December 3, 2012

Pinnacle’s The One to rise in vibrant southeast False Creek

Pinnacle building is in a community that has seen many improvements and continues to grow

The One — Pinnacle Living at False Creek

Project location:
38 West 1st Ave. (at the corner of Ontario and West 1st Ave.)
Project size: 165 condos and townhomes over two buildings in the first phase
Residence size: One-bedrooms from 550 sq. ft; two-bedrooms from 870 sq. ft; townhomes and penthouses from 1,100 sq. ft.
Prices: One-bedrooms from $349,900; two-bedrooms from $549,900; two-bed + den townhouses from $699,900
Developer: Pinnacle International
Architect: Bingham Hill Architects
Interior design: False Creek Design
Sales centre: 1738 Ontario St.
Hours: noon — 5 p.m., daily
Telephone: 604-874-8638
Occupancy: Early 2015

Special to The Sun

Timing, it seems, is everything.

In recent years, the southeast False Creek area has been transformed from a community in the making to a community well made. This is nothing but great news for Anson Realty owner Grace Kwok and her colleagues. Selling suites in The One in late 2012 and early 2013 puts Pinnacle at a distinct advantage in the neighbourhood because the most anticipated amenities — a bank, café, London Drugs, Urban Fare grocery store and community centre — are now open.

It’s that gradual enlivening of the neighbourhood, with more retail, commerce and condominium homes set to appear in the next few years, that will turn the area into what Kwok sees as the greatest option for homeowners tired of highrise downtown lifestyle. “Just look at what’s here already, with the convenience to downtown through cycling paths (via Seaside route) and nearby SkyTrain stations (Main Street-Science World and Olympic Village). It’s an alternative to the downtown highrise. It’s less congested, there’s more green space, and it’s a fun place to live.”

For many, it’s also a prestigious place to live. Kwok points out that Vancouver buyers are still very conscious of a cachet of the West 1st Avenue address, even if the building is just on the cusp of the city’s east and west sides. “The west side address is very important, so over here we are west side, but our price is not much more than the east side.” Once they’re occupied, The One’s suites will enter into a relationship of sorts with one other in the vicinity. The back landscaped courtyard will neighbour the back courtyard of a Pinnacle building in construction at the corner of Ontario and 2nd Avenue. Today, an alleyway separates the rear end of the nearly constructed building from the site of The One.

By 2015, when residents will occupy their suites, that alleyway will be a landscaped laneway, green and well lit. On both sides of that lane, the greenery of two courtyards will directly mirror one another. The effect will be a dramatic improvement in the community as a whole, Kwok suggests. In the front of the building, hedges, small entrances and fences will give townhomes a physical buffer from West 1st Avenue. Residents of The One’s highest floors will be able to view, over the roof of the Salt building, the village plaza, with the giant public art installation of the Birds, a pair of 16-foot, 4,200 pound house sparrows at either corner of the plaza. It’s surrounded by new retail and restaurants, such as London Drugs, the community centre, a brew pub, wine store and Terra Breads bakery-café. By the time homeowners occupy their suites in 2015, the neighbourhood will be a scene of even more activity. The Salt building, directly across the street from The One’s site, celebrated its grand opening in October as a craft beer market and brew pub.

The One’s building itself will be exceptional, Kwok promises. While sub-penthouse suites will be graced with extra-large outdoor decks, penthouse owners will get small balconies and large rooftop terraces. A long lap infinity pool and hot tub surrounded on all sides by landscaping, and a deck large enough for lounge chairs and a change room will inhabit the roof of the second and lowest building, while a fitness centre and yoga studio will be built on a lower level.

The presentation centre houses one-bedroom and two-bedroom show suites, each with its own charms. With hardwood floors underfoot, nine-foot ceilings and air conditioning in every suite, both display suites sport granite countertops, Grohe fixtures, Bosch appliances and a full-sized Fisher & Paykel refrigerator in the kitchens. Steps from the kitchen prep areas, both suites also have generous storage areas that could be transformed into a home office or twin bed space. The one-bedroom suite shows a small solarium with full windows, directly beside the balcony, which could range in size from 40 to 60 square feet, depending on the suite size.

The second bedroom suite opens to a long foyer stretching to the right and left, with a guest bathroom and washer-dryer closet near the entrance. The hallway space is generous enough to fit a storage unit and a chaise. An open-concept living space holds a kitchen and solarium, a wide living and dining space and generous storage or den area. Double-door closet in the hallways and walk-in closets in the master bedroom include built-in shelving and drawers, and come as a standard feature in every home. In the two-bedroom suite, Pinnacle has included very few built-in display-only items, so built-in closet organizers and drawers come as a surprise for most buyers.

A large master bedroom includes a long walk-in ensuite closet. The bathroom shower stands independent of the deep bathtub, separated by a vanity with a dual sink. The master bedroom has a unique feature: bathe in the tub in the ensuite bathroom and look out through a transparent glass wall out to the main bedroom. The large window, which stretches from the top of the tub to the ceiling, has proved to be popular in past Pinnacle condo projects.

Kwok says she expects The One’s buyer demographics to be similar to the population of homeowners who will occupy two neighbouring Pinnacle buildings next year. “We have a lot of first-time buyers, but the majority are professional couples — people who work downtown or close by and find this is a location they can spend time relaxing or cycling on the weekends.”

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