Tag Archives: Horseshoe Valley

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In Conversation With… Mark Palumbo, Sales Manager, Democrat Homes

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In Conversation With… Mark Palumbo, Sales Manager, Democrat Homes

If COVID-19 has done anything, it’s convinced some homebuyers that more is necessary. Bigger homes, larger lots, more privacy and personal space. Or, as Mark Palumbo, sales manager at Democrat Homes’ Forest Heights Estates development, describes it, to live without being “squished on top of one another.”

Homes Magazine sat down with Palumbo for his insights into these and other matters at Democrat Homes, as well as his background in acting. Yes, acting.

Let’s start with an easy one: How’s business these days?

Business is booming. Our beautiful Forest Heights Estates site is situated 20 minutes north of Barrie in Horseshoe Valley. Every lot that we offer here is nestled into the trees and gives people the space both on their lot and in their home that is so hard to find in the city.

There is no need to live crammed into a subdivision like sardines where you can touch your neighbour’s house from your window. From the minute you drive into the site, the first thing you notice is the incredible towering trees on the 100-ft. frontages each one of our lots provides.

People have really begun to realize that it’s possible to live in a stunning community like this with the space and house you’ve always wanted. The affordability and lifestyle you get with this community is what has fueled the steady traffic we have seen at the model home.

How did the pandemic affect construction and sales at Democrat Homes?

It has been a crazy year! Our model home remained closed through the early months of the pandemic. We were lucky in that construction was one of the few industries allowed to continue working. We have moved to an appointment-based structure at our sales office, which allows us to control the flow of people coming through, as well as effectively clean and sanitize our model home after each visit. We also provide masks, gloves and hand sanitizing stations for people. Safety is a priority, and something we take very seriously.

How has the company ‘pivoted,’ in terms of virtual sales and other changes during the pandemic?

Almost all of the appointments I have now are set up virtually. All the information a potential purchaser needs can be found on democrathomes.com. We made it a priority to make the website as functional and informative as possible. You can view everything from floorplans and site maps to quick move-in options and virtual tours right on the site.

What distinguishes Democrat Homes and its product from what else is available in the market?

Democrat Homes has always prided itself on offering people a better home on an incredible lot for much less money than you could ever hope to find in Toronto markets. We want to show people that the home of your dreams is possible and it’s just an hour away from the city.

But beyond that, we are a familyrun business that cares about our customers and the product we build for them. With so many other home builders out there, the process of buying and designing a new home can be cold and joyless.

We offer a more personal experience that makes buying a home special. I am the purchaser’s main liaison throughout the entire process, from sales to house design. This is the biggest purchase people make in their entire lives, and I strive to make the experience the best it can be.

You’re building in non-GTA markets – Horseshoe Valley and Orillia. How are those markets doing?

Better than ever. In these crazy times, people have begun to realize the importance of working remotely. We offer incredible homes in beautiful areas with the highest quality services around. Bell FIBE is available at all our sites, offering lightning fast Internet speeds, so working from home is an easy transition. Not only do you have the flexibility to realize your remote working options, but our sites are surrounded by the most incredible year-round activities. Lake Simcoe is just 10 minutes away, and our site is situated with direct access to hundreds of kilometres of walking, ATV, snowmobiling and snowshoeing trails. We are a five-minute drive to Horseshoe Valley ski resort and six different golf courses. The possibilities are endless, and the markets reflect that.

Some experts say larger detached homes on sizeable lots, in more remote locations like yours, will be a growing market in future, given everything COVID-19 has taught us in terms of working from home and personal space. How do you see this?

The future is now! COVID-19 has made people understand the issues that come with living squished on top of one another. Democrat Homes offers empty nesters a tranquil setting and stunning home to retire in. We offer families the space for their kids to play and explore nature instead of being cooped up in a small home devoid of living space, or a 500-sq.-ft. apartment. There really is something for everyone here in Forest Heights Estates, and there has never been a better time to make your dream home a reality.

What’s next for Democrat Homes?

We are currently focused on the two brand new sites we have just begun: Forest Heights Estates in Horseshoe Valley, and Professor’s Walk in Orillia. But, the future looks bright! We plan to be providing quality-built homes to the people of Ontario for many years to come.

And on a personal note…

When I’m not at the office, I am: A husband and soon to be father!

My greatest inspiration in this business is: My father, who started this business with my uncle almost 20 years ago now. He is the best man I know, and I have learned so much from him. He inspires me every day to be better at everything I do, from our business to home life.

If I wasn’t in the homebuilding industry, I would: Be an actor. I studied acting at an arts high school in Toronto, then went on to get a university degree in dramatic arts. I’ve been in a ton of plays, commercials and even had a TV show all about Canadian beer that I cohosted with my brother Chris.

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Forest Heights
Horseshoe Valley
Estate homes

Professor’s Walk
Orillia
Detached homes

democrathomes.com

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In Conversation With… Mike Parker, Vice-President, Sales and Marketing Georgian International Build Corp.

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In Conversation With… Mike Parker, Vice-President, Sales and Marketing Georgian International Build Corp.

Some homebuyers, be they empty-nesters or those just looking for a little more privacy, love space. Quieter locations, larger homes, bigger lots… it’s as much a lifestyle choice as it is a new home selection. Georgian International, with unique communities in locations such as Blue Mountain and Horseshoe Valley, is one builder that caters to this demand.

It’s early days yet, but some experts suggest these very homebuyers might become a fast-growing demographic in a post-pandemic market.

And Georgian, offering “more than a floorplan, but an opportunity for a more balanced way of life,” seems well positioned to deliver.

Mike Parker, vice-president of sales and marketing, discusses the Georgian approach – pre- and post-COVID-19.

When we last spoke, for our Special Report: Outlook 2020 in our January issue, you were quite bullish on the outlook for 2020. How were things unfolding before COVID-19… pretty much as you expected?

Yes, we had a positive start to the year. All of our sites were essentially in the same position, with final lots and suites in current phases well positioned to be sold out by the end of the first quarter. We continue to have strong interest in our communities with people connecting with us daily, collecting information and asking questions, however, people are more cautious to move forward with a purchase at this time. Due to demand, we opened our final phase at Mountain House in Blue Mountain just prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. Obviously, this altered our outcome, however, a good percentage of our purchasers continued with their purchase.

The pandemic has obviously changed everything, at least for the time being. How is Georgian Communities operating during this time – for example, accepting sales centre visits by appointment only, giving virtual tours…

Like all businesses, we’ve had to adapt to new health and safety measures to help ensure the well-being of our staff, and of course the public. Our production team continues to construct our homes and condos, albeit under stricter working protocols. We’ve increased communication with our onsite team to ensure they and our trade partners have the necessary support to conduct their activities safely. Currently, our sales centres and model homes are closed, but we have kept our regular sales centre hours the same with our team working remotely. We previously introduced virtual tours of our model homes and we connect with people through phone, video conference and, of course, email. We’ve had a 30-per-cent increase in website registrations with people spending more time online. This is positive, as it keeps our team busy with follow-up and one-on-one engagement.

And how is all that going?

Our immediate priority is to maintain and promote personal engagement with people. In many aspects, we are conducting our sales operation in the same manner we always have. It’s not unusual for the majority of our initial communication to be done remotely. However, what’s obviously missing, and what I feel will always be important, is the tangible aspects of visiting us. Walking through our model homes, taking in the views, enjoying the local restaurants and shops to get a sense of the area, and of course the in-person interaction with our team are all important components of our sales process. Technology is a tool, and one we absolutely could not operate business without. However, for us, and the nature-rich based communities we have, we want people to be able to experience what we have in person. We look forward to this returning. What we are offering is so much more than a floorplan. It’s an opportunity for a new, more balanced way of life.

Given that your community locations are outside the GTA, how conducive is that to success when the market returns to “normal”?

We are very optimistic that we will see an increase in demand for all of our communities. Windfall and Mountain House in Blue Mountain offer private enclaves away from urban congestion, close to all daily necessities, and set in one of the most beautiful four-season recreational playgrounds.

Similarly, Braestone offers large estate lots set in the picturesque Horseshoe Valley region, another four-season playground. Many of our residents have the ability to work from home, and we suspect this trend will continue as companies have been forced to provide and embrace remote working solutions. We are extremely confident that we have the locations, lifestyle and homes that people desire and, when individual consumer confidence returns, we will remain well positioned.

What is the status of Windfall? How is that project coming along?

Windfall continues to be one of the most sought-after communities in Blue Mountain. Located next to the mountain and within minutes of the slope-side village, it continues to exceed our expectations. To date, we have delivered more than 250 homes and, assuming we will be able to continue building, our construction pipeline is full through the second quarter of 2021. We are not delaying the launch of our next phase, which is scheduled for May/June 2020. You can literally walk to the chair lift from this part of our community and people are anxiously awaiting the opportunity to live here. We have, of course, been in touch with our potential future homeowners to gauge their interest, given the current circumstance, and most plan on moving ahead when we do, in fact, release.

And Braestone?

Braestone is a country estate community located in the Horseshoe Valley region with convenient access to neighbouring Barrie and Orillia. It offers large estate lots with beautiful natural amenities such as berry and pumpkin patches, a maple syrup producing sugar shack, kilometres of trails and unbelievable value compared to the GTA. Residents truly enjoy a life altering style of living, and we believe this community will increase in demand as more and more people look for options further away from the city. Similar to Windfall, we are not delaying the release of our next phase. In fact, we’ve taken advanced reservations on 40 per cent of the upcoming release. We are extremely excited about the escalated increase in interest for Braestone.

How will you welcome buyers back, when things return to normal and the market “reopens”? For example, will you offer any incentives, price discounts or free upgrades…?

We’ve always positioned our homes to offer value that exceeds their price and to be extremely competitive in the market. We have no plans to discount pricing, however, we will continue to offer decor incentives as we always have, as a means to help our customers obtain their priority upgrades.

Our sales philosophy is based on sharing, not selling. Our team simply shares what our communities have to offer, what lifestyle improvements our residents experience, and we provide information through a more holistic approach. Each community we build is designed to create positive interactions between neighbours – places for adventure, dreams, inspiration and coming together in shared experiences. We look forward to this being normal again.

What’s next for Georgian? What other new opportunities are you considering bringing to market?

We are very excited about our future development in the village of Craighurst, which is currently in the planning stages. Located minutes from Hwy. 400 and just 15 kms from north Barrie, this small town community will be embedded in nature, yet minutes to city conveniences. Additionally, we continue to study opportunities within “our own backyard” in the Grey and Simcoe County regions.

georgianinternational.com

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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.

DEMOCRAT HOMES
Forest Heights Estates

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


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Editor's Choice: Georgian International's Braestone

Georgian International’s Braestone walks the talk in the Horseshoe Valley

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Georgian International’s Braestone walks the talk in the Horseshoe Valley

What began as a vision of a truly unique country estate community in the Horseshoe Valley, #BraestoneLife is now a beautiful reality for the fortunate families who live here. Happily, there is still room for more residents as this welcoming community unfolds.

The Skating Pond has already seen many a pick-up hockey game and figure skating practice. The Field of Dreams is the site of home runs marked by corn stalks. Spring is heralded by maple sugaring at the Sugar Shack. The Christmas Tree farm is growing, and the pumpkin patch is on track for fall. The many lifestyle amenities that made living at Braestone look so extraordinary on paper are now in place. Braestone calls them Remarkables, life-enriching amenities that foster a deeper, richer connection with the land.

From the beginning, Barrie-based Georgian International understood that building a community out of nothing takes time, even if the backdrop is a remarkable 556 acres of green fields, lush woodlands and rolling hills. Intending to set traditions that will take hold and continue, the company has held community events; summer corn roasts with live music; a pancake breakfast fundraiser; horse-drawn sleigh rides on Family Day; Braestone maple syrup fundraiser; any excuse for a get together.

More than brick and mortar are the connections between the residents who live here, and these will naturally build and evolve over time. With more than 100 homes now built and occupied, a deep sense of community is forming around residents’ shared love of the natural setting unlike any other and the activities that the land affords them.

When complete, Braestone will consist of a total of 229 homes, each one a unique expression of its owners, yet designed to create an appealing and consistent streetscape using progression architecture around a central core. Authentic gas lanterns will light the porches of these modern interpretation of farmhouse-style detached homes.

Everyone has a unique take on life, and being in the Horseshoe Valley in the heart of everything you love, offers you a world of activities that will satisfy most everyday needs, and more. Braestone is close to Barrie and Orillia, with numerous malls, shops, markets to choose from. Both centres boast stunning waterfront parks to enjoy the beaches, as well as scheduled events and festivals. Golfing enthusiasts don’t have to go far to tee off – Braestone Club and other courses are nearby. Outdoor fun doesn’t end when the snow falls, either. Ski resorts are dotted around the local neighbourhood and Blue Mountain is a short drive away.

GEORGIAN INTERNATIONAL
Braestone

You are invited to join the story. Some homesites are still available in Phase 4, so hurry in for a site tour. The weather’s fine and the welcome is warm. For further information visit the website.


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Braestone

Braestone, where Georgian walks the talk at Horseshoe Valley

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Braestone, where Georgian walks the talk at Horseshoe Valley

What began as a vision of what a unique country estate community in the Horseshoe Valley should be, and look like, is now a reality. New home purchasers have discovered the #BraestoneLife, and as this welcoming community unfolds, more residents are choosing Braestone by Georgian International.

Fulfilling the vision

From the beginning, Barrie-based Georgian International understood that building a community out of nothing would take time. Even when the backdrop was 556 acres of lush woodlands, fields and rolling hills, it would take ingenuity and commitment to bring it to fruition.

Georgian has not only created the community that they envisioned, but they have introduced traditions and celebrations, which they hope that the residents will embrace on a yearly basis. To date, neighbours have enjoyed a summer corn roast with live music, a pancake breakfast fundraiser, a horse drawn sleigh ride on family day, and Braestone’s maple syrup fundraiser.

At the skating pond, pick-up hockey games and family get togethers have become the norm. The field of dreams is the site of home runs marked by corn stalks. Spring is heralded by maple sugaring at the sugar shack, the pumpkin patch is on track for fall, and the Christmas tree farm is growing. The lifestyle amenities that seemed so extraordinary on paper, are now in place at Braestone. As a result, Georgian has named these life-enriching amenities the ‘remarkables’.

More than bricks and mortar

When complete, Braestone will consist of a total of 229 homes. Each will be designed to create an appealing, and consistent, streetscape by using progression architecture around a central core. The community projects a modern interpretation of farmhouse-style detached homes; however, each porch is lit with authentic gas lanterns.

More than 100 homes are now occupied. A deep sense of community is forming around the residents’ shared appreciation of the natural setting, as well as the remarkable activities that are available to them.

Not only does Braestone offer a unique setting in the Horseshoe Valley, but it’s easily accessible to Barrie and Orillia for everyday amenities. Both centres have an abundance of services and shopping options, along with stunning waterfront parks where scheduled events and festivals take place. Golfing enthusiasts don’t have to go far to tee off with the Braestone Club and other courses are nearby. And, of course, come winter, a selection of ski resorts are close at hand.

The weather is fine and the welcome is warm at Braestone. Select homesites are still available in Phase 4.

CONTACT INFORMATION

braestone.ca


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Georgian International - Braestone

Georgian International walks the talk at Braestone in Horseshoe Valley

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Georgian International walks the talk at Braestone in Horseshoe Valley

What began as a vision of a truly unique country estate community in Horseshoe Valley, #BraestoneLife is now a beautiful reality for the fortunate families who live there. Happily, there is still room for more residents as this welcoming community unfolds.

The skating pond has already seen many a pick-up hockey game and figure skating practice. The field of dreams is the site of home runs marked by corn stalks. Spring is heralded by maple sugaring at the sugar shack. The Christmas tree farm is growing, the berries are ready to be picked, and the pumpkin patch is on track for fall. The many lifestyle amenities that made living at Braestone look so extraordinary on paper are now in place. Braestone calls them Remarkables, life-enriching amenities that foster a deeper, richer connection with the land.

Mike Parker, vice-president of sales and marketing for Georgian International‘s real estate division, was an early purchaser before he joined the company. He says, “My backyard faces Braestone Farm and, as I sit on my porch, I marvel at the progress of this community.”

From the beginning, Barrie-based Georgian International understood that building a community out of nothing takes time, even if the backdrop is a remarkable 556 acres of green fields, lush woodlands and rolling hills. Intending to set traditions that will take hold and continue, the company has held community events: Summer corn roasts with live music; a pancake breakfast fundraiser; horse drawn sleigh rides on Family Day; Braestone maple syrup fundraiser; any excuse for a get together. Staying true to the intention and sustaining it through the building years to give it stability is important to everyone at Braestone.

More than brick and mortar are the connections between the residents who live there, and those that will naturally build and evolve over time. With more than 100 homes now built and occupied, a deep sense of community is forming around residents’ shared love of the natural setting unlike any other and the activities that the land affords them.

Groups have naturally started to form, giving expression to this vibrancy and lifestyle that draws residents to Braestone. A hiking club is one recent example, who meet at a set time before setting off to explore the nature preserve that winds through Braestone. Dog owners, too, are becoming friends as they walk the fields and trails – and so are their four-legged pals.

“The people who live here are inherently nature lovers and enjoy being outdoors, so it’s natural they would join with their neighbours for a hike,” says Mike, adding, “Although there is still work to do, the vision has taken root and is being enjoyed among the families who now call this remarkable community home.”

The children of Braestone have access to many great schools nearby, including the Oro-Medonte Forest School at Horseshoe Resort where kids aged two to 12 spend anywhere from half a day to full day outdoors exploring and learning amid nature’s splendour.

When complete, Braestone will consist of a total of 229 homes, each one a unique expression of its owners yet designed to create an appealing and consistent streetscape using progression architecture around a central core. Authentic gas lanterns will light the porches of these modern interpretation of farmhouse-style detached homes. Interiors reflect the natural setting and include classic quality tongue-and-groove engineered hardwood flooring, with designer tile in the foyers, bathrooms and mudrooms. Optional freestanding tubs are set in front of dreamy views over the valley, inviting a relaxing soak to refresh.

Everyone has a unique take on life and being in Horseshoe Valley in the heart of everything you love offers you a world of activities that will satisfy most everyday needs, and more. Braestone is close to Barrie and Orillia with numerous malls, shops, markets to choose from. Both centres boast stunning waterfront parks to enjoy the beaches as well as scheduled events and festivals. Golfing enthusiasts don’t have to go far to tee off – Braestone Club and other courses are nearby. Outdoor fun doesn’t end when the snow falls either. Ski resorts are dotted around the local neighbourhood and Blue Mountain is a short drive away.

Braestone is well on its way to becoming one of the prettiest new home and lifestyle communities in the country, offering vitality and activity. You are invited to join the story. Some homesites are still available in Phase 4, so hurry in for a site tour. The weather’s fine and the welcome is warm.

Georgian International. Unlike others.

One of Simcoe County’s most influential and recognized names, Georgian International is a dynamic leader in automotive retail and a dominant real estate investor in commercial and residential opportunities, including Windfall, Mountain House at Windfall and Braestone. Passionate about giving back to the community, Georgian has made it their mission to create legacy communities of artfully designed architecture inspired by small town Canada, with amenities that improve peoples’ lives, giving people that sense of home ensconced among mountains, lakes, Christmas tree parks, skating ponds. Homes and hometown communities that truly exceed buyers’ dreams.

GEORGIAN INTERNATIONAL

For further information visit the website.


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Georgian International

Georgian International offers remarkable communities in Barrie-Collingwood-Orillia area

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Georgian International offers remarkable communities in Barrie-Collingwood-Orillia area

Active families and retirees are heading in droves to the Barrie-Collingwood-Orillia region for its natural beauty and world-class attractions. Once here, they are delighted to discover that Georgian International, a visionary developer with strong roots in the neighbourhood offers exactly what they’re in search of; thoughtful communities that are an authentic reflection of small town Canada.

Braestone at Horseshoe Valley. Country Estate, rethought

Gas-fired lanterns. A pumpkin patch. A Christmas tree farm. A baseball diamond encircled by corn stalks à la Field of Dreams. These idyllic features complement the farmhouse-style homes that make up the Braestone estate community, one hour north of the GTA in Horseshoe Valley.

Braestone
Braestone

Developed by Georgian International, the 229 homes sit on 556 acres in the Oro-Medonte township. These ingredients, known as “remarkables,” truly capture the uniqueness of living here that appeals to prospective buyers.

Bringing a unique approach to Ontario real estate is a hallmark of the company. “What we’re doing is not what other developers are doing,” says Mike Parker, vice-president, sales and marketing for Georgian International’s Real Estate Division. “In the planning process, we came up with community features that will enhance people’s lives, that will be part of their active lifestyles.”

Bathroom at Braestone
Bathroom at Braestone

For example, a toboggan hill is a family-friendly add-on, and a sugar shack can teach residents about the age-old practice of tapping maple trees. “Braestone buyers are typically nature lovers and enjoy being outdoors,” Parker notes, “and that’s why we created remarkables like a skating pond, a berry patch.”

Parker adds that they regularly hold events for the community with the intention that the traditions will continue long after the development is built out. Summer corn roasts with live music, a pancake breakfast fundraiser, and family day horse drawn sleigh rides are just a few.

Livingroom at Braestone
Livingroom at Braestone

Besides successful sales, Braestone’s eye-catching offerings and impressive amenities are getting noticed by the industry. It was recognized as Best New Home Community of the Year in 2016 by the Canadian Home Builders’ Association, and its Discovery Centre was named 2016 Best Lowrise Homes Sales Office in Canada by the CHBA. Most recently, the “Thoroughbred” model was awarded Best Two-Storey Design up to 2,500 sq. ft. by the Ontario Homes Builders Association.

Interior flourishes make the Braestone homes visually appealing, to say the least: Floors come complete with tongue-and-groove maple or oak, and porcelain tile is found in the bathrooms, foyers and mudrooms. Master bathrooms showcase an island-style soaker tub.

Windfall at Blue Mountain

Winner of the Simcoe County Home Builders Awards’ Project Of The Year 2017. Georgian International’s popular Windfall is a 609-home community at the base of Blue Mountain that attracts buyers looking for “comfort, character, culture and community with a relaxed way of life,” says Parker.

He notes that “it’s a place where nature and neighbourhood are in perfect balance… with community trails, Georgian Bay on one side, and the Niagara Escarpment on the other the beauty of the natural landscape is simply amazing.”

Windfall
Windfall

In the heart of the community will be The Shed, a barn-inspired gathering place that will form the hub for residents to network, socialize and relax. Cold- and hot-water outdoor pools are planned to further promote relaxed living.

“The semis and detached homes differ from the look of Braestone units with more mountain-like colours and shades,” Parker remarks. But both will feature a trademark flourish for Georgian International developments: Gas-powered lanterns.

“There’s a romantic feel, an ambiance, to lanterns that is special and not done by anyone else,” Parker says.

Buyers can select from well-appointed standard features or upgrade interior design packages that coordinate interior finishes, including flooring, cabinetry, countertops, lighting and other fixtures. started moving in this spring, beginning in May.

Bridge at Windfall
Bridge at Windfall

When fully completed, the 230-unit Mountain House will consist of two-, three, and four-storey buildings. The terrace suites boast a chalet-style and complemented by a community building, a bike repair station, a sauna and relaxation room, hot and cold pools and an idyllic setting. “Like all our projects, the standard features, such as full, glass-walled showers and exterior gas lanterns, go above and beyond expectations,” says Parker.

Mountain House
Mountain House

Close to Windfall and Mountain House are the historic areas of Collingwood, Blue Mountain Resort and Wasaga Beach, as all three regions are “remarkables” onto themselves for Ontario residents. Nearby activities include boating on Georgian Bay, fishing, snowboarding, ATV trail tours, water parks, golfing, sleigh rides and guided snowshoe hikes.

Georgian International. At home in beautiful Simcoe County

Georgian International is not just carving its own path in the real estate business, which began in 1985. The diverse company’s divisions include Georgian Chevrolet Buick GMC and Air Georgian.

Georgian International has made it its mission to create communities of artfully designed architecture inspired by small town Canada, with amenities that improve peoples’ lives, giving people that sense of home ensconced among mountains, lakes, Christmas tree parks, and skating ponds.

And if that isn’t being Canadian at its most grassroots, we don’t know what is.

GEORGIAN INTERNATIONAL

For further information visit the Braestone, Windfall and Mountain House websites.


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Democrat Homes

At Forest Heights Estates, by Democrat Homes, luxury has never been so affordable

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At Forest Heights Estates, by Democrat Homes, luxury has never been so affordable

Democrat Homes is creating one of the most exclusive and desirable communities in the GTA, just one hour north of the city and perfectly situated between Orillia and Barrie. Forest Heights Estates, in Horseshoe Valley, offers brick and stone bungalow and two-storey single-family homes on treed ravine lots, nestled in nature but handily close to all modern amenities. Imagine hiking, skiing or golfing, just moments away, while big box stores, boutiques, restaurants, waterfront, schools, hospitals and a major university are a short drive nearby.

And then there are the homes! Classic two- or three-garage bungalows with nine-ft. ceilings, upgraded kitchens and finishes, sited on sprawling 100- by 200-ft. (minimum) sized lots. These single level homes range from 1,615 to 2,821 sq. ft. and incorporate large picture windows with ample views of the stunning landscape…of your own backyard! Other standard features include: Hardwood flooring, gas fireplace, granite counters, superior ceramics and designer finishes. Whether you just like the one-floor convenience or have had with climbing stairs, these are the perfect models for you.

Of course, who can argue with the unmatched beauty, refinement and elegance of a classic two-storey estate home – especially in Forest Heights. The refined town-and-country abodes have found an ideal placement in picturesque Horseshoe Valley. These stunners offer high-pitched roofs, two- and three-car garages, large verandas and distinct windows on their brick and stone exteriors. Step inside to discover sizeable foyers, nine-ft. ceilings (some with vaulted and cathedral treatments), wood, tile and berber carpeted floors, large master bedrooms plus two or three additional generous bedrooms, and so much more. There are six exceptional models to choose from, ranging in size from approximately 2,400 to 3,500 sq. ft., one more beautiful than the other.

Forest Heights is a real neighbourhood with fantastically fit empty-nesters and forever young families coming together in a celebration of fine living and fabulous surroundings. All homeowners will enjoy convenient access from Horseshoe Valley Road. And the homes are perfectly situated on a quiet main road as well as several one-of-a-kind cul-de-sacs. Everything you need is right there, or conveniently close by. The area’s famous ski hills and renowned golf courses are literally a five-minute drive away!

Finally, you should know that these Estate Homes are available at half the Toronto price, starting from the low $700,000s. Phase 1 is almost 50 per cent sold, but a generous selection of houses and lots are still available. Spring is the perfect time to find your forever home in Forest Heights.

DEMOCRAT HOMES
Forest Heights Estates

To register call (705.835.0354), email sales manager Mark Palumbo or visit the website.


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EDITOR'S CHOICE: Georgian International

Georgian International creating remarkable communities in the Blue Mountains

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Georgian International creating remarkable communities in the Blue Mountains

Award-winning Braestone in Horseshoe Valley and Windfall and Mountain House in the Blue Mountains, by Georgian International, are among Ontario’s most exceptional and desirable projects.

MOUNTAIN HOUSE

It’s time to take your place in the ongoing story of a best seller. A new chapter has unfolded at Blue with Mountain House at Windfall. This exclusive mountain community was created over a sprawling 10 acres, slope-side, in the centre of nature’s four-season playground. Just minutes away from the shops of Blue Mountain Village, the beaches of Georgian Bay, the historic Town of Collingwood and some of Ontario’s most compelling natural attractions, Mountain House offers Blue Mountain chalet living as it was meant to be.

Authentic gas-fired lanterns will welcome you home. You’ll appreciate the natural stone accents and heavy timber frames of the 12 buildings that make up Mountain House, which are inspired by the surrounding forests and mountains. Inside the 230 suites you’ll find gleaming modern kitchens, spacious private terraces, and high-end features and finishes to complement your elegant mountain lifestyle.

What makes Mountain House truly an escape though, is the private club-like four-season amenity facility. At Zephyr Springs, the community’s own Nordic spa-inspired space, you can soak up the gorgeous views of the mountains while you unwind in the sauna, hot and cold pools and source pool. The relaxation and fitness room and extensive landscaped lounge area are the perfect place for yoga, stretching, reading or quiet reflection. The Après Lodge is a secluded social space where family and neighbours can connect, featuring conversation seating, an outdoor wood-burning fireplace and a bike tune-up and parking area. At Mountain House, wellness isn’t a buzzword; it’s a way of life.

Explore Mountain House now and witness how you can live in nature year-round without the heavy lifting of home maintenance. Envision all of the incredible adventures to come from the exhilarating to the sublime – hiking, skiing, mountain biking, rock climbing, golfing and swimming to laying back in the warmth of the Nordic baths surrounded by snow. Simply magical.

Construction is well underway with Georgian International working to release its second of three phases this year due to strong demand. Units range from 675 to 1,150 square feet and start from low $300,000s.

GEORGIAN INTERNATIONAL
Mountain House

Register online today for Georgian’s Registrant Preview Opening!

705.293.0954

MountainHouseWindfall.ca


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h_nov2018_icw_fi

In conversation with David Bunston, president of Georgian International Land Corp.

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In conversation with David Bunston, president of Georgian International Land Corp.

By Gale Beeby

Georgian International started as a small aeronautics company, founded in part by Jamie Massie and David Bunston. The company has grown since it was founded in 1984 and now Air Georgian operates 19 aircrafts on scheduled passenger and charter flights, is a partner with Air Canada Express and also performs aircraft maintenance, management and training services. Based at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, it is now ranked as its fourth largest user by traffic frequency.

That’s a success story.

And from that storied beginning, Georgian International has taken off with automotive and real estate businesses, as well.

Bunston — who is executive vice president, real estate, for Georgian International, as well as president of Georgian International Land Corporation — has been friends with Massie since they were kids. He also carries a pedigree as a third-generation member of a real estate family.

He’s also a really nice guy.

Georgian’s commitment to quality and craftsmanship — as well as unique designs — has landed Georgian numerous awards, including being awarded the Best New Home Community in Canada by the Canadian Home Builders’ Association for Braestone Estates in Horseshoe Valley in 2016.

Georgian International took a very holistic approach when developing Braestone and the result is a unique. What Georgian calls Remarkables are amenities that have grown naturally out of the community’s own landscape. That includes a 566-acre working farm that includes a fruit orchard, berry patch and Christmas tree farm. Other Remarkables include are horseback riding, Nordic skiing, a maple sugar bush, beehives, a pond that is used for ice skating in the winter, a toboggan hill, a treehouse and a hilltop observatory called Starfall.

Also in development are Windfall at Blue and Mountain House at Windfall, both located in the Town of Blue Mountains.

Q: How did Georgian International move from the aviation industry to real estate?

A: We were well positioned to add real estate development to what we do — there is still a lot of runway left. Aviation is, obviously, a large part of what we do, but real estate is becoming a bigger part of our focus. Jamie Massie and I were childhood friends and over the last 30 years our friendship has evolved into a partnership.

Although I grew up in the GTA, I had a lot of connection to the area of Collingwood and Blue Mountains, where as a family we spent a lot of time. It’s an area that is close to my heart.

Q: Whose idea was the holistic approach to the development of Braestone?

A: It really was a team vision. In the early days we knew we had a unique property and that we could create something remarkable and do something different and capture the imagination of buyers.

Braestone is unique in that it appeals not just to the 705 area, but also the 905. It’s close to the GTA but still remote and we embraced the architectural style of the farmhouses, barns and sheds that are common in Oro-Medonte. Each of the lots are 3/4 to 1 1/4 acres lots.

As exciting as Braestone is, I’m excited by all three of our current projects — Windfall and Mountain House condos, as well.

Q: Who are your buyers?

A: Geographically, most of our buyers don’t see themselves living in this area until they come and see it. It’s a great place and once they experience it, they want to spend the rest of their lives here, and that includes parents, kids and grandparents. The multi-generational aspect of our buyers is quite unique.

There is a great sense of community here and we appeal to those who embrace an active lifestyle. Georgian has continued to keep the management under their banner, and we organize a number of social functions to get residents involved and connected.

We are committed to Simcoe County and Collingwood and the Town of Blue Mountains are our backyard. It is more accessible to the GTA than other resort areas, and there is so much to do — it’s an interesting place to be during all four season.

Q: Do you think that the real estate market is going to slow down?

A: We haven’t seen any pull back in market activity, but here we are still benefitting from the high prices of homes in the GTA, where many people are feeling disenfranchised. Plus the traffic congestion and other issues facing large urban areas and sending people out of the GTA in search of community.

I believe in Simcoe County, its got lots of growth potential and we are well positioned to take advantage and create other remarkable communities.

Q: Georgian is known for its philanthropic endeavours. How does that align with the company’s philosophy?

A: We believe we should invest in the community and the people who support it and not just by writing a cheque. The executive team and our employees are encouraged — and do — volunteer hundreds of hours to community initiatives. We embrace the importance of community and philanthropy.

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GeorgianInternational.com

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