Mountain retreat calls to ‘flatlanders’
Well-kept secret of Canmore now home to project ideal for lock-and-leave set
If living on the edge stirs your soul, then a closer look at Versant at Stewart Creek in Canmore is definitely in order.
This boutique collection of 48 exclusive townhomes rims the escarpment at the gateway to Stewart Creek Golf Course and offers awe-inspiring panoramic views — west to Cascade Mountain and east to the majestic peaks of the iconic Three Sisters Range.
The mountain-themed development, spearheaded by Canmore residents John Third, Keith Brown and Richard Bremner, weaves together all of the high-end must-haves with an eye to sustainability, stellar design and of course breathtaking views.
“Versant is the French phrase for the escarpment or the edge of the rock at the pinnacle of the tree line just as it comes into the rock,” explains Third, who wears the hat of project manager. He’s lived in Canmore for more than 19 years, originally settling in the area to develop Silver Tip Resort. Third knows the area intimately, raising his family in the mountain town of 12,000 and enjoying all of the benefits of this world-class outdoor playground.
“It’s an incredible place to live, raise your children and enjoy the splendour of the mountains,” he says, adding Canmore is still a well-kept secret. “It’s a fabulous place to relax, unwind and recharge your batteries.”
That’s one of the reasons emptynesters Duane and Bev Smith purchased a three-bedroom, two-storey, 1,900-square-foot stacked townhome at Versant.
“We liked that it wasn’t a huge project. We wanted a small, tight development that was a bit removed from it all, with the expanse of the mountains yet still close to the amenities of fine dining and aspects of a community,” says 50-year-old Duane, who is gearing up for retirement.
He recently sold his company but stayed on as the CEO and plans to cycle between periods of work and play for the next few years.
He and Bev live in Swift Current, Sask., but often find themselves in Cal- gary, where their two university-age children live.
“Being flatlanders, we always like to get the mountain fix. We really like the feel of Canmore and the proximity for us coming from Swift Current is great.”
The couple plans to use their mountain home at least once a month, enjoying time with family and friends.
“We really liked the expanse of the space. It gives us lots of room for entertaining and cooking, but we didn’t want it too big, because we wanted to be able to lock-and-leave,” says Duane, nothing they also spend vacation time at their home in Hawaii. “It’s really the best of all worlds. Having homes in three locations creates a great lifestyle.”
The couple’s mountain home offers two bedrooms on the main floor and a loft-style owner’s retreat on the second floor.
“The views are amazing. We have this great big wraparound terrace that takes in everything,” says Smith, adding that for he and his wife, getting away to the mountains is about relaxing. “It’s really all about just turning on the fireplace and enjoying.”
Third says many of Versant’s purchasers, like the Smiths, are either buying pre-retirement with an eye to eventually settling in the quaint mountain town or are purchasing as a second home. He adds the mix of buyers is drawn from across Canada.
The project, designed by Marshall Tittemore Architects, features exteriors that speak of mountain majesty with heavy fir beams and rich cedar siding, while the interior spaces are very contemporary with bright, open concepts that include clean lines and stunning finishes chosen by Calgary designer Lynn Donaldson. Keeping the process simple, buyers can choose a turnkey package or create a customized interior in collaboration with Donaldson.
Two styles of townhomes are available — chalet-style townhomes and lodge-style stacked townhomes. Floor plans range from 900 to 1,900 square feet with one, two and three-bedroom configurations. Versant will unfold over a three-year build-out, with 16 homes being released to the market each year.
The first occupancies will take place next spring. Homes start in the high $300,000s and include a heated parking stall.
Homes in the Versant at Stewart Creek development in Canmore offer wonderful panoramic views of the area’s mountains.
“The views are amazing. We have this great big wraparound terrace that takes in everything,” says townhome owner Duane Smith.
Flatliners can get their mountain fix in Canmore.