House Tours
Mar 24, 2015

House tour: Seaside sophistication

By: Christy Wright
House tour: Seaside sophistication

You'll love this fully furnished seaside escape. Author: Tracey Ayton

House Tours
Mar 24, 2015

House tour: Seaside sophistication

By: Christy Wright

A Vancouver-based design and renovation firm turns the tide on a fussily furnished seaside house, re-envisioning it as an inviting, livable retreat with crisp colours and ship-shape style.

From the outside, this West Vancouver beach house has it all. Poised among the breathtaking North Shore Mountains on almost an acre of waterfront property, with nary a neighbour in sight, its position 100 feet above sea level provides it with optimal views of the ocean - a real-life Arcadia just 20 minutes from downtown. Its pre-makeover interior, however, presented a different tableau. "It was pink with overstuffed furniture and Persian rugs everywhere. It didn't feel like a beach house or reflect its amazing setting," says Dave Leavitt, general manager of Vancouver's Fox Design Studio.

Dave and his team of designers - brother Ben Leavitt and friend Andrew Harvey - were tasked with transforming the 7,000-square-foot space into a comfortable weekend retreat. 

Since its architectural bones (hardwood floors, generously proportioned light-filled rooms and custom mouldings and built-ins) required no reshaping, the four-month revamp was strictly cosmetic, although it was anything but small.

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House tour: Seaside sophistication

Family room

"The family room is all about the stone fireplace and the driftwood coffee table," says Dave Leavitt, general manager of Fox Design Studio. "They share an organic sensibility that brings the beauty of the landscape in and represents the tranquility of the beach and all of its colours."

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Custom low profile sectional

The family room's sectional was custom made with a low profile so that it wouldn't impede the stunning views. Its warm grey tone grounds the space.

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Breakfast nook

A whimsical chandelier crafted from old pop bottles was the starting point for the kitchen's eat-in area. "A breakfast nook should never be too fancy," says designer Ben Leavitt. "This fixture is very casual but has all the sparkle of chandelier." Navy and white upholstered chairs offer a crisp nautical-inspired look that suits the home's seaside setting.

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Refreshed white kitchen

The traditional white kitchen, with its recessed panel cabinetry and detailed mouldings and corbels, is freshened up with black bistro-style stools and pendant lights.

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Nautical meets a touch of glam

There's an obvious relaxed nautical style throughout the home, even in the dishware and table linens. But if you look closely you'll find hints of glamour, like the gold-tipped flatware.

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Feature walls and animal sculptures

A feature wall hand-painted by designer Andrew Harvey defines the master bedroom's sitting area. The whimsical sheep sculpture, originally peach-coloured, was painted white and chosen with the owners in mind. "They love animals," says Dave, "so we thought this would be a nice touch. It's also great here because the back of the sofa is seen from the bedroom, and this transforms it."

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Master bedroom

"A master bedroom should look relaxing," says Dave, "so we typically don't use bold colours, but rather textures and patterns." The custom nightstands feature reclaimed railway posts that provide a rustic counterpoint to the show-stopping ceiling. "We highlighted the domed ceiling above the bed by silver leafing it. It took more than 20 hours to do but was worth it, since the shimmery finish creates depth and drama."

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Grasscloth accent walls

Grasscloth accent walls in the living room and master bedroom amp up the warmth factor while blending in with ease.

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Master ensuite

The spectacular ocean view can be enjoyed from the clawfoot tub or the window bench in the master ensuite.

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Organic touches

Delicate organic touches can be found throughout the home.

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

House tour: Seaside sophistication

Design inspiration

Nothing like Mother Nature to inspire a beautiful home renovation.

By: Christy Wright Source: Tracey Ayton Credits: Style at Home

 

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House tour: Seaside sophistication