It’s preview day here at Thurston Street in Burnaby, and as VIP registrants get their first look at these homes, the mood is distinctly upbeat.
This is the debut collection of Anthem Properties’ Neighbourhood Series, and the reaction from visitors leaves no question these West Coast contemporary homes are turning heads and winning hearts.
“That kitchen was amazing — can’t you just imagine having mom and dad over for dinner? And the master bedroom is huge.” The woman emerging from Thurston Street’s presentation centre gives a sigh of delighted anticipation. “I’ll have a real closet again, and you’ve got to love that shower — I thought it was marble for sure, but porcelain tile is way easier to look after. And that storage space under the stairs would be great for…” the rest of her comment is lost as she and her partner disappear round a corner.
Okay, I definitely need to check this out for myself.
Good Living By Design
Peter Edmonds, Anthem’s director of marketing, greets me on the front porch of the first display home: a two-level, walk-up that marries the inviting charm of West Coast architecture with a dramatic, distinctly contemporary colour palette of dark brown-on-grey with cedar accents. I’m instantly thinking this would be a great place for al fresco summer dinners with friends and family or luxuriating with a latté and the Sunday morning paper. So go ahead and call me a romantic.
Inside, Thurston Street’s no compromise style is immediately evident. This is a home designed for living well. The ambiance is — well, comfortable and stylish sums it up. This floorplan is wider and more square than usual which means a generously-sized dining room table fits neatly to one side between the staircase and foyer. The result introduces a touch of Old World elegance and allows an easy, unimpeded flow between kitchen and living room—an airy, delightfully welcome change from the long, narrow design of more typical townhomes. Plenty of space for full-sized furniture too.
A young man is currently ensconced at the eating bar watching anxiously while a silver-haired woman examines the soft-close cabinets, the pullout hood fan, the under-sink storage, and the pantry wall beside a full-sized fridge with the meticulous attention particular to a caring parent. “You’re right, Margie will love this,” Mom confirms giving a thumbs up. Her son’s grin says it all.
“Young, growing families really appreciate the way they’ve got the privacy of having the bedrooms on the top level and still have lots of ‘adult space’ downstairs,” Peter says. “When you live in a condo, adults often have to talk in hush tones once the baby’s gone to bed. Here, you don’t. It’s perfect for couples who are planning for the long term and want a home they can grow into rather than out of. And for downsizers who want single-level living, we’ve got garden suites with spacious patios—some as large as 685 square feet—and plans offering as much as 1,260 square feet.”
Now I’ll admit one of my favourite perks about what I do is that sometimes I get to see some truly amazing sneak previews. So I’m thrilled when Peter opens the gate to Thurston Street’s inner courtyard and beckons me to follow. Even though I’m already smitten by the tranquility of this community’s location on a quiet cul-de-sac, this urban oasis is a delightful surprise. Massive patios framed with lush landscaping, a central pathway reminiscent of the romance of traditional European villages, the wind whispering through surrounding trees — even though I know the amenities of Metrotown and two SkyTrain stations are less than a 10-minute stroll away, it feels as if I’ve left the city far behind.
Knowing my passion for two-wheeling transportation, Peter also makes a point of showing me Thurston Street’s onsite storage lockers. Each one is not only twice the width of the one in my building, it’s at least three feet taller as well. “You could fit two bikes in here and still have room for shelving units,” he says as if reading my mind. “And since you have to go through three security gates to get here, it’s just about as secure as you can get.”
Written for the Metro Vancouver New Home Guide by Susan M Boyce