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LUXURY october 2012

Living in Calgary and area Your gui de to LUXURIOUS L I F E S T YL E S


One of life’s greatest luxuries Paul Hardy: Celebrating 10 years of design

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Creating the ultimate garage

What’s on your estate home wish list?

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141 Gateway Dr. NE. Airdrie Dr. NE 403.960.1030 67 Glenbrook Place. SW 403.246.6266 [03]

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table of contents o c t o b e r

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24 pg


Cover story

The Ensuite Bath: Taking luxury to the next level

6 Editor’s Note tyle File 14 SDesigner Paul Hardy celebrates 10 years of great style uxury Home 18 LWhat’s on the estate home wish list? Calgary 22 Lifestyle In love with a city! Lifestyle 24 Luxury Internationally yours, DSquared


Tips 27 Quick Put a value on your time uxury Home 28 LCreating the ultimate luxury garage The visual on the cover is proudly presented by Ultimate Interiors, For more information go to page 2

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LUXURY Living in Calgary and area

vice-president, Wall2wall Media

Jacqueline Hill

editor-in-chief, National real estate

Susan Legge

contributing Editors

Silvana Longo Elisa Krovblit

senior account executives

Natalie Wilkinson-Houghton Anita Van Breevoort Melanie Gowans Sales & marketing co-ordinator

Sandra Begenisic

Senior production Manager

Bala Gnanapandithan art director

Lee Cobham

production co-ordinator



Lee Cobham

Luxury Living, Calgary and area

2891 Sunridge Way N.E. Calgary, Alberta T1Y 7K7

Advertising: Call 1.855.626.4200 ext 4213 for advertising rates and information.

Copyright 2012 Copyright covers the contents of this publication and prevents reproduction in whole or in part; offenders will be prosecuted. We reserve the right to refuse any advertising, to make changes or edit advertising as necessary. Care will be taken to ensure copy accuracy but no warranty is implied or given by the publisher. The publication, the publisher and the printers shall not be responsible for any typographical errors, mistakes, misprints, spot colouring or any information or lack of information furnished by the advertisers. Editorial Submissions from interested parties will be considered. Please submit to the above address, to the attention of the editor please. The homeTRADER & Design are trademarks of Apax Partners LLP, used under license.


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Wall2Wall Media is a trademark of Yellow Pages Group Co. in Canada.

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Destination luxury Design, dÉcor and more. Welcome to the second issue of Luxury Living for 2012. In this issue we list seven reasons why Calgary is an amazing place to call home, plus we have a feature on Paul Hardy, the famed fashion designer who calls Calgary home. Hardy’s celebrating 10 years in the business this year and he’s staging a fashion event this month to celebrate his success. His new location in a historical building in Inglewood is spectacular. In fact, Hardy’s had a banner year, having developed a commemorative white hat for the Calgary Stampede’s Centennial anniversary. Also in this issue, tips on adding luxurious, thoughtful details to your home, including the ensuite bath and the garage. Be sure to also check out what could be on your estate home wish list on page 18 of this issue. Speaking of thoughtful details, organizer extraordinaire Hellen Buttigieg’s column is not to be missed if you put a value on your time. Hellen’s got some excellent ideas on how to divide and conquer life’s “to-do lists” as the holidays approach. Yes, I said holidays. Forgive me – I know it’s only October but we won’t be back until 2013. Enjoy this issue and do let us know what you think. We love hearing from you!

Susan Legge editor-in-chief | National Real Estate | |

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Retail Store 403-269-8577 Rentals 403-262-5462 914 - 11th Street SE Calgary, AB


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one of life’s greatest luxuries by Heather Ryan


aving a master bedroom ensuite designed just for you is one of life’s greatest luxuries.

Photos supplied by Ultimate Renovations

Aside from its function and being conveniently placed off the master suite, a luxurious ensuite offers homeowners a personal spa and retreat – a place they want to spend time in. “Ensuites have really become a personal sanctuary; they’re more relaxing and calming,” says Corinne Gill, renovation consultant for Ultimate Renovations. And people are willing to spend thousands of dollars to create a spa-like atmosphere, she says. “We hear all the time from people that they loved the bathroom in their luxury hotel suite and they want that in their own home, except they want to step it up a notch.” Several years ago an ensuite was a room of convenience that would consist of a tub, vanity, toilet and maybe an undersized shower, and you didn’t spend a lot of time there. “Now ensuites are becoming larger and more luxurious,” Gill says. “People are recapturing space from other areas in the home, such as spare bedrooms and closets, to make more room for large showers, soaker tubs, double vanities, storage and private water closet.” Small upright shower stalls are a thing of the past, she says, as people are looking for luxury in their showers creating large spaces “typically with built-in seating and installing shower systems that elevate the spa feeling, such as steam showers, body sprays and rain heads.” “We’re also seeing that men are spending more time in the bathroom now,” Gill says. “I met with a couple and she wanted the soaker tub and custom tiled shower and didn’t see a need for a steam shower, but he spoke up and said he wanted that. It seems more men are really appreciating the larger showers and look forward to sitting in the steam shower and relaxing after a tough day.” Having more space in the ensuite means there is room for a lavish free-standing tub, which have grown in popularity because they add an elegant look. As well, many homeowners are putting them on decks that match the material used on the vanity – granite, marble or quartz – to ensure continuity in the design. “We’re still seeing more people choose a standard soaker tub because they find them more relaxing and quieter than jetted tubs,” Gill says. “But people who want the jets are going with air jets because they offer more of a therapeutic massage.” Storage is key in any area of the house and the ensuite is no different. So designs include everything from built-in cabinets and open shelves to storage towers that go from floor-to-ceiling and make an attractive yet functional separation between dual sinks. Many of these cabinets have a furniture look and co-ordinate with the vanities. luxury living OCTOBER 2012 [09]

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luxuryhome Double vanities or large vanities with dual sinks are very desirable in an ensuite to give spouses their own space. Granite and quartz countertops are a beautiful luxury and the most popular choices for vanity tops, and while there is some who go for the vessel sinks and handpainted sinks, most homeowners choose the under mount sinks, which present clean lines and are easy to care for. Many people also like to separate the vanities by either the tub or the storage towers and build custom cabinetry below for additional storage. But, Gill says, there is also a growing trend toward wall mounted vanities that are open underneath – “it really creates a seamless look.” “Fireplaces and TVs are also really popular in the ensuite,” Gill says. “For fireplaces, a lot of them are two-way shared with the master bedroom so you can enjoy the luxury and ambience from either side. And you won’t believe how popular having TVs are; they’re going in many ensuites we do and they add just one more luxury.” Heated floors also seem to be a must-have in the ensuite – they’re especially great on frosty mornings. Popular flooring choices are porcelain and natural stone, with some people using ceramic tiles matching those used on the backsplash or in the shower. And speaking of backsplashes, they are becoming more intricate with decorative inlays and glass mosaic tiles. Lighting is also important, especially for women when putting on makeup, Gill says. “You need lighting from in front and behind. We do a variety of styles, such as pot lights and wall sconces on either side of the mirror. We’re also adding Solatubes to bring in natural light; in fact wherever we can we’re replacing skylights with Solatubes.” Some homeowners are also adding heated towel bars, but Gill says “they are bulky and with the emphasis toward more clean lines and a seamless look, I think we will soon start seeing people spending that extra money to install warming drawers for their towels.” Some other luxuries that can be added depending on space include coffee/juice bars, built-in makeup tables and sitting areas. And what would any ensuite be without a sound system even in the shower. You’ll also want to personalize the space, so colour, decor and accessories such as artwork, plants, candles and other items can help reflect your tastes and style. “Wallpaper is really making a comeback and adds a decorative touch to the ensuite,” Gill says. “They’re much different than they used to be; companies are creating amazing designs like zebra, leather and tile looks – the selection is incredible, so there is more opportunity to be decorative and add a touch more to the spa-like atmosphere.” Whether you’re building a new home or renovating your space, creating a luxurious ensuite adds a fabulous private retreat to your home. Photos supplied by Ultimate Renovations [10] luxury living october 2012

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Make no compromises‌

Quality, Transparency, Value

OUR BEST PRICE GUARANTEE *On renovation projects $100,000 and up, we will match and better a recognized competitor’s quote by 10%. At Trademark Renovations, we are constantly reviewing and negotiating preferred pricing arrangements with our supplier & trade partners to get you the best value for your money. We are so confident about our pricing that we guarantee you the lowest price for your overall renovation project while delivering our unsurpassed level of quality, service and transparency.

(403) 277-5600

TERMS & CONDITIONS: This Best Price Guarantee applies to projects based on identical scopes of work, specifications, products, levels of finish, service, and quality. Best Price Guarantee applies to overall total project price and not the individual components contained therein. All recognized competitor quotes are subject to verification by Trademark before honoring this offer. Trademark will not accept screenshots or other purported evidence of a lower price that cannot be independently confirmed by Trademark personnel. Nor will Trademark verify any request that it believes, in its sole discretion, is the result of a printing or other error or is made fraudulently or in bad faith. All original documents from recognized competitor quotes must be presented to Trademark prior to verification, execution of any contract or commencement of work. This Price Guarantee excludes insurance claims, free offers, gifts with purchase, gift cards, gift certificates, rebates, clearance or close-out prices, credit or financing programs, used, damaged, or display merchandise or products. Discount applied before taxes and environmental stewardship fees or other levies, if applicable. This price guarantee cannot be combined with any other offer. Trademark reserves the right in its sole discretion to modify or discontinue the Best Price Guarantee or to restrict its availability to any person, at any time, for any or no reason, and without prior notice or liability to you. The failure by Trademark to enforce any provision of these Terms & Conditions shall not constitute a waiver of that provision.


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Tamani presents

luxurious estate living in Riversong’s The Pointe by Heather Ryan

Luxury is one of the key words being used to describe the upscale living homeowners are discovering in The Pointe, the estate neighbourhood of Riversong in Cochrane. Other words include breathtaking, stunning and picturesque as Riversong, being developed by Tamani Communities along a heavily treed escarpment above the Bow River, offers gorgeous views of the Rockies, the river and the beautiful natural setting, says Tamani’s general manager Cam Hart. “The Pointe is our estate phase and because of the spectacular views, the topography, the large lots, this high-end product is top notch,” he says. “The Pointe allows people to come home to luxury, a tranquil natural setting and the charm of small-town living; it really can’t be beat. “People looking for luxury for up to 20 per cent less than northwest Calgary and 30 per cent less than west Calgary, with all the amenities of those locations, up to more than 3,500 sq. ft. with walkout are looking at Riversong,” Hart says. basements. Homes backing onto the In fact, The Pointe in Riversong has ridge that overlook the river and include been so well received there are only 32 mountain views start in the $600,000s lots remaining. “The opportunities are and range up to $1 million-plus. dwindling, but we still have a good Each estate builder has two selection of lots remaining,” says Tamani’s showhomes in The Pointe that feature land co-ordinator Nicole Westman. Many stunning details and dynamic designs of those lots back onto the treed “that are a must see; they’re truly escarpment with river and mountain outstanding homes,” Hart says. The views and range between 44- and 54-feet showhomes are open Monday to wide. Thursday, 2-8 p.m., and weekends and holidays, noon-5 p.m. Estate homes in The Pointe are being crafted by Jager Homes, Jayman Homes throughout The Pointe reflect MasterBUILT and NuVista Homes and Riversong’s Contemporary Heritage showcase exceptional details, fabulous architecture that complements the styles and luxurious features and finishes natural surroundings and provides an that appeal to buyers looking for a cut overall upscale feel, he says. above. Homeowners also have the luxury These front-attached garage homes of enjoying nature at their doorstep as include bungalow and two-storey designs 100 of the community’s 340 acres has ranging from1,600 sq. ft. (for bungalows) been set aside as an environmental [12] luxury living october 2012

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preserve, ensuring an abundance of green space, parks and pathways that link throughout the community and to a pedestrian bridge allowing access to downtown Cochrane. There is also a high school located right in Riversong. Riversong is also conveniently located a few minutes drive from downtown Cochrane where there is an array of shops, restaurants, services and other amenities, and it’s an easy 20-minute drive to Calgary’s west side or the mountains. Riversong also offers a range of housing styles for first-time and move-up buyers starting at $289,900, and welcomes Trico Homes to its builder’s group. For more information on Riversong’s The Pointe, visit the showhomes or check out


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w t l e d ne xt to the b o

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Exclusive runway show and fashion event featuring Hardy’s 2013 spring/summer collection will showcase Calgary as a Canadian fashion destination [14] luxury living october 2012

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Paul Hardy celebrates 10th anniversary with unprecedented Calgary Fashion event


nternationally acclaimed Canadian fashion designer Paul Hardy will premiere his 2013 spring/ summer collection at an exciting fashion show event in Calgary on Saturday, October 20, 2012. The one-of-a-kind event and runway show will celebrate the 10th anniversary of Hardy’s successful design career and host entertainers, fashion aficionados and VIP guests from across the country. “This year Calgary has been designated as the Culture Capital of Canada.” explains Hardy, “In partnership with Tourism Calgary, I look forward to showcasing my collection and celebrating my 10th anniversary in the city that I’m proud to call home. It’s an opportunity to show the rest of Canada Calgary’s cultural gems of food, fashion, music and design. Calgary is truly evolving into a fashion and design destination, and I believe the city has been ready and waiting for this kind of event.” In partnership with Tourism Calgary, the fashion event will surprise guests with a new way of experiencing the city. The event will include an exclusive red carpet reception at Hardy’s impressive new design space in Calgary, followed by a world-class runway show of Hardy’s 2013 spring / summer collection, his 21st collection to date. The runway show, the first of its kind in Calgary, will also include a musical collaboration by artists including country music superstar Paul Brandt, two-time Juno award winner Greg Sczebel and an ensemble from the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra. The show’s post party in the unique historic building will feature entertainment, food and beverage offerings from some of Calgary’s award-winning culinary stars, establishments and suppliers. Hardy began his design career in 2002, introducing his inaugural collection at Toronto Fashion Week to rave reviews, and has since earned international acclaim for his collections. Hardy recently moved to a larger design space in a historic building in Calgary’s Inglewood neighbourhood, helping to support the growth of his brand and business. Earlier this year, Hardy was commissioned to design a commemorative white hat for the centennial anniversary of the Calgary Stampede and to celebrate Tourism Calgary’s iconic “white hat”. The limited edition hats were gifted to notable Canadians including Bryan Adams, Michael Buble and Karen Kain. Paul Hardy’s celebrity clientele has included Bette Midler, Michael Michelle, Carrie Fisher, Diane Kruger, Keshia Chanté, Alanis Morrisette, U2’s The Edge & Daniel Lanois, Kate Hudson, Goldie Hawn, Sarah McLachlan, gold medallist John Montgomery, Chantal Kreviazuk, and Paul Brandt.

Hardy’s hard-to-resist spring palette is mostly black and shades of white, with accents of grey, flame orange and French pool blue. Handmade and distressed effects are evident in the silk blend fabrications, but are achieved through modern detailing and finishing. Such visual details as shredded strips beaded on tulle, metal blends for hammered effects, leather with distressed sackcloth fusing and 3-D lace effects of tulle on tulle give the collection a modern presence. Yet it still reflects a vintage, traditional era of style, but with antiquated and outdated conservatism stripped from the design.

For more information about Paul Hardy, visit or follow @PaulHardyInc. For more information about Tourism Calgary, visit or follow @tourismcalgary. luxury living October 2012 [15]

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awk’s Landing at Priddis Greens is an exclusive estate community nestled

Hwy 22X

Priddis Greens Dr

MacLeod Tr

in the forested foothills of the majestic Rocky Mountains. Located just 15-minutes from Calgary, Hawk's Landing offers all the amenities of country living just a short drive from big-city conveniences. All lots are fully-serviced, so that you can start building the custom home of your dreams as soon as you find the perfect homesite.







By appointment only*

403.338.1313 (ext. 227)

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Prominent Homes opens the doors to luxury living by Heather Ryan

A stunning stairway, lavish ensuite and delicious kitchen are a few of the luxury features that abound in Prominent Homes’ newest estate showhome in West Grove Estates. The 3,076 sq. ft. Monroe showhome, opening Oct. 17, will wow people with its grand criss-crossing curved staircase that is really a showpiece when you enter the home. “The stairs are really incredible; they have open rises and rails that provide a fabulous view to the rear of the home,” says Pal Shergill, general manager of Prominent Homes. Barn-style french doors off the entry open to the den and a formal dining room with an elegant tray lighted ceiling has double doors that open to a butler’s pantry. “Its cabinetry is finished similar to the kitchen and is ideal for a beverage centre and for serving food.” You can also walk though the butler’s pantry into the kitchen, or through to an additional pantry and the mud room, which is outfitted with several built-in lockers. The expansive gourmet kitchen serves up an abundance of show-stopping features including an amazing 10-foot-long limestone and granite topped central island with breakfast bar seating and wine fridge that is the focal point for the home. “This is a giant kitchen with one wall being 15-feet long so there are plenty of cabinets and counter space,” Shergill says. “The maple cabinets are full height to the nine-foot ceiling with the top row in glass, the counters are quartz and there is a chimney-style hood fan.” Other delectable items include built-in appliances – fridge, wall oven, microwave, dishwasher and a six-burner gas cook top – full-height decorative tile backsplash and under cabinet LED lighting. The bumped out nook has a single door to the large rear deck, and the great room is highlight by a cantilevered, wall-centred gas fireplace. Upstairs, double french doors open to an inviting master bedroom with a vaulted ceiling, huge walk-in closet and luxurious spa-like ensuite. “The ensuite is bigger than the secondary bedrooms,” Shergill

says, and has a steam shower, claw foot tub, heated floor, skylight and his and her vanities separated by a storage tower. A pocket door also leads to the second-floor laundry that can also be accessed from the main hall. There are two large secondary bedrooms, each with their own bathrooms and walk-in closets, and a bonus room with a vaulted ceiling and a view to below. “This home is also fully automated, so you can control your lights, thermostat and security through a touch pad in the home or through your iPad or iPhone; it’s really easy and fun to use,” Shergill says. Prominent has not developed the basement in the showhome, but Shergill says there are a variety of optional plans


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available and it can be customized to suit the customer’s lifestyle with features such as an exercise room, home theatre and wet bar with wine room.

To learn more about this incredible estate home, visit the showhome Monday to Thursday, 2-8 p.m., and weekends or holidays, noon-5 p.m., or visit

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What’s on the

estate home wish list? by Heather Ryan


ou’ve gone through your first and maybe even a second home where you did your share of compromising

on the features and finishes you really wanted

because of affordability, location, family needs and other factors.

Photo supplied by Macdonald Development Corporation


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Photo supplied by Prominent Homes

Photo supplied by Macdonald Development Corporation

But now you’re done with having to live with too small kitchens, crowded closets and lack of bathrooms and are ready to have that home of your dreams – an estate home that fulfils your wish list. So, what’s on that wish list? A spa-like ensuite, a home theatre or hand-crafted built-ins? What’s amazing about estates being crafted by home builders in the Calgary area is you can have all of this and much more. “People looking for an estate home are seeking more luxury, high-end appointments, incredible attention to details and custom built-ins,” says Ralph Smith, vice-president of sales and marketing for Prominent Homes. “Calgary is one of the most affluent cities in Canada, with one of highest per capita earnings so there is increased interest in higher end homes,” Smith says. That interest has grown more in the last few years and “there has been fairly substantial growth in the sales of $1-million-plus homes this year,” says Warren Saunders, estate sales & market strategies manager for Homes by Avi. “Developers are making more land available for estate communities so there is more opportunity now than ever before.

So, what’s on that wish list? A spa-like ensuite, a home theatre or hand-crafted built-ins? What’s amazing about estates being crafted by home builders in the Calgary area is you can have all of this and much more.

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“People buying estate homes have higher expectations for overall design, interior finishes and craftsmanship,” he says. Smith says many of the estate buyers are professionals in their 30s, 40s and 50s, who have gone through the starter home, and often the move up product “and now want an estate where they can have what they always wanted without having to sacrifice or compromise,” he says. “Estate buyers expect a higher quality in their home because they’re creating a showpiece; their dream home.” Both experts agreed estate buyers put the most emphasis on creating stunning kitchens and master bedroom ensuites. “They’re areas people want to show off and treat themselves so they’re willing to spend extra money and time on making them incredible,” Smith says. In the kitchen, you’ll see stone countertops, often made of granite but quartz is becoming more popular, integrated appliances with fronts that match cabinetry, drawer style dishwashers, built-in ovens, microwaves and wine fridges, induction and gas stoves, decorative backsplashes, large single bowl sinks and expansive islands with flush eating bars. The kitchens are designed to add a wow factor to the home and often present clean lines and a modern uncluttered look. “Kitchen pantries are designed with more built-ins – shelves and spice racks – and in our homes with separate dining rooms, we are incorporating more butler’s pantries, complete with bar sink and cabinets,” Smith says. “Definitely the kitchen is where estate buyers expect to make a statement,” Saunders says. “They want functionality but also details and custom woodwork, commercial grade appliances, islands have become very personal as customers create them to suit their needs with features such as vegetable sinks and wine fridges. “We’re also building beverage centres with built-in coffee makers, commercial grade hood fans, pot filling taps and cabinet-style pantries that can transition from the kitchen to the mud room or into a butler’s pantry,” he says. “These homes are made for entertaining and dinner parties so the kitchen is really a showpiece.” Master bedroom ensuites have become a lavish, inviting retreat with luxuries such as huge custom-built, walk-in showers with dual rain showerheads and wallmount body sprays, free-standing, deep or jetted tubs, coffee and/or juice bars, two-way fireplaces shared with the bedroom, heated floors and towel racks, builtin storage towers used to separate the dual sinks, decorative tiles, TVs and multiple windows to maximize natural light and space. “Ensuites have become like you’d expect in a hotel suite,” Saunders says. “They’re a total getaway space; where you can retreat to at the end of the day and relax in luxury.” Closets in the master bedroom have also become more elaborate. Sarah Jessica Parker’s character Carrie Bradshaw on Sex in the City inspired many women to desire built-in space for their clothes and accessories, and depending on the space these feature built-in

Photo supplied by Prominent Homes

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Photo supplied by Shane Homes

Photo supplied by Prominent Homes

wardrobes, islands with drawers, shelves for sweaters, shoe racks and various length racks for dressers, shirts and pants. “Some people want very elaborate built-ins,” Smith says. “They can be really personalized to the owner’s tastes and needs.” Many estate homes are designed with walkout basements and “buyers want this space developed to the same finishing level and look as the rest of the home,” Saunders says. “What they create in the space really reflects the personality of the buyer so they may want a games area, a wet bar, family room and extra bedroom and bathroom. “Exercise rooms have really become popular in the basement with people using them for yoga, dance and fitness equipment – these rooms are more than just a place to put their weights,” he says, adding the rooms can have cork or rubber floors, mirrors, TVs and more. The wet bar is another major addition to the estate basement, Smith says. “These have the same cabinets, counters, tiling as you see upstairs so there is continuity. Wine cellars are growing in popularity and we’ve also built cigar rooms.” Home theatres have become a must-have feature in the lower level, and the designs vary from multilevel seating with high-end projection systems to a more casual sectional seating with custom crafted built-ins to hide away electronics and gadgets. Both Smith and Saunders note the staircase to the second floor sets estate homes apart. “The first impression from the front entrance is crucial, people want to make a statement and sweeping staircases, criss-cross stairs and stairs with open risers add a dramatic look,” Smith says. “Generally people want the staircase to be very grand and dynamic,” Saunders says. “We also see

more estate buyers wanting more elaborate front doors because they want to make a statement right from the entry.” The exterior is also important with features such as copper roofs, cedar soffits and stone work, he says, and there is a growing trend toward front courtyards adding to the curb appeal. “I’m also seeing a lot more attention being paid to outdoor living spaces for estate homes,” Saunders says, with buyers seeking multiple places for lounging and entertaining outdoors. Two-way fireplaces shared with the patio outside and great room inside are becoming a popular feature in estate homes, as well as outdoor kitchens, stand alone fireplaces with sitting areas and covered decks and patios. Smith says nine- or 10-foot ceilings are a must in every estate home with matching higher cabinets and taller doors, and “we are seeing more requests for sliding barn doors. People also want more attention to details, like custom built-ins in the mudroom and intricate tiles inlays at the front entry.” Triple car garages are fairly standard with estate homes, but some larger lots allow room for four and five car garages giving homeowners room for cars and toys. On the technology side, Saunders says, “it’s not as complex as it once was for homeowners. You can control your lights and temperature easily through your phone or iPad. Estate owners want that because it is so convenient. They also want integrated sound throughout the home, and generally the garage, basement and bathrooms are desired with heated floors.” When it comes to that wish list, it seems anything goes and estate home buyers are only limited by their imaginations and, of course, their budgets. luxury living october 2012 [21]

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In love with a city!



algary certainly has earned its place in the sun. It’s a great city that has much to offer its residents and has rapidly grown from a small city to a hub of activity. There are a number of things that set Calgary apart, offering an exceptional quality of life and making it an easy choice to call home. Nature as a neighbour. While the beautiful Bow River runs right through it, cleaving north from south, some of Canada’s most majestic landscape surrounds Calgary. Fresh air and greener pastures are a rare find in any urban area, but Calgary keeps nature accessible to its inhabitants. Whether it’s camping at Mount Kidd, ski weekends at Sunshine or a simple stroll along the Bow, the options are all easily accessible and offer much to enjoy – in all seasons. Financially sound. While Alberta has no sales tax – bumping up the affordability of living in Alberta – Calgary has an enormous number of corporations headquartered here, offering an impressive selection of job opportunities. The variety of industries flourishing in the city has given rise to great prospects. The unemployment rate for Calgary in the summer of 2012 is sitting at 4.9 per cent, well below the national average of 7.3 per cent, and far better than other major centres such as Vancouver at 6.4 per cent, Montreal at 8.9 per cent, Ottawa at 6.1 per cent and Toronto at 8.6 per cent. The Conference Board of Canada pegged Calgary to be among the top four cities in Canada for economic growth in 2012. Calgary also claims the most millionaires per capita in Canada. Vermin free. Alberta holds the unique distinction of being rat free. Though there are rumours, lore, sightings, even perhaps the occasional sabotage, Calgary doesn’t have any level of Norwegian rat infestation to menace residences and businesses. Rat free is a beautiful thing.

A major hub. Whether it’s business or pleasure, there are a lot of people coming and going from Calgary annually. In 2012 Calgary International Airport (YYC) saw 12,844,523 passengers, and for the year ending in June, 2012, 13,200,667 people came in for a landing. This doesn’t account for the massive number of people visiting by land who travel by train and automobile through the majestic Rockies on their way to Calgary. A well-planned city. You can’t argue that Calgary is one city that city planners got right. Its simplicity and straightforward layout makes it easy to travel and easy to access every area. There’s no focal point of gridlock and no area that has grown uncomfortably beyond its infrastructure. Designed on a grid and broken down into directional quadrants North East (NE) North West (NW) South East (SE) and South West (SW), numbered streets and avenues make it easy to navigate and difficult to get lost. Streets always run north/south and avenues always run east/west. At the axis, where the numbering originates, are Centre Street and Centre Avenue – navigational ground zero.

The weather. Yes, winters in Calgary can be cold and harsh. When the mercury drops to -40s, there’s no denying it’s cold. But it’s not a long winter, nor is it overly harsh. While there may be a lot of snow and a lot of low temperatures, it is, as they say, a dry cold. It’s more palatable than when there’s a windchill factor or dampness. If you dress properly the cold is perfectly tolerable. And the Chinooks often sweep through giving the city a reprieve, where t-shirts and warm breezes replace the chill. The summers are lovely and the idealistic spring and fall temperatures monopolize the better part of the year. The architecture. Yes, winters are cold. That’s why the +15 is so great. Designed in the 60s, Calgary’s core was well planned, the ingenious idea of Harold Hanon. Business carries on with walk-overs, called +15s, connecting buildings. There are currently 59 walkways. Just look up – about 15 feet up – and you’ll see them when you wander around anywhere from 9th St. SW to 3rd St. SE, starting at about 2nd Ave. SW/SE and ending right around the railway at 9th Ave. SW/SE.

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Internationally yours,



by silvana longo

twin brother is also a great added bonus! It would be almost cliché to name five physical items … they would never compare to the time or freedom we enjoy.

Since the launch of their first collection in Milan in the early ’90s, Toronto-born twins Dean and Dan Caten of Dsquared2 have become wildly successful fashion designers, who besides creating gorgeous collections and elevating their brand to a bona fide lifestyle, have mastered the art of living well. I had the opportunity to interview them after a busy summer of travelling for work and much needed play.

Sil Since we first spoke, you have been awarded several honours; in 2008 the GQ Germany Men of the Year award, in 2009 a star on Canada’s Walk of Fame and then in 2010 you designed the talent costumes for the opening and closing ceremonies of the Vancouver Winter Olympics — and a host of many others — too many to mention! Tell me which event was the most meaningful to you and why. Dean&Dan All awards are special in their own way. Of course, Canadian recognition, like the star on the Walk of Fame, or the Winter Olympics have a special place in our heart. Canada is our home and it is priceless to see that your country supports and appreciates what you do. Sil You have described your 5,400-sq. ft. flagship store in Milan as a “taste of home where the Canadian woods meet Italian design.” This merging of these two worlds seems to encapsulate a lot of what you create. Your fashion collection inspiration, your fragrance Wood that you have defined as “a return to your roots, with a scent evoking a day in the forest.” You have since set up shop and home in London — an international English-speaking city of which Canada is thought of as a colony. (Hey, the Queen is on our money too!) What prompted this decision to live and work only part time in Italy? Is this the optimal solution to the merging of your two worlds that influence you deeply?

Silvana Longo This interview is long overdue since our first one in 2005. I have been following you on Twitter these past few months and I have lived vicariously thru your jet-set travels! Let me get this straight: you spent Canada Day in Ibiza and a week later you were in Monte Carlo at your Dsquared 2 boutique you opened in 2010 for a personal appearance. You even flew to Toronto for two days to attend your niece’s wedding at one point before a three-week holiday in Mykonos in the month of August! You are a living testament to the Dolce Vita … I couldn’t think of two people more appropriate than you to interview about leading a luxury lifestyle. Tell me what luxury means to you and what are five luxury items you couldn’t do without? Dean&Dan Caten Thank you so much for the support and for following us online! To us the biggest luxury of all is TIME & FREEDOM! What is really priceless is to have the time to do what you want when you want it. Usually when you have time, you don’t have money or when you have the money you don’t have the time. We have the luxury of being our own bosses and of making money by doing something we love! Luxury is smoking a cigarette in our office, on our private plane or anywhere we want! Working with your [24] luxury living october 2012

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Dean and Dan completely redesigned the interior of the new Dsquared2 Milan headquarters on via Ceresio.

Dean&Dan Obviously! Plus we had enough of pasta! (joking). London is more international, eclectic and has a mix of things we like …plus Milan is only one hour and half away by plane so we have no problem going back and forth! Sil It seems you are constantly expanding your scope of creative projects. In 2010 you moved your Milan headquarters to the historical ENEL building in the prestigious Brera area, and you collaborated with the architectural studio Storage and designed the entire interior with Art Deco details and Canadian references throughout. How does the interior design process compare with fashion design? Dean&Dan The design of our offices is similar to designing a fashion collection. When you design, you play with textures, shapes, patterns and materials. For a building, the textures are harder: stone, metal rather than cashmere silk and tweed for a fashion collection but it is still a game of balance and proportions. In the design of our boutique there are very strong references to Canada. On the other hand, in the design of our Milan offices we were inspired by the beautiful original ENEL building that was built in the 1920s.   Sil Your shows are notoriously elaborate and engaging for everyone who participates — both models and attendees. I know sending models down a runway for people just to look at clothes isn’t your style. So the stage for your fall/winter collection this season was themed as Caten’s high school graduating class — where prim and

proper are juxtaposed with youthful rebellion. Above-the-knee pencil skirts, cropped fur-trimmed jackets, colourful cropped pants. Graduating is fun and Dsquared 2 is evolving… What are your plans to further develop the Dsquared 2 brand? I heard a rumour you want to extend your talents to food and open an original-themed restaurant. dean&dan We don’t believe in sending models down the runways in a “conventional” way. We love to put on a real show, an elaborate production where music and stage décors are an intrinsic part of the show. Rumours are often based on some sort of truth….! Jokes aside, we love to eat out and appreciate good restaurants so we are looking into opening a restaurant. We want to open a member’s only health club and a restaurant on the top and bottom of our offices in Milan. Sil We know Canada will always have a strong presence in your heart, do you ever see yourselves buying a property somewhere here to have a Canadian getaway or a semi-permanent residence? Other than Milan and London, where would you want to live? Dean&Dan Canada will always have an important place in our heart. We would love to own some getaway place in Canada. A cottage by the lake would be great. Somewhere where we can get away and enjoy the nature. We were just at the Westin Blue Mountain Lodge in Collingwood that was absolutely gorgeous! If we could pick anywhere else to live in the world Rio de Janeiro would probably be it.

A few days after our interview, Dean and Dan co-hosted, along with Linda Evangelista, the 25th and last Fashion Cares gala in Toronto which took place on September 9. Their contribution to fashion, fierce Canadian pride and ongoing support for the cause made them a natural choice to end the Fashion Cares’ legacy on a poetic note.

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put a value on

your time. by hellen buttigieg T here a re m a n y t imeconsuming Activities we do, despite the fact that we don’t enjoy doing them. Could our time possibly be better spent? You need to decide if it is possible to unburden yourself and liberate your time by improving your methods or delegating some tasks. If it’s a choice between kids and cleaning or sleep versus cooking, why not call in a cleaner or the caterers if it fits into your budget. If you can’t find ways to delegate or hire to get the job done then at least give yourself some ‘me’ time between tasks. As the holidays approach your time will become more pressed, try it and see if you enjoy the approaching season just a little more with a little less on the agenda. Make room for fun If you aren’t particularly excited about that organizing project you have to work on, consider ways you can make it more enjoyable. Perhaps you can listen to your favorite music, have the TV on in the background, or invite a friend over to socialize with (especially one that makes you laugh). Although I’m always thrilled to work on organizing tasks in my home, I really dread ironing. So I iron while watching mindless TV shows (my ‘guilty pleasure’ is X-Factor). The job gets done and it doesn’t feel like drudgery. Time is money Do you wish you had more time yet find yourself spending time to save money? If you spend hours doing unpleasant tasks that you could hire someone to do, or drive across the city to save a few dollars on a grocery store special, you are squandering a precious commodity. Average people spend time to save money; successful people spend money to save time. Look at it this way: You can always make more money

but you can never have more than 24 hours in a day. Before doing any task, get into the habit of asking yourself what it’s costing you in terms of your time and weigh the return on that investment. Avoid mall madness Do you get stressed when shopping for gifts at the mall this time of year? Do those long line-ups and limited parking spots dampen your holiday spirit? If you hurry, there’s still time to shop online and have your items delivered in time. Many retailers offer free shipping or other incentives (i.e. free gifts) this time of year. Another option is to hire a personal shopper. Some major department stores actually offer this service at no cost, so ask. Remember to stick to your budget to avoid starting the New Year with more debt! Help for the host Hosting a holiday soiree this year? Don’t be a superhero - accept help from others. Make it a pot-luck. People feel better when they can contribute and it makes the meal more interesting. While you’re at it, consider putting your kids to work during the event or hiring students to help out. They can take coats as guests arrive, freshen up the appetizer plates and load the dishwasher. They’ll be learning valuable skills and perhaps making some extra money and you’ll be a more relaxed and joyful host! Ask and you shall receive As the popular Rolling Stones song goes, “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you might find you get what you need”. The part they left out of the lyrics is “...if you just ask”. Few people ask for what they need. We expect that those around us will just know what we need, and that if they really care about us, we shouldn’t have to ask. However, most people aren’t mind

readers, and even if they were, they’re probably too busy wrapped up in their own day-to-day challenges to notice when others around them are silently suffering or seeking their support. As an experiment, just for this week, find the courage to speak up and make a direct request; and don’t be surprised if you get both what you need and what you want. Free Yourself Challenge yourself to spend one weekend a month without running any errands or doing chores. If you plan in advance, and use the time during the week effectively, it can be done. In fact, it may even motivate you to boost your productivity level during the week substantially. Use the time to just relax, unwind and putter around the house. If you find you’re feeling bored, let the initial discomfort pass - on the other side of boredom you’ll find peace and tranquility. Remember, we are human beings not human doings, so we need and deserve to spend some time just being - guilt free.

Hellen Buttigieg Hellen Buttigieg, CPO, is a Certified Professional Organizer, life coach, TV host and owner of We Organize U. Visit her website,, for a free e-Book on how to find more time, energy and inner peace. Contact Hellen at 905.829.2219 or luxury living october 2012 [27]

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Creating the ultimate

luxury garage by Heather Ryan


hey’ve become showrooms for classic machines, a social gathering spot with your mates and a place where the storage is as high end as the home’s interior. They’re garages and for many luxury homeowners they’re no longer just a place to park the car.

In the past few years people haven’t just been spending money on luxuries inside the home, “many Calgarians have the disposable income and can afford to create the ultimate garage” that is designed to suit their needs and personalities, says Terry Tout, owner of Ultimate Garage. “People are choosing to spend the extra money in the garage because it adds to the home’s curb appeal, it increases the value, covers blemishes and declutters,” he says. “It really makes it more livable.” It all starts with creating a premium floor that will set the tone for the space. Tout says they first grind the surface of the concrete and then apply an acrylic resin to create a hard, durable and long-lasting coating. “This protects the concrete from deteriorating, reduces dust and it’s very attractive,” Tout says. “The resin can come in any colour or the floor can be done in a combination of different colours, and we’ve done some very decorative patterns and designs.” Including one recent garage floor that was crafted in a two-colour checkerboard design and another that had an inlay in a square pattern in a different colour to the main section. “We recently did a jet black floor with silver and ruby flakes for a guy who has building a showroom for his sports car; it turned out amazing,” he says. The next consideration is storage and many homeowners are choosing a slat wall system because it allows flexibility to combine a variety of hooks, holders, baskets and shelves from many different manufacturers since the system is universal in design.

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Photos supplied courtesy of Ultimate Garage

“It’s great in the garage, shed or even in the home because there are so many uses,” Tout says. People can get specialized holders to hang their golf clubs, skis, equipments bags and bicycles, choose baskets to store basketballs, footballs, shoes, sprays and automotive products, and select different hangers to store ladders, hoses, rakes and shovels out of the way. “It really provides ideal storage because there is so much you can do with it, and it gives your garage a nice, clean look,” Tout says. “A messy garage is the bane of people everywhere,” and this system and other storage ideas help people organize items so the garage doesn’t become cluttered. There are also overhead racking systems to make use of the empty space in the ceiling and pulleys to hang shelves or bikes. Tire racks have also become a popular addition to the garage especially for people who swap out summer and winter ties, Tout says. As well, specialty lifts are becoming more common for estate homeowners so they can easily store away their luxury toys such as all-terrain vehicles, motorcycles, jet skis and snowmobiles in the off-season. These lifts can rise up to six feet high and hold up to 1,200 pounds. A number of homeowners also desire cabinetry for their garages – adding upper and lower cabinets with a work bench and lockers for additional storage. There are a wide range of cabinets available in various price ranges, “but a number of people are going really high end with these and are putting in Baldhead units that are custom built and great for the serious hobbyist,” Tout says. “We are putting Baldhead cabinets into one customer’s garage who is building a showroom for is Maserati.”

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Tout is also currently creating an ultimate garage for a home in Aspen Woods valued at $35,000 and will be featured on a home show called Remodel It! With Her that airs on CTV hosted by Sue Deyell, who is working on all parts of the installation process as part of the show. “The customer is putting in Baldhead cabinets, which are being customized to their needs; they’re actually putting in deep 36-inch square cabinets because they have two boys who are into just about every sport and need a lot of space to store their equipment,” Tout says. The job also includes 15-feet of lockers, a nine-foot workbench, a new floor, a slat wall and overhead storage. Another unique item that is starting to catch on is the garage screen door. These screens fit over the space for the overhead door so you can have the garage door up allowing fresh air in but not the wind and bugs. “There are more people using their garage as an extension of their entertaining space, so these screens make the space more comfortable,” Tout says. And they’re ideal for those guys who dream of turning their garages into man caves to go along with the big screen TVs, furniture, wet bars and beer fridges. Adding TVs is another popular item for the garage. Tout is doing a garage where the customer is installing several Baldhead cabinets and “he wants to make sure they aren’t installed too high so that there is room for his 80-inch TV.” “Garages can be very uber, very high-end; you’re only limited by your pocketbook,” Tout says. And the interest in adding even more luxury is spurring Tout to explore a relationship with a U.S. company called GarageMahals that builds luxury garage environments costing $1 million-plus. “They do the complete garage from the floor plan and design to custom cabinetry and I think there are enough people in Calgary who want that type of luxury.” So while homeowners still need room to park their cars, it’s clear they see more opportunities to create a luxurious space and have the ultimate garage they’re always desired.

Photos supplied courtesy of Ultimate Garage

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Luxury Living in Calgary and Area - 2012 October  

A Wall2Wall Publication