Boutique Penthouse With a View

Article by Michelle Heslop. Photos by Jody Beck. Exterior photos courtesy of Jawl Properties.

Lyndia and Scott Morrice were on a routine Costco run in Victoria for their son, a University of Victoria student, when they took a leisurely detour in Cordova Bay and spotted the Sayward Hill development in the distance. Not consciously in the market to relocate from their White Rock home, the couple, intrigued by the sublime architecture built into the hill, drove by the development one more time before heading back to the Mainland. “With nothing comparable to this development in Vancouver, especially in this price range, I just couldn’t get the property out of my head,” notes Morrice. We spoke to the realtor the next day and made an offer on the penthouse condo two weeks later. We hadn’t even sold our house, we hadn’t even thought about selling it, it was all completely spontaneous,” laughs Morrice.

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Like many empty nesters, the Morrices were not looking to downsize, but were keen to trade in their large home for a more flexible, unencumbered lifestyle. Embracing a new found freedom, many baby boomers want to move beyond raking leaves and cleaning gutters, and begin to focus on lifestyle modifications. As the wealthiest generation in Canadian history, boomers are looking for an ease of lifestyle and the ability to explore and travel more spontaneously. Considering their large house on an acre of landscaped land on the mainland, travel of any kind was no small task for the Morrices. Valuing spontaneity, they were drawn to the idea of the turnkey home; just close the door, lock, and go.

As avid golfers and outdoor enthusiasts, amenity-rich Sayward Hill had many advantages for the Morrices. With access to biking and running paths at their front door, local beaches minutes away, and the ability to grab their clubs and walk down to their choice of two golf courses, Sayward Hill was the ideal move for the Morrice’s next chapter.

“We spoke to the sales and marketing representative from Sayward Hill on the phone, Ingrid Jarisz, and we felt connected immediately. From our initial conversation, I knew she was someone we could comfortably work with; her depth of knowledge about the property and the surrounding area was incredible. As a Victoria resident her entire life, Jarisz knows the area inside and out. She actually seemed like a member of the building,” notes Morrice.

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Designed by de Hoog & Kierulf Architects, the contemporary low-rise architecture was the initial feature that really caught the Morrices’ eye. “It wasn’t a typical high-rise condominium building full of small units and that was really appealing to us,” says Morrice. Their boutique penthouse is a generous 1900-square-feet, with soaring thirteen-foot ceilings, and floor-to-ceiling windows that capture the stunning panoramic views of Haro Strait, Mount Baker, and the Gulf and San Juan Islands. “The view and the expansive open-plan draped in natural-light was an absolute jaw dropper when we first walked in,” states Morrice.

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Complete with a separate media room off the kitchen, the penthouse taps into a sense of space and privacy and boasts the features and comforts of a single family home. The media room offers flexibility for a home office, extra guest accommodation, or home theatre. The generous square-footage, and a larger than average storage unit, meant that the Morrices didn’t have to go through the taxing job of downsizing before making the move. The open-plan interior, all designed by Kimberly Williams Interiors, allows for flexibility within the space and is generous enough to entertain their large families, grandchildren, and most notably, comfortably house their grande piano.

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The light-infused, custom designed kitchen with open-plan concept offers a contemporary blend of functionality, flexibility, and ease of entertaining. It features streamlined, flat panel maple cabinetry with stainless steel hardware, three-quarter-inch granite countertops and backsplash, generous-sized island and eating bar, and comfortable cork flooring.

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Overlooking Haro Strait, this transitionally appointed master bedroom blends classic components with a contemporary twist. A neutral palette allows the bold orange accents and reflective sculptures to take centre stage and create a personalized and restorative retreat. With luxurious amenities including a spa-like ensuite and an oversized walk-in closet with white laminate storage system, you will forget this is a self-contained condo.

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Spacious, spa-like bathroom with sea-blue accents complement the floating maple vanity with marble countertops and backsplash. Nu-Heat in-floor tile heating add warmth and comfort to this soothing space. Hytec Rockford soaker tub and walk-in shower with seat and glass enclosure accented by tiled tub and shower surround (not shown).

“We certainly bought a lifestyle change and an entire community,” add the Morrices. “Being new to the area, Jariszwas there for us even after we purchased, with hints and tips and where to go for things we needed. Laughing, Morrice adds that, “she is still the first person we call today when we need a particular service, or supplier.”

Now a licensed real estate agent, Jarisz notes that, “commitment to my clients and feeling like a member of a community is just my style, they are an important part of what makes a community hum and tick. It certainly helps to have such amazing people to work with,” smiles Jarisz.