Constructed in one of Nanaimo’s most elite neighbourhoods, The Horizon brings to life the homeowners’ dream of a West Coast-inspired home that appears light and welcoming while responding contextually to its natural environment.
Bringing to Life a Homeowner’s Dream.
Rough-cut stone on the forward most facades connects the home with its rocky hillside location, while neutral vertical panelling softens the mass on the upper levels. The architecture gracefully imparts a subtle Asian influence – nested rooflines, staggered fascias and subtle curved overhangs announce the front and rear entrances. Extruding exterior beams with inverted angles meet the home’s scale while flawlessly illustrating how well the two design styles can integrate. The lot was familiar to custom home builder TS Williams who completed another project in the neighbourhood and recognized the potential to capture views from almost every room in the house. Company owner Taran Williams played an important role in establishing a design that would meet both homeowner’s vision and the inherent challenges of building the rocky, ocean-facing terrain.
“We strongly believe in building homes from long-term value and durability,” says Williams. “We focus on generous overhands to protect the home’s exterior form the elements and lots of natural light to make our homes feel warm and welcoming.” Curving rock and shrub beds, designed to require low maintenance, wind around to the back of the property where a meticulous lawn extends away from the home to an infinity view of the ocean and tiny islands in the distance. Wicker furniture is set into a sunken patio area, protected by overhead heat lamps and fire pit that invite cozy outdoor evenings almost year round. A second group level seating area acts as an extension of the indoor living space – an essential feature for the homeowners who wished for integrated indoor-outdoor living.
Because of the home’s location on a rocky slope, preparing the property required an extensive excavation and levelling procedure, but the results are impeccable. The view to the ocean is unimpeded by the rooflines below the property slope, and from the sunken patio, one could imagine being completely secluded at an oceanside resort. The home’s orientation and footprint, and even the lot, were selected with a simple concept in mind – creating a warm, open-concept, family-centred place where the homeowners and their children could be together in their own spaces in the main living area.
The great room shines with abundant natural light through a double set of picture windows, situated to capture views from the main floor and from the second-floor mezzanine. A concrete cast-in-place hearth spans the feature wall where pre-fabricated concrete panels stack to house an ambient fireplace and wall-mounted television. On either side, dark walnut cabinets and floating shelves keep the aesthetic clean and simple, while glass and metal decor and flowing orchids keep it warm and approachable. Overhead, a delicate cascading light fixture was a rare and treasured find, leaving the view unobstructed form the upper floor.
Softer, lighter finishes in the kitchen reflect the natural light and provide and open, airy appearance. Carrera marble tiles on the backsplash meet warm maple cabinets, leaving the design contemporary and fresh with less emphasis on a specific design aesthetic. A generous maple island and crisp white quartz counter top welcome visitors and family members while the homeowners are preparing meals and entertaining, and a discreet butler’s pantry keeps the non-essentials tucked away. The homeowners didn’t see a formal dining area as conductive to their open-concept floor plan; they opted instead for and open, intimate space and a rich wood dining set that pays tribute to the beautiful walnut hardwood flooring. Over the dining table, curved walnut panels create a seamless transition between wood tones in the great room and kitchen.
On the main level, a guest bedroom opens up with light through sliding doors leading to the yard and patio. And the room’s generous size and adjacent bathroom make it perfect for a master bedroom later in the homeowners’ lives. A floating staircase in walnut with metal inlays leads to a mezzanine that connects two wings of the upper floor. The staircase and mezzanine are protected with a frameless glass railing fastened with stainless connectors that tie in with the subtle use of metal in the home’s appliances and decor. With the view unobstructed, natural light floods the space and casts a subtle shine on the woodwork.
The master bedroom is a bright, romantic space with a stunning view to the ocean and the vaulted ceiling creates a chalet-like ambience. A spacious walk-in closet is closed off with opaque glass track doors that reflect the light and add dimension to the space. Porcelain tile in a swirling, marble pattern adorns the glass shower and tub surround in the master ensuite – a style chosen to exude a relaxing, spa-like appearance complemented by a picturesque view from the window over the bathtub. Facing one another, double under mount sinks and a dedicated vanity provide adequate space and a balanced appearance. And a floating bulkhead brings the ceiling down to create a sense of intimacy in the space.
The children’s rooms are mirror images of one another, housing generous walk-in closets and incredible views from built-in window seats. The palette in both rooms was chosen so the children could grow up with it – warm and simple with bright pink accents. The rooms are connected by a shared bathroom where double sinks and a generous mirror ensure ease and comfort of use.
Strategically situated over the garage for front-facing ocean views and sound proofing is a media room, where a gabled ceiling and built-in bar give the room the perfect ambiance for entertaining. And the best place to relax and take in a gorgeous sunset is the balcony that stretches out to the front of the property. The lighting scheme throughout the home was carefully selected to highlight the architectural features and throughways – inset floor uplighting and under mount LEDs cast a subtle glow in all the right places, while starburst pot lights are both practical and a lovely design feature.
The homeowners, thrilled with the final results, appreciated TS Williams’ commitment to the build, having a presence at every draftspersons’ meeting and contribution practical solutions to achieving the incredible design of their dream home.
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