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THE

WINTER

ISSUE

THE SWEET SPOT Dessert destinations in St. Henri MUD GUARD

The well-designed mudroom

COCOON ROOMS Make your home winter-cozy

GOTravelSOUTH destinations:

Mexico and French Polynesia

SLEEP TIGHT Our guide to beautiful bedding

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COMIC BOOK ART

CAPACIOUS CLOSETS

CONTEMPORARY DESIGN

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Najib CHAKCHEM Something Wonderful is About to Happen, 40 x 60 in.

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Mathieu CARRIER Haïku 23, 40 x 40 in.


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France LAMARRE Collection organique : Monet, 48 x 72 in.

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EDITOR’S LETTER

WHENEVER I MENTION to someone that I really like winter, I am always met with a look of stunned surprise … sometimes, horror. Canadians, it seems, are hardy people, skilled at dealing with the rigours of cold weather. But with the exception of those who want to spend every minute on the ski slopes, few admit to having an affection for the season of snow, freezing rain, frigid temperatures, howling winds and long hours of darkness. What about the dangerous driving conditions, they protest, to say nothing of the time it takes to liberate one’s parked car once it’s entombed in ice and snow. No, it’s understandable that winter is a hard sell in this country. However, winter gives us an opportunity to slow down and cocoon indoors. After spending the warm months being active outside – and there is great joy in that – the darkness and cold of winter persuades us that it’s time to hunker down, light some candles, build a fire in the hearth, brew some tea and curl up with a good book. At least that’s what the season says to me when the wind is screeching outside and the snow is accumulating. The cold outdoors seems to amplify the coziness factor indoors. For those of you who are not yet enamoured of the frigid season, I hope that this issue may change your mind. We asked blogger La Carmina for her guidance on how to cocoon successfully without getting cabin fever. If anyone can sell the virtues of winter, she does in her delightful advice-filled column.

There are several ways you can stay in touch with us: @movatohome @movatohome @movatohome

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And journalist Susan Schwartz shows us how she cocoons all winter in her inviting home amid comfortable furnishings, Persian rugs, good books and collections of the beautiful things she loves. One indoor space that gets plenty of use during the winter months is the mudroom. This transitional area between the outdoors and the inner sanctum of home needn’t be dull and utilitarian, writer Susan Kelly tells us. Her story focuses on how designers are creating mudrooms that are as aesthetic as other areas of the house. They’re a pleasure to behold when their owners come in from the cold. Our bedding guide will show you where to get the best linens and throws for your bed so you can cocoon with that cup of tea and good book under a puffy duvet. And because we know that not every Canadian wants to hunker down indoors all winter, we profile two travel destinations that will make you forget about the cold months in Canada: Mexico’s Riviera Maya and French Polynesia. Whichever camp you’re in – “hurray, it’s winter!” or “take me to the airport, fast; I’m heading south” – this issue of Montreal Home has some fine stories that I know will please you. Now, where did I stow my mittens and windshield scraper when I put them away last spring?

STEPHANIE WHITTAKER Editor-in-Chief stephanie@movatohome.com


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CONTRIBUTORS

LA CARMINA Writer La Carmina travels to more than a dozen destinations yearly in search of off beat stories for the millions of readers of her LaCarmina.com blog. Her trip to the Riviera Maya left her brimming with inspiration. “As a goth, I especially loved the Day of the Dead skeleton art and Mayan pyramids,” she says. “Now that it’s cold in Canada, I’m dreaming of being back on the beach in Mexico!” For now, La Carmina says she’s staying cozy in her apartment, which she details in her story about winter cocooning. She is the author of three books, and has appeared on TV shows, including “Bizarre Foods” and “No Reservations.”

CLAIRE NEWELL Travel expert Claire Newell has visited more than 65 countries and says there are more on her bucket list. She’s the official travel expert for Global News and CKNW radio, and is the bestselling author of Travel Best Bets: An Insider’s Guide to Taking Your Best Trip Ever. Claire has appeared on NBC’s TODAY Show, Fox News and CNN, and has been published in Success, Professional Woman, Reader’s Digest and Today’s Parent. For this issue, she writes about why French Polynesia is an ideal destination for anyone who needs to slow down and unplug.

SUSAN SCHWARTZ Susan Schwartz, a veteran reporter and feature writer at The Montreal Gazette, has been decorating her living spaces for as long as she can remember. Even as a teenager at summer camp, she’d create a cozy corner by the bed with a small area rug on the floor and a colourful quilt on the camp-issue cot. There was always water in the kettle for tea. In this issue, she explores the elements that make her home the warm and welcoming place she hopes it is.

SUSAN KELLY Writer and long-time Montreal Home contributor Susan Kelly takes on another trend for us. This time, she talked to six designers about how to elevate the style of the once-lowly mudroom. “Just in time for boot season,” she says. “But longer term, mudrooms are getting a lot of design attention these days, and rightly so.” Susan also caught a glimpse of how Victoria multimedia artist Lyle Schultz translates cartoon imagery into colourful canvasses. “He has very strong visions and the drive to make them a reality,” she says.

JULIE GEDEON As a writer/editor who constantly fusses about finding the ideal word, Julie Gedeon appreciates the detail that Evolution Design and its clients put into the renewal of a Westmount home. “Nothing was overlooked,” she says. “Every windowsill is marbled and heated to prevent condensation.”

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Volume 9, number 6, The Winter Issue 2017/2018 Date of Issue: December, 2017 6100 TransCanada Highway Suite 100, Pointe-Claire Quebec H9R 1B9

Call 1-866-846-1640 movatohome.com sales@movatohome.com

PUBLISHER Dr. Sharon Azrieli CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER Stanley Kirsh

EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Stephanie Whittaker ART DIRECTOR Randy Laybourne EDITORIAL MANAGER Tracey MacKenzie ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT Carmen Lefebvre CONTRIBUTORS La Carmina

CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER Matthew Azrieli PRODUCTION DIRECTOR Wendy Loper ACCOUNTING Jenny Marques DIRECTOR OF SALES - NATIONAL Kelly Chicoine ACCOUNTS EXECUTIVE Florence Cazier

Cheryl Cornacchia Julie Gedeon Susan Kelly

SALES EXECUTIVE Joanne Mayoff

Claire Newell Susan Schwartz

ACCOUNTS RECEIVABLE Trudy Kerman

PHOTOGRAPHY Jean Blais Maxime Brouillet Drew Hadley Randy Laybourne Angus McRitchie Guylaine Proulx

LEGAL DEPOSIT issn

1920-1370 Montreal Home

magazine Inc. 2017. All rights reserved. Any copying or reproduction of content without the written permission of Montreal Home magazine is strictly prohibited.

STYLISTS Grant Kefalas Jean Monet Isabelle Perez Eric Joseph Tremblay

Publication # 41959020


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CONTENTS

104 ON THE COVER COMFORT AND JOY

A writer creates a home that allows her to cocoon all winter with the things she loves

ART DECO UPDATED

A Westmount house is gutted and redesigned in the elegant style of the 1920s

112 28 PARADISE FOUND

French Polynesia is an exotic locale in which to unplug from the busyness of life

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COMICS AND CULTURE

The unusual art of Victoria’s Lyle Schultz has some surprising influences

96


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CONTENTS

SMOOTH INTEGRATION

An old duplex’s original building materials are used in its new design

18 6 EDITOR’S LETTER 14 THIS JUST IN A selection of new items for your home

38 MAJOR METAMORPHOSIS A Petite-Patrie duplex is transformed into a sophisticated contemporary home

50 COMMODIOUS CLOSETS A Dorval company creates storage space and closets that make life easier

52 SLEEP WELL Our guide to linens and throws that will make your bedroom warm and cozy this winter

62 STAY HOME AND STAY WARM

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There are many wonderful ways to cocoon indoors this winter

70 FIT FOR A PRESIDENT

SUNSHINE, BEACHES AND AN ANCIENT CULTURE

The presidential suites at the Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia offer sweet luxury

Mexico’s Riviera Maya offers the winter-weary a warm welcome and plenty to see and do

76 WELCOME HOME The redesign of a Candiac house makes its owner feel happy to be home

88 MUD GUARD While useful during inclement weather, today’s mudrooms are also aesthetic spaces

102 CLEAR AS GLASS A Boisbriand company produces designed glass for more than just the shower

136 FROM MID-CENTURY MODERN TO CONTEMPORARY With a respect for its past, a 1954 home gets redesigned for today

THE SWEET SPOT

Purveyors of divine desserts set up shop in gentrified St. Henri

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COLOU R OF T H E Y E A R 2 018

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DESIGN

1. HIGH STYLE CONTAINED This closet contains all of the elements needed to ensure organized storage in a stylish fashion. Designed and built with deco drawers, doors with matte-glass inserts, slanted shoe shelves, chrome wire baskets, and deco crown and base molding, it’s available from Closets by Design. Closets by Design www.cbdmontreal.com 514-631-6777 2

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3. PERFECT PIG This painted porcelain piggy bank, created by artist Jocelyne Lapointe, is called “Pablo.” He measures nine-by-18 inches, and is one of a kind. Galerie Le Balcon d’Art 50 Notre Dame Ave., St. Lambert 450-466-8920 www.balcondart.com

2. COZY AND COMFORTABLE These cabin-red cushions and throws from Fabricville are all the encouragement we need to relax indoors and get cozy during the winter months. Other finishing touches for your decor include guest slippers, candles, lanterns and more. Fabricville www.fabricville.com

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DESIGN

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3. THE WHITEWASHED HOME “Blanchie à la chaux” is the name of this mixedmedia, 10-by-10-inch painting by artist Josée Tellier. Available at Galerie Le Balcon d’Art. Galerie Le Balcon d’Art 50 Notre Dame Ave., St. Lambert 450-466-8920 www.balcondart.com

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DESIGN

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DESIGN MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

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SMOOTH INTEGRATION An old duplex’s original building materials are reworked to create a new industrial-rustic home PHOTOGRAPHY: ANGUS McRITCHIE STYLING: ERIC JOSEPH TREMBLAY AND ANGUS McRITCHIE

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DESIGN

SOMETIMES, A HOUSE IS LIKE A BOOK. It should not be judged by its cover. Because once you open it up, you might be surprised by the wondrous tale that awaits. You might just find yourself getting lost in an adventurous journey that transports you to another time. So with that in mind, let’s take a peek behind the door of what – from the outside – looks like a typical Montreal duplex in the city’s Plateau Mont Royal district. But you have been warned; please leave your preconceived notions on the front stoop.

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The front of the island, which is topped with white quartz, is finished in aged wood that was part of the original house. The floor is hand-made concrete tiles from Morocco.


DESIGN MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

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A patio door was installed in the kitchen, giving access to the backyard. And although new, the black steel H-beams were inspired by the original structure of the house. The concrete column that houses the gas fireplace adds to the new industrial-rustic look of the home.

“We tried to give life to the history of the house,” says Yvane Le Dot. She and her husband, Mathieu Sirot, bought the property in 2013 with a plan to convert the building, which was two small apartments, into a single-family dwelling to provide enough room for their young family. The property also included a rare garden house, a completely separate dwelling in the backyard that the couple has since renovated as well. The garden house, or back house,

does not have street access and is believed to be only one of four left in this district of the city, a remnant that harkens back to the past. It was a feature that sold the couple on the property the moment they saw it. Their plan was to be able to have room for friends and family who visit from the couple’s native France, but also, in the longer term, be a place where their children could live when they are older. •

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DESIGN

“The old and the new is what gives it the unique cachet.” – Eric Joseph Tremblay

But first, they focused on converting the principle residence. For that, they turned to architect Eric Joseph Tremblay with l’Atelier Boom Town, a Montreal-based architectural firm. He assessed the structure and devised the plan to transform the building. It started, he explains, with changing the position of the staircase, and opening it up to be part of the living area on both levels. And this is where the story really begins.

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“The idea was to have it as open as possible,” Tremblay says. The plan was to enlarge the windows at the back and improve access to the yard, while keeping the front virtually visually unchanged to maintain the home’s privacy, as it sits directly on the sidewalk.


DESIGN MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

The stairs are made of steel stringers and open risers of white oak, the same wood used on the floors.

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Inside, much of the old house was stripped away. But as this work progressed, they discovered parts of the past that they wanted to incorporate into the new look. “Often we plan a lot before we go. But with this project, we left a lot to adjust on the work site,” Tremblay says. The first discovery was the trusses that supported the second floor. Today, they are fully visible, giving the main-floor ceiling what Tremblay calls an “industrial-rustic” look.

Exposed steel beams also contribute to the look, but, Tremblay says, although their use was inspired by the original structure, the dark H-beam pieces are all new. Wood that was stripped from the building was repurposed throughout the new house, which includes about 1,700 square feet of space on two levels. Aged planks cover the front of the island in the kitchen, offering a contrast with the sleek white quartz countertops. •

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DESIGN

The wood from the original structure was also used to custom-build the rustic sliding barn-style doors that access the powder room and pantry. These doors save space in a tight area by eliminating the need for room to swing open. A shelf-style vanity in the powder room was fashioned from an old beam. The use of concrete throughout the main floor also contributes to the industrial-rustic theme. “The old and the new is what gives it the unique cachet,” Tremblay says. And the blend of materials, such as the concrete column that houses the gas fireplace, gives it warmth.

“I like that there is warmth and history. We adore our house.”

The barn-style doors to the powder room and neighbouring pantry that glide along a track were custom-built of wood that was stripped from the house when the renovation began, as were the boards that now cover the ceiling in the powder room, and the beam that supports the sink.

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DESIGN MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

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Shelves and the vanity in the upstairs bathroom were crafted of repurposed wood that contrasts with the concrete tiles on the floors and walls.

“I like that there is warmth and history,” Yvane says. “We adore our house.” It is a home that was designed with the couple’s vision of not only how it would look, but also how they envisioned living their lives. “It’s a house in our vision,” Yvane says. “When we open the door, people are stunned.” The contemporary design indoors has totally transformed this older building, which is not apparent from the street. But the style of the interior has ensured that the building’s history is still part of the narrative. •

New red brick was used on the house’s façade. It indicates where changes were made to accommodate larger windows and a patio door. The grey-painted bricks are original. The patchwork look was kept to add to the industrial-rustic theme.

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TURNING VISIONS INTO REALITIES

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TRAVEL

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TRAVEL MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

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PARADISE FOUND

Tahiti and French Polynesia is an idyllic destination for anyone who needs to unplug from the busyness of life BY CLAIRE NEWELL

DINNER FOR TWO AT A TABLE set on a private beach, lit only by a hurricane lamp and the moonlight. We sat with our toes in the sand staring at the ocean and the bright stars in the sky, sipping champagne. My husband and I were at the St. Regis Bora Bora Resort, where our fivecourse French meal with a Tahitian-vanilla flair was being impeccably presented by our waiter, who rode a bicycle from the kitchen to the beach to deliver each course. It was one of the most memorable meals I have ever experienced and something I will never forget from my trip to Tahiti and French Polynesia. •

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TRAVEL

The moment I arrived in the capital, Papeete, I could tell that I would not be disappointed by the trip that I had dreamed of for decades. Stepping off the plane, I inhaled the warm, fresh air and visually devoured the brightly coloured tropical flowers and sparkling azureblue water. Having taken several fine arts courses in university, I immediately understood why French post-Impressionist artist Paul Gauguin spent 10 years near the end of his

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life in French Polynesia, and why most of his paintings from that time depict the people and landscapes of the region. Capturing the stunning beauty, with its sculpted sky-piercing, moss-green peaks and vivid turquoise lagoons, is what Gauguin did best, and what I tried to recreate with the hundreds of photos I took. But no painting or photo can fully capture all that makes these islands so magical. Sultry Tahiti and French Polynesia is a place to completely relax and experience

the warm, laid-back island culture while fully unplugging from the rest of the world. It’s an island paradise for vacationers, rich in culture, nature and hospitality. I liken it to Hawaii of 50 years ago. And it is only two hours of flying time past Hawaii, with direct flights to Papeete from Los Angeles’s LAX. With non-stop LAX connections all across North America, it has never been easier to get to this remote island paradise.


TRAVEL MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

While French Polynesia is close to Hawaii, it feels as though it’s a million miles away. The eight Hawaiian Islands get nearly nine million tourists yearly; the 118 islands of French Polynesia get about 200,000. This is a destination where you can still have complete privacy and wear nothing more than a swimsuit and cover-up from morning to night. You can spend days not seeing anyone while staying in a gorgeous overwater bungalow, jumping off the deck into the warm, crystal

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clear water to snorkel, passing time watching the fish through the house’s glass floor, and having your meals delivered so that you never have to eat in a restaurant. French Polynesia is composed of five groups of islands, or archipelagoes. Of its 118 islands and atolls, 67 are inhabited, and Tahiti, where the capital, Papeete, is situtated, is the most populated island. •

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TRAVEL

I knew that I was going to enjoy my trip, but I had no idea just how amazing it would actually be. The uniqueness of each island is what stood out most; they are as varied as they are exotic. In many cases, the islands differ quite dramatically from each other, so it is important not to assume that you can do the same type of activities on each of them. For example, you can snorkel everywhere, but some islands are better than others, and some islands have high-end accommodations while others don’t. Another difference to note is that some beaches are smaller and more difficult to access than others. If you are accustomed to popular resort destinations, such as Maui or Mexico, with their wide, long stretches of beach, you may be surprised by these Polynesian shorelines. That said, the scenery will not disappoint – from geometric ridges strung with waterfalls on the high islands to flat, desert-like atolls, where lagoons far outsize the landmass.

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TRAVEL MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

If you are planning to island-hop, getting around is best done by flying on Air Tahiti, the country’s only domestic airline, or by taking boats between the islands. All of the islands are small and require no more than a day or two to see the sights, but I recommend adding more days if you want to melt into the slow, peaceful pace of island life. A French colony since the late 19th century, French Polynesia has been a “collectivity of France” since 2003.

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I found the French inf luence there far more prevalent than I had expected. I was so surprised when I saw a delivery service dropping fresh baguettes to almost every home. It was interesting to observe how the French culture has been kept alive in such a remote region. I’m sure that this is why so many of the visitors I met were from French-speaking European countries: France, Belgium and Switzerland. Every local I met was friendly, happy and warm. We didn’t

always speak the same language, but I felt completely welcomed. My favourite activity was walking around in the morning while so many Tahitians baked their breadfruit, spreading the aroma of a bakery around the entire island. •

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TRAVEL

Island-hopping is a popular way to see Tahiti and French Polynesia. However, in my opinion, cruising is a better option for a first-time visitor to this destination. Cruising allows you visit multiple islands and experience all of the different areas and activities without having to deal with unpacking and repacking, transportation, airports, changing hotels, ferries, and the like. It would also be expensive and time-consuming to replicate the same type of trip on your own using ferries, planes and hotels. When cruising, I recommend you venture into the towns to try the local cuisine. However, be forewarned that restaurants

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in tourist-heavy areas are expensive. With the exception of fresh seafood and tropical fruit, everything is shipped from a great distance. Also, the high cost of electricity and a currency tied to the Euro (making the exchange expensive for North Americans) drives up costs. Cruising ensures that food, accommodation, drinks and entertainment are included in the price, allowing you to simply sit back and relax on the top deck and watch the sun set behind the islands. Some cruise lines offer regular sailings in Tahiti and French Polynesia, including Windstar Cruises and Paul Gauguin Cruises; others offer seasonal sailings.

While I was taking in the breathtaking views of these stunning islands, I came to appreciate why the postcard-perfect allure of Tahiti and French Polynesia has drawn visitors – and had others dreaming about it – for centuries. Of course, when the Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan became the first European to discover the islands in 1521, he wasn’t exactly in search of a place to unplug from the busyness of life. But for those of us for whom, in the words of poet William Wordsworth, “the world is too much with us,” this is an ideal – and idyllic – place to discover. •


TRAVEL MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

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IF YOU GO: Tipping: Not customary or expected Language: French Currency: French Pacific Franc (CPF) Hello: “ia ora na” Bring: Water shoes Water: Safe to drink Entry requirements: Passport validity of three months Average temperatures: 28°C in January, the hottest month, and 25°C in July, the coldest month Wettest month: January - 240mm of rain Best time to visit: May - October

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DESIGN

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DESIGN MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

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MAJOR METAMORPHOSIS A Petite-Patrie duplex is transformed into a sophisticated contemporary home PHOTOGRAPHY: MAXIME BROUILLET

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DESIGN

“When you walk in, the most striking element is the stairs.”

THERE ARE RENOVATION STORIES and then there are renovation stories. The latter are not characterized merely by upgrades and dramatic transformations, but by complete architectural renaissances, in which old buildings are re-imagined and restructured. The process takes a clear concept, plenty of planning, a dash of daring and bit of a budget. But the result is singularly spectacular. It’s almost magic.

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The story of the complete transformation of a former duplex in Montreal’s Petite-Patrie district, just east of Papineau Avenue, north of Plateau Mont Royal, is such a tale. Where the address once identified an old rundown two-storey two-unit building, has – as if with the wave of a wand – disappeared. The civic numbers now belong to a three-storey single-family home that is modular and highly functional, suiting the needs of a single father and his three children. •

Maple full-panel banisters, black steel treads and open risers create a spiralling visual feature with interesting views from all levels.


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DESIGN

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The owner also excavated the area under the building to create a full basement, adding a fourth level of living space that is designed for his children – two young adults and one teenager. An extension was also added to the rear of the building. The total effect: about 4,000 square feet of contemporary-style space. The re-conception of this dwelling was pulled together by the architects at the Montreal boutique firm La Shed. Sébastien Parent is one of the architects who worked on the project. “It has the appearance of being very, very big with the light,” Parent says. “It absolutely responds to what (the owner) wanted. It functions well with his lifestyle.”

Finished in cedar, the rear of the building has been revamped. The row of horizontal windows on the second level is high enough to allow for privacy without limiting light.

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In some ways, this building is now almost ahead of its time, with a section of the secondf loor roof supporting a garden, and solar panels on the third floor supplying energy to power some of the building’s needs. To begin to understand the extent of the re-invention of this home, visitors simply have to open the door. “When you walk in, the most striking element is the stairs,” Parent says. “The stairs set the ambience, drawing a lot of light from the third floor.” The single stairwell, which runs from the basement to the main floor and up to the two higher levels, offers a stunning visual spiral. Its full-panel banisters, made of Canadian maple and steel treads with open risers, are a definite wow factor, adding a dynamic edge to all levels. •

A large window cranks open to allow access to the raised green roof on the upper level, where the family has planted a garden.

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Then, there’s the kitchen. Its three islands – which eliminate the need for upper cabinets, creating an open-concept space – are positioned next to a massive black cube. This structural element, with walls covered by dark steel panels, helps create a striking industrial vibe. “The cube offers a hierarchy to the space without closing off areas with walls,” Parent explains. It also encloses a number of features: a closet off the main entrance on one side; a powder room on another; a large pantry area; a coffee area, which includes a sink and space for all the small kitchen appliances, such as the coffee maker, toaster and blender; and a gas fireplace. “When you are cooking, you are always facing out, not looking at a wall,” Parent says, adding that anyone working in the kitchen can maintain visual contact with others in the living room, which opens onto the courtyard area at the back of the home.

This structural element, with dark steel-panelled walls, helps create a striking industrial vibe. It also encloses a number of features – a closet off the main entrance on one side, a powder room on another, a large pantry area, and a coffee area, which includes a small sink and space for small kitchen appliances, including the coffee maker, toaster and blender. There is also a gas fireplace.

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The living room has a wall of f loor-toceiling windows and a sliding patio door, flooding the first floor with natural light. A 12-foot-wide full-length corrugated glass panel that runs along a track can be positioned to provide privacy from the outdoors without blocking the light. And a second entrance was built just off the living room, complete with a glass vestibule to facilitate access to the home by anyone who parks a vehicle or bicycle in the back alley adjacent to the property. The vestibule is a practical feature, especially in winter. It prevents a direct walk into the living room, Parent says. •

The living room features a wall of floor-toceiling windows. A 12-by-8.5-foot corrugated glass panel on a track can be positioned to provide privacy from the outdoors.

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A full ensuite bathroom off the master bedroom uses the same bold dark colours to contrast with the light maple wood accents. All floors on the upper levels are oak.

The bedrooms are on the second floor, while the third floor provides space for an office that features many windows. They flood the upper level with natural light that also illuminates the stairwell. The space, which has a small outdoor terrace, is used daily by the owner, who works from home. He wanted a functional business area, separate from the rest of the house, Parent says.

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And then there is the basement. This level, Parent explains, was entirely designed for the children. It is sleek, with heated polished concrete floors in its bathroom, and an area in which to watch television, a work space, a gym and a bathroom that offers a wild punch of colour, a request from the owner that aims to give the space a youthful ambience. Overall, Parent says, the project turned out exactly as the owner wanted. “It offers contrast. It’s masculine, with a lot of light.” And although it took six months to develop and plan, and eight months to execute the renovation work, the final result is amazing. Maybe there was a little magic? •

The basement boasts heated polished concrete floors; it has an area for television viewing, a workspace, a gym and a bathroom that offers a wild punch of red colour in the shower.

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YO U R S PECIALI STS I N DECORATIVE AND ARCHITECTURAL GLASS L A M I N ATE D G L ASS G L ASS S H OWE RS WI N E CE LL A RS CU RV E D G L ASS

STA I N E D G L ASS TH E R M O FO R M E D G L ASS PA I NTE D G L ASS SA N D B L ASTE D G L ASS

4320 BO U L D E L A G R A N D E -A LLÉ E BO I S B R I A N D, Q C T E L: 450 433 5770

WWW.VERREACTUEL.COM


TO SELL OR TO BUY CALL

SÉBASTIEN PARENT Real Estate BrokeR

1

st

514 249-9700 sebastienparent@royallepage.ca www.parentsebastien.com

Salesperson Royal Lepage in QUEBEC for 2016-2017

HAUT-RICHELIEU Real estate agency

FRANCHISE INDEPENDENT AND AUTONOMUS OF ROYAL LEPAGE

ST-LUC! IN THE PRESTIGIOUS DOMAINE DES POÈTES! Somptuous property including 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, kitchen of your dream with wood cabinets, living room with fire place and 11 feet ceiling, central heating gaz system, basement entirely finished with integrated bar, wine cellar, home movie theatre, heating floor... BREATHTAKING LUXURY... MLS 9633666

ST-LUC! Prestigious property with 11,800 sq feet lot! 5 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, large kitchen with luncheon corner, living room with fireplace, natural gaz, central heathing with thermopomp, basement 100% finished, fenced backyard with in ground swimming pool, large concrete terrace, driveway covered with Pavé Uni... Real turn key... MLS 17893396

PRESTIGIOUS PRIVATE DOMAIN! REAL OASIS! Somptuous property including 5 bedrooms each with private bathroom, dream kitchen with all appliances included. Double garage plus small wharehouse of 32 x 42 ft (insulated and heated) with 2 private offices and parking. Close to 500,000 sq ft lot... UNIQUE SITE! DON’T MISS IT!!! MLS 26459896

SPECTACULAR AND UNIQUE SITE! Contemporary style, directly located on the mountain of Mont Saint-Grégoire, more than 45,000 sq feet lot. Interior redesigned completely between 2014 and 2015, everything has been thought for the utmost comfort of the occupants. Chef’s kitchen with large island of 10 x 4 ft and quartz counter... BREATHTAKING! MLS 28297680

WATERFRONT PROPERTY!! Completely renovated between 2011 and 2013 with high quality materials, 5 bedrooms, 3 living rooms, 3 boudoirs,2 complete bathrooms, dream kitchen with large granit counter, heated ceramic and wood. Central gas heating system with air conditionning, fire place, in ground swimming pool with salt water system, solarium, 2 garages. MLS 28368448

VIEW ON THE GOLF! Magnificient property, with 5 bedrooms, kitchen with maple wood cabinets, granit counters, island 4 x 9 with gas kitchen hob with 6 burners,all appliances included, large living room with 12 x 14 window, Master bedroom with on suite bathroom, ceramic shower, separate guest bathroom, in ground swimming pool with salt water system. MLS 13773210


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DESIGN

DESIGNED TO BE ORGANIZED Dorval company creates storage space and closets that make life easier BY JULIE GEDEON

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IMAGINE REACHING INTO your closet every morning knowing exactly where the clothes you want to wear are waiting for you. Think about the time saved. Feel how much more relaxed the start of your day is. “Whether you live in a mega-home or a small condo, we can make this a dream-cometrue,” promises Katherine Staveris Dres, owner and director of sales and marketing at Closets by Design Montreal. “We can make virtually any closet – a large walk-in or a tiny reach-in – more efficient in terms of its organization and storage. We specialize in customizing space in a home, tailored to a homeowner’s specific needs.”

It all starts with a phone call. “Within two to three days, one of our 10 experienced designers visits your home in or around Montreal for a free consultation,” she says. After previewing the area slated for a makeover, the designer consults with the homeowners to ascertain their specif ic needs. “We ask various questions to ensure that every inch of the closet will reflect your lifestyle,” Staveris Dres adds. “Do you wear business suits or yoga outfits to work? Do you fold your clothes or prefer to hang them up?” Double-hanging systems, overhead storage units and other features reclaim space that most homeowners never realized they had. “We optimize the space and add value to it,” she says.


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The Closets by Design system has earned its leading North American reputation over the past 35 years. The Montreal operation began five years ago and custom-builds everything at its Dorval location. “We have three installation trucks on the road daily,” Staveris Dres says. “A team of professional installers ensures superior quality and installation.” Three finishes – called Everyday, Classic and Brio – come in a myriad of colours to provide significant choice in a range of prices. “We pride ourselves in giving our clients the opportunity to choose one of our three collections and to add on options that permit them to control price and meet their budget,” Staveris Dres says. “Our designers are trained to find a way to make every closet more functional without compromising budget.

“Of course, there are also various additional options available – everything from an island to storage baskets to a pullout ironing board, velvet jewelry inserts, and hideaway laundry bins.” Clients who experience the Closets by Design advantages often want other areas of their homes transformed. “We often have existing clients phone us back to find solutions for other closets, playroom/basement storage, pantry or laundry area reorganizations, or garage units,” Staveris Dres says. “We’re also asked more often these days to organize hobby or arts-and-crafts rooms.” Whatever the needs, the solution is always personalized. “We recently custom-built a long desk in a finished basement area so that all of the family’s children had their own area for doing homework,” she says. •

Closets by Design Montreal www.closetsbydesign.com 514-631-6777

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DESIGN

FINDING WARMTH IN A WINTER WONDERLAND A selection of products that transform rooms into spaces for cozy, comfortable cocooning BY TRACEY MacKENZIE

L

et it snow. Let it snow. Let it snow. It’s time to hunker down and enjoy the warmth of the great indoors. At this time of year, there are few spaces more inviting than a well-designed bedroom, outfitted with beautiful linens, puffy duvets and fluffy throws. That goes for cozy living rooms and dens, too, where cushions and coverlets encourage us to sit a spell and warm up by a crackling fire. Here’s a selection of products to help you create rooms that shut out winter’s cold.

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BEDDI NG GU I DE

R EST EASY The Lavato White bedding collection is a blend of high-quality linen and cotton, woven in Italy. The pieces, which are made in Canada, are available in various colours. These super- soft sheets are crafted to transform a bed into a sleep sanctuary. Available at Au Lit Fine Linens www.aulitfinelinens.com

PI L LOW TA L K The blend of 50 per cent Belgian linen and 50 per cent long-staple cotton creates a soft pillowcase with a linen look. Pre-washing it softens the fabric and adds a casual appearance. Woven in Italy and made in Canada, the Lavato Skylight collection features sheets, pillowcases, shams, duvet covers and bed skirts. Available at Au Lit Fine Linens www.aulitfinelinens.com

SU M P T UOUS A N D SI L KY These 100 per cent bamboo pillowcases from the CÊzanne collection are soft and silky, and will keep you cool throughout the night. They’re crafted in Canada of fabric that is woven in Italy. Sheets, shams, duvets and bed skirts are also available. Available at Au Lit Fine Linens www.aulitfinelinens.com

R EL A X ED A N D R EV ERSI BL E The Lavato Dimora Grey collection is made of a pre-washed blend of linen and cotton that has a looser weave than the other Lavato linens. Offering a casual yet elegant appearance, these pieces are reversible, featuring a light grey on one side and a beige-grey on the other. Available in shams and duvet covers. Available at Au Lit Fine Linens www.aulitfinelinens.com

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DESIGN

BEDDI NG GU I DE

GR EAT SH A DES OF GR EY Hand-knitted, this extra-thick, wool-blend blanket was double-knit for maximum coziness. Larger than a lap blanket, it’s an oversized throw, which is a statement piece in any living space. Ships worldwide. 70˝ X 50˝. $317.08. La Reserve Design www.lareservedesign.com

H ER R I NGBON E COM FORT Redolent of classic homespun design, this herringbone wool-blend blanket is perfect for warming up under in front of a crackling fire. Hand-crafted in Canada, it has a fringe border to drape over your favorite sofa or chair. Ships worldwide. Approximately four-by-5.5 feet. $303.87. La Reserve Design www.lareservedesign.com

SI N K I N Carlo Bertelli, the third-generation creative director of Tessitura Toscana Telerie (TTT), the textile mill in Italy co-founded in 1947 by his late grandfather, is the creative brain behind this beautiful satin-stitch collection of 100 per cent cotton bedding. Regular use and laundering makes the 210-thread-count pieces softer. Available at Restoration Hardware www.restorationhardware.com

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BEDDI NG GU I DE

T H E V ELV ET I N E H A BI T Make it an evening ritual to climb into a comfy bed, dressed with this pure cotton-velvet bedding with a stonewashed linen underside. Available in various earth tones, this quilt and sham collection is tuck-embroidered in a subtle grid pattern. Available at Restoration Hardware www.restorationhardware.com

T H E BR IGH T BLU E SEA With a nod to ocean hues, Restoration Hardware’s tribal linen bed throw brings to life the art of mud-resist printing (dabu) of India. Artisans use carved wooden blocks to paint stripes on linen with mud, then dip the fabric in a natural dye bath. Available at Restoration Hardware www.restorationhardware.com

T ENCEL T EM P TAT IONS Tencel is an eco-friendly fabric that is antimicrobial and extremely soft. These sheets and duvet cover sets come in seven colours and are woven in a 600-thread count. Available at Linen Chest www.linenchest.com

COZ Y CUSH IONS Feather-light warmth and sublime texture characterize these Stowe brushed Peruvian alpaca pillow covers. Cozy and modern, these baby alpaca fleece covers are neutral-coloured in graphite and ivory. Available at Restoration Hardware www.restorationhardware.com

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DESIGN

BEDDI NG GU I DE

PA I N T ED PI L LOWS This line of rayon-silk-velvet-blend pillows was designed by Kevin O’Brien’s studio. Hand-painted and down-filled, they add a touch of Old World luxe to any space. $268 each. Available at Anthropologie www.anthropologie.com

WA R M I R ISH W ELCOM E From the oldest weaving mill in Ireland comes the April throw blanket by Avoca. Established in 1723, this family-run business is famous for tailored tweeds and colourful throws. Made of Donegal wool, it measures 72˝ L X 56˝ W. $178. Available at Anthropologie www.anthropologie.com

BET W EEN A ROCK A N D A SOF T PL ACE Images of geodes are everywhere this year, including on this featherweight duvet cover by East Urban Home. Made of a light polyester spun material, it’s also perfect for warm climates. Machine washable, it has a hidden zipper closure and ties inside to anchor a duvet insert. $245. Available at Wayfair www.wayfair.ca

T UCK I N Add a touch of panache to your comforter and pillows with this Hewitt pin-tuck duvet cover and sham set from VivaTerra. Elegant pin tucks create plushness. Organic cotton has a 230-thread count. Machine washable. Available at Wayfair www.wayfair.ca

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BEDDI NG GU I DE

COL D-W EAT H ER LU XU RY Stay warm under this ombre patterned faux-fur throw. Layered or on its own, this soft, luxurious throw makes a statement in a bedroom, living room or den. 47˝ W X 60˝ L. Available at West Elm www.westelm.com

F L ECK ED F U R Soft and fluffy, this flecked faux-fur throw is chic and elegant. Perfect for cuddling up, it’s machine-washable. 66˝ W X 88˝ L. Available at West Elm www.westelm.com

ICON IC WA R M T H The Hudson’s Bay blanket was first commissioned in 1800 and is as popular today as it was then. Made in England, this multi-stripe point blanket is 100 per cent woven wool and comes in the standard bed sizes. $325 - $550. Available at Hudson’s Bay www.thebay.com

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DESIGN

BEDDI NG GU I DE

A DASH OF EL EGA NCE Pale grey Jacob wool and creamy white Welsh Mule lambswool is combined in the Alta handwoven cushion by Glenbach Weaving. A dash of navy blue is used for contrast. Ships worldwide. Available at Glenback Weaving www.glenbachweaving.com

WOV EN I N WA L ES Hand-woven, these cushions are 100 per cent wool that is sourced from Shetland sheep in the Teifi Valley of Wales. Hand-made by a small family-run business, Glenbach Weaving, they bestow a traditional touch on beds, sofas and armchairs. Ships worldwide. Available at Glenbach Weaving www.glenbachweaving.com

COT TAGE CH IC The Eddie Bauer cotton-blend Stag decorative pillow is as Canadian as you can get. Perfect for cottages or city homes, this red-and-black, checkered pillow with a deer’s-head patch has a concealed zip closure. $60. Available at Hudson’s Bay www.thebay.com

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BEDDI NG GU I DE

LU X E L I F E These hand-felted fleece rugs come from The Living Rug Company. The raw fleece from each lamb is combined with carded wool and then felted to create the rug. No lamb is harmed in the process, and each fleece is named after the lamb it came from. These 100 per cent wool fleece rugs will add a touch of originality to your home as well as help with the upkeep of the lambs. Available at The Living Rug Company www.thelivingrugcompany.com

LOGICA L LY ECOLOGICA L The Pendleton Eco-Wise wool throw is made of non-toxic, biodegradable materials and is produced using environmentally responsible production methods. The fabric can be recycled or composted. $199. Available at Pendleton www.pendleton.ca

TA K E A SEAT! This seat cover from The Living Rug Company is made of 100 per cent wool fleece. Named after the sheep that donated its wool, the fleece is perfect as a chair pad or as a luxury cover for your pet’s bed. No sheep are harmed in this process and all proceeds go to the upkeep of the animals. Available at The Living Rug Company www.thelivingrugcompany.com

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Photo courtesy of BONE Structure

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STAY HOME AND STAY WARM Take advantage of winter’s cold and darkness to experience the joy of cocooning indoors BY LA CARMINA

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HAS WINTER GIVEN YOU A CASE OF THE BLUES? A touch of cabin fever? Consider this cold, dark, blustery season a gift. Think of it as an opportunity to slow down, turn inward, and cocoon at home. The Danish concept of “hygge” (pronounced hoo-guh) is being embraced worldwide. The term refers to creating a relaxed, inviting environment that makes you happy to curl up, away from the cold. Take a cue from the Danes, and try these easy tips for warming up your home and body during the long winter months.

SPA SPACE Have a spa day indoors. Forget about going out in the cold to an expensive day at the spa, and pamper yourself in the comfort of your own home. A long, hot bath is especially satisfying in winter. Play relaxing music, dim the lights, and arrange candles around the tub. Throw in f lower petals, orange peels or any bath products that you have. To soothe dry skin, put oatmeal in a nylon stocking and run it under the spout. It’s easy to concoct natural face masks out of ingredients in your kitchen. Mix together yogurt and honey for a facial, and don’t forget cucumber slices over the eyes. For a salon-style treatment, comb coconut or olive oil through your hair. Middle and bottom left photos: La Carmina

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CHEERS! Make warm drinks that are enjoyed around the world. From Chinese “leung cha” medicinal tea to South American yerba mate, there’s a wide world of hot drinks out there. Many of these international beverages are made with healthful and delicious ingredients, with properties that encourage heating in the body. “Glühwein,” or mulled wine, is a favorite throughout northern Europe. In a saucepan, heat red wine with spices (cinnamon sticks, clove, star anise), lemon and orange slices, and a touch of honey. For a non-alcoholic version, swap the wine for berry tea or pomegranate juice. Indonesians warm up with “bajigur,” a soothing coconut milk and ginger drink. In Japan, traditional matcha (whisked green tea powder) is a winter staple. You can also have fun decorating hot chocolate with Japanesestyle bunny faces and ears. •

All left photos: La Carmina

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LIFESTYLE

WARM DECOR A few decor tweaks in your home can elevate your comfort levels. Decluttering is the first step: discard items that, in the words of organizing expert Marie Kondo, no longer “spark joy.” When a room is free of excess, it feels calm and inviting. To make the most of daylight, create a cozy window perch where you can look out and sip tea. At night, soften the room with candles or light up the fireplace if you have one.

Natural textures create instant hygge. Danish decoration tips include surrounding oneself with plants, and making centerpieces out of such forest materials as pinecones. Don’t forget to arrange comfortable throws and pillows around your favorite lounging areas.

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GET UP AND DANCE Work out with video games and apps. Chilly weather makes many of us reluctant to hit the gym or exercise outdoors. However, you can still break a sweat and have fun in front of the TV. Video game consoles, including Wii and Xbox, have developed fitness games that track your movements. Gather a group of friends and follow along with “Just Dance” choreography until you reach “superstar” status. You can also get moving to Wipeout (obstacle courses), Zumba, and P90X.

Photo: La Carmina

Online fitness is popular. You can stream hundreds of classes, taught by top instructors. Many programs offer free one-month trial subscriptions, including YogaGlo and Beachbody On Demand. YouTube also has plenty of videos that teach barre, Pilates, kickboxing and other workouts. •

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LIFESTYLE

LOUNGE AROUND Get stylish with loungewear. Hygge extends to feeling good about what you wear at home. Why not brighten up your winter wardrobe with a few comfortable yet chic pieces? Seek out sweaters with whimsical prints, such as the holiday loungewear collections by online purveyors Wildfox and UNIF. Or find a robe and slippers decorated with your favorite cute character. If you enjoy sewing and knitting, this is a chance to treat yourself with new accessories.

Top photos: La Carmina

Photo courtesy of Wildfox

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PET PLAY Spend cozy time with pets. They tend to be extra snuggly this time of year. Spoil your furry friends with a long grooming session, and then take portraits of them with holiday lights and costumes. Cats and dogs can be delighted by a cardboard box with cut-outs, or a cozy fort made from bedsheets. If it’s snowing outside, make a snowman for them to investigate. And of course, cuddle up. Our animal friends naturally seem to understand the joys of cocooning in winter. • Photo: La Carmina

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TRAVEL

SWEET LUXURY

The presidential suites at the Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia offer lavish indulgence

WHO HAS NOT DREAMED OF ESCAPING into the lap of luxury? Of closing one’s eyes and breathing in deeply as a warm wave of sumptuous relaxation envelops one’s body? Safe, secure and detached, this is what enjoying the moment really means. But what if you could enhance this exquisite sense of timelessness, this feeling of living in the now, by having it all steeped in the style and intrigue of ancient Spain?

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You can make this dream a reality by walking into one of two presidential suites at the Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia. Surrounded by the Sonoran Desert at the foot of Camelback Mountain, the resort is in Paradise Valley, just east of Phoenix, Arizona. Here, white-washed villages like those of the Andalusia region of southern Spain provide the backdrop that will make your getaway an unforgettable experience.


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“Guests who stay in these suites are pampered to the utmost level,” says Chloe Dake, public relations and communications manager at Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa. “They are truly a way to escape. You don’t feel like you’re at a normal hotel.” A stay in the Camelback presidential suite is like no other. It is the perfect setting for a special romantic occasion. Among its unique features is the bathroom, which could set the scene for any Hollywood-worthy love story. “Everybody is in awe of the bathroom,” Dake says. “The bathroom is the highlight of the suite.”

A pendant chandelier, framed by a domed ceiling well, projects diamond bursts of light against the rounded walls, like thousands of stars cast in a dark blue sky. The large, luxurious tub is carved from a single piece of stone. “It’s very romantic,” says Dake. “It really sets the mood,” especially with the glow from the small windows and the soft light from flames of the grand votive candle arrangement. Unwinding with your special someone soaking under bubbles in this setting while letting room service deliver a world-class meal to your door to share as you look out at the majestic views of Camelback Mountain is unrivalled. •

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TRAVEL

In addition to the romance, the Camelback suite – which includes two bedrooms and three bathrooms – also offers guests the opportunity to share an occasion with friends and family; it opens onto a private 4,000-square-foot exterior event space. This courtyard, equipped with guest bathrooms, is the perfect spot to host an intimate reception, especially before or after a wedding, which is the Omni Scottsdale’s specialty. This resort caters romance. And then there is the Andalusian Presidential Suite. With its stone columns, carved stone water features from the mid-1800s, tiled floors and beamed ceilings, this suite has two bedrooms, three baths and a private pool. “Everything in that suite is designed to transport you to another time and place,” Dake explains.

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TRAVEL MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

If you’re looking for a luxurious private getaway, this suite is more than perfect. With a full wet bar for entertaining, it also includes a private office that will let you stay in touch while not taking you away from quality family time. And if you are planning a wedding at the resort, the suite’s spacious bathroom offers the perfect space for the bride and her bridesmaids to prepare for the big event. It’s a space that will help create a memorable atmosphere

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on a special day, a little something that falls into the category of “priceless.” So you might just want to think about inviting the photographer in, too. And when you rent these suites, you’ll also want to take advantage of the all-day access to the resort’s spa, Dake adds. Still dreaming of escaping into the lap of luxury? It can be done under the Arizona sun. •

Prices for the presidential suites at Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia vary according to the season, but start at $5,000 a night for the Andalusian Presidential Suite and $3,500 per night for the Camelback Presidential Suite.

Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia www.omnimontelucia.com 888-444-OMNI

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A view on the world.

Custom made Solariums

Aluminum interior

Standard size solariums

Permanent awnings

R.B.Q. 1983-2179-28

Glass and aluminum railings

1 SINCE 198

Glass and stainless steel railings

Architectural doors and windows

ST. LAURENT

LAVAL

LONGUEUIL

QUEBEC

4940 Bois-Franc Rd 514-335-2050

1601 AUT Laval (440) 514-335-2050

600 Jean-Neveu 514-335-2050

5237 Wilfrid-Hamel W 418-877-1888 /1-800-665-9505

FREE ESTIMATE

1-800-361-9232

•

OTTAWA GATINEAU 1-800-361-9232

www.zytco.com


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DESIGN

HAPPY TO BE HOME

A homeowner is so pleased with her house’s new design, she loves walking through the front door BY JULIE GEDEON PHOTOGRAPHY: JEAN BLAIS STYLING: JEAN MONET Floral arrangements: Le Marché aux Fleurs du Village

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DESIGN

HOMEOWNER MARIE-JOSÉE LÉPINE SMILES every time she enters her Candiac home and sees the foyer’s bold floral black-and-white floor tiles. “I can’t help it,” she says, laughing. “Their design is so playful that they immediately put me in a more joyful and relaxed ‘glad-to-be-home-again’ mood.” She and her husband, Edward Olander, wanted a home where they and their two children could – in her words – breathe with ease. “Lots of open space with sleek, pure lines,” she explains, “but nothing so precious that it would make people feel they have to remove their shoes at the front door.” They bought an older contemporary home in a neighbourhood they adore, knowing they would have to update it to their own tastes. “Edward and I both wanted more of a masculine character for the home but, perhaps somewhat surprisingly, I sought more of an industrial feel while he asked how we could incorporate wood for some rustic warmth,” Marie-Josée says. “Fortunately for us, our designer nailed the combination!”

The pattern on the entryway floor makes the homeowner smile whenever she returns to her peaceful abode. The overhead window is framed in wood to give it a homey warmth.

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Rather than attempt to camouflage the stovetop’s exhaust vent, the designer had it clad to match the island. It makes a bold structural statement.

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Manon Bélanger, the designer in question, achieved the couple’s goals with a palette of grey, black and white throughout the house. “The homeowners had wanted concrete flooring, but the existing structure would have to be fortified,” Bélanger says. “So instead, we installed concrete tiling in high-traffic areas but a matte white oak in a large plank in the main living area.”

Deciding how to divide up the great room was the first order of business. “It was important to make the kitchen big enough for everyone but not so large that it would overly dominate the space,” Bélanger says. “We also had to figure out where to put the huge walkin pantry that Marie-Josée requested.” •

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“The cellar fits perfectly with our welcoming of family and friends for a good meal and nice glass of wine.”

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The glassed wine cellar divides the space without creating the sensation that a wall has been erected for the pantry’s sake. “People don’t even know the pantry is there unless we show it to them, which we usually do because we just love it so much,” Marie-Josée says. “And the cellar fits perfectly with our welcoming of family and friends for a good meal and nice glass of wine.” The pantry is a dream-come-true for Marie-Josée who initially fell in adoration of a friend’s walk-in space. “Most everything is stored there within easy reach,” she says. “And our kitchen counters stay free of clutter.”

The walk-in pantry is designed to be hidden, but the homeowners love it so much that they can’t help showing it to visitors. The dark shelving adds richness.

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DESIGN MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

Black lacquered melamine gives the pantry greater chic than white shelving could ever do. Its slim counters are in keeping with the current trend of having small appliances out of sight. “What’s nice is the homeowners can use the appliances right there inside the pantry with the electrical outlets we’ve installed, rather than hauling them to and from the kitchen,” Bélanger says The breathing space that Marie-Josée desired is also incorporated in two windowed corners where Bélanger opted to keep the

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natural light unobstructed. “The ‘messier’ greenery and lighting in these corners give them a slightly more bohemian spirit than the rest of the house,” Bélanger adds. All of the main furnishings were chosen for comfort and for the children’s use. “I really like how the library is built into the sofa unit because it provides storage without blocking any of our view or ever getting in the way,” Marie-Josée says. “And Edward loves the wood background for the mounted television.” •

The natural light in this corner is ideal for growing herbs.

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Bélanger incorporated various black accents to ground the space. “The black cladding on the exhaust hood makes an initial impression but then it’s dismissed from our conscious awareness because it’s so dark and doesn’t obstruct any view lines,” she says. “The meshed glass dividers were already there, but we gave them some punch by repainting the wooden frames black to go with the rest of the room.” Her designer’s touch especially came into play in finding the perfect masculine-feminine balance for the kitchen’s backsplash. “From a distance, the grey ceramic from Patricia Urquiola’s Mutina tiles collection looks plain with a slight texture,” Bélanger says. “Yet up close, you see the lacelike flowers that subtly connect with the foyer’s louder floral tiles.” Back at the front entrance, a once-bland overhead window casing was tied into the home’s other rustic elements. Bélanger clad it in some white oak so that every aspect of this contemporary home ties beautifully together to add to Marie-Josée’s smile. •

Streamlined furnishings were chosen not only for their sleekness, but for their sturdiness.

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T hingS wOrk bE T T Er whEn T hE y F iT. which is why we adapt hospital care to a child’s needs.

Funds raised by OpĂŠration Enfant Soleil are used to acquire the latest medical equipment and to create a better healing environment for sick children. operation enfant soleil.ca


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GO AHEAD! TRACK MUD INTO THE HOUSE Today’s mudrooms are practical, but they’re also beautiful, sought-after spaces BY SUSAN KELLY

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Photo courtesy of Cliff and Evans

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ITS NAME IS MUD — mudroom that is. But despite the unpromising moniker, in today’s houses, mudrooms are taking on new importance and lots of style. No longer an afterthought, “Eighty per cent of the large renovations we do have mudrooms on the wish list,” says builder Dave Evans, partner at Cliff and Evans Ltd., a construction company in Toronto. In most homes, it can be found just off a side or rear entrance, as in the detached single-family

home in Moore Park that his company renovated. Families prefer the convenience of using the door closest to the garage or driveway. Front doors, he points out, are reserved to welcome guests. The mudroom sees a lot of traffic, which is why planning one should start from the ground up. Here designer Kate Zeidler gave the f loors a style upgrade using soft grey porcelain tiles that emulate natural stone. Bonus: they are also highly durable and easy

to maintain. Evans often suggests a honed finish rather than a glossy one that can be slippery when wet. And no matter what the period of the home — this one dates from circa 1915 — modern conveniences such as heated floors are a must. “That way, you always have warm boots to put on, and they help speed up evaporation of any water that is tracked in,” he says. •

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People with children and pets perhaps are most keenly aware of how important the mudroom can be, says designer Rhonda Thornton, owner and creative director at Bloomsbury Fine Cabinetry in Toronto. “Between school and activities, there can be a lot of gear and clutter,” she says. “People now are investing more to have a space that is both organized and inviting.” Thornton designed the one in the home north of the city she shares with her husband and three children, ages 22, 19 and 16, plus three dogs. A solid maple bench has served the family well for more than 10 years. Underneath are storage bins carved with the names of each family member. Small children especially like having a space reserved just for them, she says, and they can keep such things as hats, mittens and scarves out of sight.

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Photos courtesy of Bloomsbury Fine Cabinetry

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Thornton was ahead of the curve in incorporating a mix of open and closed storage, now a big trend. Sports gear and other paraphernalia not used every day can go behind a closed door. “People want a less utilitarian, more quality-furniture look today,” says the designer. “It’s also important to respect the

overall style of the home.” By adding a few details, Thornton was able to give traditional English-style cabinetry a look that fits beautifully in the French-style country cottage.


Photos courtesy of Dvira Interiors

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And you can ramp up the style by adding luxe details and personal touches without losing any function, says interior designer Dvira Ovadia, principal at Dvira Interiors in Toronto. She fearlessly covered the mudroom bench in her updated traditional home in the Allenby area with vibrant striped wool fabric by Paul Smith. This despite the fact that her two children, aged five and eight, clamber on it to reach their backpacks on the hooks above. “It’s very durable fabric and the stripes hide stains,” Ovadia says. She ran durable natural slate floors underneath. Not only does she love the rich look, but they also remind her of growing up in Brussels. The farmhouse apron sink is not only European chic, but practical for rinsing gear and potting plants. The designer had both elegance and her children in mind when she chose the white wallpaper. She likes the sense of whimsy the gold bumblebees provide and the fact they are an international symbol of welcome. “Every detail is beautiful and was chosen with my family in mind, to make them feel happy when there,” she says. •

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Every mudroom is different, and there are no fixed rules for decorating it. Except when it comes to combining it with the laundry area; most designers advise against doing so, says Sarah Gallop, owner of Sarah Gallop Design Inc. in Vancouver. “Ideally, they should be in separate areas of the house; a crossover can be messy,” she says. Sometimes that is not possible, such as in the mudroom area she designed for a newly built home in the Cambie Corridor area of Vancouver. Gallop kept the two at opposite ends of the space. They are visually separated through the use of different colours and textures: smooth, pure white surfaces in the mudroom, soft grey tones and a mix of tiles in the laundry area. Dog-washing stations, though, are an increasingly popular feature that does belong in or near the mudroom. Here the designer included one across from the washer/dryer. It consists of a sink large enough to comfortably lift the homeowners’ small French bulldog for a quick rinse. “For larger dogs, I often design a small tiled-in area with hand-held shower attachment,” she says. •

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Photo courtesy of Sarah Gallop Design Inc.


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“In a more contemporary design like this one, clutter will make the room look cramped. You want as much behind closed doors as possible.”

Photos courtesy of South Hill Interiors

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Making the most of available square footage is important. Especially true of mudrooms in smaller homes, such as the “farmhouse chic” one designed by Barbara Mangoni, founder and principal at South Hill Interiors in Toronto. The usual impulse is to use open shelving to create the illusion of more space, but that’s not what was done here, she says of the century home her company recently renovated. “In a more contemporary design like this one, clutter will make the room look cramped,” she says. “You want as much behind closed doors as possible.”

To keep it light and bright, she had white Shaker-style cabinetry built around a window to one side of the door. It faces one opposite, under which a simple open bench provides a place for removing boots. To the side, an industrial rustic wall rack holds coats and backpacks. Underfoot, the same wide-plank engineered oak with a hand-scraped finish runs to the doorsill. “Putting down tile would have broken the line and made the area look smaller,” she says. “Plus, the wood adds a nice warmth, like a big welcome mat.”


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Photos courtesy of Mélyssa Robert Design

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Everyone’s dream: a spacious, gorgeous, organized mudroom. And that was what the owners of a newly built home in the PointeClaire suburb of Montreal requested, says their interior designer Mélyssa Robert, owner of Mélyssa Robert Design. “I put in contemporary sliding barn doors, which can hide any clutter from view,” she says. “But with three kids, the couple still wanted everything as organized as possible.” So the designer created customized solutions for each member of the active family. And, because the family wanted this to be their forever home, Robert made them adaptable to grow with the residents. A touch especially appreciated in winter is a custom rack for drying gloves and mitts set over a heating grate. She also had to meet the challenge of using eco-friendly materials, also a big trend. This mudroom breaks with the new norm in that it’s placed near the front door. Turns out, that’s the one the family uses. “It doesn’t matter where you place the mudroom,” says Robert, “as long as it works for your lifestyle — and is as beautiful as the rest of your home.” •

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COMICS AND CULTURE The quirky art of Lyle Schultz taps into 1990s skate-punk culture and the depths of the subconscious mind BY SUSAN KELLY

“EDDIE HIDES HIS FACE UNDER A JOKESHOP (SIC) MASK.” Victoria artist Lyle Schultz says that lyric snippet from a song by Canadian skatepunk band SNFU about sums up his approach to life and art. “I tend to hide behind a sense of cartoon facade in most of my work,” he says. “It’s still me, but just hidden deep under many layers of paint.” A full-time painter for a decade, at age 39 Schultz has created a serious body of work. Unique, often absurd or provoking, yet somehow profound, his style is sometimes compared to American neo-expressionist painter Jean-Michel Basquiat. Schultz’s paintings have been shown in close to 100 exhibitions nationally, about three-quarters of them on Vancouver Island. His works can also be found in many private collections, including those of Kids in the Hall alumnus Scott Thompson and John Wright of the band Nomeansno. •

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Cartooning dates to Schultz’s teenage years in 1990s Saskatchewan. He and a friend produced Phoxx Hat, a ’zine filled with “poetry, drawings and insanity.” With other artists who were part of the same film group in college, he received a Canada Council grant to make an animated film: Hello, My Name is B.O.B., a project that took him to the West Coast. The group subsequently fell apart, but Schultz remained on Vancouver Island in 2003.

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The culture of the 1990s – from Terry Gilliam to Sam Kieth comics to filmmaker David Lynch – remains a big influence on his life. But it’s the decade’s underground-alternative and punk musicians, the “intelligent, creative, in-your-face bands that had amazing musicianship and art,” that inspire him the most. He has created album covers for such bands as U.S. punk rockers Lucky Scars over the years.


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And he counts SNFU musician and artist Ken Chinn, who uses the pseudonym Mr. Chi Pig, as friend and mentor. Schultz says it was backstage after a concert when he first saw one of Chinn’s paintings, which spoke to him as nothing had previously. “He also taught me that if you don’t have passion for what you’re doing, no one will care about what you produce, either,” says Schultz. He has a strong support system of friends, and is grateful to his parents who have always been strongly in his corner. Most of Schultz’s paintings have “at least 10 paintings under them,” as he tends to revise feverishly and relentlessly until he gets it right. He works on canvasses or panels that range in size from four inches square to sixby-12-feet. He prefers acrylic paints with the occasional mix of other media. Because he prefers to work insulated from natural light, his studio is in a converted sauna at the back of his home. •

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ART

The rest of his apartment is jammed with paintings, books and guitars. To find space to sketch out his ideas, he tapes huge sheets of paper to the walls. That way, he can record his ideas for the many media he works in, including animation, short film, and writing. He also has scattered six video monitors that continually run, usually showing his favourite classic films, such as David Cronenberg’s Naked Lunch or sci-fi classic THX 1138.

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Among the projects in the works now is a mixed-media animation with musician Edward Garbo for a song that’s set for release in 2018. And he’s launched a line of leggings, skirts and bags under his own label, Stitch Cricket. They’re entirely made in Quebec, from the performance fabric to stitching. “And I don’t just transfer a painting onto the fabric,” he says. “I design each item, so each becomes wearable art. And some are limited editions.” The clothing and accessories are

available only at stitchcricketclothing.com. Schultz also sells his paintings mainly online as well, at lyleschultzart.com and on his Instagram site: @lyleschultzart. His most popular works feature cartoonish dogs in often surreal landscapes. It’s again an outsider’s view of the world around him. For in a town where “everyone and his dog has a dog,” Schultz remains a devout cat person. “I am happy people like something I do, but don’t want these paintings to be all I do,” he says. •


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CRYSTALCLEAR DESIGN

A Boisbriand company produces glass for interior decor use that goes way beyond just the shower

WHEN YOU THINK OF spectacular modern bathroom design, there are many things that can be debated: Where to put the tub, the size of the vanity, what to choose when it comes to tile and how much cabinet space is enough. But one thing is set. Your vision of a modern bathroom design must absolutely include a sleek glass-walled shower. There is no question there. It’s got to be glass. Glass showers are the standard. They have transitioned from trend to become a firmly established must-have. And no one knows this more than Félix Lévesque-Prévost. His company, Verre Actuel et Fils, has been designing glass showers for decades. And today, they are the most popular home decor feature his company produces. Lévesque-Prévost’s father started the company about 40 years ago, but today it does much more than the bathroom showpieces to which everyone is upgrading. Verre Actuel et Fils now is helping homeowners discover how they can use the sleek transparent look of glass in other areas of their homes as well. Glass, he explains, is strong, elegant and “very classy.” It offers what Lévesque-Prévost describes as “a light design” element that can be mixed with almost any other material, including wood, metal and concrete.

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“Just about everything made in glass, we make, and we can personalize.”

One of the newest popular design features Verre Actuel creates is custom wine cellars – large made-to-measure floor-to-ceiling display cases to house large collections of wine. They make an impressive visual statement in a home. “More and more, people are thinking of glass now,” he says. It offers an elegant way to make a bold visual impact. And what is more exciting, he says, is how many glass elements can be personally customized so that homeowners can have a one-of-a-kind element incorporated into

their decor. This can include sandblasting an image onto a mirror, laminating colour sheets of gelatine between layers of glass to create images or even printing elements of a photograph onto a glass or mirrored surface. “Our specialty is personalizing things,” he says. “We can build some exclusive products. “Just about everything made in glass, we make, and we can personalize.” This also includes glass walls that act as banisters along staircases to add a dimension of light to open interior designs, and glass

guardrails along decks and pools in outdoor landscapes. “One of the advantages we have is that we manufacture these products directly,” Lévesque-Prévost says. Spectacular glass design does not have to be limited to the bathroom any more. •

Verre Actuel et Fils 4320 de la Grande Allée Blvd., Boisbriand 450-433-5770 www.verreactuel.com

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COMFORT AND COZINESS FOR WINTER COCOONING There’s an art to creating rooms that invite us to relax and warm up when it’s cold outside BY SUSAN SCHWARTZ PHOTOGRAPHY: JEAN BLAIS STYLING: JEAN MONET Floral arrangements: Le Marché aux Fleurs du Village

WHAT WE WANT MOST FROM HOME, I believe, is sanctuary – shelter from the storm. The marketing consultant and futurist Faith Popcorn, who coined the term “cocooning” back in the 1980s, explained that the concept involves building a “shell of safety” around oneself – a buffer from the perceived dangers of life beyond our front doors.   It’s illusory to think that cocooning can protect us from peril, of course, but certainly it can provide a measure of comfort. And with the icy winds of winter bearing down on us, comfort is what we crave. •

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(Above) The deep sofas, by Montauk, are a perfect spot on which to curl up and gaze into the fireplace. (Opposite) French doors lead into the dining room, where the deep blue ceiling brings to mind a night sky.

As the winter coats and scarves and boots come out, I spread old Persian carpets on the old oak floors throughout the house and replace light-coloured linen throw pillows with those in deeper tones and heavier fabrics. Â And I gravitate toward the fireplace. There are two in the living room, both gas inserts; they lack the lovely crackle of wood-burning fireplaces but can be turned on and off with the flick of a switch and they have fans, so they generate warmth: In a living room facing north and east in a drafty house built more than a century ago, warmth is welcome.

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During these dark times, light is also welcome. I prefer the pools of light created by table and floor lamps to overhead lighting: It’s softer. Part of making the space mine is furnishing it with unique pieces and, to that end, I have had lamps created that incorporate vintage Mason jars, old Beauceware, wooden spools – even a heavy old iron. Nearly all the lampshades were custom-made, mostly at Abat-Jour Marie-Elizabeth in Pointe-Claire, where they also make the bases and wire the lamps. Could I find perfectly nice shades and lamps at HomeSense? Absolutely. But these elevate the lamps and make them special.   I have always associated colour with comfort. The living room is Benjamin Moore’s Yellow Lotus (2021-50), a saturated and happy yellow. The dining room is a strong red, Poppy (1315), and the kitchen a Pear Green (2028-40). •

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Much as I admire spare spaces and clean lines, I don’t want to live with them. I want the art I chose with such care splashed on the walls and the books I read piled around me. I want to look at framed photos of people I hold dear and to admire the sunlight streaming through the coloured glass bowls and vases to which I am drawn. I want rooms that feel cozy and inviting.

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But like the guy who walks the line in the Johnny Cash song, I walk one, too. It’s the line between making my home feel warm and welcoming by filling it with things I love – and overdoing it so that the space becomes cluttered and, by definition, uninviting. It’s a fine line.

(Above) The library’s sofa is long enough to stretch out on. (Above and opposite) My collections are everywhere: old industrial spools in the library, vintage apothecary jars and Quimper dishes in the living room, cut crystal in the dining room.


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I have been collecting stuff for as long as I can remember, everything from vintage apothecary jars and crystal and table linen to unmatched pieces of old sterling, which cost a fraction of sets, and old copper pots for their patina. Most of my finds come from thrift shops such as the Nova shops in the West Island and Hudson, and from church rummage sales.   I’m big on re-using items that had a life before they came into mine. A pair of chairs that had orange vinyl seats when they were in the basement of the 1960s house in which I grew up are now upholstered in colourful barkcloth

from a pair of vintage drapes found at Beverly Russell Antiques downtown. Two doctor’s office chairs once covered in drab salmon are dressed now in a fabric wild with palm trees. A slipper chair was $5 at an Ottawa thrift shop run by the St. Vincent de Paul Society. It was covered in a garish – and dirty – fabric, but it had good bones. Now it’s upholstered in the same dark blue as the Roman shades in the dining room – with little gold stars that seem to twinkle in candlelight.   Probably the only piece in the house purchased new is the bed. •

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I love the patina of rough old pine dressers and dough boxes and have found a few at Finnegan’s, the seasonal flea market in Hudson, open from May through October. And treasures I have found at a terrific Montreal consignment shop called Galerie M include a pair of Montauk sofas in the living room for which I paid considerably less than they cost new. The dining chairs came from a friendly Old Montreal shop, now sadly closed: It was run by a lovely French woman whose motherin-law used to send containers full of furniture and home furnishings from France and it was a kind of cross between an antique store

and a thrift shop. I had the chairs re-upholstered in a soft red and blue plaid and then, years later, at an antique store in Cape Cod, spied a round table stained dark red that was perfect with them. My modus operandi has always been to buy what I like and figure I’ll find a place for it. From time to time I cull my collections, because I realize that I want to keep only what gives me comfort and joy. And I’m forever moving objects around because, to my mind, things need changing up. After all, you wouldn’t wear the same thing day after day, would you? So why should your rooms? •

Colourful area rugs cover the floors in winter. The yellow walls are so cheering. This corner of the living room is probably my favourite place in the house in which to read or contemplate life.

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A RETURN TO ART DECO A Westmount home is gutted and redesigned in the elegant style of the 1920s BY JULIE GEDEON PHOTOGRAPHY: DREW HADLEY STYLING: GRANT KEFALAS AND ISABELLE PEREZ

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A SUCCESSFUL YOUNG FAMILY MAN with an OldWorld soul and an eye for exquisite details wanted his Westmont home to be renewed as a light, airy canvas infused with jewel tones. The co-founders of Evolution Design achieved his vision with a classic decor spiced with Art Deco influences. The homeowner contacted designers Grant Kefalas and Isabelle Perez after admiring the design of one of their projects, featured in Montreal Home. He originally

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planned to renovate only the bathroom and kitchen, but instead gutted the whole house. “We came on board after the architect, Adam Borowczyk of Atelier URA, had erected the beautiful wall panelling, which we painted in a neutral tone to make the overall space feel larger,” Kefalas says. “Our mission is always to collaborate with our clients to determine their specific needs, preferences and lifestyle so we can evolve those elements into a uniquely personal statement.”

The foyer sets the stage with the dramatic contrast of the China Black and Statuario marble slabs in a customized pattern, inspired by a photograph of Renaissance f looring at the Vatican. “Adam worked with us to rescale the design for the home’s dimensions,” Kefalas adds. He and Perez also designed the console tables, each of which features a handpolished black-lacquered top and apron with a brass inlay.


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Nickel plating and hammered nickel doorknobs speak to the homeowner’s attention to detail. “When we saw the faux emerald green malachite spokes, it was exactly the gem we envisioned for this foyer,” Perez says of the mirrors that hang above the tables. The Art Deco influences continue in the living room with the customized herringbone flooring with a dark inlaid perimeter and a customized rug from Nepal. “It took us months of back and forth to achieve the ideal colours and fibres based on a classic ikat pattern,” Kefalas says. •

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(Above) The China Black and Statuario marble flooring was inspired by a photograph of a Renaissance floor at the Vatican. Each console table was designed with a hand-polished black-lacquered top and apron with a brass inlay.

(Right) Polished hammered-nickel doorknobs convey the attention that was paid to every detail in this renovated home.

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He and Perez took into consideration the family’s young children in selecting a sofa with a durable yet velvety upholstery. “We achieved a subtle but essential balance by having the bright cushions on the grey sofa connect with the purple fauteuils on the other side of the room,” Perez says. “We likewise created an equilibrium with the doorway into the sunroom by installing mirrored, nickel-framed doors to a small bar area.”

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The furnishings reflect the home’s regency but also its worldliness. “We chose pieces that looked as if they had been collected during travels over the years rather than all purchased at once,” Kefalas explains. “Our upholsterer built and covered the purple chairs based on a photograph of an Art Deco model that he’d taken apart to repair.” All the paintings were selected to add those rich gems of colour that the homeowner desired. Teal-coloured furnishings were likewise chosen to give the sunroom its unique punch with the intensity playfully reflected in the drapery.

The bird motif on the drapes ties in with the rich teal-coloured armchairs and ottoman in the sunroom. The cushions and other accessories recall the Greek key pattern found elsewhere in the home.


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(Left) A reproduction of a whimsical chandelier was rescaled in size to make a statement in the dining area without overpowering the space.

Limited dining space prompted the designers to track down a California company to reproduce a Josef Hoffmann (circa 1905) chandelier with its palm tree motif, albeit in smaller dimensions. The designers also ordered a Louis XVI-style dining set in raw wood that they had lacquered in black. They upholstered the chair seats in a traditional Greek key design with gold and white hues on the chair backs. •

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Marble with black, white and lime colouring was selected to reframe a former coal-burning fireplace that had been transformed into a gas unit. It served as the inspiration for the mossy and woodsy hues in the upstairs family room. The masculinity of the oak panelling is softened by floral and pastel elements. Grandness is achieved in the master bedroom with a tufted velvet headrest and footrest, along with the simple but exotic finish of the Makassar ebony veneer on the night tables.

The ensuite bathroom was designed to remind the homeowner of the opulence found in posh hotels of yesteryear. “We bookmatched the marble to create that mirrored effect and included the slabs in the front of the sinks not only for the effect but to protect the wood cabinetry from water,” Perez says. A stickler for details, the homeowner asked the designers to source a chromeframed shower stall with an etched pattern in the frosted glass that’s more reflective of the Art Deco period than a frameless enclosure would be.

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The chevron pattern of the home’s wood flooring is boldly repeated in marble in the master bedroom’s ensuite bathroom. It leads into a new shower enclosure that was custom-made in California to feature the chrome and etched glass of the Art Deco era.


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The kitchen suite was imported from Florence, Italy.

The kitchen suite, imported from Florence, Italy, is also true to an earlier age but it has all of today’s modern conveniences. “The way the subway tiles wrap around the wall edges is an indication of the attention that we paid to every aspect of this project,” Kefalas adds. It may recall the past but this is a home that is very much for today. •

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LIFESTYLE

HITTING THE SWEET SP T

The gentrification of St. Henri includes delightful dessert destinations PHOTOGRAPHY: RANDY LAYBOURNE

M

ontreal’s St. Henri district has a long, storied history. From its early days in the late 1800s as a working-class neighbourhood, where residents toiled in its tanneries along the Lachine Canal and laboured on the nearby railroad, to its struggles in the last century as many of those same factories shuttered their doors, St. Henri has had to find ways to adapt to change. But adapting is not merely a strand that has been woven into the fabric of this neighbourhood’s past. It is part of its textured look of today, as well. As a new generation moves into this district, fuelling a wave of rapid gentrification that appears to be gaining traction, the evolution the neighbourhood is witnessing is not as bitter a pill to swallow as the waves of the past. No, the changes taking place in St. Henri today are a little bit sweeter you could say – and in more ways than one. •

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LIFESTYLE

ROLLING IN THE DOUGH: LÉCHÉ DESSERTS Josie Weitzenbauer knows a thing or two about the sweeter side of St. Henri’s current evolution. She is the owner of Léché Desserts, Montreal’s first artisanal doughnut shop. Léché opened its doors on de Courcelle Street about five years ago. And Weitzenbauer admits that in those early days, her shop was a little hard to find. No one knew where it was. But not anymore. It has since emerged as one of the sweet spots on St. Henri’s map of new hot spots. “There are tons of businesses now,” she says of the district. “Tons of restaurants; a lot of things are happening. It’s trendy.”

Double Chocolate Brownie

Lime & Coconut

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Weitzenbauer decided to open her shop here after being part of the early wave of pioneers who sparked a residential resurgence in the district as old industrial buildings began being converted into condominiums. She had attended pastry school, and travelled, working as a pastry assistant in Europe and other parts of Canada. Then, she worked

as a pastry chef at a few major hotels and restaurants before starting her own business about seven years ago, supplying desserts to high-end restaurants. And from there, well, in her own words: “It snowballed into this whole doughnut thing.” This “doughnut thing” has people beating a path to her door.


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“People are on the search for a good doughnut these days.”

Blueberry & Cream Cheese

Léché prides itself on its hand-rolled doughnuts that are inspired by traditional classic desserts. “The doughnut has been around forever, but we’re trying to step it up a little,” she says. Léché steps it up one doughnut at a time, from its lemon meringue variety, which is filled with fresh lemon curd made in-house and topped with fresh toasted meringue, to its blueberry and cream cheese selection, a glazed doughnut half dipped in a cream cheese glaze made with fresh vanilla beans

Milk Chocolate Mousse

and topped with a coulis made with Quebec blueberries, or its lime and coconut doughnut, a vegan option made with coconut milk, fully dipped and covered with a mixture of shredded coconut, sugar and lime zest. “We produce about 1,000 doughnuts a day, and we can double that on the weekends,” Weitzenbauer says. The shop makes traditional-size doughnuts and mini beignes on special order only. Weitzenbauer says the smaller varieties have become a hit for anyone hosting an event or

party. “They’re cute and they are really fun,” she says. A dozen regular doughnuts retails for $30, making them a premium specialty dessert. But as Weitzenbauer says: “People are on the search for a good doughnut these days.” Aside from its bakery, where the owner employs 13 people on a full- and part-time basis, Léché Desserts operates a small café that also offers a little lunch menu. •

Rosemary infused pastry cream & Pumpkin Pie

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EASY AS PIE: RUSTIQUE PIE KITCHEN Another sweet spot on the St. Henri map is the Rustique Pie Kitchen. Located on Notre Dame Street West near de Courcelle, this bakery and café serves up good, old-fashioned traditional pies. And as the executive chef explains it, not only are they delicious, patrons have often been moved by how they evoke memories of their childhood. Everything at this pie shop is old-school. “Sometimes, you just want a pie that tastes like butter and fruit,” says executive chef Alienor Clot. She and her crew of nine employees specialize in what she calls “backto-your-roots cooking.” “We don’t cut corners. It’s always going to be butter, not shortening. It’s always going to be fresh fruit, nothing frozen, nothing premade,” Clot says.

Chocolate cream with whipped caramel and cocoa nibs

Pumpkin with whipped cream and toasted pumpkin seeds

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The Rustique has gained a devoted following among its customers. For example, Clot says, one client walked in one day and purchased a traditional mincemeat holiday pie. Unable to wait until he got home, he had a bite of it right there in the shop. The reaction was instantaneous, Clot says. He was immediately reminded of the pies his grandmother used to make at Christmastime. Now, every year, he orders 20 to share with friends and family. But pie is not the only dessert at the Rustique, which opened almost five years ago. It also specializes in dessert bars. It’s an option to which customers are reacting very positively, Clot says.

Cranberry citrus

Mini apple pie

“The idea of pie brings people through the door; then they discover the bars,” she says. Platters of mini bars and pies are popular with people who are hosting events, she adds. But making everything from scratch takes time, or as Clot put it: “It’s a commitment to make pie.” And what does that look like on a regular day? Well, she offers a quick example. They just received a 10-kilogram box of lemons. That means everyone working in the shop will be squeezing lemons that afternoon.

Premium pies retail for $24 to $25. The Rustique has also launched a new line of what Clot calls “salty pies,” a collection of quiches and meal pies – in the space next door to the original store – to feed the demand for hearty home-style cooking. Among the new lineup is a bacon-cheddar pie and a spinach, mint and feta creation. •

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Chou à la crème

PUTTING NEW PUFF INTO PASTRY: PATRICE PATISSIER Also making a name for itself in the St. Henri dessert scene is Patrice Patissier, a specialty pastry shop that is redefining puff. But don’t expect anything too traditional here. This bakery and café on Notre Dame Street West, operated by pastry chef and former TV cooking show host Patrice Demers and his wife Marie-Josée Beaudoin, specializes in original recipes. There are no classic French pastries here, Beaudoin says. Their offerings have “less decoration and fussiness.” Instead, the focus is on freshness.

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Kouign-amman


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Tartelette aux agrumes

“We make everything in-house every day. Freshness is the most important. It’s about good chocolate and good fruit,” she says. The couple opened the shop a little more than three years ago just outside of St. Henri’s boundaries, east of Atwater Avenue. And, Beaudoin says, many customers recognize Patrice from his stint as host of the show Les Desserts de Patrice on the French cable station Canal Vie. Today, they have 14 employees and make about 2,500 desserts every week. And at Christmas, “it’s just crazy.”

Among their popular offerings is a tarte aux agrumes, an almond crumble with lemon, lime and yuzu, a Japanese lemon. Also, a popular menu item is the chou à la crème, which is a puff pastry with caramelized bananas, chocolate and caramel foam. The desserts are popular with people who host dinner parties, Beaudoin says. “They are a good way to finish a meal. People are happy to serve our desserts.” The gentrification of St. Henri is not just about renovation and renewal. It has a few sweet spots, too. •

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TRAVEL

HOLA!

THE RIVIERA MAYA WELCOMES THE WINTER-WEARY Mexico’s Caribbean coast boasts beautiful beaches, fascinating culture and ancient sites WORDS AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY LA CARMINA

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TRAVEL

THE SNOW IS GETTING ALARMINGLY DEEP. The wind is howling outside. And the furnace is on fullblast. Could there be a better time than now to escape to a place that is warm, inviting and culturally rich? Perhaps it’s time to pack your swimsuit for an escape to the Riviera Maya. Located in Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula, this 120-kilometre Caribbean coastline is home to Tulum, Playa del Carmen, Akumal, Puerto Morelos, and other charming beach towns. If you love both relaxing by the ocean and exploring local culture and archeology, this is your ideal tropical getaway.

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I booked an inexpensive direct flight and travelled in early January, leaving behind a heavy snowfall. Riviera Maya’s hot, dry season begins in November and ends in February, making winter the best time to visit. To avoid the tourist scene, I stayed at the adult-only El Dorado Maroma. As soon as I saw the resort’s thatched over-water huts on a stretch of quiet beach, I knew I was in for a relaxing break from the crowds.

If you prefer a larger five-star resort, Iberostar Grand Hotel Paraiso will pamper you with award-winning restaurants and spas. Nature lovers should consider Azulik Resort and Maya Spa near the town of Tulum, where the wood villas have 360-degree views of jungle and the Caribbean Sea, offering visitors the experience of living luxuriously in the wild. Spending time in the sun might be your priority, but don’t miss out on the ancient Mayan ruins in the region. Some of the oldest excavated sites date back 4,000 years. •


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El Dorado Maroma is on one of Riviera Maya’s most peaceful beaches. Guests can relax on the white sand, shaded by palm trees, rent speedboats, indulge in an outdoor massage, or sip cocktails in coconut shells at the poolside bar. This is one of the only resorts in the region with over-water bungalows.

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To get around, travellers typically rent a car or take public transportation such as “collectivo� buses. I hired a driver and guide from local concierge company, Loco Gringo, so I could easily visit several sites in a day. My guide, Paulina, took me to Chichen Itza, site of an iconic step pyramid and ancient observatory. Here, I learned about Mayan astrology and human sacrifice. We then drove to the lesser-known archaeological sites Ek Balam and Coba. Wandering through the stone temples without other tourists around, I felt transported back in time.

El Castillo, or the Temple of Kukulcan, looms over the Chichen Itza archaeological site. The Mayan pyramid has 91 steps on each of its four facades. During the spring and fall equinoxes, shadows give the impression that serpents are slithering down the sides.

Next, Paulina suggested a tour of the folk-art museum, Casa de Los Venados in Valladolid, an inland town established by Spanish colonialists atop an older Mayan settlement, which was dismantled to provide the conquerors with building materials. I rode to a yellow hacienda there, decorated with more than 3,000 Mexican works: grinning sugar skulls, colourful deer, and a mosaic of images of painter Frida Kahlo. After walking through the old town, we stopped at a cemetery filled with flowers and rainbow-coloured tombstones.

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Back at the resort, I honoured the sunworshipping Mayans by spending a day relaxing on public beaches. Locals agree that Maroma is the most picturesque, with its soft white sands and clear waters. Xpu-Ha has a charming mile-long stretch of coast, perfect for a long stroll followed by swimming and snorkelling.

Riviera Maya is also famous for its cenotes, or subterranean swimming holes. Dive into Cenote Maya near the Ek Balam ruins, or Ik Kil near Chichen Itza. When you’re floating and looking up at the shaft of light, it’s easy to understand why these wells were sacred to the Maya. •

Visitors to Ek Balam, the ancient Meso-American city, can climb its mysterious temples. The name translates to “black jaguar,” hence the many feline carvings. Nearby, swimmers dive into Cenote Maya, a natural pool with vines reaching down into cool waters.

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I wanted to try authentic Mexican food, so I went to Aguachiles in Playa del Carmen. The namesake dish is an outstanding Sinaloa ceviche, made from raw shrimp cured in lime juice and spiced with chilies. Aguachiles’s fresh seafood tacos and tostadas were also well-priced, and hit the spot. Kay Walten, founder of Riviera Maya vacation company Loco Gringo, encouraged me to eat at El Meson de Marques in Valladolid. “Here you can enjoy terrific Yucatecan food,” she told me. “Our favorite regional dishes are cochinita pibil (slow-roasted pork), sopa de lima (poultry lime soup), and longaniza (sausage similar to chorizo). Their special caldo de marques, a hearty soup with avocado, chicken and spice, is a winner.” Kay also raved about El Pollo Bronco, “the best Mexican grilled chicken place in Tulum.” This unassuming late-night joint serves addictive drumsticks with guajillo chili powder and a side of salsa.

Yucatan Peninsula cuisine mixes influences from Mexico, the Caribbean and Europe. Try ceviche (marinated raw fish), enchiladas with mole (a traditional sauce made with chocolate), and pork tamales with charred chilies. If you’re looking for a quirky locally crafted souvenir, pick up a rainbow sugar skull.

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I couldn’t leave without a few souvenirs from local boutiques. On Coba Road, artisans display impressive handmade dreamcatchers and plaster sculptures. My favorite vendor sold organic Melipona honey from stingless Mexican bees, fashioned into candles and soaps.


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You c a n a l s o f i nd u n ique g i f t s at MexicArte, located in Akumal and Tulum. Friendly owner Nayeli sources crafts and jewelry from various regions of Mexico, and gives proceeds directly to the artists. I also recommend Siete Detalles, a small store packed with handicrafts, pewter and glass. This is one of the only shops in Playa del Carmen with authentic talavera, a clay pottery tradition that dates back to the 16th century. A vacation in Riviera Maya is especially delightful during Canada’s coldest months, when you’re craving a fix of sunshine and seafood. With easy flight access and plenty of attractions, the land of the Maya is just the ticket to heat up a long winter. •

IF YOU GO: Getting There: There are direct flights to Cancun on most days of the week, from major Canadian cities including Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto and Montreal. These airlines include InterJet, WestJet, Sunwing, Air Canada and Air Transat. Prices range from $390 to $800, with a flight time of between four and six hours, depending on the city of origin. Ground Travel: If you’re staying at a Riviera Maya resort, the staff can usually provide a shuttle transfer from Cancun International Airport. Travellers may also rent a car and drive south down Carretera Federal 307, a well-maintained highway that follows the coastline; Playa del Carmen is a 45-minute drive from the airport. Accommodation: All-inclusive packages are excellent value, beginning at around $190 a night at a four-star resort. A luxurious, ocean-front villa is generally $500 and up.

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DESIGN

MID-CENTURY CONTEMPORARY

Modest on the outside, redesigned on the inside, a 1954 home is updated for the 21st century BY CHERYL CORNACCHIA PHOTOGRAPHY: GUYLAINE PROULX

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DESIGN

LOOKS CAN BE DECEIVING, and a good example of that is this house, which straddles the boundary between downtown Montreal and Westmount. From the street, it looks like a relatively modest red-brick structure, at least by Westmount standards. But it is actually an expansive mid-century home that cascades down the side of the mountain, providing stunning views from all three levels at the back. After the interior was stripped down to its studs in 2007, the house was redesigned

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into a modern contemporary space by Montreal designer Vincent Boyer, to recapture what would have been the original wonder of the house that was built in 1954. After all of the hot-water radiators were removed, new large windows running from floor to ceiling were installed right across the back of the house. They offer an everchanging panorama of the city and natural landscape from morning to night and from season to season.


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“Everywhere you look, you can see outside,” says Lisane Elkaim, who owns the house with her husband, Montreal businessman Albert Elkaim. “The sunsets at the rear of the house are spectacular.” Once the leaves fall off the trees, she says, she can glimpse the St. Lawrence River between the office buildings that have sprouted up downtown since the house was originally built. “It must have been beautiful in the 1950s.” The 11-room house was originally designed by the Montreal firm of Harold Lea Featherstonhaugh, the renowned architect behind many downtown office buildings, legacy homes, and churches, including the Church of St. Andrew and St. Paul on Sherbrooke Street. •

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Although the original red-brick facade, dormer windows, mansard roof and garage are still there, much has changed as well. Inside, the house is a contemporary space with an open-concept plan. Several walls on the main f loor were removed to open the space. The living room, dining room, family room, kitchen and a small study now surround a large, square wood cube. The sculpture-like cubic form is an oversized closet that conceals the “guts of the home� and grounds the main floor. It opens up on all four sides to provide shelving and tailored storage for the various rooms.

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DESIGN MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

The hardwood floors have been darkened to match the walnut of the wood cube. Upstairs, there are two bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms; a third bedroom was transformed into a walk-in dressing room. Below, on the ground level, there are two more bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, as well as laundry facilities, a gym, and an artist’s studio. On each level of the house, there are access points to the outdoors, including a deck off the main-floor living room, and another one off the second-storey bedrooms.

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At ground level, doors issue onto a private backyard patio. Vincent Boyer, the designer who redesigned the house, says that there were some hurdles in executing the work. For example, City of Montreal officials responsible for applying heritage-property guidelines contained in the Guide du patrimoine et de la rénovation de qualité prohibited changing windows on the front and sides of the house. There were fewer prohibitions on changing windows at the rear of the building. •

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“However, on the back facade, we nonetheless had to work with the city and have our proposal approved,” Boyer says. “Since that facade is visible from Atwater Avenue, it’s treated a bit like the front. The city wanted to make sure the overall composition was elegant and balanced.” And, he adds: “We wanted to maximize the view. You see all that sunlight that comes in over the tree tops.” Lisane says that when the family moved into the house in 2008, their three children were aged between 20 and 27. The three-level design with its ensuite bedrooms gave them the space they needed. “It’s a house for a family with young adults,” she says.

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As for Albert, he says the house has been his muse. A painter, he uses acrylics, and his large works decorate the home. He says that he and Lisane fell in love with a number of pop-art pieces at an exhibit of modern art in Miami a few years ago. But when they discovered how much those paintings cost, he adds, he decided he would go ahead and decorate his own walls with his own works. The large canvases now accentuate the house’s contemporary ambience. There’s a painting of Mick Jagger in the front entrance, another of Marilyn Monroe in the dining room, a Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman à la Casablanca in the living room, and several others. “Everyone wants to buy the Mick Jagger one,” says Lisane. “I had to have Albert paint ‘Not for Sale’ on it.” • This house is for sale through Sotheby’s International Realty. (www.sothebysrealty.ca)

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IN OUR NEXT ISSUE

Is there anything more inviting than a kitchen in full use? The aroma of cooking and baking fills the house, along with laughter and conversation. Our kitchens have become the centre of our homes. We use our kitchens for so many activ ities: homework, cook ing lessons for children, heart-to-heart talks. We cook, eat and entertain in the kitchen. In our next issue, we bring you profiles of some of the best-designed kitchens in Montreal. D on’t m i s s Mont re a l Home’s Kitchens issue, on sale in February.

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Club Cuisine BCBG Benjamin Moore Centre Design Realite Centre Mont Royal Closets by Design Comptoir St-Denis Cuisines Denis Couture Engel & Völkers Montréal Entreprises LND Fabricville Galerie le Bourget JC Perreault L’office Le Balcon d’art Linen Chest Maison Corbeil Presti Royal Lepage Verre Actuel Zytco


BUYERS’ GUIDE MONTREAL WINTER 2017/2018

GO AHEAD! TRACK MUD INTO THE HOUSE Dvira Ovadia www.dvira.com 416-562-2252

COMFORT AND COZINESS FOR WINTER COCOONING Le Marché aux fleurs du village www.lemarcheauxfleursduvillage.ca 450-672-5554

COMICS AND CULTURE Artist Lyle Schultz www.lyleschultzart.com @lyleschultzart www.artbombdaily.com

Melyssa Robert www.melyssarobert.com 450-858-3326

Abat-Jour Marie-Elizabeth www.melighting.ca 514-695-0045

SMOOTH INTEGRATION Atelier Boom Town www.boom-town.ca 514-502-2020

South Hill Interiors www.southhillinteriors.com 416-970-1703

Nova Thrift Shops www.thriftshopsfornova.com

Cliff and Evans Ltd. www.cliffandevans.com 416-628-7186 Bloomsbury Fine Cabinetry www.bloomsburykitchens.com 416-782-7900 ~ 905-853-7700 Sarah Gallop Design Inc. www.sarahgallop.com 604-952-4448 SWEET LUXURY Omni Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Montelucia www.omnimontelucia.com 888-444-OMNI

Finnegan’s Market www.finnegans-market.hudson-village. com www.facebook.com/ marchefinneganmarket 450-458-4377 Galerie M www.galeriem.ca 514-564-3600 Ottawa St. Vincent de Paul Stores www.thrift-store.ca 613-722-7166

DESIGNED TO BE ORGANIZED Closets by Design www.closetsbydesign.com 514-631-6777 CRYSTAL-CLEAR DESIGN Verre Actuel et Fils www.verreactuel.com 450-433-5770 HITTING THE SWEET SPOT Léché Desserts www.lechedesserts.com 514-303-2200 Rustique Pie Kitchen www.rustiquepiekitchen.com 514-439-5970

Patrice Pâtissier www.patricepatissier.ca 514-439-5434 HAPPY TO BE HOME Manon Bélanger, Designer www.manonbelanger.com 514-570-1545 Le Marché aux fleurs du village www.lemarcheauxfleursduvillage.ca 450-672-5554 A RETURN TO ART DECO Evolution Design www.evolutiondesign.ca 514-816-4181 MAJOR METAMORPHOSIS La Shed Architecture www.lashedarchitecture.com 514-277-6897 MID-CENTURY CONTEMPORARY Vincent Boyer vboyer@mail.com 514-608-8420 Sotheby’s www.sothebysrealty.ca

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Montreal Home - Winter 2017/18  

Montreal Home - Winter 2017/18  

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