Loving the high lifePublished on October 28, 2015

  • BCR woodworking created the Euro- style kitchen with a grey caesarstone island. 

  • Original Bauhaus chairs surround a dining table that can accommodate up to 20 people ?in the open dining area.

  • Louise Houde art hangs to the left of the fireplace, electric fireplace from Hubertís FIREPLACE CONSULTATION + DESIGN.

  • Colourful cushions made by Da Silva Upholstering.

  • Art by James Lahey adds drama in the kitchen.

  • Gus the Portuguese water dog has settled in well to condo living. 

The unit was taken back  to its open concrete shell to create an open-concept living spaceÖ
A few years ago, a woman who knows what she wants and goes for it set her sights high above the Rideau Canal. She persuaded her husband to go along with plans for a grand condo renovation - and it worked beautifully! Now the busy professional couple, who are active grandparents, enjoy the liberation of condo life in high style with spectacular spaces inside and out.


While living in their last home, an infill on the canal that they built and designed with the help of their architect friend Barry Hobin, she eyed a nearby condo building. With experience in the property management business, she had admired the building for years and knew that she ultimately wanted to move there and have a bird's-eye view of the scenic neighbourhood.

 Her husband was a little nervous about heights and wasn't sure he could get used to a condo. But when a suite came up for sale in the highrise building that only has four units per floor, she knew that they had to go for it!

With years of home renovations under their belt, they were confident about buying the unit from the original owners and ripping everything out with their trusted contractor Skarlan Enterprises. The unit was taken back to its basic concrete shell to create an open-concept living space with a wider entry and expanded bathrooms. Combined with tons of natural light pouring through a span of expansive windows, the open layout makes the 1,600-square-foot condo feel much bigger.

The huge balcony was another appealing factor with its sweeping views of the canal, a small park and Ottawa's cityscape.  It's very private and the couple love watching the year-round activity on the canal, as well as seeing the sun rise and set from each end of the condo.



To make the inside space as captivating as the panoramic scenery, the former galley kitchen was converted into a sleek new model. Dark Euro-style cabinetry, contrasted by a shiny glass backsplash, combines with an 11-foot island topped with grey Caesarstone, to create a designer workspace with great storage.

It's a very efficient kitchen with clever space-saving features such as the shallow pantry built around a concrete pillar. BCR Woodworking constructed the kitchen cabinets, as well the bathroom vanities, bedside tables and built-in cabinets in the den.

The floor is covered in long four-by-two-foot ceramic tiles from Italy that flow continuously throughout the condo. Together with light grey walls, they provide a monochromatic decor for an open feel of spaciousness. With monopoint ceiling lights that can be individually directed and dimmed, the setting perfectly highlights the condo's colourful collection of artwork and contemporary furnishings.

Much credit is given to the late interior designer Patrick McCarron, who worked with the owners on the general design of the condo. In addition to recovering the living room furniture to fit the condo's contemporary style, he redesigned the second bedroom into a smart den with built-in cabinets and a table under the window to view the cityscape.

There is also a vista of the Parliament Buildings from the window in the generously sized master bedroom. Here, the main focus was a complete overhaul of the ensuite to create an open walk-in space with a concealed stacked-laundry closet and a luxurious shower unit.

Whether it's enjoying the sun rise or a giant moon above them, the owners are loving the high life. And that goes for their dog too - who has also adjusted happily to condo living!

Sign up for our Newsletter
Subscribe to theMagazine

Subscribe to Ottawa at Home for only $25.00 + hst per year. Click to Subscribe.