STAND­ING TALL

Bridg­wa­ter Lakes two-storey BIG AND BRIGHT

Winnipeg Free Press - Section F - - FRONT PAGE - By Todd Lewys lewys@mts.net

IT’S not of­ten that floor­ing steals the show in a show home, but that’s def­i­nitely the case with 156 Lake Bend Road in Bridg­wa­ter Lakes. “The first thing peo­ple talk about once they en­ter the home are the hard­wood floors,” said Hearth Homes’ sales man­ager Liam Milne as he sur­veyed the home’s en­trance, it­self de­mar­cated by rich, bronze-flecked taupe tile. “They’re a hand­scraped, wide plank, solid-sawn hick­ory that look ab­so­lutely awe­some. They have a great grain to them that pro­vides a rus­tic yet clean look. They’re not so rus­tic that you feel as if you’re en­ter­ing a farm house.”

To be sure, The Winch­ester, a 2,652-sq.-ft., two-storey de­sign, is the an­tithe­sis of a farm house. Right from the out­set, the home ex­udes a warmth that draws you in­side, and a well-con­ceived floor plan flows beau­ti­fully be­neath soar­ing ceil­ings — 18 feet high in the foyer and fam­ily room and nine feet through the rest of the main floor.

A quick look at the home’s main-floor lay­out re­veals a com­bi­na­tion of tra­di­tional and con­tem­po­rary de­sign fea­tures. For starters, a for­mal din­ing room sits to the right of an ex­tra-wide hall­way that takes you seam­lessly into the great room.

“We de­cided to go with a for­mal din­ing room be­cause it fits in with the home’s grandiose theme,” Milne said. “Al­though it’s a space unto it­self, it’s only steps away from the kitchen and fam­ily room. It’s also a big space with plenty of room to move and serve. A can­tilevered buf­fet niche adds un­ob­tru­sive stor­age space, while a tran­som win­dow above looks great and lets in day­light.”

While the great room is open-con­cept in de­sign, some clever seg­men­ta­tion strate­gies en­sure that it doesn’t feel like one big, rec­tan­gu­lar box.

First, a bulk­head was placed be­tween the en­trance that unites the kitchen and fam­ily room to mark where the kitchen ends and fam­ily room be­gins. Sec­ond, a large ver­ti­cal win­dow was placed be­tween the fam­ily room and kitchen to subtly de­fine the two ar­eas and al­low even more nat­u­ral light to en­ter an al­ready bright area.

“Our goal (with the fam­ily room) was to cre­ate a spec­tac­u­lar yet func­tional space,” Milne said. “To make that hap­pen, we placed the room be­neath an 18-foot-high ceil­ing, then placed the room’s fo­cal point — an in­door/out­door black gran­ite gas fire­place with see-through (ce­ramic) in­sert — be­hind the hearth that gives you a view of the wet­lands out back. We then sur­rounded the fire­place with a col­lec­tion of win­dows that span from floor-to-ceil­ing and out to the side.

“The re­sult is tons of light, and an in­cred­i­ble wet­land view.”

The ad­ja­cent kitchen matches the fam­ily room in its style and func­tion. A 4-½-foot by seven-foot quartz is­land with eat­ing nook (and honey-tinted maple base) for two pro­vides a ver­sa­tile spot for food prepa­ra­tion or con­sum­ing a snack, while light-stained maple cab­i­nets, earth-tone quartz coun­ter­tops and taupe/tan glass com­bine with the hick­ory hard­woods to cre­ate a smash­ing syn­ergy of fin­ish­ing ma­te­ri­als.

“Ev­ery­one who’s been in the home has loved how the floors bring out all the colours of the dif­fer­ent fin­ish­ing ma­te­ri­als,” Milne said. “It’s a warm, func­tional and low-main­te­nance space that lends it­self nicely to en­ter­tain­ing or fam­ily life. At the same time, it’s nice and bright, thanks to a big three-part win­dow that was placed over the dou­ble sink.”

A quick trip up­stairs re­veals a sec­ond level that’s steeped in func­tion and not short on style. To the right of the stairs is a loft that’s neatly seg­mented by the stairs’ rail­ing. “Peo­ple usu­ally use it as a play area, or a home­work area where they can see what the kids are do­ing at the com­puter,” Milne said. “It gets the sec­ond level off to a very func­tional start.”

Thanks to its gen­er­ous square footage, the up­per level is com­prised of four bed­rooms, a four-piece bath and a laun­dry room. The three kids’ bed­rooms and four-piece bath are set away on one side, while the mas­ter suite and laun­dry room – ac­cessed via a 15-foot-long cat­walk — are set away in their own lit­tle cor­ner of the home.

Milne said the idea be­hind the cat­walk de­sign was to cre­ate a true oa­sis of san­ity for par­ents need­ing soli­tude at the end of a fre­netic work/school/ac­tiv­ity day.

“It’s a huge space with wet­lands view (through a mas­sive pic­ture win­dow) that gives you to­tal pri­vacy,” he said. “For re­lax­ation pur­poses, we de­signed a big, bright and warm en­suite with dark cork floor­ing, cor­ner soaker tub (set in taupe tile) and five-foot tem­pered glass/tile shower.

“A mas­sive ob­scured glass win­dow al­lows tons of light to fil­ter in, while an an­gled honey maple van­ity with dual sinks adds warmth and func­tion. There’s also a big walk-in closet with loads of honey-stained pine shelv­ing.”

The home is fin­ished off by a 731 sq. ft. walk-out lower level that houses a me­dia area (next to a five-piece pic­ture win­dow), two bed­rooms (one with wet­lands view), four-piece bath and tons of stor­age room. Heat­ing is sup­plied via a heated con­crete floor.

“We’re re­ally pleased with how the home turned out,” Milne said. “Even though it’s a big home, it’s warm, func­tional and very liv­able on ev­ery level.”

PHO­TOS BY BORIS MINKEVICH / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS

The big, bright and warm en­suite of­fers dark cork floor­ing, a cor­ner

soaker tub and shower fea­tur­ing tem­pered glass and tile.

The kitchen fea­tures light-stained maple cab­i­nets, earth-tone quartz

coun­ter­tops and taupe/tan glass.

The up­per level is com­prised of four spa­cious bed­rooms.

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