By Andrea Cox. Published on: September 14, 2015 | Last Updated: September 18, 2015 11:55 AM MST
Tucked away on five hectares of pristine lands brimming with manicured Victorian-style gardens, stone bridges, a rushing creek and green lawns spilling onto white sand beaches and the Straight of Georgia, Pacific Landing at Havenwood, in Victoria, is a refreshing get-away for parched in-landers.
Located on Esquimalt Lagoon, a protected bird sanctuary, the property graces 650 feet of waterfront with access to paddle boarding and canoeing. It’s nestled beside Royal Roads University with its 240-plus hectares of unspoiled lands and historic castle.
“Vancouver Island has the best weather in Canada and offers an active and engaged type of lifestyle,” says Randy Royer, president of Pacific Landing Ltd., the Calgary-based development company behind the project.
No stranger to creating successful lifestyle playgrounds (he was the impetus behind The Grand Okanagan Hotel in Kelowna, B.C.), Royer purchased the Vancouver Island property in 2007 after sifting through ideas for development projects.
“I knew that the baby boomers were entering their 50s and 60s and were beginning to search out quality of life locations where they could transition into retirement,” he says.
Community living is a key concept in crafting the mixed-use, multi-stage project.
“We really want to create an inter-generational community in a waterfront village setting,” says Royer.
Upon final build-out, the community will feature 115 residential apartment-style homes, a boutique hotel, a selection of restaurants, wine bars and pubs, along with a myriad of amenities from a wellness spa to grocery stores, and local shops.
Pacific Landing is also a former estate. The property features the historic Pendray House, an 8,400-square-foot mansion, with old-world arts and crafts architecture, which houses the Coast Collective Arts Group, an interactive art museum and art school.
The artistic element certainly feeds the soul, but it is really the maple, sequoia, and fir tree-lined boulevards and adjacent forest and hiking trails that nurtures the spirit.
“The tallest tree is 230 feet high,” says Royer. He says that the views and the location still take his breath away. “The property is just magnificent.”
Pacific Landing’s natural beauty certainly inspired Kathy and Blahne Sukut to jump on a quick hour-long flight to take a first-hand look at the development. The couple lives on acreage, just minutes from Okotoks, a thriving city 20 minutes south of Calgary.
“We were exploring the possibilities,” says Blahne, 64, a retired farmer who owns tracts of land near High River.
The couple wanted a healthy real estate investment and a part-time home, one that would transition them into retirement.
“I saw the site in its raw state and was amazed at how beautiful it is and the quietness – it is a very peaceful setting,” says Blahne, adding that the island hums a different pace.
“It’s much slower. It’s such a lovely place. I am really looking forward to just sitting and enjoying a cup of coffee in the mornings.”
But the couple is also excited to hike and bike. “And I really like to salmon fish,” says Blahne.
The development plan incorporates a multi-phased build-out comprised of six stages. The first phase is a collection of three arts and crafts boutique-style buildings — Dunsmuir House, Breton Place and Hatley Manor. They will offer 33 modern West Coast, two-bedroom, two-bathroom, 1,060-square-foot homes with large terraces. The buildings are uniquely designed with only four homes per floor, allowing each to enjoy expansive views from two sides.
Amenities in the first phase are prolific. Dunsmuir House will feature a state-of-the-art yoga studio on the top floor set amongst the canopy of the trees with resplendent ocean views. While those with a culinary inclination can enjoy Hatley Manor’s Cooking Theatre with outdoor lounge and barbecue area. It will also feature a large workshop space.
Blahne and Kathy purchased a third level home, facing west across the inlet. Their three adult children and ageing parents still reside in the Calgary region.
“So we don’t want to leave for long stretches,” says Blahne. “We just want a place to escape and relax.”
They hope their adult children and their families will have the opportunity to enjoy the new home as well.
“The full-time management feature was very attractive. We can friends and family use the home and I don’t have to worry about getting keys to them,” he says.
Royer’s goal is to create a multi-generational village filled with laughter and inspiration.
“Certainly a key market is the transitioning baby boomers, but the best way to stay young is to be around young people, so we are really wanting to attract young buyers as well.”
Fido is also welcome. “We are pet-friendly, with dog wash stations on-site,” says Royer.
Buyers can purchase full-ownership homes or co-ownership homes. “When it comes to co-ownership, we have a couple of different programs – you can lock down your time and place or you can float,” says Royer.
Full ownership homes are $440,000. Co-ownership opportunities start at $60,000.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
PROJECT: A multi-phased collection of 115 condominium-style homes, in a waterfront setting on five hectares of land brimming with manicured Victorian-style gardens, stone bridges, a rushing creek and green lawns spilling onto white sand beaches and a protected bird sanctuary.
DEVELOPER: Calgary-based Pacific Landing Ltd.
HOMES: Homes feature large terraces with ocean views, two-bedrooms, two bathrooms an open-concept living design with centre kitchen and more than 1,060 square feet.
PRICE: Homes are $440,000. A variety of co-ownership opportunities are available, starting at $60,000.
DISCOVERY CENTRE: Located in a charming creekside coffee house built in 1910, the Discovery Centre is at 3221 Heatherbell Rd. in Colwood, B.C.
DIRECTIONS: Follow the signs from Metchosen Road or Lagoon Drive.
HOURS: The Discovery Centre is open every day from noon to 5 p.m. Private tours are available upon request.
INFORMATION: www.pacificlanding.ca; email email@example.com; or telephone 778-265-8289
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