All posts by Regina Gadacz

Democrat Homes - Forest Heights

Democrat Homes’ Forest Heights Estates in Horseshoe Valley is truly one of a kind

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Democrat Homes’ Forest Heights Estates in Horseshoe Valley is truly one of a kind

Picture it: Towering pines and maples, oak trees and white birch dotting the landscape. Breathe in the clean, fresh air as you listen to the sound of serenity – quiet interrupted only by the gentle chirping of birds. Now picture the home of your dreams framed against the greens and reds and browns of the Simcoe County Forest. This isn’t a fantasy or a pipe dream. This is the reality Democrat Homes is building for a fortunate few in the brand new Forest Heights Estates community in Horseshoe Valley.

More than 30 years in the business has taught the Palumbo family (Democrat Homes) the real differences between a house and a home. A house is a shell, four walls and a roof with no personal attachments. A home is that special somewhere you choose to live – a place where you feel safe and where you spend time with those you love. It’s the setting for your biggest moments and celebrations. Democrat wants Forest Heights to be the place you choose, a community of homes, luxurious, affordable and situated amid rolling hills and green treetops. It’s like no other community and the limited 80 lots truly make it one of a kind. It is a special place that will remain a jewel in the heart of Oro-Medonte for years to come. This is your chance to be part of this most exclusive neighbourhood.

To match the stunning natural beauty of the nature all around, Democrat has raised the bar by offering exceptional standard features – bringing elegance and luxury inside every home they build. Incredible standards include engineered hardwood floors, nine-ft. ceilings, oak stairs, insulated steel garage doors, upgraded trim and kitchen cabinets, 200-amp service, pot lights, tankless water heaters and more. Democrat wants to set every house apart with a uniqueness and individuality that will speak to your refined taste.

Bold brick and brick with stone elevations are dramatically silhouetted against the verdant greenery just outside your back door. Democrat Homes’ custom-style elevations feature architecturally refined exteriors, which include: High-pitched roofs, classic masonry, decorative columns, and pre-cast detailing (such as key-stones banding and sills) giving each model a regal stature.

Each lot is special, ranging from a minimum half acre to private cul-de-sacs boasting premium lots that approach three acres of treed beauty. There is something for everyone. Each home is given the space it deserves, instead of the “sardines in a can” look and feel of so many other subdivisions.

Located in Oro-Medonte within the beautiful Horseshoe Valley, Forest Heights Estates feels like a private resort, yet is just 15 minutes from the neighbouring cities of Barrie and Orillia. Toronto is just an hour’s drive away. More important, you’re minutes away from world class golfing, skiing at Mount St. Louis Moonstone, canoeing on Bass Lake, walking the countless trails and wildlife preserve, or enjoying the many restaurants and boutique art shops tucked into the surrounding towns. There is so much to do and see whenever you wish; all you have to do is walk out the front door. Whether it’s the peace and quiet tranquility of your backyard or a day filled with adventure, it’s all at your fingertips in Forest Heights Estates.

Beyond the natural beauty of the surroundings, every Democrat home is Built to Appreciate. Not only will the thoughtful design and attention to detail provide you with an incredible living experience for years to come, but your valuable purchase will appreciate in so many ways… and remain a source of pride for your family and the surrounding community.

Forest Heights Estates checks all the boxes, an incredible location that will continue as one of the most desirable luxury communities in the Horseshoe Valley and GTA. Curb appeal with curated designs and layouts that will please everyone. Architectural beauty that will stand the test of time. Quality construction with the peace of mind that only a new build can provide. Yes, you can rest assured that every Democrat home is built to the Ontario building code, with only high quality materials and finishings that will last a lifetime. Hundreds of options and customizable premium upgrades will add that personal touch all your very own.

Sales Manager, Mark Palumbo, handles every purchase personally and will help you navigate your newhomebuying experience with ease. From the initial purchase to colour charts, electrical layouts and kitchen design, Palumbo will assist you with every aspect of your new home.

Forest Heights Estates

For further information and to register, visit the Democrat Homes website or e-mail Palumbo directly.


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Here's how to get your garden ready for the warmer months ahead

Here’s how to get your garden ready for the warmer months ahead

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Here’s how to get your garden ready for the warmer months ahead

A new season requires some fresh landscaping: From planting to fertilizing and lawn care, here’s how to get your garden ready for the warmer months ahead. Warmer temperatures are coming, and this is the perfect time to devote a little attention to our gardens and lawn, so when spring does hit, we’re able to enjoy the outdoors without being plagued by all of those weekend chores. Here are a few tips to get you started!

Weed control

When temperatures start to rise, weeds pop up like, well, weeds. Get at them right away with pre-emergent weed control to get rid of them before they’ve had their time to germinate, or use a post-emergent if they’re already active and growing. Remember to be responsible with the earth around you: If you’re going to use chemicals, use only those that target your particular problem area, and always remember to follow the product directions carefully.

When is it safe to plant annuals?

Annuals can be quite delicate, and they don’t like frost, so all of this depends on your local frost dates, and that will determine when it is safe to plant your annuals and vegetables. For annuals, you will be transplanting from pots, flats, or six-packs at the garden centre, so it’s safe to plant when the last frost date has passed. In southern Ontario, that’s typically after the May long weekend.

Order summer-flowering bulbs and seeds

Now is a great time to order your summer-flowering bulbs and seeds such as lilies, gladioli, and ranunculi – all can be ordered ahead of time for early spring planting.

Set up your compost

If you haven’t done so already, set up a compost area in your garden. Whether you decide to build your own with some spare wood around your house or you opt to buy a ready-made compost bin, this area is essential for you to store your organic waste. Once it has broken down, you will get this rich compost that your plants will thrive on. Remember to have a decent mixture of vegetable peels, wood prunings, paper, and grass clippings, and don’t forget to help the process along by turning your compost with a garden fork every month to keep it aerated.

Clean your tools

Not only will maintaining your garden tools help save you money in the long term, it will also help prevent the spread of disease (dirty secateurs love bringing bacteria and fungi to fresh pruning). Use detergent, hot water, and a brush to give your bladed tools a good clean, and then have them sharpened at your local garden store so you can get cleaner pruning cuts.

Lisa Rogers is Executive Vice-President of Design for Dunpar Homes.

Lisa has shared her style and design expertise on popular television programs, such as Canadian Living TV, House & Home TV and The Shopping Channel.

Lisa is one of the most familiar faces on CityTV’s Cityline as a regular guest expert for fashion and image, health and wellness and design.


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The Rhodes

The Rhodes Residences is the new Blackdoor Development project that honours the singularity of its buyers

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The Rhodes Residences is the new Blackdoor Development project that honours the singularity of its buyers

Torontonians are a discerning bunch. Unique in our interests, we know what we want and where to get it. And we find a lot of it at the intersection of Bathurst and Eglinton.

With its high-end restaurants, eclectic bar scene, and stunning walking trails, this distinctive stretch of the city attracts and accommodates the most customized of lifestyles. Now, with the introduction of a boutique residence, The Rhodes, Bathurst and Eglinton, offers a bespoke living experience as well.

Blackdoor Development Company, the visionaries behind The Rhodes, believe that a home must be as individual and unique as its owner. It’s a novel approach, given the sameness of much of Toronto’s condominium options.

“At Blackdoor, we eschew the idea of a stacked building with identical layouts,” notes Blackdoor Principal Noah Geist. “It may be easier to build that way, but it surely doesn’t honour the singularity of our buyers.”

As such, Blackdoor commits to building unique and curated units. At The Rhodes, 85 per cent of the suites have floorplans that are fully distinctive from one another. And somehow, Blackdoor has managed to realize its vision at an affordable price (starting at $1.4 million), and with cutting edge design.

The eight-storey, 25-unit build is a master class in modern luxury. The exterior flat-finish concrete arches, masonry pillars, and oversized black door are representative of Blackdoor’s signature aesthetic. While the spacious suites and common spaces will appeal to the most sophisticated of taste, there’s a hipness to the design… a certain rock n’ roll elegance that helps to set The Rhodes apart.

“We knew we needed The Rhodes to be functional and reliable,” says Geist. “And we also wanted it to be beautiful and inspiring and original. Ali Budd was the obvious choice for our interior designer.” Ali Budd Interiors has been making a lot of waves in the design world of late. The full-service studio commits itself to understanding and accommodating the needs of every individual client, so the synergy with Blackdoor was immediate. And with the Toronto-based team able to provide holistic design, including bespoke furniture, millwork design and fabrication, and art curation, The Rhodes looks to be a model of design excellence.

Ten-ft.-high ceilings with no bulkheads and a 1,700-sq.-ft. average unit size afforded the design team the opportunity to deliver condominium living with the dimensions of a full-sized home. Lower floor balconies and upper floor skyview terraces shine light on Ali Budd’s curated palette of materials, including Gaggeneau appliances, custom-designed cabinetry and, wide plank seven-inch engineered flooring and a host of top grade finishes.

Eighteen of the 25 units at The Rhodes will have direct-to-suite elevators, providing unmatched security and exclusivity. And with all that the neighbourhood has to offer, residents will appreciate that measure of convenience.

The Rhodes is surrounded by greenspaces and walking trails, as well as boutique shopping along Eglinton Way. Plus, the Eglinton LRT is nearly complete, so residents will have transit access to anywhere in the city.

The Rhodes truly does offer a bespoke living experience for today’s most discerning buyer.

To be among the first to learn more about The Rhodes, register now at the website.


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Penguin Basement

Penguin Basements recommends that you read this before you close

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Penguin Basements recommends that you read this before you close

Congratulations. You just bought a home from a builder off a plan. Before you close, you may want to take advantage of an opportunity most people fail to consider. If you have any future plans to finish what would otherwise be a standard roughed-in basement, it’s time for you to draw up a plan of your own.

So, what does that plan look like? Think it through. How many kids do you presently have? How many more will you have? Will you need a nanny suite? Will the basement serve as a rental property or an office? How conducive is the home to building a walkout or grading for enlargement of windows? These are some good questions to ask yourself well before the house is built.

It’s the perfect time to determine aspects such as the ceiling height, potential layout options, where your windows go, the placement of the furnace or plumbing rough-ins, type of floor, custom finishes and more. If you talk to a basement renovator to explore your design, scope and costs, you can have a basement build that uniquely reflects your needs.

Let’s look at some advantages

It’s cost effective. Build from scratch and save money by doing this at the plan stage, not when you’re settled in the house. Add the cost to your mortgage. Some contractors also offer financing.

Enjoy your basement from day one. Why have a roughed-in space sit there unused when you can reap the lifestyle advantages of a custom-finished basement, not a cookie-cutter version? Your kids will thank you.

Avoid living through a renovation. Why suffer through the disruption of dust, noise and upheaval while you and your family are living in the home? Move in when it’s perfect. Even if you have to delay your move by a few weeks (which your contractor can help you with) it’s worth it.

Finally, another thing to consider is how much more house you can buy if you finish your basement to generate income as a rental property. Many basements in southern Ontario can rent for upwards of $1,500 a month to offset as much as $300,000 of your mortgage. That’s attractive math.

It all starts with a reputable contractor

Find a contractor that specializes in basements and has an established process for new builds. Get a credible referral. There’s never a need to go through the multiple quotes process as that only becomes about price. Quality, trust and track record are the true measures of whom you should consider. A contractor can even work off a sales brochure floorplan and possibly even visit the site before closing.

Once you have an idea of what you want and what you can afford, talk to your builder.

Get the basement you want, not the scaled-down, unfinished one you’re given. It’s smart from a financial and a lifestyle sense.

If you think about it, your new house isn’t finished until your basement is.

Guy Solomon is the founder and CEO of Penguin Basements, Canada’s leading basement renovation company.

He is also creator of The Second Suite Solution, a wealth-building strategy designed to help homeowners create strategies for unlocking enduring value in their property.

As a leading innovator in the area of construction solutions, Solomon is a sought after speaker and authority across a range of building related subjects.


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The Aquavista by Hines and Tridel

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The Aquavista by Hines and Tridel

The recently designed Aquavista model suite by Hines and Tridel, is a two-storey penthouse suite with a total of 2,608 sq. ft. that beautifully captures lakeside living.

This magnificent suite allows for potential homeowners to be captivated by the panoramic lake views and stunning design finishes throughout. With all elements thoughtfully designed, comfort and luxury work together cohesively. This spacious and open concept layout makes the most of the natural light as it streams through the floor-to-ceiling windows while also being equipped with an in-suite elevator.

For further information visit the website.


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Bimbrok Marble

Bimbrok Marble offers top quality marble and tile design

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Bimbrok Marble offers top quality marble and tile design

Photography: Angelo Distefano

Combine a family business with more than 30 years experience with quality craftsmanship, and top quality marble and tile design, and you get Bimbrok Marble & Granite, a Vaughan-based business that has been providing quality to personal and commercial clients since 1986. Bimbrok’s team of skilled craftsmen provides more than 100 years of combined experience, resulting in a professional, hassle-free installation.

Thirty years ago, this family-run business began with an idea of meeting and exceeding the demand for top quality marble and tile designs. It is now one of the industry leaders in manufacturing and installing any type of natural stone in the world. Marble, granite, quartz and exotics, thousands of custom and highrise jobs continue to be produced on location, each done with the very same skill, dedication and care designed to meet and exceed your expectations.

Bimbrok provides the knowledge, experience and quality to meet your needs. The confidence and trust when choosing Bimbrok as your natural stone provider and project manufacturer is a relationship that this family-owned business takes to heart. Quality materials, crafstmanship and installation means having your project perfectly delivered by Bimbrok on budget and on time.

Equality quartz/engineered stone provides some of the industry-leading materials, providing a beautiful white canvas with a gorgeous grey vein running through the slab to give it a natural look.

The featured photos show the beautiful characteristic of materials being book matched from a profile or even a waterfall, giving an eccentric look to the flowing pattern to the countertop. The featured photos show engineered quartz, natural granite stone and exotic natural quartzite.

Bimbrok Marble Importing Ltd.

965 Creditstone Rd., Vaughan



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National Homes

New GREENPRINT from National Homes makes communities more sustainable

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New GREENPRINT from National Homes makes communities more sustainable

Today, homebuyers – especially Millennial buyers – are looking for environmentally responsible options in real estate. National Homes recognized the importance of sustainability to its buyers, and began developing a program that gives buyers the reassurance of knowing that when buying a new home, they are also doing their part. That program, called “GREENPRINT,” is now about to launch in National Homes communities across the GTA.

For more than 25 years, National has lived by the mandate that “You are the Blueprint.” This customer-focussed approach has been the driving force behind the design and construction of every community National has built. And now, the company is taking it even further.

As an environmentally conscious company, National Homes utilized a third party CRESNET-certified energy evaluator to complete energy performance testing and inspections in their homes, to find where they can best improve energy efficiency and increase savings for homeowners on energy consumption. Then National responded by incorporating Green materials, features, and processes into every home they build. In addition, homebuyers can also choose from options that can save even more energy, save long term costs, and reduce their environmental impact even further.

Engineered hardwood flooring optimizes performance in your home with many eco-concious benefits.
Engineered hardwood flooring optimizes performance in your home with many eco-concious benefits.

The initial step to any Green initiative is recycling. National strives to reduce landfill waste and repurpose as many materials as possible. Non-recyclable materials are carefully sorted, and bricks and concrete that can’t be used on another project are broken down into recycled aggregate. National chooses to use renewable materials where possible and buy local, cutting back on emissions created by shipping materials while also fueling the local economy.

National then offers environmentally responsible features as standards in all its homes. From features such as programmable thermostats and low-flow faucets, to drain water heat recovery pipes and energy recovery ventilators, National ensures that your home runs as efficiently as possible for both the planet and for your wallet. Using Quartz countertops and 100-percent recycled carpets preserves natural resources by using safe man-made alternatives, and all hardwood flooring meets the high standards regarding low environmental impact.

Low-flow faucets reduce water consumption.
Low-flow faucets reduce water consumption.

Going Green provides homebuyers with even more choice. With so many Green features offered, the possibilities are nearly endless. A comprehensive series of Bright Ideas was developed with input from National homebuyers that make a home more functional, save time, and money too. Imagine cupboards that disappear when you don’t need them, drop zones that keep your home organized and lights that turn off with a voice command.

At the National Homes Design Studio, buyers can choose LED lighting packages to save energy, upgrade to a two-stage variable speed furnace, or get a smart thermostat that learns and adapts to a buyer’s needs to save money and energy. Or choose between durable, eco-friendly laminate flooring or engineered hardwood flooring to optimize your home performance while still looking sleek and beautiful.

Quartz countertops preserve natural resources as a man-made material.
Quartz countertops preserve natural resources as a man-made material.

The “GREENPRINT” to an eco-friendly home isn’t all about features and finishes. One of the most revolutionary technologies that National Homes has adopted to help keep your home as environmentally responsible is the use of innovative Panergy Wall Systems. Tested in Europe for decades, these prefabricated building envelopes reduce CO2 emissions, have superior thermal, moisture, and acoustical performance, are more fireproof, and have far higher energy-efficiency than traditional constructions. All this, paired with faster installation and significantly reduced construction waste, makes Panergy one of the smartest and Greenest options on the market. National began using this technology starting with the acclaimed Three Rivers community, which is currently in its final release and, given the very positive response, it will continue to do so into the future.

Smart thermostat systems that learns your habits and adjusts accordingly, saving money and energy.
Smart thermostat systems that learns your habits and adjusts accordingly, saving money and energy.

By offering so many Green features and finishes in its communities, National Homes is showing a commitment to sustainability as it continues to roll out new innovative ideas like the “Bright Ideas” and “GREENPRINT” programs. National strives to put clients first and work on a personal level to meet the needs of those people who prioritize environmental responsibility, all while building homes as eco-friendly as possible.

Each step taken towards efficiency and sustainability brings us closer to a Greener future – something that people worldwide work towards every day. The actions of every single person creates an impact, but having these ideals built into the core of a company such as National Homes shows that every company can do its part, and National’s “GREENPRINT” initiative proves that you can do your part to help the planet, and look stylish at the same time.

You will be able to explore National’s Green/Smart home innovations in new communities coming soon, including The Vale, a townhome community coming to Courtice; Tyandaga Heights, townhomes coming soon to Burlington’s Brant St.; and, also in Burlington, a new condo and townhome community on Plains Rd..


For further information, visit the website.


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What the coronavirus means for Canadian real estate

What the coronavirus means for Canadian real estate

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What the coronavirus means for Canadian real estate

The Canadian economy and real estate markets might not be able to escape the affects of the global coronavirus outbreak, but strong underlying fundamentals will return prosperity in the longer term.

This is among the findings of a new study from the Real Estate Investment Network (REIN), a Canadian real estate education and research firm whose members have transacted more than 39,300 properties worth more than $5.1 billion.





According to the REIN Special Report: The Coronavirus’ Impact on Canadian Real Estate, Canadian real estate will see an immediate cool-down, but a long-term lift, due to:

  • Temporary, small decrease in GDP growth
  • Increased immigration
  • Increased foreign capital
  • Increased demand
  • Leading to increased property values

These factors represent a buying opportunity now, REIN says.

Following is an edited version of the report.

There is some good news

Looking at the numbers, the future may not look especially bright, but there are also signs of hope. Take, for instance, the fact that China recently closed its last temporary coronavirus hospital because there aren’t enough new cases to support its operations. Apple has reopened all of its 42 stores across China, and the number of new cases in South Korea is on a steady decline.

Recession may be unavoidable

Earlier economic forecasts originally saw the impact of coronavirus as “modest and temporary,” at worst. But as more stringent containment measures are placed and oil price shocks take hold, the impact may be greater and may last longer than initially anticipated. Stalled exports to affected countries are set to negatively affect the country’s quarterly growth.

According to experts, the oil price shock, coupled with supply disruptions, could tip the Canadian economy into recession this year.

Nevertheless, the same report suggests that the economy is bound for a sharp recovery once the virus is contained, stimulus kicks in and pent-up market demand boosts the economy upward once again.

In current conditions, the economic implications of COVID-19 will be driven by a decline in land and international travel, along with the unprecedented oil price shock and disruptions to industry supply chains. The implications of policies, changes and impacts are numerous.

Short-term impacts on real estate

This will depend on quickly changing information and resulting policies as they unfold.

Medium-term impacts on real estate

A decline in GDP growth may impair the rental and property markets in 18 to 24 months. However, this is a unique situation and the velocity of the changing situation and responses could compress outcomes and timeframes rapidly.

Longer-term impacts on real estate

Demand for Canadian real estate will likely have a positive lift resulting from increased demand, rental shortages, demographics, immigration policies, and Canada’s position as a relatively safer harbour for capital, including foreign investment.

While there are travel restrictions in place, existing immigration policies have not yet been altered. The Canadian Federal government supports a continued upsurge in immigrant populations in the next few years. Once the outbreak is contained and the dust settles, we can postulate an increase in demand for migration to Canada, particularly from China and other Asian countries. This could then increase demand for both rentals and ownership properties, providing a further lift to real estate markets.

Post-coronavirus Canada can also mean a haven for foreign capital. All things being equal, it’s possible that post-coronavirus foreign capital becomes increasingly directed to international property investments, further boosting rental and property markets in the process.

Historically speaking, real estate tends to be a very stable asset class, even in times of turbulence. While current market conditions may not be the most conducive for purchasing properties at the moment, it is best for real estate investors to use this time to position themselves in a place where they are best suited to weather rougher times ahead.

Canadian real estate investors and property owners can prepare by following trusted sources for updates on the confusing and rapidly evolving scenario, refinancing where possible and staying calm, well-informed and alert.

Your opinion matters

Click here to tell us what you think in our HPG COVID-19 Real Estate Survey.

Related reading

Why Canadians should think long term in real estate, especially now


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Local Focus - Toronto

Toronto – in demand and on the rise

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Toronto – in demand and on the rise

Largely considered the pinnacle of the condo boom we’re seeing these days, Toronto still does boast some good lowrise home options. Supply and pricing of those homes, however, is another matter.

That’s what happens when you combine a strong economy and rising population with limited new and resale home supply.

Indeed, the Toronto Regional Real Estate Board (TRREB) is forecasting at least 10-per-cent price growth in the GTA this year to $900,000, up from $819,319 in 2019. And on the new home side, 2020 began on a strong note, with 2,106 total new home sales in January, up 65 per cent from January 2019 and 14 per cent above the 10-year average, according to the Building Industry and Land Development Association (BILD). The benchmark price for new single-family homes was $1.09 million.

Booming economy

“Toronto’s booming economy has brought with it housing affordability challenges that will continue throughout the next decade,” says Frank Clayton, senior research fellow, Ryerson University’s Centre for Urban Research & Land Development.

“Both the provincial and municipal governments must support a massive increase in the supply of all types of housing and tenures as priority number one and quickly transform the land use planning system to make this happen.”

Long considered one of the most multicultural cities in the world, Toronto boasts a collection of distinct communities, including East York, North York, Scarborough and Etobicoke.

Some of these areas, in fact, now represent areas of growth for new lowrise housing, given that larger master-planned communities of single-detached homes are fewer and farther between. Much of the focus now is on the socalled missing middle, those smaller developments such as townhomes that represent a real opportunity for new ground-oriented homes in the city.

Culture and entertainment

Find a way to buy and live in Toronto, however, and you likely will love it.

Toronto offers a vast array of culture and entertainment options, from the National Ballet of Canada, Toronto Symphony Orchestra, to the Art Gallery of Ontario, Royal Ontario Museum and more.

For the sporting sort, Toronto has a handful of pro sports teams – the Toronto Maple Leafs, Toronto Raptors, Toronto Blue Jays, Toronto FC and Toronto Argonauts – and is home to the Hockey Hall of Fame.

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is an annual event celebrating the film industry and attracts many movie stars and a-list players. And the Toronto Caribbean Carnival, formerly known as Caribana, attracts more than one million people every summer.

Other points of interest include the Toronto Zoo, the Ontario Science Centre, Harbourfront, Fort York, the Distillery District, Ripley’s Aquarium, the CN Tower and the Canadian National Exhibition.

And of course, as a large metropolitan city, great shopping areas include the St. Lawrence Market, Kensington Market, the Toronto Eaton Centre, Sherway Gardens and Yorkdale Mall.

Though a subject of some debate due to the challenges with keeping up with all the growth, transit and highway infrastructure is undergoing major expansion all over the city. The TTC moves almost two million people throughout the city every day on subway, buses, streetcars and LRT lines, while GO Transit links Toronto with the surrounding regions of the GTA. Highways include the 400 series (401, 403, 404, 407 and 427), the Don Valley Parkway and the Queen Elizabeth Highway.

Location, location, location

This provincial capital of Ontario and the most populated city in Canada is located on the shores of Lake Ontario; Population 2,954,024

Key landmarks

  • CN Tower
  • High Park
  • Ontario Science Centre
  • Ripley’s Aquarium
  • Toronto Eaton Centre

Select housing developments

East Station by Mattamy Homes

Fairfield Towns by Plaza

Lake & Town by Menkes

Origins of Don Mills by Mattamy Homes

Terraces at Eglinton by Nascent Developments

The Belmont Residences by Caliber Homes

The New Lawrence Heights by Context Dev. Inc.

The New Lawrence Heights by Metropia

Twelve on the Ravine by Geranium


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Getting the most out of your lighting

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Getting the most out of your lighting

Lighting can have a major impact on the look and feel of your home. While lighting obviously has a function and purpose, it can also become a great feature in your home to highlight focal points and create ambiance.

To create a successful lighting plan for your renovation you need to consider a layered approach. By layering lighting in a space, you are able to create the flexibility of different vibes and functions. However, to do so you need to have a general understanding of the four basic categories of lighting: ambient, task, accent and decorative.

Ambient lighting illuminates any given space and permits an ease of mobility throughout a room. Task lighting, as seems obvious, affords you additional lighting in specific areas devoted to a particular task or function. Accent lighting can be used to highlight artwork, decor or perhaps architectural features within a space; it can be a great way to highlight a focal point in a room. Finally, we have decorative lighting, which is simply an accessory to your room, or the finishing touch. However, another source of lighting that should not be dismissed in design is natural light. It’s the most inexpensive, environmentally friendly and sought-after form of light available. Many new condo and home builds today are being designed and constructed with wonderfully large window features that allow for maximum natural light even in small spaces. Natural light not only services the functional aspect of light in design, it also helps to create a warm and inviting aesthetic for your home.

In most renovations today we find that recessed pot lights are the go-to option when looking to upgrade lighting in a home. However, for condo-dwellers this is not necessarily feasible as ceilings are mostly concrete. When looking to renovate your condo there are some ceiling details that may allow you to add pot lights. If your ceiling height permits, such features as a tray ceiling or a coffered ceiling can be a nice way to not only add interest to your space, but also provide the space required to add recessed pot lighting. If this is not an option for you, consider the addition of track lighting. The track lighting systems on the market today have a far more upscale look to them, with many more size and style options than we have previously seen, while being far more user-friendly for the condo environment.

Whatever your lighting inspiration, be sure to pay adequate attention to your lighting plan and needs so that you not only create a space that is safe and functional but use light to create a warm and inviting ambiance in your home.

Linda Mazur is an award-winning, nationally publicized designer and Principal of Linda Mazur Design Group.

With almost two decades of experience this in demand multi-disciplinary design firm is known for creating relaxed stylish spaces and full-scale design builds within Toronto, the GTA and throughout Canada.



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