“It has an in­ter­est­ing seat­ing ar­range­ment,” says Fred Ser­rafero of FRAM. “It’s like a three-sided Ja­panese ta­ble, with seat­ing all around and a cooking area at one end.”

The out­door rooftop space of­fers space for yoga, a firepit, a lounge area and a hot tub.

“We thought we’d put in (the hot tub) for the apres-ski crowd who come home on a Sun­day night,” says Ser­rafero.

To fol­low up with what the developer did in First, the sis­ter project to Verve, a small look­out room is lo­cated on the 24th floor. It of­fers views to the north, east and west.

For the twowheeled com­muters, there is bike stor­age as well as a bike wash sta­tion.

River­house is a pre­mium, six-storey con­crete build­ing fronting River­Walk in East Vil­lage. It will con­tain 12 units, with larger ones from 1,600 to 3,400 square feet.

When FRAM+Slokker did some mar­ket re­search for the bou­tique devel­op­ment last sum­mer, it dis­cov­ered din­ing, wine and travel were the top three in­ter­ests of the peo­ple look­ing at River­house.

“Travel, of course, we can’t ac­com­mo­date — it’s a whole dif­fer­ent in­dus­try,” says Ser­rafero. “So, in­stead, just down the cor­ri­dor from the lounge, we de­cided to cre­ate a room as a wine room.”

It will have a large ta­ble able to seat up to 14 peo­ple for events, catered din­ners and wine tast­ings.

The room fea­tures se­cure, tem­per­a­ture- and hu­mid­ity-con­trolled wine cab­i­nets that can hold up to a cou­ple of hun­dred bot­tles for each condo.

“There will be the abil­ity to host one’s own party, have your own wine and also have the abil­ity to bring in, say, an in­de­pen­dent win­ery to do some wine tast­ing,” says Ser­rafero. “If it’s a catered event, there’s a lit­tle kitch­enette.”

Visit EV­ex­pe­ri­ence.com for more in­for­ma­tion.

CVisit our web­site for more pho­tos.

Wil An­dr­uschak/For the Cal­gary Her­ald

Peter Doel­man, 31, a lawyer who works down­town, bought a two-bed­room, two-bath­room unit on the eighth floor of The Park, shown in a model in the fore­ground.

Pho­tos: Cal­gary Her­ald/Files

A big com­mu­nal pa­tio, seen in this artist’s ren­der­ing from The Park, is a nice place to spend an evening with friends.

An artist’s ren­der­ing of the wine room amenity with stor­age cool­ers and seat­ing for 14 peo­ple in River­house by FRAM + Slokker in East Vil­lage.

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