Boulevard Magazine, Victoria Aug/Sep 2022

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BEAUTIFUL BOARDS The art of charcuterie



Using art to personalize your space

Years of plans and dreams give rise to this stunning home

Kitchens + Living

design by Erika Simonsen

Come check out our NEW LOCATION! 250 381 5123 | 2100 Douglas Street



ONE BEAR MOUNTAIN IS MARKETED BY BLUEPRINT GLOBAL AND BROKERED BY FIFTH AVENUE In our continuing effort to improve and maintain the high standard of the One Bear Mountain development, the developer reserves the right to modify or change plans, specifications, features and prices without notice. Materials may be substituted with equivalent or better at the developer’s sole discretion. All dimensions and sizes are approximate and are based on architectural measurements. As reverse, flipped, and/or mirrored plans occur throughout the development please see architectural plans for exact unit layout if material to your decision to purchase. Illustrations, renderings, photos and marketing materials provided are an artist’s conception and are intended as a general reference only, not to be relied upon, and are subject to change without prior notice. Please ask one of the helpful sales staff to reference the most recent set of architectural construction drawings for most up to date dimensions and other details. Please refer to disclosure statement for specific offering details. E.&O.E.

YOUR TIME IS NOW ULTRA RECREATIONAL LIVING IN A PRISTINE RESORT COMMUNITY. Don’t miss this opportunity to live your best life in this vibrant community at Bear Mountain Resort. Golf two Nicklaus Design golf courses, explore miles of hiking and biking trails and play at Canada’s largest indoor/outdoor red clay tennis centre. Masterful architecture, unparalleled shared amenities, premium finishings and modern, sophisticated residences converge to create this best-in-class property at One Bear Mountain.










40 On the Cover

DREAMSCAPE AT LANDS END Years of plans and dreams give rise to magnificent North Saanich home

Photo by Lia Crowe Model Niamh Harold wears a vintage Armani suit on Chesterman Beach in Tofino. Styling by Sarah D’Arcey; makeup and hair by Jenny McKinney.

By Angela Cowan


ART & FASHION High fashion inspires the self in the same way art can stir the soul


By Lia Crowe + Sarah D’Arcey


AT HOME WITH ART Using art to personalize your space By Jane Zatylny

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BEAUTIFUL BOARDS The art of charcuterie By Ellie Shortt


HIGH IN LONDON Experiences with a view By Susan Lundy










Another trip to the loo By Susan Lundy


By Chloe Sjuberg



By Sean McIntyre

By Lia Crowe

GOOD TASTE Delectable. Accessible. L’Apéro Wine + Cheese By Devon Smith


NARRATIVE Aloha Kauai By Linda Doctoroff


BEHIND THE STORY Photo contributed

To the lake!

Ian Roberts


By Kaisha Scofield

The joy of art



Spirit of reconciliation: Maynard Johnny Jr.



Considering bravery

DESIGN NOTES By Janice Jefferson




By Lia Crowe


BUSINESS CLASS Oasis in the storm: Philosophy MD By Tess van Straaten |

AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022


contributors “From the moment the plane landed at the airport in Kauai, I was


captivated with the beauty surrounding me, acutely aware of my senses springing to life after a long dormancy. Each morning I wrote in my journal, capturing the first moment of the sun rising in the darkened sky, the splash of colour against the black canvas awakening me. I was turning the corner of a milestone birthday and celebrating it in Kauai seemed like the perfect antidote to this passage.” Linda, who likes to hike, bike and kayak, is once again travelling to far-off places, immersing herself in their offerings.


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AU GU ST | S E P T E MB E R 2022

BOULEVARD GROUP Mario Gedicke PUBLISHER 250.891.5627 MANAGING EDITOR Susan Lundy ASSOCIATE EDITOR Lia Crowe CREATIVE DIRECTOR Lily Chan DESIGN Michelle Gjerde Tammy Robinson Kelsey Boorman ADVERTISING Mario Gedicke Vicki Clark

“For this issue of Boulevard, I was



fortunate enough to meet some Victoria restaurateurs who are re-igniting people’s curiosity and passion for sharing wine and cheese. I sat down at L’Apéro Wine and Cheese Bistro on a sunny summer afternoon to find out more about what makes them so passionate about these French staples and why they’re so often at the centre of friends gathering together.” Devon is a writer with a passion for home design and décor, food and wine. Montreal born and Vancouver Island raised, she continues to enjoy exploring with her husband, Robert, and their rescue dog, Daisy.


Sarah D’Arcey Linda Doctoroff Janice Jefferson Susan Lundy Jenny McKinney Kaisha Scofield Ellie Shortt Chloe Sjuberg Devon Smith Tess van Straaten Jane Zatylny ILLUSTRATION Sierra Lundy CONTRIBUTING Lia Crowe PHOTOGRAPHERS Don Denton

Joshua Lawrence CIRCULATION & Marilou Pasion DISTRIBUTION 604.542.7411

“Writing this article reminded

me that the best way to build any art collection is to slowly choose pieces you love.” A former art gallery administrator, Jane Zatylny is a regular contributor to Boulevard, as well as a communications specialist, magazine writer and the owner of Fernwood Fashionista, an Etsy vintage shop.



Victoria Boulevard® is a registered trademark of Black Press Group Ltd. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced without the publisher’s written permission. Ideas and opinions expressed in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of Black Press Group Ltd. or its affiliates; no official endorsement should be inferred. The publisher does not assume any responsibility for the contents, both implied or assumed, of any advertisement in this publication. Printed in Canada. Canada Publications Mail Product Sales Agreement #42109519. Tel: 250.381.3484 Fax: 250.386.2624

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Another trip to the loo

My daughter Danica’s art opening at the prestigious White Cube in London, England was everything you’d expect: chichi outfits, flutes of Prosecco, little canapé sandwiches…and, of course, lots of art. Too bad the night ended in “The Toilet.” Washrooms became a bit of a theme in this trip to London, which is documented elsewhere in this edition of Boulevard. In fact, as I sought out yet another public washroom amid our sightseeing, my husband Bruce wryly remarked, “I see our tour of London toilets continues…” What can I say? Between pints of British beer and cups of tepid tea (actually, make that red wine and coffee), bathrooms beckoned. And the array was dizzying. For example, there was the public restroom on floor 35 of the spectacular building The Shard. Here, the only thing more stunning than the view was the shock of plunking down on a heated (!) toilet seat. Then there was the pub bathroom discovered behind a secret door that looked like a bookshelf; the underground restroom accessed dungeon-style by a narrow set of stairs winding through cramped concrete walls; and the tiny, tiny loo, in which I’d chosen to change from jeans to shorts and barely had room to untie my shoelaces. Bruce’s experience in the men’s washroom at a bus station left him muttering “just a wall for the men, really.” But the toilet following the art show was the most memorable of all. We arrived early at the gallery event—“we” being me and Bruce, as well as Sandra, the partner of my ex-husband Derrick, who passed away in November. We arrived early, well before dinner, so that Danica could show us the art privately. Next came an hour-long artists’ talk, followed by three hours of art viewing and art chitchatting. It always seemed we were standing elsewhere (usually in line for Prosecco) when the trays of food were trotted out—so invariably, the delectable-looking bites were just a little beyond our reach. Danica had no time to eat at all. By 10 o’clock we were starving. Plans were set to go to “the club” for the event’s after party. But before that, some 15 of us set out to find food—not an easy task in London where most places close their kitchens early. Eventually, we found an Indian-cuisine restaurant able to accommodate us. I’m not sure I’ve ever attacked a basket of papadums so fiercely. (In an unusual twist, one woman in the group sat down at a table, enjoyed a drink and plate of food…and then left. It turned out everyone assumed she was with someone else and, in fact, no one knew her at all.) Finally it was time for the after party! Were we wrong to envision “the club” as a quiet, elegant, wood-panelled room with ornate carpet, high-backed antique chairs and perhaps a grand old wooden bar serving Glenlivet in cut-glass tumblers? We arrived expectantly at our destination and, as Danica’s guests, we were escorted past the long line of patrons awaiting entrance on a steeply descending staircase. At the bottom of the steps, we entered what I now know is called the Bermondsey Arts Club, an art deco bar created in—you guessed it—a former public washroom. To its credit, it gets great reviews. Apparently, it’s a beautiful and trendy— albeit small—bar that serves excellent cocktails in an “intimate” setting. We could see the intimate. Stepping through the doors, we immediately met a crush of people, pulsing music and a thick blanket of hot, moist air (hello, COVID!). Even Bruce—known to enjoy a cocktail bar or two—looked skeptical. We paused long enough to say quick goodbyes and skedaddled back up that crowded stairway. No matter, it had been a wonderful evening. And four hours after we arrived back at our hotel? It was time to get on a train to Gatwick for our flights home. In this era of convoluted air travel, it’s not surprising that we missed our connection in Calgary due to an hour-long hold-up on the tarmac in Halifax. But the issue that caused the problem seemed rather appropriate to our journey. The plane had just arrived from Glasgow, where a horde of thirsty Scots had left the toilets too full for the next flight, and servicing was required. It required another trip to the loo.

Susan Lundy Editor Susan Lundy is a former journalist who now works as an editor, author and freelance writer. Her latest book, Home on the Strange, was released earlier this year via Heritage House Publishing.

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Showroom hours: 10:00 - 16:00, Monday to Saturday CALGARY EDMONTON WINNIPEG TORONTO MONTREAL OTTAWA


design notes

the joy




By Janice Jefferson Modhaus Designs

n our dining area we have a tropical art-deco-inspired poster, and on an adjacent wall, we have a formal (very old) oil portrait of a woman wearing a fur hat and stole. Polar opposites, and yet somehow they relate. Clients often wish to know if their art works together, so I have purposefully picked a collection of art that, side by side—in order of one through 12—relate to what's next or prior to, like a happy little loop of art! Take a look and see if you can see the connections. Whatever your taste—romantic, graphic, bold or calm—if it evokes joy, get it on your walls!




4. 6. 5.




1. Anatheia: Goddess of Gardens

by Taryn Brown 36” x 36” $3,900

2. Hold Everything

by Sharon Montgomery 36” x 36” $1,300

3. Amity

by Dallis Leslie 12” x 16” $40

4. The secret

by Vikki Drummond 22” x 30” $600

5. Odyssey

by Donovan Rose 54” x 80” Gallery Merrick $6,500

6. Honeymoon Bay by Rose Currie 11” x 14” $650


7. Muriel Goes Cruising


by Ed Hughes 36” x 36” Art Gallery of Greater Victoria $3,100

8. Warm Arbutus III by Dana Statham 9” x 12” $475

9. Swirling, Swirling by Susan Salvati 16” x 20” $320

10. ParCell XVIII by Peggy Bell 20” x 20” Gallery Merrick $800

11. Acknowledgment 12.

by Denise Tierney 34” x 24”

12. Protector of the Tree Spirits

Print by George Littlechild 22” x 22” Mark Loria Gallery $1,250

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pacsafe was established 1998 by no-nonsense travel security. Todayin their bags Their experiences convinced them of the friends who’ve than 80 accessories can be foundvisited in overmore 33 countries IAN ROBERTS, M.ARCH, LEED-AP, PRINCIPAL, FLASHHOUSE WO RDS + PH OTOG RAPHY LIA CROWE

“If you are rigorous about your passions and ideas, the right people will find you,” says Ian Roberts of Flashhouse. I meet Ian in front of one of his recent projects to chat life and style, and I start by asking him about life lessons. Ian describes how he started his career as a still photographer, and says, “This has always helped me with visualization and light in my designs. It also allowed me to complete a master’s degree in architecture more directly, without having to start at the beginning. Residential design is generative and I love designing spaces that meet the needs and desires of my clients.” Outside of work, Ian spends his summers riding his vintage Ducati motorbike, and foraging for mushrooms the rest of the year. When it comes to style for Ian, it has to be very personal and “speak to your life.” He says, “It has to be effortless and work with where each day is going to take you. The minute you try to ‘have great style’ or achieve sprezzatura, you have already failed. Good style is combining great pieces in creative and unexpected ways, as opposed to pulling it from a magazine or a specific designer.” Ian describes his personal style as “eclectic,” adding, “I am continually bouncing between job sites and meetings all day so I tend to wear work boots and selvage denim paired with finer pieces up top. I’m a sucker for outerwear…I have a lot of choices! From October to May (or until last week this year), if I take off my jacket during the day, I’ll have on pullovers and usually a scarf. I love pattern and texture. I care a lot about garment construction quality and that leads me to Japanese brands quite often.” After I tour a project that’s currently under construction with Ian—marvelling at the drama of the design coming to life in huge metal beams reaching out into the treetops—I ask what quality has led to Ian’s success? “I try to listen more than I talk,” he says. 18 |


CLOTHES/GROOMING Favourite denim, brand and cut: Iron Horse IH-777S. Current go-to clothing item: Whitesville T-shirts, National Standards denim over-shirt. Currently coveting: Anything made on a Tsuriami loom. Favourite pair of shoes: Red Wing Iron Ranger boots, Premiata trainers. Accessory you spend the most money on: Watches. Favourite work tool: Sketchup. Sunglasses: Oliver Peoples Evason. Scent: Isos Farmacia SS. Annunziata. Necessary indulgence: Fernet Branca. Favourite skincare product: Salux Hard towel and Kiehl’s Ultra Facial Cream. Favourite hair product: Pattern curl gel.

STYLE INSPIRATIONS & LIFE Style icon: Marcello Mastroianni. Favourite artist: Diane Arbus. Piece of art: Child with Toy Hand Grenade in Central Park (Diane Arbus). Favourite musician: Prince, Chris Cornell. Era of time that inspires your style: Early ’60s Italian is hard to beat. Film or TV show that inspires your style or that you just love the style of: The Talented Mr. Ripley, Blade Runner. Favourite cocktail or wine: Negroni. Album on current rotation: Massive Attack's Mezzanine. Favourite place in the whole world: Victoria, BC. Fave object: Finn Juhl Chieftain chair. Motorcycle: Ducati 996s.

READING MATERIAL What do you read online for style: Cool Hunting, Dezeen. Fave print magazine: wallpaper*, Azure. Fave style blog: Mr. Porter Journal. Coffee table book/photography book: Portraits by Helmut Newton. Last great read: A visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer Egan. Book currently reading: Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro. Favourite book of all time: 1Q84 by Haruki Murakami. |

AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022


good taste

Delectable. Accessible.

L’Apéro Wine & Cheese Bistro makes wine and cheese simple WORDS DEVON SMITH

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Co-Owners Page Loten (left) and Guillame Kieffer at the window of L’Apéro Wine + Cheese.

ine and cheese. Simple, right? But in reality, this classic French pair can often overwhelm with too many rules and an overabundance of choices. Not to despair, though—a new bistro in town is aiming to cut through the complexities of this classic combo by simply bringing friends together through food and drink. “We’re here to make wine and cheese more accessible for everyone,” explains Page Loten, co-owner of L’Apéro Wine & Cheese Bistro. “We’ve designed our experience to be as flexible as possible, so people can come in and enjoy a small tasting, they can take wine and cheese to go, or they can dive into a more complex, diverse tasting experience with a group of friends. There’s something for everyone here.” The bistro, which opened last fall in downtown Victoria, is the brainchild of Page and his business partner, co-owner and resident cheese expert Guillaume Kieffer. After many years in food and beverage management in hotels and restaurants, Page wanted to start a bistro where people could gather with friends. “During the pandemic we all realized just how much we missed that aspect of gathering, eating and enjoying wine with friends, and I really wanted to be a part of that coming back. But the one thing missing was I didn’t have a strong knowledge of cheese,” he explains, sitting in the bright, modern space. A mutual friend connected him with Guillaume who was sharing his vast knowledge and love of all things cheese through his business, L’Apéro Experience, a mobile cheese service, featuring cheese boards and seminars. After partnering with Page and opening L’Apéro Wine & Cheese Bistro, Guillaume has now found a permanent home base from which to share his passion.


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The two took possession of the space last summer and worked through the season to renovate it. The bistro is bright and spacious with tables downstairs and a loft area upstairs which can either accommodate regular dining during peak hours, or private functions. A glass showcase presents carefully curated cheeses, and a beautiful feature wall behind the front counter displays the current wine selection. The walls are adorned with local art by Victoria Heryet, evoking somewhat of a French feel, and the rest of the décor is clean and simple. “We worked throughout the summer to make sure everything was just right, but eventually, you just have to bite the bullet and open,” explains Page, adding that their decision to finally open the doors brought about a moment of great coincidence. “I remember we were tearing the paper off the windows,” laughs Page. “As we did, there was a couple standing just outside the door. They asked us when we were opening and I said ‘Today, you’re our first guests!’ It turns out that this very couple were the first guests of L’Apéro three years earlier! We took that as a good omen.” After that soft opening, they’ve had wonderful response from their clientele, he adds. “We’ve been incredibly supported by the community and we’re so thankful for that.” Of course, they both note, they couldn’t do it without their chef, kitchen staff and servers. “We are so, so lucky with our staff. We’re a really tight team and they’re at the heart of what we do. They’re such a huge part of the experience because we rely on them to provide a warm, welcoming environment and, most importantly, to help us create a memorable experience for our guests,” says Page. Also at the heart of what they do are the themes of sharing and keeping it simple. “There’s a reason we don’t have more types of wine on the menu, and why we keep our options simple,” explains Page. “We try to build a friendly, easy list that has something for everyone, so people can share

“We’ve designed our experience to be as flexible as possible, so people can come in and enjoy a small tasting, they can take wine and cheese to go, or they can dive into a more complex, diverse tasting experience with a group of friends.”

Now oPEN

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and try different things. I always say you don’t have to be a sommelier to know what you like. If you come in and tell your server what kind of wine you normally like to drink, we can make it easy by building you a cheese-tasting experience around that.” And don’t think if you’ve been to L’Apéro once or twice that you’ve tried it all, Guillaume adds. The flexible menu provides a unique experience for guests with each visit. “I really make sure to always have new options for our clients,” he explains, pointing to the bistro’s generously stocked showcase. “Every time I order cheese, I make sure to bring in new cheese—even new to me. That way, there’s always something new for guests to try when they visit.” Along with the lunch, dinner and Sunday brunch menus served in the bistro, L’Apéro offers an array of other options, including customizable online cheese boards, picnic boxes, vegan and dairy-free options, cheese to go from the counter, event catering, subscription boxes delivered to your door and seminars like Cheese Tasting 101 and Wine and Cheese Pairing Parties. “Our classes are always a fun experience because people can really learn about how a wine pairing complements a specific cheese, and why certain pairings complement each other or don’t,” Guillaume adds. You can visit Guillaume and Page at L’Apéro Wine & Cheese Bistro at 1028 Blanshard Street in downtown Victoria. Reservations are recommended on Friday and Saturday nights, and on nights when there’s a show on at the Royal Theatre. To order online visit and to stay up to date with the latest pairings as well as the fall 2022 class schedule, follow them on Instagram @aperobistro.

L ands End Luxury | 250.882.1895 |

AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022


well and good

Considering bravery A story about facing and (almost) conquering fear through the love of nature, movement and family adventures WORDS KAISHA SCOFIELD

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e all have that thing. You know, the thing where just thinking about it makes you break into a cold sweat and feel a knot in the pit of your stomach? For some, it’s public speaking or flying, for others it could be small spaces, spiders or heights. These things can be called worst fears or even phobias. My thing is deep water. Oceans, waterfalls and streams are great, but deep, dark, bottomless lake water? No thank you. I’ve never been a strong swimmer and the mere thought of the weeds in lakes makes me woozy. Living here in BC, however, I still manage to spend most of my summer holidays at or around bodies of water. My family and I take several annual lake-centred camping trips with friends. These trips involve all sorts of water activities; swimming, diving off the dock, lounging on inflatable unicorns, water frisbee and paddle boarding. Until recently, my involvement in these activities was limited to wading, splashing and the occasional shallow-water doggy paddling. I was content with my limited water activities until a few years ago, when I decided to buy my husband a paddle board. This paddle board is glorious, nine feet long with black and red stripes, cool fins and a shiny paddle. Never had I been so dazzled by a piece of sporting equipment. I couldn’t wait to try it out. The following month, we headed out on our annual camping trip to Cowichan Lake on Vancouver Island. We scored a beautiful spot, right in a pristine bay with a sandy lakebed and clear blue water. I eagerly hopped on the board and paddled around in the shallows. Sure, I fell in a few times, but the water was waist deep and perfectly clear so I felt confident to keep practicing. I was feeling quite pleased with my progress and increasing water savviness, which is why I agreed, when my pre-teen daughter and her friends suggested that they paddle us moms to the big island in the middle of the lake. Surely it wasn’t as far as it looked, and besides, several of the people we were camping with had paddled and even swam out there. My new-found water courage was swelling as we enthusiastically set off on our adventure. It started off smoothly. We travelled in a little flotilla, coasting along peacefully as the sun glistened on the water. Sitting on the back of the board, I lazily dangled my feet in the clear water. Fairly quickly, however, one of the boards pulled ahead and the group started to spread out. My daughter paddled as hard as she could to keep up but the distance grew too far. We were on our own. It was at this point I realized that we had well and truly reached the middle of the lake. I could tell this because of the vast distance between us and the shore but also by the deep and very dark water below us. The same water that my helpless feet were dangling in. Cowichan Lake has depths of 50 to 150 metres and my mind started imagining what could be lurking in the depths.


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AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022


Anyone familiar with the beginnings of a panic attack might describe it as waves, but when you are enduring a panic attack on actual waves, it’s more like an ooze that starts in your chest and slowly radiates out. I also realized my daughter was paddling painfully slow, and I wondered if we might be marooned in the middle of the lake forever. I considered that at only 11 years old, she might lack the sheer muscular strength to paddle us the rest of the way. I started glancing between the distant island destination, my helpless feet and my daughter's slow paddles. Panic was creeping in. Anyone familiar with the beginnings of a panic attack might describe it as waves, but when you are enduring a panic attack on actual waves, it’s more like an ooze that starts in your chest and slowly radiates out. My heart started pounding, my mouth got very dry and my body became strangely rigid. Simultaneously, I started to slowly but gingerly sneak my feet out of the now terrifying water. I tried to compose myself by taking deep breaths while my brain, essentially doing the opposite of deep breathing, started calculating how reasonable it was to consider calling search and rescue. At the time, a rescue mission off of a paddle board felt completely reasonable and something for which I would have paid almost anything. I glanced at my daughter, assuming she was also in the throes of a deep panic and would be interested in discussing our search and rescue options. But she wasn’t. My sweet, lovely daughter was not panicked at all. Instead, she was positively beaming with pride. Standing astride the board like

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it was a chariot, she paddled us into the great unknown. She didn’t appear to have a care in the world. I gave my head a shake and willed the fear to retreat. I looked around and noticed that we were now only a few metres from the island, certainly close enough that I might be able to out-swim a lake monster. In no time, we landed at the island, lifted the boards up and stood firmly on solid land. I was still shaken but the sheer excitement expressed by my daughter and her friends, as they celebrated their epic paddling trip, filled me with comfort. The waves of my panic receded to a manageable murmur. The girls fearlessly dove off of cliffs and swam around the rocky outcroppings, while I perched safely atop one of the more sturdylooking rocks. It was beautiful and magical and something I will never forget. After nearly an hour of frolicking, we decided to head back. Before anyone could speak, I challenged the adults to a race back to camp. I paddled that board like a professional with my eyes on the horizon, as fast as I could. In the end, I decided that even though I will not be agreeing to any mid-lake island adventures any time soon, I am braver than I think. The water will always be equal parts magical and terrifying to me, and that’s okay. I will continue to practice my paddle boarding in the shallows, occasionally daring to reach a little deeper.



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Spirit of reconciliation

Jewellery to Tell Your Story



ucked discreetly between a “romance boutique” and an auto parts store in an unassuming strip mall near downtown Duncan isn’t where you’d expect to find a rising star in the Canadian art world, and Maynard Johnny Jr. is totally cool with that. Besides, the rent is cheap and it’s close to home. Maynard has been working out of his 500-square-foot space since he moved back to the Cowichan Valley from Vancouver at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic to be closer to family and friends. It’s easy to miss the new digs. There’s no sign out front and the only art on the walls are the marker-and-crayon-on-looseleaf works created by Maynard’s grandchildren. Maynard sits at a table, casually sketching designs on postcard-sized sheets of card stock, while his assistant Ruth, seated in the window overlooking the mall’s asphalt parking lot, calmly blocks in colours of a giant dorsal fin on a three-foot-wide canvas stretched to form a massive drum. The only other furnishings are a sofa and a kiddy table with a pair of tiny chairs, presumably used by the budding young artists who decorated Maynard’s walls. Most of the artist’s work begins right here at the drawing table in his workshop, where he sketches out ideas that give shape to pieces inspired by Coast Salish tradition blended with a wide swathe of contemporary colours. The little sketches he’s making for a client now, for example, will eventually morph into a 36-by-48-inch canvas. While he’s drawing, thoughts about proportions, contrasting colours and the interplay of negative space come alive on paper. Maynard can trace his interest in art back to the sketches he made when he was five or six years old. He recalls drawing portraits of his family, and then expanding into a wider range of comic-bookstyle illustrations. Maynard excelled at art during his middle and

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AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022


Through seeing his work on the soccer pitch or sailing through the Gulf Islands on the Salish Heron, Maynard says, he hopes nonIndigenous Canadians will reflect and make an effort to learn about the mistreatment of Canada’s Indigenous population. Pacific FC striker Alejandro Díaz Liceága.

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high school years, but loathed painting until his art teacher gave him an assignment in Grade 11, asking him to draw inspiration from his Indigenous heritage. “I gave it a shot thinking it was going to be easy, but it was actually really hard. I stuck with it and it eventually became something I had a passion for,” he says. “I wasn’t great at academics, but I’d always been good at sports and art; I realized that I had a better chance of becoming an artist than a professional soccer player.” It wasn’t long afterwards that Maynard found himself living the life of a young, up-and-coming artist, honing his skills and developing a unique style. There were challenges and moments of doubt, but Maynard always found the motivation and courage to keep painting. At one point, back in 1999, he was ready to call it quits when the late Robin Williams bought one of his paintings. That moment remains a turning point in his career. “I don’t know why it was important that someone like Robin Williams liked my work, a lot of people like my work, but for some reason I felt like I was doing the right thing when he bought my piece,” Maynard says. His decision to stick with it turned out to be a wise one. After spending four years in Vancouver, where he says he took his career to the next level, Maynard’s recent return to Vancouver Island has coincided with a meteoric rise in his profile. In 2021, BC Ferries commissioned Maynard to create the art that adorns the company’s newly launched Salish Heron. Earlier this year, the Pacific FC soccer club asked Maynard to design a jersey for use as the team’s alternate kit (see story below). And while the added attention hasn’t necessarily made his work any more popular—it was already in high demand—it’s made him a more recognizable presence on the West Coast art scene.

“I knew a lot of people before I moved away, but now a lot of people know me,” he says. “It’s weird because people will come up to me and say: ‘Hey, how’s it going? You’re on the BC Ferries.’ And I might not know who that was. “I’d established myself as an artist already, so I didn’t really need the exposure, but the publicity side of it was amazing. People always knew I was as an artist, but they didn’t know what I looked like.” Such high-exposure projects are about so much more than raising his profile, Maynard says. He hopes to encourage Canadian corporations to take on a more active role in the truth and reconciliation process. Through seeing his work on the soccer pitch or sailing through the Gulf Islands on the Salish Heron, Maynard says, he hopes non-Indigenous Canadians will reflect and make an effort to learn about the mistreatment of Canada’s Indigenous population. Talk of truth and reconciliation needs to be about more than mere words and token actions for Maynard, whose parents and grandparents were forcibly separated from their family to attend residential schools. Reckoning with what has transpired in Indigenous communities across Canada since the arrival of European settlers requires openness, humility, curiosity and introspection. Most importantly, he adds, it begins with acknowledging the continued presence of the distinctive cultural communities that have called territories across the continent home for more than 10,000 years. “You can’t deny the facts, and you have to look at them,” he says. “You have to acknowledge and accept that Canada was a deep, dark and messed up place for Indigenous people, and if you can’t, we’re not going to be able to move forward in any way.”






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BLOW THE WHISTLE! Maynard Johnny Jr.’s Pacific FC jersey design is an instant success Artist Maynard Johnny Jr.’s iconic Indigenous-inspired jersey sported by Vancouver Island’s Pacific FC soccer club was an instant hit the moment it landed on the pitch earlier this season, selling out fast and generating an online buzz that’s sent the team’s staff scurrying to meet growing demand. The white and black jersey with teal trim depicts a salmon and young child adorning its entire front side and sleeves. The salmon is meant to represent the rejuvenation and resilience of Indigenous people, while the child symbolizes moving ahead to a positive future. Maynard says the jersey was created with Pacific FC, in the spirit of truth and reconciliation, as a way to highlight work that still needs to be done across Canada. He hopes Pacific FC players wearing the jersey at home games and in soccer stadiums from coast to coast will raise questions and promote awareness. The Vancouver Island Canadian Soccer League franchise plays its home games at Langford’s 6,000-seat Starlight Stadium. “My job as an artist and as an Indigenous man is to create an awareness that it is not us as Indigenous people that have to reconcile, it’s the rest of Canada,” he says. In a collaboration with local First Nations, $20 from each jersey sale will be donated to the artist’s charity of choice. The new jersey retails for $119 and comes in sizes youth to 4XL. For more information, visit:

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Pacific FC striker Alejandro Díaz Liceága.

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Wes and Tara Swaren.

To the lake! Okanagan Lake is the heart of summer life in the Okanagan Valley WORDS + PHOTOGRAPHY LIA CROWE

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Okanagan Lake is like a magnet around the centre of which Okanagan life orbits. The picturesque towns of Peachland, Summerland and Naramata dot its perimeter and the larger cities of Penticton and Kelowna hug its shores.


s we begin our descent down the east side of the Okanagan Connector mountain pass, which runs from Merritt to Kelowna, the landscape quickly changes from a green forest of fir and aspen trees to a dryer landscape of pine and bunch grasses. My partner and I immediately feel the temperature warm up a few degrees. And then, like a majestic queen, Okanagan Lake suddenly appears in our view: blue, sparkling and impressive in its immensity. Okanagan Lake is like a magnet around the centre of which Okanagan life orbits. The picturesque towns of Peachland, Summerland and Naramata dot its perimeter and the larger cities of Penticton and Kelowna hug its shores. They are all connected by fruit-producing land with orchards and wineries that flow from the hills down to the fresh water. And as the summer temperatures start to creep up, the lake is the place to be—this is where valley residents and visitors get to play. Winding along West Kelowna’s Boucherie Road, we pass numerous wineries that beckon with the promise of cool Chardonnay—with notes of honeycrisp apple and butterscotch—or bright pinot gris, refreshing in its minerality. But the wineries will have to wait because after our lengthy drive from Vancouver Island, our ultimate destination comes into view—Hotel Eldorado, Okanagan lakeside luxury at its finest. Hotel Eldorado has been a hidden gem of Okanagan hospitality since 1926. Beautifully situated right on Okanagan Lake, “The El” has a private boardwalk that glows in the evening with twinkling lights, a luxury marina that offers boat and personal watercraft rentals, along with daily and weekly moorage for all in-house guests’ boats. It immediately sets the tone of stepping back in time to an era of luxurious elegance. We open the door to our lavish lake-view suite and let out a big sigh as we flop onto the comfy king-sized bed. The sound of waves lapping the shore and a sweet breeze fill the room from

the open window, and our nervous systems start a slow unwind. Later that evening we have dinner in the Eldorado dining room, where an old-fashioned wooden rowboat suspended from the ceiling gives the room a lovely feeling of warmth against the backdrop of the blue lake that turns grey as the last light fades from the sky. We sample buttery steelhead trout with burrata salad to start, and then dive into Cornish game hen and a vegetarian coconut curry, all paired with mouthwatering Okanagan wines. Our server delights us by offering a bit of the history of The El, which was founded by Countess Bubna, an aristocratic English woman, who decades earlier had been married to an Austrian count. But the highlight of the dinner for me—and my sweet tooth— is the pina colada dessert of compressed pineapple, passionfruit cremeux, coconut rum sorbet and almond financier. The next morning at the West Kelowna Yacht Club, we meet Wes and Tara Swaren and their family, who are taking us out on the lake on their Starcraft pontoon boat—which is like a floating living room—for some fun in the sun. Wes and Tara regale us with stories about summer on the lake as we sip cold rosé. The lake bustles with life, and activity on it is essential, they say, as Okanagan summer temperatures can soar, hitting close to 50 degrees Celsius last summer. The three Swaren daughters laugh and smile as their dad pushes the pontoon boat into high gear. I face the wind and look down the long lake and start to get what it’s all about. Suddenly my hat flies off, landing far away on the water’s surface. Tara’s husband turns the boat around and the girls jump into action as one assures me that this happens all the time. As I place my rescued and now soaking hat back on my head, I feel—just like that—I’m inducted into lake life. Looking to join the fun? Here are some of the many ways to enjoy life on the lake in Kelowna. |

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Okanagan Lake is home to over 30 beaches, and many of them have playgrounds, concessions and bathrooms. Five of the most popular beaches in Kelowna are Hot Sands Beach, Boyce-Gyro Beach, Rotary Beach, Sarsons Beach, and Strathcona Park.


There are many, many ways to have fun on the lake, where the summertime water temperature averages 19 to 23 degrees Celsius. Things you can rent include: stand-up paddleboards (SUPs), wakeboards, sailboats, houseboats, jet skis, pedal-boats, charter boats, flyboards, kayaks and canoes. With a host of marinas, serene bays and isolated beaches, boating is a great way to explore the 135-kilometre-long lake that stretches north and south from Kelowna. Numerous marinas, yacht clubs, charters and rental companies dot the shoreline in both directions. Several marinas on the lake have gas bars with convenience stores. Boaters can take their time on the lake in some sort of vessel, or try parasailing, wind-surfing or learning to wakeboard. Another opportunity? Finish the day with an evening dinner and dance on one of the local charter cruises.


If stand-up paddle boarding is your thing, Okanagan Lake offers a 27-kilometre SUP trail that runs from McKinley Beach to Bertram Creek Regional Park. Running along Kelowna’s shoreline, the trail has many buoys to guide paddlers along their way. Paddle by more than 20 beaches and parks, three waterfront resorts and two bird sanctuaries, as well as downtown Kelowna. Paddlers can choose to explore part of the trail or test their stami-

Piper Swaren, Kristen Swaren, Ella Swaren and “Bentley.”


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na by paddling the whole thing. Either way, it’s a great chance to take in the beautiful sights from the water.


Okanagan Lake offers scuba divers shore and boat dives, catering to all levels of expertise. The lake is 232 metres at its deepest and has shallower reaches too. Visibility is best in the spring, fall and winter months: explore rock formations, small caves, overhangs, shelves and drop-offs.


Okanagan Lake is welcoming and refreshing during the summer, but it also has its mysteries, such as mythical creatures, hidden coves and tombs. Search for Ogopogo, hike Paul’s Tomb trail at Knox Mountain or snorkel in the crystal clear water of the quiet, secluded bays.

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Custom cabinet lengths ensure no space goes to waste. Custom oak shelves with metal detailing adds to the light and airy design style.

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Dreamscape Breathtaking North Saanich home rises after years of dreams and plans



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After years of gathering magazine pictures, making Pinterest boards and gathering countless ideas, the “Nantucket-Cape Cod tradition with a twist of West Coast” is a dream home come true.


eep into the twists and turns of Lands End Road is a hidden jewel of a house, the culmination of many, many years of dreaming and planning. When Jane and Peter Ellmann sold Muse Winery in June of 2017, they moved to Brentwood Bay, but they always knew they would come back to North Saanich. And when they found a steeply inclined one-acre lot, jutting out just enough from the coastline to perfectly frame spectacular sunsets on the ocean horizon, they knew they’d found their forever spot. But it needed work.

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Long overgrown, the property was covered in thick brambles and choking weeds. Many of the older trees were unstable or dying. And as well as the existing house, there was an ancient log cottage at the top of the lot that was slowly being swallowed back into the ground by roots and greenery. The couple contacted Jeff Causton of Blackline Home Design and Christopher Walker of Christopher Developments and began what would be a breathtaking two-year transformation. Today, descending down the driveway feels like entering a different world. A carpet of thick ferns and thigh-high wildflowers extends along either side of the drive, giving off a spiced green scent in the shade of the towering Douglas firs. A detached garage sits off to the left, opposite a trailered boat. At the bottom of the lot, displayed against the wide blue sky and framed with trees, is a charm-laden seaside home that couldn’t be more perfect than if it came straight from a west coast fairytale. There are round nautical windows, a gentle swoop to the garage roof, an eyebrow roof arch over a dormer and staggered peaks. Rough-surfaced stone runs along the foundation and rises to engulf the wall beside the front entrance. And everywhere are white posts and beams contrasting the grays and dusty ocean blues of the exterior. Jane beams at the house as she pauses beside the gently burbling fountain in the front courtyard. After years of gathering magazine pictures, making Pinterest boards and gathering countless ideas, the “Nantucket-Cape Cod tradition with a twist of West Coast” is her dream home come true.



250.412 .8012 | 5285 WEST SAANICH ROAD VICTORIA , BC | W W W. M A C R E N O . C O M



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“I’ve been building this house in my mind ever since we left the winery,” she says, smiling. Inside, the cathedral front entrance awaits visitors with a grand staircase and light-soaked landing to the left, a peeka-boo ocean glimpse through the round glass elevator, and a gorgeous view through the living room. Walking through into the open-concept living room-nookkitchen, there’s a simultaneous impression of expansive space and a cosy intimacy. Rough stone surrounding the fireplace echoes the exterior and gives off a cottage feel, while the high ceilings, white built-ins and three-panelled sliding glass door keep the space bright and airy. The design flows effortlessly into the kitchen and cosy breakfast nook, both of which were built with an incredible amount of thought. “Peter has been in the wine and food industry his whole life, and he really thought about how we work in the kitchen,” explains Jane. Details include having adjustable dish drawers within arm’s reach of the dishwasher, placing the double sink out of the way of the stove so that they can both work without getting in each other’s way, and the inset butcher’s block in the island. It’s an eminently workable and practical kitchen, but it’s also gorgeous. Marble countertops, textured diamond-shaped tiles behind the gas range and rich walnut juxtapose against the smooth white and elegant black hardware of the cabinetry. The breakfast nook—something Jane wanted for years— overlooks the incredible view and reinforces that cottage feel, as does the shiplap wall, the Dutch door leading out onto the patio, and the natural Douglas fir beams in the main living area and the formal dining room. Those beams, Jane reveals, were actually milled from the

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trees they had to take down on the property. Jane and Peter had them shipped up island to be processed before putting them up. “Chris thought we were crazy,” Jane laughs. “He said, ‘They’ll crack,’ and we said ‘Great! We love cracks!’” Jane leads the way out onto the patio, pointing out the incredible covered outdoor kitchen where Peter can grill “in rain, sleet or snow,” as well as a wood-burning fireplace, a raised garden bed housing herbs and garlic, and a small custom infinity pool designed by Nautilus. Below, the backyard is an oasis of flawlessly soft grass and garden beds stuffed with flowers and lush greenery, interspersed with large boulders and bordered with a river of smooth stones. Little pockets of shrubs and blooms are scattered throughout, their curved borders complementing the ever-changing shoreline just beyond. It’s an almost unbelievable transformation from the weedy wilds that were here before, and all due to the hard work and vision of landscapers Kathy and Dave Hunt from Zenith Development, as well as “local boy” Dave Bailey who did the complex irrigation, says Peter. “They were artists. They worked miracles here.” Moving back inside, we take a peek into Peter’s office, situated just behind the elevator. Warm wooden built-in shelves rise to the ceiling, framing a window seat and the ocean view beyond. Upstairs, the master suite takes full advantage of that view: the bed rests against a half wall, facing out towards a small walk-out balcony that feels so far removed from the daily stresses of life that you could just about float away on a sunbeam. The angled shiplap ceiling, round window at the peak and see-through fireplace create the ultimate escapist feel, and the en suite—with its elegant soaker tub on the other side of the fireplace—feels like a place in which you could spend days.

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Jane tucks me into the elevator as we head down to the bottom floor. Having experienced the challenges of end-of-life care with her mother, Jane was adamant that this home be wheelchair accessible. But beyond that, the elevator has come in very handy when sending wine cases down to the basement, or luggage up to their master suite. Downstairs holds the temperature-controlled wine cellar, bedrooms and full bathrooms for the couple’s two daughters, and a wet bar. At just shy of 5,000 square feet, the house isn’t small by any means, but each space is designed with such flow and purpose that no matter where you stand, the overarching impression is one of comfort and character. “They wanted it to feel warm and cosy and yet still wide open for entertaining,” says Jeff Causton. “It was a fun design to work on. The shingle-style house is always fun to do, and it looks so natural, especially on that property. It just fits right in. And working with Peter and Jane—they were just amazingly fun to work with and they made it easy.” “They were great clients to work for,” adds Chris. “Jane was so organized, which is so helpful. We’ve done designs like this before, but never to this level of detail, and it’s an extremely well-built house.” Jane stands again outside the front entrance, looking out over the yard, the swathes of wildflowers, the ocean view. “We’re over the moon. It’s a dream come true,” she says of their forever home. “We are the luckiest, most blessed people.”

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SUPPLIERS’ LIST: Architect/Design: Blackline Home Design Interior Design: Lorin Turner with Zebra Interiors Construction & Interior Finishing: Christopher Developments, Sean Lapshinoff Construction, AP Woodworks, Collin Loganhume with Majestic Mechanical Interior Drywall: Adrian Lise Drywall Ltd. Painting: We Paint Inc. Cabinetry & Millwork: Hobson Woodworks Ceiling Beams: (milled from property) Mathew Lee Flooring: Island Floor Centre Tiling: Island Floor Centre Doors: Karmanah Wood Design Ltd. Windows: Gaulhofer Lighting: Mclaren Lighting Plumbing Fixtures: Victoria Speciality Hardware Ltd. Countertops: Matrix Marble Fireplace Hearth/Stonework: Plumb Masonry Landscaping: David and Kathy Hunt with Zenith Developments Pool: Nautilus Pool Service Home Automation: One Touch House Elevator: Savaria, Kevin Wirachowski with Access Mobility

Beautiful furniture for every room in the home. Solid, unique, sustainable and functional. Easy parking with new designs arriving monthly. Open 7 days a week.

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is everything your skin wished for ... and more.

NOW OPEN in James Bay’s Capital Park, Philosophy MD is Victoria’s landmark medical spa. In an atmosphere dedicated to self-care, our team of experts aim to empower patients with self-confidence while providing physician-led cosmetic services and outcomes in a worldclass, luxury clinical spa setting.

Now offering: Consultations + Personalized Planning Wrinkle Relaxers Injectable Fillers Hydration Boosters Platelet-Rich Plasma for Hair Restoration Medical Facials Clinical Peels

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Oasis in the storm Calming medical spa opens amid pandemic to great success WORDS TESS VAN STRAATEN

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tranquil, high-end medical spa and a chaotic, bustling emergency room couldn’t be more different, but Dr. Matt Carere and Dr. Bri Budlovsky are equally at home in both settings. “Emergency medicine is a passion for both of us and it addresses an immediate need, fixing things that need to be fixed. But with this clinic we wanted to create something beautiful where patients feel pampered and cared-for and staff feel nurtured,” says Matt of their new Philosophy MD medical spa in James Bay’s Capital Park. The luxurious medical spa, which opened at the end of May, provides personalized cosmetic treatments including injectables, complexion and skin tightening treatments, facials and peels, and hair restoration. “It’s confidence-boosting and it’s all about self-care,” Bri explains. “For my patients, it’s time they take away to do something nice for themselves. We wanted to be able to provide a more wholistic environment that made it feel very special for them. Unlike the ER, we have a longitudinal relationship with our patients here and we really get to know them.” The doctors, who both have training in cosmetic medicine, met in 2017 while working in the Victoria General Hospital and Royal Jubilee Hospital emergency rooms, where Matt still works full-time. “I was driven by the ability to solve problems for patients and I remember exactly when I decided I wanted to do it,” the 38-year-old father of two says of his decision to become a doctor. “I was in a chemistry class and I was able to get through these complex problems by thinking really clearly and methodically about them. I thought if I can do that for patients on a daily basis, what a wonderful thing!” For Bri, who also has two small children and is an artist and musician was well, the decision to become a physician was a very personal one. “When I was a teenager, my dad was in a cycling accident and he was quite injured,” the 35-year-old single mom explains. 250-382-4841

Located in the Empress tea lobby Family operated since 1972 |

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“He’s fine now, thankfully, but he was in hospital for a number of months and being there through his surgeries and recovery, there were a few physicians and nurses who stood out. One in particular—his spinal surgeon—really treated our family as a whole and recognized the impact on my mom and my sister and really included us in a really meaningful way.” Bri and Matt were both born in Victoria but moved away for university and medical school. Matt played varsity volleyball at the University of Hawaii and then professional volleyball in Europe before going to medical school in Ireland. Bri did her undergrad at McGill and medical school at UBC, and she couldn’t wait to come back home to Victoria. “Victoria’s amazing and my family’s all here, which was a huge part of the decision,” the former ER doctor says. “But it’s such a wonderful community. We have that small-town community type of attitude and feel, but then you have so many of the perks of a city with great businesses and lots of things to do.” “I think it was only a matter of time before we came back with small kids,” Matt adds. “We’re lucky to have roots here and I think that’s why Bri and I have felt so passionate about building something here and creating a space where people from Victoria can come and feel cared for and looked after.” Unlike most construction projects during wide-spread COVID19 labour shortages and supply-chain issues, Matt and Bri say the creation of their calming Philosophy MD space has been surprisingly smooth. “We’re so lucky we haven’t really had major issues,” Bri says. “Cascadia Architects did the design and totally elevated our vision. We’ve had the most incredible team with the builders (Jawl) and subcontractors, so that when some supply-chain issues did come up, they were all solvable and we’re really close to being on time, which is unheard of these days.”


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“Emergency medicine is a passion for both of us and it addresses an immediate need, fixing things that need to be fixed. But with this clinic we wanted to create something beautiful where patients feel pampered and cared-for and staff feel nurtured.” Part of that was due to Jawl predicting shortages and the partners heeding advice to order everything as soon as possible. “Our builder said that with certain items if we’d ordered them three months later, we would have been delayed in opening six to 12 months, so we just decided, let’s get it all here and we had it stored and ready to go,” Matt explains. Being used to making decisions quickly has definitely helped the pair, but becoming entrepreneurs and starting a business has certainly posed a new challenge for the doctors, who are in partnership with Matt’s wife, Tara Carere, who runs Victory Media and specializes in marketing aesthetic medicine, and CFO Carla Matheson, who has a business background and experience with start-ups. “There aren’t a lot of models doing what we’re doing, so learning to run a new business has been really different,” Bri says. “We did it all from the ground up and it was a steep learning curve.”

“We’ve really had to learn how to work within a budget and we’ve had to be smart with money and plan things appropriately,” adds Matt. “I think the biggest lesson so far is the need to be in constant communication. There are so many moving parts and so many things that need to happen in concert that we’ve learned that we always have to be communicating with the entire team all the time.” As for deciding to open a new business during the pandemic, the partners say it was definitely a calculated risk. But the medical spa industry is growing and demand actually went up during the pandemic. “When you’re opening a business at this time in the world, there are a lot of unknowns,” Matt says. “But we felt like, if not now, when? We knew we wanted to do something together so we just put one foot in front of the other.”


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Balmain Blazer Bodysuit ($4,295), Chloé Alexander McQueen Pave Ring with Pearl ($695), both from Nordstrom Vancouver. “Adler” Series, sculpture by Birgit Piskor, from the Tofino Gallery of Contemporary Art.

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Dion Lee Spiral Rib Crop Sweater ($775), Chloé Pleat Front WideLeg Linen Voile Pants ($2,150) from Nordstrom Vancouver.




Line, movement, shape: sparks of the unexpected mixed with references to things deeply familiar. High fashion inspires the self in the same way art can stir the soul; they both reach for a feeling, strive to say something not quite said before and catch the viewer off guard. On the curve of the Vancouver Island’s west coast sits Tofino Brick House, where pieces from the Tofino Gallery of Contemporary Art come alive inside its walls, and spill seamlessly to the dramatic landscapes just steps from the door. Here, the loop of art and life spiral, catch you and lift you a little higher. |

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Lemaire Asymmetric Long Sleeve Apron Dress ($1,460), Chloe Lyv Shell Pendant Necklace ($720) and Marine Serre Moon Print Gloves ($541), all from Nordstrom Vancouver. Art, from left to right: “Grapes, Pears and Vase by Kevin Nierman,” painting by Marion Evamy; “3 Vessels” by Fran Solar; “Twilight IV,” painting by Monica Gewurz. All from the Tofino Gallery of Contemporary Art.

Khaite Sukey Draped Harness ($2,420) from Nordstrom Vancouver, swimsuit, stylist’s own.

Smythe ‘90s Blazer ($695), A.L.C. Tommy Pleat Front Linen Blend Pants ($575), and Dion Lee Ribbed Combat Corset Tank Top ($685), all from Nordstrom Vancouver. Art from left to right: “Ukrainian Spring,” painting by Paula Callahan; “Paroles,” painting by Ira Hoffecker (upstairs landing), “Wandering High and Low,” painting by Chin Yuen. All from the Tofino Gallery of Contemporary Art.

Valentino Garavani VLOGO Buckle Leather Belt ($695), leather jacket by Dolce & Gabbana ($8,245) from Nordstrom Vancouver, swimsuit, stylist’s own.

Makeup by Jenny McKinney. Model Niamh Harold represented by Mode Models. Production support by Peter Zambri. All art provided by The Tofino Gallery of Contemporary Art. Photographed on location at Tofino Brick House, one of the vacation properties at Chesterman Beach managed by Tofino Beach Collective. A huge thank you to Tofino Beach Collective for hosting our team. Thanks also to Michael Sahely for loaning the big easel.

Ultimately, art helps us create a beautiful sanctuary from the world… “If we have pieces in our spaces that we love, it can really bring us home to ourselves.”

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Building a collection and using art to personalize your space WORDS JANE ZATYLNY




hether it is your child’s first painting, an inherited watercolour, an old family photograph or a piece of functional pottery—art brings incredible meaning to our personal lives. As the artist Pablo Picasso once put it, “Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” |

AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022


Enter a world of Nordic wellness



In a sea of manufactured goods, art also humanizes our homes. “I always like to look at it as the personalization of a space,” says Hannah Katey Berger, principal interior designer and owner of Hannah Katey Interior Design in Kelowna. “When you have a neutral space, art really adds that personality.” When I was a teenager, I papered my bedroom walls with pages torn from fashion magazines, my own drawings and posters of my teen idols. A great compliment from a visiting friend was always, “Wow, there is so much to look at in here!” Today my condo walls are covered with colourful paintings, my own photographs, large pieces of pottery and art glass. There’s still a lot to take in, and it may not be to everyone’s taste—but that is perfectly okay. Art is powerful because it takes a room to the next level, explains Brooke Hatfield, interior designer and principal of Brooke Hatfield Design in Victoria. “Even if two people have the exact same furniture in a room, you will get a completely different vibe and understand so much about Person A and Person B, just from their selection of art.” The art you choose to display in your home can also profoundly influence the way you feel. It can calm you or it can energize you, depending on the pieces you choose—and where you choose to display them. “At museums, we often see people staring at a piece of art for a long period of time,” says Lucila Diaz, founder and creative director of Harmony Sense Interiors in North Vancouver. “That’s because the art is making them feel something beyond the colours or the lines or the composition.” 64 |


The same holds true when art is integrated into interior design, she stresses: “I know I’ve done my job when people say, ‘I don’t really know what it is, but it feels so peaceful and harmonious to be in this space.’” Ultimately, art helps us create a beautiful sanctuary from the world, says Brooke. “If we have pieces in our spaces that we love, it can really bring us home to ourselves.”

Building a collection

When choosing art for your home, the nearly infinite selection of styles, colours and sizes can often seem overwhelming. “Many of my clients say, ‘I wouldn’t know where to start’ when I ask them about art for their homes,” says Brooke. A simple rule to follow is to buy what you love, she adds: “Follow your gut, and you won’t go wrong.”

TEN TIPS TO HELP YOU SOURCE ART FOR YOUR HOME: 1. Building an art collection takes time, so it’s wise to buy art piece by piece. 2. “Be patient and have fun with it,” says Hannah. “Explore different artists and different mediums. There is nothing wrong with liking or disliking certain styles. When it’s right for you, you’re going to appreciate it in your space.”


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3. Start by showcasing your children’s art, suggests Brooke. “One of my own favourite pieces of art is a series of three cards my god-daughter created in preschool, which I matted and framed.” 4. Visit museums and galleries to get a sense of what you like. 5. Studio tours and art walks are another great way to build a collection; you can also forge a meaningful connection with the artist and learn the story behind a particular work of art. 6. Parker Street Studios in Vancouver, a 52,000-squarefoot warehouse, is home to more than 100 artists’ galleries and studios, says Lucila. “It’s a great place to look for or even commission art.” 7. Etsy, the global e-commerce website for makers, is another good place to source art, whether you purchase a digital download or an original piece. You can also explore Instagram for artists’ profiles and follow and purchase art through that platform, says Brooke. 8. Online auctions like MaxSold can also be a great way to browse and find art to suit pretty much all tastes and styles. 9. Try to avoid settling by “matching” a piece of art to a sofa or other piece of furniture; instead, choose a piece that speaks to you, says Hannah. “Art can act as a major focal point, which should inspire the remaining space. You can add cohesive harmony to your interior by pulling colours from the artwork through accent pillows and accessories.” 2416 Beacon Ave, Sidney 250.655.2919 @modenessentials | 66 |


10. Many public art galleries offer art rental and sales. This is a great way to test drive a painting style or size in your home before buying.

Hanging, spacing and placing art

How we hang or display our art pieces can greatly affect their impact in our homes. The most common mistake, according to the interior designers I spoke with, is hanging a painting too high or too low. Here are some tips about hanging, spacing and placing art. • Take your cue from art galleries and museums and make sure that the middle of the art work is at your eye level. • Another rule of thumb is to hang paintings 60 inches from the floor to the centre of the art for a room with an eight-foot ceiling. Adjust for higher ceiling heights. • When hanging art over a sofa, mantle or dresser, make sure it relates to that piece and isn’t too high above it. Usually four to eight inches is ideal, says Brooke.

PH: Jody Beck

• Be mindful about scale when hanging artwork, as pieces can sometimes be too large or small for a particular space, says Hannah. With too-small pieces, consider adding an extra-large matte when framing, or group items together.

ONLY MODERN 250.920.6353 | | |


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• Try to make sure that the distance between pieces in a gallery wall is consistent. • Think outside of two-dimensional artwork, says Brooke. “A friend of mine collected those small blue and white houses that a Dutch airline gave away. Displayed together, they formed a powerful piece of art.” • Make sure your artwork is properly secured to the wall. “You don’t want things to fall,” says Lucila. “It’s also important to protect your investment with UV protected glass, so it won’t be damaged by sunlight.” Don’t be afraid to layer art by putting a lamp in front of a painting, suggests Brooke. “You don’t want to obliterate the artwork, but layering is what makes a space interesting.” • Use painters’ tape or trace your artwork onto newsprint to test out a gallery wall. • Consider the overall atmosphere you want to create when hanging art, says Lucila. “If you have a piece of art you love, make it the centrepiece of your room.”

photo: Jody Beck Photography

design + build + interiors + heritage restoration 1161 Newport Avenue, Victoria, BC


250-360-2144 |


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A mattress made for two shouldn’t be designed for one.

Come see us at Uptown

Across from Whole Foods, Uptown, Victoria 250.597.7378 •


| AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022












f By Kerriann Coady Chief Executive Officer, Canadian Home Builders’ Association of Vancouver Island


t felt like a big reunion for the Canadian Home Builders’ Association Vancouver Island (CHBA VI), bringing back the best in home-building professionals from across Vancouver Island. The Vancouver Island Building Excellence Awards, presented by FortisBC and CHBA VI, celebrate the outstanding achievements in residential construction and renovation. On June 9, winners in 29 categories were announced at the Delta Ocean Pointe Resort in Victoria. Projects were judged on craftsmanship, environmental considerations and industry advancement. The sold-out evening featured performances by the Jesse Marshall Trio and was hosted by CHBA VI member Brendan Bobby. Brendan had the crowd on their toes and always guessing as he quizzed the audience on current industry prices, playing the Price is Right throughout the evening. Victoria was well represented among the winners, with NZ Builders Ltd. taking home the second award of the evening with their Industrial Modern Concrete Beach House. The interior and exterior of the home was constructed using various methods of pouring concrete to create a range of textures—from glassy smoothness to graphic art inlay—and assembled using a tilt-up technique. The next award of the evening also went to someone on home turf in Victoria: Zebra Design took the win with Magnolia Lane, simultaneously welcoming an elegant symmetrical design. This shingle-style home is flooded with natural light. P. Cosgrave Construction Ltd. won Best Townhouse with a stunning contemporary look and passive performance tucked into a fourunit townhouse complex. This project also won the People’s Choice award, voted live by the audience.

BC Housing was the winner in Best Multi-Family Low Rise Development with its Goldstream project. This six-storey, 102unit residential project was built to Passive House standards and provides affordable housing for individuals, couples and families with low-to-moderate income. Mac Renovations Ltd. is no stranger to VIBE Award success, and it walked away with FIVE wins this year, including the Customer Satisfaction Award. This award utilizes percentile criteria to ensure that finalists and winners are both rated highly by their customers and also rank as top industry performers for customer satisfaction. CHBA VI is very fortunate to have such a strong association comprised of incredible members. Their commitment to building communities with careful thought and consideration is resounding. This is a strong industry, an innovative industry and a resilient industry. An industry known for going above and beyond. As a special nod to this, also presented during the awards ceremony, was a Lifetime Achievement award. This award recognizes an individual whose dedication and vision have furthered the cause of the association. The recipient of this award is an individual who has gone above and beyond for both the association and the industry. He has held leadership positions at the local and provincial level; he has shared knowledge with his peers and mentored younger professionals. His commitment to the industry was exemplified through his advocacy work and creating and implementing resolutions and new approaches to industry issues. This award was presented to Ron Bickford of RobRon Developments. For the full list of winners and photos visit

Zebra Design

P. Cosgrave Construction

Best Single-Family Home Over 4,500 Sq. Ft. – Magnolia Lane

Best Townhouse Development – Fairfield Passive Fourplex

BC Housing Best Multi-Family Low Rise Development – 330 Goldstream

MAC Renovations Ltd.

NZ Builders Ltd.

Best Residential Renovation $100,000 - $300,000 – Oak Bay Luxury

Best Single-Family Home Between 3,000 - 4,500 Sq. Ft. Industrial Modern Custom Concrete

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8338 West Saanich Road

605 Senanus Drive

Victoria, BC $15,900,000

Victoria, BC $17,775,000

The setting at Ocean Enclave between the sculptured gardens and the sparkling sea, transmits a sense of peace & tranquility. This low bank oceanfront property encompasses 6.8 acres and captivates at every glance. This exquisite custom built home and guest cottage are a masterful work of West Coast Architecture that incorporate natural building materials throughout. This expansive property offers resort-style living year round, including multiple oceanfront patios, a 60 foot dock, helicopter pad, walking trails, gardens and spectacular sunsets year round.

A masterpiece of architecture, offering resort-style living year round! This incredible, south facing waterfront estate sits on 5+ acres in the Saanich Peninsula. Sweeping water views grace all principle rooms. The park like property is gated, private and delightfully peaceful. Exceptional outdoor living spaces throughout the property, including a swimming pool, plenty of patio spaces, plus meandering trails and manicured landscaping covers the scenic property. Explore the surrounding waters and rugged coastline from your yacht or pleasure craft, with the convenience of a boathouse.

546 Taylor Road

249 King George Terrace

Metchosin, BC $9,600,000

Oak Bay, BC $10,500,000

Luxury Farm Estate on 18 acres of Oceanfront property. Private sanctuary allows a self-sufficient lifestyle. Updated main home is a renovated 1930 farmhouse, offering 4 beds, with an additional 1 bed suite below and a 2 bedroom barn for guests. Outside, resort style living, with 550 feet of low bank shoreline, expansive patios, gardens, walking trails, fruit trees and more. One of a kind opportunity!

‘Muir Haven’, a refuge by the sea! Sweeping water & mountain views from this architectural gem in Oak Bay. Panoramic water views from all principal rooms. With over 14,000 sq ft of designer living space, 5 beds, 10 baths, and a separate guest suite, there is ample room for friends and family to enjoy this stunning property. True resort style living, with a rec room, billiards room, movie theatre, gym, sauna and an outdoor pool, extensive patios, and beach access.

735 Humboldt Street, Victoria BC, Canada V8W 1B1

The local real estate agent with the international network: Scott Piercy, Private Office Advisor Personal Real Estate Corporation 250-686-7789

242 Beach Drive

234 South Point Road

Victoria, BC $3,950,000

Cortes Island, BC $2,750,000

Beautifully updated South Oak Bay estate with unobstructed ocean views. Fully renovated by award winning LIDA Homes, the home provides a great deal of living and entertaining flexibility over three levels. Outside, the yard is fully fenced and was professionally landscaped by Manon Tremblay & features a raised deck, on-grade patio, five-person hot tub, and a covered Tiki bar that can sit eight people. Combined with the lush landscaping, it is a private oasis perfect for entertaining. Prime location steps to the beach.

A truly rare find! Custom designed & completed in 2022 to the highest of standards. Traditional Timber Frame, embodying premium island craftsmanship. All principal rooms have ocean & mountain views with huge picture windows allowing for abundant natural light. A separate guest cottage allows visitors peace and privacy. The property is a perfect getaway, with park-like grounds to enjoy year round, energy efficient and designed to be low maintenance.



1100 Lands End Road

2481 Tryon Road

North Saanich, BC $4,750,000

Victoria, BC $4,800,000

Spectacular oceanfront, stunning gardens, tranquil woods, and a beautiful house - this location has it all! Situated in prestigious Lands End, this property is perched on nearly an acre lot with sweeping ocean and mountain views. The 6 bed, 7 bath estate showcases a designer interior with large windows framing the gorgeous water views.Outside, a large patio, gazebo, stairs to the beach and stunning gardens. A true West Coast gem!.

Stunning, custom-designed, oceanside estate embodies West Coast style & artistic architecture. Designer interior with a desirable open floor plan & soaring ceilings. Sweeping Ocean & Island Views. This 3, 800 sq ft, 4 bed/4 bath home, offers an expansive living/dining area, perfect for entertaining. Situated on the waterfront, with coastal breezes, an outdoor kitchen, fireplace and waterfront access, this is a boater’s and kayaker’s dream property!

2249 Oak Bay Avenue, Victoria BC, Canada V8R 1G4

The local real estate agent with the international network: James LeBlanc, Private Office Advisor Personal Real Estate Corporation 250-812-7212






3570 BEACH DRIVE | OB UPLANDS 4 BEDS | 4 BAT HS | SOL D FOR $ 4,575,000



6 BEDS | 6 BAT HS | SOL D FOR $ 3,825,000

5 BEDS | 5 BAT HS | SOL D FOR $ 3, 465,000



3 BEDS | 4 BAT HS | SOL D FOR $ 2,825,000

5 BEDS | 7 BAT HS | SOL D FOR $ 3,500,000



651 Beach Drive $3,785,000 Incredible Views & Steps From the Ocean

1755 W. Shawnigan Lake Road $3,750,000 Two Private Docks, Boat Ramp & Covered Lift

2770 Heron Street $3,850,000 Gorgeous 5 bed/6 bth Uplands Home

2898 Mt. Baker View Road $6,880,000 Stunning Gated 1.3ac Oceanfront Oasis

3005 Rutland Road $4,990,000 Uplands Exquisite 6 bed/6 bth on .62 ac

3708 Arbutus Ridge $2,275,000 Quiet 10 Mile Pt. 6 bed/4 bth Private .8 Acre


3320 Upper Terrace $2,575,000 Uplands Arts & Crafts 4 bed/5 bth .37ac

1198 St. Patrick Street $1,490,000 South Oak Bay Prime Building Lot 7260sqft

403-847 Dunsmuir Road $1,925,000 Incredible Views/Sunshine ‘Swallows Landing’

250-514-1966 DIRECT * Pe r s o n a l R e a l E s t a t e C o r p o r a t i o n


Timeless Elegance 2801 Tudor Avenue


The discerning buyer will be captivated by exquisite design coupled with an impeccable array of tasteful fixtures, finishes and millwork achieving perfect harmony in this customdesigned ocean view home. A rare opportunity to acquire a private gated 2-acre estate in sought after Ten Mile Point with a 4,115 sq.ft. residence completed in 2021.

Estate Home 1177 Garden Gate Drive

Launch your Kayak!


Situated in the Garden Gate enclave of estate homes, this gorgeous 4,870 sq.ft. family home with separate suite has been substantially updated. Nestled on 1.82 acres, it offers privacy and tranquility with an easy-care backyard.

2310 Dolphin Road

Multi Family Opportunity

$2,688,000 6945 Pavel Court

Superb .83 acre seaside property with a totally reimagined home for casual living. Modern updates include wide plank oak floors, glass railings and new crisp white kitchen with huge island & new appliances. Mooring buoy included.


Two homes for the price of one! Custom built 4,495 sq.ft. home offers extended family or income opportunity across 2 levels. Located in a quiet cul-da-sac in the seaside town of Brentwood Bay. A short walk to the ocean, and 30 minutes to Victoria.

“We believe every home is a mansion regardless of size, location or price.”


Shaelyn Mattix

Glynis MacLeod

Sales Associate

Sales Associate

Personal Real Estate Corporation




Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, Independently Owned and Operated. E.&O.E.: This information is from sources which we deem reliable, but must be verified by prospective Purchasers and may be subject to change or withdrawal.

Helping you make the right decision. RECENT LISTINGS

$4,500,000 8521 Lochside Dr, North Saanich


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# 910050 7046 Brentwood Dr, Brentwood Bay

$3,500,000 565 Towner Park Rd, North Saanich



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$3,995,000 10433 Allbay Rd, Sidney



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$3,495,000 10387 Allbay Rd, Sidney


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KRISTA V AND MARK G TEAM Krista Voitchovsky, Real Estate Advisor 250-888-3256 |

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684 Frayne Road, Mill Bay | $1,099,000 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms

Bright,lovely & immaculate rancher with amazing OCEAN VIEWS! Beautiful landscaping surrounds the home and there is a new patio in the private, fenced back yard. The primary bedroom has a W/I closet, and a 4 pce ensuite. A tastefully updated kitchen that is open to the family room has a bright eating area and access to an expansive deck with ocean views. A cosy, but elegant living/dining room also has ocean views. Hardwood floors, 2 gas fireplaces and skylights add to the ambiance.

Mark Gutknecht, Real Estate Advisor 250-880-1000 |

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107-201 Nursery Hill, View Royal | $650,000 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms

Welcome to the Aspen! This bright unique ground level corner unit offers beautiful nature views & privacy. This open concept 2bd 2ba unit is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts (w/ Thetis Lk. & the Galloping Goose nearby) & pet owners (w/ access off patio to common property gardens)This lovingly kept home features 9 ft ceilings & updated flooring. Kitchen features granite counter tops, & peninsula w/bar seating. A spacious living room features an electric fireplace & patio access.

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35-108 Aldersmith Place, View Royal | $779,000 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms

One level living at its best! This lovely, modern and cozy END UNIT town home is perfect for downsizers. Surrounded by beautiful landscaping and 358sqft. of private outdoor patio space for outdoor living. A modern kitchen with a spacious eating area has sliders to one of the patios and a skylight for extra natural lighting.. The dining, living room combo also has sliders out to another patio and a gas fireplace to keep it cozy. The Primary bedroom is a good size and has double closets with organizers and another set of sliders to the patio. A spacious ensuite offers a tub and large walk in shower.


824-21 Dallas Rd, Shoal Point in James Bay | $1,799,000 2 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, 1741 Sqft.

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5006 Echo Drive, Prospect Lake $2,399,000 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms Rarely does this side of Prospect Lake come available! This wonderful waterfront home on the SUNNY SIDE of Prospect has two brand-new docks surrounded by deep, reed free water and is perfect for all your activities. Enjoy the lake views from the moment you walk in!


rista V and Mark G are a motherson team with a combined total of 17 years experience advising in the buying and selling of real estate in the Capital Region District. Krista and Mark pride themselves on their outstanding customer service and client communication, providing the highest standard of service to their clients regardless of price point. Every listing is treated with premium services, high quality photography, video or 3D tour, and and high quality glossy brochures. The goal of the team is to put every listing in the best possible light to get as many buyers through the home as possible, living in a digital world the online presence of listings is so important to make a lasting first impression on buyers.

2249 Oak Bay Avenue, Victoria, BC V8R 1G4 • Office +1 778-433-8885

CARROLL GROUP Licensee of Engel & Völkers Canada, Inc. 735 Humboldt Street, Victoria 250 889 9060 | |

Alex Carroll PREC


250 889 9060

Your Specialist in Saanich & Oak Bay


3901 Tudor Avenue SE Ten Mile Point - $6,499,000

One of the finest waterfront properties on Southern Vancouver Island. Opportunities for a world-class home are endless with rarely seen acreage and flat and level yard spaces.



4040 Haro Road SE Arbutus - $1,785,000

Tucked away between Cadboro Bay and Finnerty Cove, the charm of yesteryear has been brought forward into a complete package in one of Saanich’s most serene environments.

1455 Clifford Street VI Fairfield West - $2,548,000

A stunning contemporary home in the heart of Fairfield. This bright and luxurious 2019 built modern farmhouse sits proudly on a quiet treelined street in one of Victoria’s most walkable communities.



8224 West Saanich Road CS Inlet - $1,799,900

The tranquility of the country with the refinements of modern living. A beautifully renovated west coast home with a charming country feel set on a 0.71 acre lot.

605 Selwyn Close LA Thetis Heights - $769,000

A townhome with wow factor right in the heart of Langford. This likenew 2020 built townhouse offers 3 levels of living space, a garage, fantastic rear patio/yard space, and more.



785 Murphy Place SE Cordova Bay - $2,099,000

An expansive executive home on a private cul-de-sac in Cordova Bay. 785 Murphy Place has room for the whole family and designer finishes throughout.


4601 Seawood Terrace SE Gordon Head - $1,955,000

Executive west coast contemporary home in Gordon Head with stunning ocean views. Originally designed in the 1970’s this 6 bedroom home has been renovated to a contemporary standard.



2533 Margate Avenue OB South Oak Bay - $1,349,000

Opportunity abounds in South Oak Bay. Set in one of its most advantageous sections, 2533 Margate is equidistant from Windsor Park, Oak Bay Marina, and VGC.

Exclusive Ardmore Waterfront! Spectacular Sunsets! Architectural Excellence!

Welcome to 9764 Glynnwood Park Road | 3 Beds | 4 Baths | 5,099 Sqft | $5,500,000 This luxurious custom residence is designed for the ultimate experience in West Coast lifestyle and entertaining. Situated on a meticulously landscaped .6-acre oceanfront lot, with easy access to the beach in the much-coveted area of Ardmore. Special features include expansive patios and large covered upper balcony, a suspended viewing deck over the water, beautiful stone terraced gardens, with stairs to a private beach.

Associate Broker

Call Leslee Farrell at 250.514.9899 for assistance with your local and global real estate needs.

MACDONALD REALTY LTD. 755 Humboldt Street, Victoria, BC | T 250.388.5882 | TF 1.877.388.5882 | 960 Yates St #101, Victoria, BC 778.265.5552

Welcome to the Hudson, one of Victoria’s most iconic and historically rich buildings. This 2 bed,2 bath+den penthouse boasts southwesterly views to the ocean, both harbours, and mountains beyond. A designer kitchen is fitted with upscale integrated appliances, w/gas range and built in coffee system. Dark hardwood floors sprawl throughout. 10’ ceilings give a spacious feeling to the open concept living/dining area, w/floor to ceiling windows letting an abundance of light in. Here you will find access to your large, full sun deck.


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Briggs & Stratton and Associates Reach out to work with our knowledgeable team of Real Estate Professionals

Sophia Briggs

861 NOSE POINT RD | SALT SPRING | $1,775,000 2 BEDS + LOFT | 3 BATHS | 2,990 SQ. FT. | 1.6 ACRE LOT FOR SALE

Nancy Stratton


REALTOR® 250.857.5482

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Erin Smith

REALTOR® 250.514.9024

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CELL 250.886.1956 FAX 250.590.3519

food and feast

Beautiful boards The art of charcuterie


86 |





Licenced Realtor, Pemberton Holmes

Established 1887

Gautam Arora Personal Realestate Corporation 250.384.8124 |

Your home is more important than ever…


he surveys her palette: hues of creamy whites, muted reds, earthy browns. She ponders over her canvas, a blank backdrop awaiting adornment. Her tools are her hands, a knife, a spoon. She is guided by her senses; sight, smell…taste. She thoughtfully makes her first brushstroke—a honeycomb in the centre of dark mahogany. An artistic experience begins. It concludes with a soapy sink, full bellies, satisfied smiles and fading laughter in the background. For anyone who has ever enjoyed a considerately curated charcuterie board, you have been on the receiving end of a sensory undertaking. You have gazed upon the beauty of simple ingredients attentively arranged with care and precision.

We want you to

l ove

your home!

NICOLE BURGESS 250-384-8124 |

AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022


Ellie Shortt.



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You have crafted your own creations with each curiously constructed bite, layering flavours and textures, making new exciting combinations and savouring preferred pairings. You have engaged in the communal analysis, the cultural dissection of discussing the ingredient groupings and favourites with your fellow gastronomes. Visually, experientially and, quite literally, the charcuterie board is often the centrepiece, as well as the masterpiece of the evening. However, to be the maker behind the chef-d’oeuvre is a whole other practice and one that adds a delicious layer of creative expression and imaginative enjoyment. For many though, conceptualizing a board can feel intimidating. Where to start? What to get? What direction to take? They’re the common questions and naturally nervous thoughts of any new artist exploring an uncharted medium. We’ve all seen hundreds of paintings, but what is the process? What paints to choose? What canvas to buy? What method to explore? Just like with all art, there is no right or wrong way to make a charcuterie board. However, if you’re looking for a bit of inspiration to get started, the following may offer some loose guidelines to play with, keeping in mind that with all art—both the expression and interpretation are subjective and the possibilities endless.


The canvas: While most traditionally and commonly made of wood, I have seen, curated and enjoyed many good charcuteries on stone slabs, ceramic platters and even just a basic dinner plate. The number of folks you’re feeding and the ingredients you’d like to showcase will determine the size, and shape is often dependent on the theme you’re exploring. For example, if it’s a sumptuous starter for a farm-style feast you’re after, try a long and narrow board, almost like an edible table runner. The palette: If you’re new to charcuterie creation and aren’t wildly familiar with, or particular about, cheese and cured meat varieties, I suggest simply exploring textural range. I usually start with a soft cheese (brie, camembert, chevre), add in a medium cheese (gouda, compté, fontina) and then a harder cheese (aged cheddar, manchego), as well as a pâté or terrine, some pancetta or prosciutto and a salami of sort like genoa, felino or bresaola. After that comes the complementary spreads, which may include a tart or grainy mustard, a jammy preserve and honey. The bases of your choosing also lend well to textural variety; soft chewy bread, nutty seedy crackers or classic crisps all offer something different to each bite. Last, but certainly not least, you’ll likely want to explore some tasty trimmings, such as the classic accompaniments of nuts, olives, cornichons and grapes. I encourage imaginative consideration here, though, and often find my most exciting boards unfold when I include nibbles like marinated mushrooms, pickled peppers, sundried tomatoes and chewy dates.

The tools: Your hands of course are your best instruments for assembly, but to appreciate and enjoy your creation, you and your guests will need a few essential implements. While it’s arguably impressive and certainly convenient to acquire particular utensils for specific cheeses, your guests will likely be just as content with a small paring knife to cut their camembert. What’s more important is to have enough (even if you’re just using dinner knives), and to make sure you include spoons for the spread. It can be painfully tormenting for drooling participants to be staring at the bounty before them with no way of getting the goods onto a cracker and into their mouths. You will also need a small bowl for olive pits, cheese rinds, and anything else your guests might want to discard as they dine. A surefire way to evoke audience aversion is to have spitty pits and halfnibbled rejects awkwardly and embarrassingly scattered throughout the edible landscape.


Consider style: Minimalist? Pop art? Abstract? While it may seem silly to even name these iconic artistic movements in a story about building edible boards, I have found that drawing on some of these concepts from a purely superficial standpoint can guide me through a theme, or inspire a certain vibe. I love having that singular focus of a showstopper meat, an adventurous cheese, a perfect preserve and simple slice of sourdough, to anchor a minimalistic spread. I also adore a big, bold, beautiful mess, where each ingredient


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As with all art, there is no limit on what you can do and how you can do it! Have fun, get creative, and… keep in mind that what you’re eating is more important than how it’s presented, and what folks will remember is not necessarily how everything looked, but how it made them feel. And that is what art is truly about.




sort of melts into another. Whatever your intended outcome, start slow, perhaps one category at a time, placed evenly throughout the board, and build from there, knowing that you can rearrange and redirect at any time if your moods shifts and you’re feeling suddenly inspired to take it in a different direction. Rule of thirds: While there are absolutely no rules for making a charcuterie board, when building classically appealing “Instagram-able” / “Pinterest-worthy” spreads that seem to find the ideal balance between abundant and overflowing, but are yet tidy and tasteful, I will often go for three varieties of the main components (cheese, meat and spread), arranging them on the board one category at a time, and then filling in the holes with the accoutrements of nuts, olives, fruit, etc. Whether or not you place the bread or crackers on the board itself is (like everything) a personal decision, and may depend on dietary considerations like gluten sensitivity. However, I often go for a combination, incorporating some crackers on the board, and fresh bread (with perhaps a little olive oil and sea salt for dipping) on the side.

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The final touches: Whatever themes you’re inspired by, ingredients you’re working with, or concepts you’re exploring, I find certain details seem to turn a basic board into a memorable masterpiece. Edible flowers, microgreens, a small sprinkle of something special—there’s a reason garnishes are so popular when plating and practicing artful presentation. Do keep in mind, of course, to not mask the main event with unnecessary decorations.


While I’ve largely explored the classic combination of charcuterie et fromage, many foods lend well to a beautiful board display. A rainbow-inspired veggie platter, a deconstructed fruit salad with a dreamy dip, a fun and funky dessert board with a chocolatey theme…I’ve even done a DIY pancake board that is always hit for brunch-time gatherings. As with all art, there is no limit on what you can do and how you can do it! Have fun, get creative, and if you’re feeling overwhelmed, keep in mind that what you’re eating is more important than how it’s presented, and what folks will remember is not necessarily how everything looked, but how it made them feel. And that is what art is truly about.

Tofino Brick House, Sculpture: Birgit Piskor

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Balsamic Fig Preserve Prep time: 5 minutes Cook time: About 1 hour Makes about 1 cup of preserve Ingredients: 6-8 soft fresh figs 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar 1 tbsp maple syrup 2 tbsp fresh squeezed orange juice 1 sprig fresh rosemary Directions: Trim the figs and slice them in half. Place them in a medium-sized saucepan with all the remaining ingredients, over medium-low heat. Cook until everything is thick and jammy, stirring regularly throughout, mashing up the figs as you go, for 45 minutes to 1 hour. *Note: if you’re noting the figs aren’t breaking down after about 15 minutes, add more orange juice, or even a splash of water and give it a good stir and mash. Remove the rosemary sprig and any large rosemary needles, and transfer the fig jam to a sterilized and dry mason jar for canning (leaving some space at the top before sealing). Or, if consuming more immediately, allow the jam to cool to room temperate and store in the fridge for up to three weeks.

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Seafood Paella

Serves 6-8 ⁄4 tsp saffron 1 lb white fish (lingcod or rockfish), cut into 2” pieces 1 ⁄4 cup high heat oil (canola or grapeseed) 8 head on spot prawns 1 ⁄2 lb squid or octopus, thinly sliced 1 Tbsp smoked paprika 1

Creamy Roasted Beet Dip Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: About 45 minutes Makes about 1.5 cups of dip Ingredients 3 medium-sized beets, peeled and cut into chunks 1 large clove of garlic, peeled and trimmed ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil (plus about 1-2 tbsp for roasting) ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt ¼ cup feta cheese Handful of fresh dill Salt and pepper to taste Directions: Preheat oven to 400F. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, toss the beets in some olive oil and place in a baking dish with a lid (you can also use aluminum foil if you don’t have any covered baking dishes).Roast for about 45 minutes, turning the beets once or twice, until fork tender. Allow the beets to cool, and then combine them with the remaining ingredients in a highpowered blender until smooth and creamy. Transfer to a container and store in the fridge for up to one week.

4 roma tomatoes, diced 3 cloves garlic, minced 1 bell pepper, diced 1 onion, diced 7 cups flavourful stock 2 1⁄2 cups paella rice 1 ⁄2 lb clams or mussels

1) Place saffron in 1⁄4 cup of hot water and allow to steep. Season the fish with salt and pepper. Place your pan over medium/high heat and add the oil. Sear the fish and prawns in the oil allowing it to brown. You do not need to worry about cooking through at this point. 2) Once the fish has colour remove it from the pan and set aside. Add the squid, peppers, onions, garlic, and paprika and cook about 5-6 minutes until soft. 3) Add saffron water and broth, bring it to a boil, and season well. Sprinkle rice over the broth and stir to incorporate. THIS IS THE LAST TIME YOU WILL STIR THIS DISH. Sprinkle tomatoes over the rice and cook for 10-12 minutes still on medium/high heat. If your pan is larger than your heat source move the pan around a few times to ensure that it cooks evenly. 4) Reduce the heat to low, add the seared white fish. Place the clams or mussels in the rice hinge side down so they can easily open. Cook for another 5-10 minutes over low heat until liquid is fully absorbed and shellfish pops open. Remove from the heat, add prawns, and cover with foil for 5 minutes before eating.


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Honey Lemon Cream Cheese Whip Prep time: 10 minutes Makes about 2 cups of whip Ingredients: ½-¾ cup cream cheese 2 tbsp honey ½ cup whipping cream Zest from 1 medium-sized lemon Directions: Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and honey until completely smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as you go. Pour one quarter of the whipping cream into the cream cheese mixture. Beat until smooth. Scrape down the sides and repeat a second time until thick and fluffy. Mix in lemon zest until just integrated. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use. *Note: If you want the whip to be on the softer side, make sure to take it out of the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes and give it a little whisk before serving.

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Chocolate Almond Fudge Sauce Prep time: 5 minutes Makes about 1.5 cups of sauce Ingredients: ½ cup dark chocolate chips ½ cup smooth almond butter ½ cup whipping cream 2-4 tbsp maple syrup Pinch of salt Directions: In a small saucepan over medium heat, stir together the chocolate, almond butter and cream. Continue stirring until the chocolate is fully melted and wellintegrated with the almond butter and cream. One tablespoon at a time, add in the maple syrup until you’re happy with the flavour (this will depend on how sweet your dark chocolate chips are). Add a pinch of salt, stir one more time, before taking it off the burner and transferring to a bowl for serving. *Note: the sauce will thicken as it cools.

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High in London Experiences with a view WORDS SUSAN LUNDY

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lose to 1,000 stairs. Three “lifts.” One very long walk uphill. One observation wheel, one cable car and one double-decker bus. During our six-day trip to London this summer, we did all we could to “get high” and witness the views of this spectacular city. We also walked 62 kilometres and climbed 92 flights. We savoured some truly exquisite food, slept in three stunning hotels, visited a strange pub, and used our Oyster cards to access the exceedingly simple and efficient tube system. What did we learn? This beautiful, walkable city, with its stunning architecture—both old and new—friendly chaps and so many things to explore is a must-do on any travel lover’s list. As for getting high? Here are some of the many options:


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This beautiful, walkable city, with its stunning architecture— both old and new— friendly chaps and so many things to explore is a must-do on any travel lover’s list.


An icon of the London skyline, the London Eye is the world’s largest cantilevered observation wheel (not a Ferris wheel) and is centrally located across the River Thames from famous landmarks like the Houses of Parliament and Big Ben. This is a major tourist attraction, so expect to join a quickly moving lineup and then follow a dozen or so others into a transparent observation capsule. The 30-minute experience showcases breathtaking 360-degree views as you slowly climb the wheel to a height of 135 metres. Purchase advance tickets at londoneye. com. We augmented this attraction with a 40-minute circular sightseeing boat cruise along the Thames—a lovely open-air voyage that was both fun and informative.


The number of options for High Tea (or Afternoon Tea) in London is dizzying. But to get high, how about tea on the top level of a double-decker bus? We nibbled on delicate sandwiches, buttery pastries and iconic cream scones on a B Bakery Tea Bus Tour, while driving about the city and listening to an amusing tour guide drop enlightening tidbits about various landmarks. Check out to discover an array of bus tour offerings, including the intriguing-sounding Slingsby Gin Afternoon Tea (next time!).

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Every area in London has its own “high street,” basically a main street. But some are higher than others and Oxford Street is one of the most famous. Located in the west end of London, it’s considered the city’s premier shopping destination, offering more than 300 stores, outlets and shops. It boasts more than 90

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The Shard is one of London’s most famous landmarks.

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At 310 metres (1,017 feet), the 95-storey skyscraper The Shard is the tallest building in Britain and 96th tallest in the world. It dominates the London skyline like—as the architect planned—a jagged glass sculpture rising from the river. The “View from The Shard” is a tourist attraction that offers views from two viewing platforms inside the building: the first is a triple-level indoor gallery on Level 69, and the second is a partial-outdoor gallery on Level 72. An innovative lift system transports guests in lifts that travel at six metres per second, making the total time to go from Level 1 to Level 68 about a minute. We had the immense luck to partake in a truly divine five-course meal overlooking the River Thames and city skyline in TING restaurant on Level 35 of The Shard. Everything about this feast— from the sublime flavours to the sommelier-recommended wine pairings and impeccable service—made it one of the most memorable meals we’ve ever enjoyed. And then there was the view….

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Here’s an opportunity to get high in London that we witnessed during a few hours spent exploring the shops and restaurants at the O2 Arena, another London landmark. In this experience, you don a climb suit, boots and harness and cross a walkway on the roof suspended 52 metres in the air. With a daylight climb, you’ll see views for miles; at night you’ll witness a blanket of twinkling city lights. A visit to the O2 Arena is a worthwhile trip in itself. In addition to stores and restaurants, there’s lots of activities available for young and old.

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Here’s a unique and fun way to take in the London skyline—soar across the River Thames 90 metres high in your own private cable-car cabin. You can grab either one-way or round-trip tickets from launching sites at Royal Victoria Docks or Greenwich Peninsula. This is a peaceful way to get high in a different part of London and soak in views of the river and beyond. If you catch the cable car after 7 pm, the journey slows down, adding a dozen or so minutes each way. Timed right, you might be able to catch a sunset. We loved this ride: quiet, peaceful—and no stairs!


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Built between 1671 and 1677 to commemorate the Great Fire of London and celebrate the rebuilding of the city, The Monument is a 61-metre-tall Doric column, designed by Sir Christopher Wren, architect of St. Paul’s Cathedral. Inside, visitors can climb 311 steps through a narrow, winding passageway to take in panoramic views from the top. Hidden beneath the entrance is a tiny laboratory from where the column was once used as a giant zenith telescope. Who knew! It took a bit of huffing and puffing to reach the top, but the views—and the nod to history—were worth it.

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Visiting the splendour that is St. Paul’s Cathedral is a must-do, even without the lofty goal of getting high. Described appropriately as a “vibrant church, a national treasure and a London icon,” the cathedral is more than just a breathtaking example of Baroque church design. It houses an art collection and a crypt, and has figured prominently in events such as the funerals of Winston Churchill and the marriage of Prince Charles and Diana Spencer. First built in 604, it has burned down and been rebuilt three times, most recently in the 1600s.

Looking at the dome from inside St. Paul’s Cathedral.

At 111 metres high (365 feet), it was the tallest building in London from 1710 to 1963. The dome remains among the highest in the world. And guess what? Should you desire to embark on an upwards trek of 538 steps, you can visit the top of the dome. On the way up, you’ll pass the Whispering Gallery at 259 steps and the Stone Gallery at 378 steps. At the top is the Golden Gallery, and it encircles the highest point of the outer dome.


You can’t get much higher than space, and at the Royal Observatory Greenwich, you can marvel at The Great Equatorial Telescope and Camera Obscura, as well as climb to the top of Greenwich Park for great views of the city. This is also the home of Greenwich Mean Time where, in the Meridian Courtyard, you can stand on the world-famous (albeit slightly underwhelming) prime meridian line, or longitude 0, the starting point for measuring global distance east and west. Outside the observatory, there’s a fantastic viewpoint in front of a statue of General Wolfe.

View from Shangri-La The Shard.


Here are a few ideas to enjoy the high life in London. Try any or all of these hotels:


This is al fresco dining at its best. Located on the seventh floor of the Trafalgar St. James Hotel, The Rooftop bar is set against a backdrop of London’s iconic skyline. We savoured a delectable assortment of unique small-plate fare—hello watermelon sashimi and cider-poached chorizo—as well as a main plate of artisan cheeses, apple and cider chutney, grapes and focaccia. Although we sipped flutes of Prosecco, The Rooftop is renowned ROBP_Double_Depth_Boulevard_Ad_X1a.pdf 1 2020-02-28 for its cocktails.


Shangri-La The Shard: As we used our card to activate our room at Shangri-La The Shard, magic happened. Blinds on a semicircle of floor-to-ceiling windows lifted upwards, revealing dazzling views from every vantage point. The bathroom, encircled in glass, was also a revelation. Sitting in the tub, it feels like you’re soaking and floating at the same time. Every detail in this room was topnotch, from pillows and linen to technology, space and comfort, and the staff was super helpful. Want to get even higher? Reserve ahead and plunge into the hotel’s infinity pool on Level 52—nearly PM 200 metres above sea level.

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The Trafalgar St. James: Location, location, as they say. Situated amid London’s bustling Trafalgar Square, across the street from the National Gallery and just steps from cute patio bars and restaurants on The Strand, this is an excellent place to stay. Throw in impeccable service, comfortable rooms, an excellent rooftop bar and delightful breakfast served buffet-style in the garden-themed Rockwell restaurant—and what more could you want? The Trafalgar St. James is also within easy walking distance of Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey and many other London landmarks.

& lookin’ cool.

Pool at the Shangri-La.

Sea Containers London: Named for its location on the former site of Sea Containers London (a former shipping company), this funky, cool hotel is set right on the waterfront in London’s Southbank. Standing on the balcony of our river-side room, it seriously felt as though we were in a boat—the gentle sound of the water lapped below us and a gentle hum of river traffic motored by. Built to mimic a 1920s transatlantic cruise liner, there are dozens of nautical touches, such as the copper wall built in the shape of a hull behind the front desk. Our room was exquisite, and our seafood dinner on the river-side patio at Sea Containers Restaurant was lovely. We also didn’t miss the opportunity to try one of the unique cocktails at Lyaness Bar, where each drink is created from five rotating ingredients. Mixology taken to new heights! The hotel also has a basement cinema, open to the public, and a lusciously scented spa. Want to get high? The 12th Knot bar is located on the 12th floor and once again, there’s a panoramic view. We absolutely loved this hotel.

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Lobby at Sea Containers London looks like the hull of a ship. |

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hen Angela Hall opened Blo Victoria, the first Blo Blow Dry Bar location on Vancouver Island, she was taking a big leap into the unknown. But getting to build connections with her community and help them look and feel their best has made it all worthwile. After 15 years working as a real estate conveyancer and two years of working from home during the pandemic, Angela wanted to “shake up [her] career entirely.” She’d always loved hair care, as well as the convenience of getting blowouts at blow dry bars while travelling, rather than having to pack all her hair tools and products. “One time my husband—who is bald—asked if the salon I was going to really only did hair styling. He thought it was a great idea and asked if Victoria had something like it. ‘There’s a business opportunity for you!’ he joked.” But Angela started taking that joke more seriously after her husband happened to meet one of the original founders of Blo (which first opened in Vancouver in 2007 and now has franchises in Canada, the US and the Philippines). She decided to reach out to them about opening a franchise in Victoria. “I love the way I feel when my hair looks its best—you have an extra pep in your step. I wanted to share that feeling with the women in Victoria.” While the idea of leaving a long-term job that she loved and becoming a self-employed business owner felt terrifying at first, Angela says, facing her fears has paid off. “I can have major imposter syndrome and doubt my own abilities, but my best friend gave me a big, resounding ‘DO IT!’” So, with the support of Blo’s corporate team, she opened the doors of her space in The Bay Centre in February 2022. Since then, Angela has found her groove by “reminding myself I am capable, [taking things] one day at a time, and not getting overwhelmed when things don’t go as planned…I just kept telling myself to trust the process, and to put one foot in front of the next.” She also stresses that she couldn’t do it without her talented team. “[They have] been amazing at cultivating a feel-good vibe in the bar…It’s empowering to be surrounded by women who support women and want to make them feel good inside and out.” Angela moved to Victoria from up-island when she was 14, and aside from brief stints in Vancouver and Montreal, she’s been there ever since. It’s no surprise, then, that what she loves most about her work at Blo is the relationships she and her team have already built with their community. “We have been told many times that Blo has become our clients’ escape from the day to day. We have belly laughed with our clients, and have shed a few tears as well. Giving back to the community has also been an unexpected joy, and I plan to further our philanthropic efforts.” Asked about her essential ingredients for a good hair day, Angela answered, “I love the main line we carry in the bar, called Unite. Their products smell so good!” Sleeping on a satin pillowcase and using a good dry shampoo are also key to making a blowout last all week, she added. “And of course, booking in at Blo for all of it!” Outside of work, Angela loves spending time with her husband, two kids (ages 10 and 13) and two dogs, and having regular happy hour catch-ups with her girlfriends.

“I like when the people I care about are happy,” she says, and it’s clear that with Blo Victoria, she has created a space where happiness—and great hair days—can be found in abundance.

The 7 Sins ENVY:

Whose shoes would you like to walk in?

I am not big on envy, but I do think it would be fun to spend a week as Sophia Loren in the 1960s. Her charisma, her confidence and her appeal would be fun to experience.


What is the food you could eat over and over again? I love a good French fry. And thanks to where we live, I love fresh seafood. Prawns, salmon, tuna, oysters, you name it.


You’re given $1 million that you have to spend selfishly. What would you spend it on? Travel. I love everything about it, from researching the destination to booking the flights and accommodations, and then actually enjoying the trip. New cultures, new languages, new food—yes to all of it.


Pet peeves?

People who are rude and unkind, especially to anyone who works in the service and hospitality industry. Use your manners, tip well and be a decent human being. (Also, stirring new peanut butter.)


Where would you spend a long time doing nothing?

My bed. There is nothing better than waking up on a Sunday morning in fresh, crisp white bedding with a coffee and the sunshine pouring into my bedroom.


What is the one thing you’re secretly proud of ?

I have a very good memory. I always remember birthdays, and I could probably tell you what you wore on yours 10 years ago. And I am great at music bingo, especially the ‘60s and ‘70s categories.


What makes your heart beat faster?

Nothing beats a good date. Good wine, a good meal with great conversation, and the gazing eye contact over candlelight. |

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’m sipping a frothy chilled Mai Tai, sitting by the ocean on a low-slung Tommy Bahama canvas beach chair, watching the sunset. It’s my first night in Kauai and dozens of us gather on the beach to witness this spectacle. The sun hovers just above the horizon’s jagged clouds, then begins to dip into the ocean, its radiance casting magnificent mauves and pinks and oranges and reds on the cirrus peaks. Everyone claps for the outstanding performance. Once the sun sets, as if on cue, the rose-ringed parakeets descend from the sky, searching for food in the coco palm trees lining the beach. They come nightly by the hundreds, their chorus of deafening chirps invading the silence with the same havoc they wreak on Kauai farmers, destroying their breadfruit, longan, rambutan and lychee crops. The next morning, I awake early to Kauai’s wild roosters. They have been ubiquitous on the island since the 1992 Hurricane Iniki, which destroyed chicken farms and set free these feral creatures with their reddish hackles and hefty combs. After breakfast we set out to explore the island. Hiking is central to my life, I do it almost daily, and it is a major reason I have come to Kauai. This volcanic island is known for its stellar hikes in canyons to waterfalls and along rugged coastlines. I am excited to do one of the epic hikes in Waimea Canyon, a spectacular gorge on the west side of the island. I have heard the hike down the canyon rim is similar to experiencing the Grand Canyon. Since I haven’t been to Arizona yet, I am keen to do the hike. Though the trailhead isn’t obvious, we find it by noticing a number of vehicles parked on the shoulder of a main road, a sure sign in the wilderness that there is something special there to see.

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The Waimea Canyon hike does not disappoint. The canyon is huge—16 kilometres long, 1.6 kilometres wide and 1,200 metres deep. The rainbow-hued cliffs with layers of red, orange, pink and purple cascade down the canyon, and the trail descends as a series of switchbacks hugging the rim to the valley floor, where the muddy Waimea River gently flows. At the bottom I sit quietly on the river bank, breathing in the coolness of the eucalyptus trees, their leaves forming a thick, crunchy ground covering. I bring a picnic of Gruyere cheese, multigrain crackers and local mandarin oranges. I slowly eat my food, stillness surrounding me. I listen to the unhurried ripple of the river, take in the honey-like aroma of the eucalyptus forest. A few days later I set out on a relatively easy hike called Sleeping Giant. With an elevation gain of about 450 metres and eight kilometres long, this is the type of hike I do regularly at home. I ascend to a plateau where there’s a picnic table and decide to stop, since the view is lovely. But I meet a group of young bucks from Switzerland, who convince me to continue to the summit. “It’s only another 10 minutes up from here,” one of the guys says, “and the views are amazing.” Because I don’t want to miss out on anything, especially a great view, off I go. It had rained heavily the day before and the trail is slippery and muddy. Really muddy. I climb up the neck of the giant to its chin, a postage-stamp-size narrow summit with knife-edge ridges dropping down on either side of me. I freeze. Peering down the 450-metre plunge to the valley floor, I am immobile. Paralyzed, my eyes bulging with fear. It is sheer determination and the desire to see my grandchildren graduate from high school that guides me as I crawl on all fours down the precipice. I stop at a safe spot and exhale deeply.

Good thing I didn’t know about the two hikers who climbed up to a waterfall and fell 100 metres to their death. The $15.4-million US settlement didn’t bring them back. On the second to last day before leaving this idyllic island—and like I have every afternoon since arrival—I enter the underwater habitat. I put on my bathing suit, grab my snorkel, mask and fins, and head down to the beach, a mere 40 metres from where I’m staying. Black lava rock covers much of the beach, but I find a patch of sand where the snorkelers enter the water. The ocean temperature is perfect at 24 degrees Celsius, as warm as a heated swimming pool. I step into the ocean and immerse myself into the sea world. Immediately I see a large reef covered with cauliflower coral containing all kinds of tropical fish and sea turtles. I feel like an interloper, intruding on their fragile ecosystem, and I’m careful to not disturb the fish as they forage for food. Soon a school of convict tang—named for their six yellow vertical stripes—swim by. Gliding towards a sea turtle that’s partially resting under a rock, they circle it for a few moments and then move on. I swim along in my flippered feet and come across two Moorish idols, easy to spot with their light-gold body banded with black in a perfect blend. Their orange-and-white snout and graceful trailing filament give them an exotic air. I learn that the bright neon colours of tropical fish act as a warning to predators to keep away. Even fish have turf wars. I continue swimming and spot a butterfly fish, distinguished by its bright yellow boxy shape, as it dips down to the cauliflower coral covered with algae and nibbles gingerly at it. A few minutes later, still underwater, I hear people exclaiming, “Come over here! There are sea turtles swimming!”





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I kick my feet and speed ahead to see a green sea turtle the shape of an oversized beach ball tucked under a rock crevice, at rest. The creature is chameleon-like and blends perfectly into its habitat.

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I kick my feet and speed ahead to see a green sea turtle the shape of an oversized beach ball tucked under a rock crevice, at rest. The creature is chameleon-like and blends perfectly into its habitat. Hawaiian green sea turtles are an endangered species. Their name comes from the colour of their underbelly fat, greenish because of their diet of algae and seagrasses. Each year, from their nesting spot in the isolated French Frigate Shoals, 750 kilometres northwest of Hawaii, they swim, journeying more than a month to reach their resting spot at Poipu Beach in Kauai. Only one per cent of sea turtles survive the trip. One early evening, several of us watch the turtles slowly, haltingly climb up the beach to rest after their long journey. The next morning, they are gone, having returned to their ocean habitat. On my last morning, I’m sipping Kona coffee on the lanai in the dark, anticipating the sunrise while hearing the roosters crow. In the blackened sky, a purplish haze appears just above the horizon. Soon the sun-backed clouds emerge, their rim lined with a golden yellow that reflects the sun’s rays. A palette of hues wash the morning sky, turning the clouds amber and shading them with dark grey. Swatches of deep gold stretch across the sky forming a canvas pulled tight. The clouds are brighter the farther they are from the rising sun. As I watch nature’s show, the wind picks up and the coco palms sway and swish about as if hula-dancing in rhythm with the wind. The rooster’s crowing drowns out the birdsong, surrounding me with a sensory dissonance: the stillness of first light and the racket of the birds. The two realms are competing for my attention. I take it all in, glad I am alive and awake enough to bear witness.




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Do you have a good story to tell—and the ability to write it? Boulevard readers are invited to submit stories for consideration and publication in the Narrative section. Stories should be 800 to 1,200 words long and sent to managing editor Susan Lundy at Please place the word “Narrative” in the subject line. |

AU GU ST/S E P T E MB E R 2022


behind the story

By happenstance, the “art” theme in this edition of Boulevard coincided with editor Susan Lundy’s trip to London to witness her daughter’s art opening at the city’s renowned White Cube gallery. Susan embarked on numerous activities in London—especially experiences with a view, as documented in this edition’s travel story “High in London.” But the main purpose of the journey was to see Danica Lundy’s show and, in particular, to witness in person the 12-by-8-foot oil painting above called “Chamber.” The paintings in the show were produced in the shadow of the death of Danica’s father, Derrick Lundy, a photographer. “Chamber” captures his final moments, as seen through an exploding camera.

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