Aston Hill brings light touch to homes
west vancouver: Hillside houses built with spectacular views open the inside to the glories of nature
By Mary Frances Hill, The Province May 14, 2015
The Aston Hill neighbourhood in West Vancouver offers spectacular views from 20 luxurious homes built into the hillside to take full advantage of the natural terrain and light playing across the water.
At Aston Hill, a small community of luxury homes in West Vancouver, any designer might wonder how to make display home interiors match the beauty of the gifts that surround the new development.
The British Pacific Properties’ neighbourhood is graced with spectacular scenery, a geography unique to West Vancouver, and a community that offers calm quiet within minutes’ walk to trails and shops.
Insight Design principal Kari Henshaw took every one of these gifts to turn Aston Hill’s display home into a showcase of art, luxury and creative design.
She found her first inspiration in nature — specifically, in the West Vancouver light.
“The light that comes into these homes is really spectacular. After years of working on homes in the British Properties, we’ve discovered that this light can absorb a lot of both colour and/or darker tones,” Henshaw says.
As luxurious as the interiors are, the terrain on which the project was constructed was a major influence. The three-level town houses are built into the hillside along winding switchbacks, with grades up to 30 per cent.
“The terraced effect of the home being stepped back, with the windows primarily on the front of the building, steered some of the ideas behind the work of Insight Design,” says Henshaw.
“Considering how the home is entered into was particularly interesting to us as we wanted to create a dramatic entrance and have the guest arrival experience step through the various entry spaces. Each space needed to be addressed and at the same time remain cohesive.”
Geography aside, every room in the Aston Hill display home is a conversation piece.
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In one living room, Insight has placed dark wide panelling with an inset fireplace that is dominated by a huge piece of vibrantly coloured art.
In the kitchen, a range is placed in the island, so the hood fan moves away from its conventional spot on the wall to the middle of the kitchen, and takes on the look of sculptural decoration.
A den fitted with a games table boasts an entire wall covered in glass, for what Henshaw admits is “James Bond” appeal.
In one white bedroom, a huge, magnificent piece of antique art covers an entire wall (with much credit going to the vision of Gormand Studios).
“There are a lot of risks associated with such a bold piece, but we feel that it is well worth it,” Henshaw says.
“We are always striving to create memorable design features at various points throughout a home. It’s moments like these that get people excited and talking about where they’ve been and what they just saw.”
What: 20 2-bedroom-and-den/3-bedroom-and-den hillside homes arranged in 10 duplex strata concrete buildings.
Project location: 2726 Highview Place, West Vancouver
Residence size: 3,065-3,820 sq. ft, from $3.1 million-$3.5 million
Developer: British Pacific Properties
Sales Centre: 2726 Highview Place, West Vancouver
Hours: noon-4 p.m., Sat.-Thurs., or by appointment
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