July 25, 2013

It’s all about the spectacular views

Coquitlam development features 45 single-family homes that offer panoramic vistas


Project Location: Burke Mountain, Coquitlam
Project scale: 45 single-family view homes with four bedrooms and 2½ bathrooms, ranging between 3,700-3,900 sq. ft.
Prices: From $888,900
Developer: Morningstar Homes Ltd.
Architectural Designer: Fred Sales & Associates
Interior Design: The Creative DesignWorks, Vancouver
Sales Centre: 1508 Dayton St., Coquitlam
Hours: Every day (except Friday) noon- 6 p.m.
Sales Centre Contact: 604-942-6370
Website: www.mstarhomes.com
Email: redgren@mstarhomes.com
Occupancy: from January 2014

Special to the Sun

Running your own company doesn’t leave much time for mowing lawns or painting siding — just one of the reasons why Ron Adolph and his partner moved quickly to purchase a single-family home at Morningstar’s new Partington development on Coquitlam’s Burke Mountain. “We chose new because we are at a point in our lives where we are looking for a place that is maintenance-free,” said the 48-year-old father of two grown-up children. “So essentially, if we want to leave town and go on vacation we can basically lock up and go.”

But the big sell for Ron was the view. The panorama stretches almost 180 degrees from one end of the house to the other, taking in everything from the graceful spires of the new Port Mann Bridge to the distant sunsets over Burnaby Mountain. These are views traditionally associated with the North Shore rather than the Tri-Cities area. Ron and his family won’t be moving very far. A longtime Port Coquitlam resident, his current home, a 3,800 square-foot, 30-year-old house he and his family have lived in for 14 years, is located just three minutes down the mountain on a 1.5-acre forested lot.

“The forest has been nice but it’s time for a change, he said. “I really enjoy sunsets and sunrises and I like to see the weather coming. You don’t get that in the forest. “I have always craved and wanted a view. “ View has been a big selling point for the latest homes to be built by Morningstar, one of B.C.’s largest single-family home builders with 1,500 homes to its credit in the last decade. The developer sold six homes during Partington’s grand opening.

Adding to the homes’ appeal are traditional Craftsman features, including entrance pillars set on stone foundations, porches, rafter tails and exposed beams and braces. Two-car garages in front feature multi-paned windows. Inside, the first thing that strikes visitors is the abundance of natural light flooding into the rooms, accentuated by the open design which keeps the light and the fabulous views visible even from the tiled front entrance. Beside the front door in each of the show homes is an open area that can be used as a home office, hobby area or — as a baby grand piano in one suggests — a music space where the kids can practise.

Kitchens in two of the show homes were located in the centre of the home against a wall on the main level, while the third show home featured the kitchen sink under a bank of windows overlooking the view at the back of the house. In one of the units, a floating ceiling opens over the island area, while in another the ceiling soars to 5.7 metres. One of the show homes also features a “butler’s kitchen,” though it goes beyond the traditional definition of a sink and serving area. This one provides the homeowner with a smaller, duplicate kitchen including a gas range, sink and refrigerator. The concept would work well for the family that wants another cooking space for specialty or ethnic foods. In one of the other show homes, the space off the kitchen is put to work as a laundry and mud room off the enclosed garage.

The living rooms are open to the kitchen and dining areas and feature high ceilings and a corresponding stacked set of windows that take full advantage of the light and views of nature. Morningstar has incorporated the newest horizontal rectangular fireplaces with a spot above the mantle for a wide screen TV. Upstairs, the four bedrooms are accessed from a large landing area, and Morningstar has responded to popular demand for a traditional feature, the window seat, in both the master and secondary bedrooms. In the Balsam model, the master bedroom feels like a special retreat, starting from the additional two-step rise above the landing. Through double doors are the substantial bedroom plus a cosy sitting room with library shelves and a small natural gas fireplace. At the other end of the bedroom area are modern frosted glass doors leading to an ensuite with frameless glass shower, dual sinks, a soaking tub and separate water closet.

Two of the basements are finished (and included in the total square footage) while a third was left unfinished for homeowners who might want to build to suit their own ideas, including use as a legal suite. One of the show homes featured a home theatre and possible study area or teen bedroom, while another was finished as a wine room. Another area of the basement was developed as a fitness or yoga room with a washer and dryer behind double doors. Outside the ground-level doors are spaces for a small garden and children’s area with climbing toys.

Mae Suffron, whose The Creative DesignWorks firm undertook the interior design for the show homes, said her team looks at what is in style and matches it with the likely client profile for Partington. “Navy blue is a really hot colour right now that people are using a lot with white,” she said. Part of her team’s work is to enhance the home’s best features like the views and natural light by using elements such as sheer drapes on the tall windows and incorporating cream and tone-on-tone colour combinations. The team also used some darker area carpets on the engineered hardwood floors and furniture scaled to suit the height of the ceilings while maintaining a sense of intimacy within the rooms.

Located a five-minute walk from the wilderness trails of Pinecone Burke Provincial Park, Partington is also close to shopping at Coquitlam Centre mall, recreation centres, several schools, Douglas College’s David Lam campus and the new Evergreen SkyTrain line, scheduled to open in summer 2016.

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