A Hide ‘N Seek Sanctuary In The Beach

offered at $1,799,000

As a realtor who has spent 26 years specializing in the buying and selling of innovative spaces, I know first hand how challenging it is to find a domestic design which is elevated beyond standard sizes, big box fixtures, and traditional convention. But I also know there are occasions for outstanding exceptions, providing you have patience, instinct, and timing.  Luckily, one such exception has just come to market on Kenilworth Avenue in The Beach. Marrying a classic contemporary aesthetic with an English ‘cottage-in-the-city’ vibe, this elegant family home is much more than the sum of its parts!

Welcome to 160 Kenilworth Avenue!

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So do you desire a little ‘Hide N Seek’ in The Beach? Perched at the top of the Kenilworth escarpment just north of Queen Street East, this spacious 3 bed 2.5 bath ‘Cottage-In-Muskoka’ features a sun-drenched atrium family room‎ with ceilings vaulting to 20 feet, a charming front terrace perched over the ravine, and a generous west-facing fenced landscaped garden under a canopy of mature trees connecting to 2 car parking via right-of-way!

The Neighbourhood Setting

Conveniently located near premium shops, restaurants, and countless sought-after amenities, this unique urban space thrives in Toronto’s unparalleled Beaches neighbourhood!

Along with some nearby notable chains like a Shoppers Drug Mart, Starbucks (at the foot of the street), and a stellar LCBO – which make daily errands a breeze – there’s also plenty of unique culinary offerings in this much-desired ‘hood. If BBQ fare is your meal of choice this week, Breakwall BBQ and Smokehouse is a hop skip and a jump away. A cute wine bar with personality and a wine list to match is Sauvignon Bistro, situated down the street and one block west. Nearby Bodega Henriette is a community favourite – the perfect place for a catch-up with friends, marrying the offerings of a coffee shop with full-service meals. They also have great ready-made food and pantry items if you must dash instead of dining. Have you ever gone to The Sunset Grill? It’s my favourite local diner; they make a delicious 3-egg breakfast (to my exact specifications) that I’ve been enjoying for over thirty years!

For those with children, there’s a good selection of schools right in the neighbourhood, including Kew Beach Junior Public School, which is less than a five-minute walk away. Bowmore Road Junior and Senior PS  (JK  all the way to Grade 8) offers support for kids who learn differently, like Gifted Programs, resource support for kids with Learning Disabilities, as well as French Immersion. For students seeking French Immersion, there’s also Glen Ames Senior Public School and Malvern Collegiate. And for those seeking a private school opportunity nearby, Kew Park Montessori is very close, serving Grades 1 through 6. The local high school is notable Monarch Park Collegiate.

For those who love their green space, there are a number of parks nearby including Pantry Park, which is close to Kew Beach Junior Public. Perhaps the most notable is expansive Kew Gardens (one block south) – with its classic 3 kilometres of boardwalk on the sandy shores of Lake Ontario – is home to the Kew Gardens bandshell (Jazz Festival!), a wading pool/playground, and Kew Gardens Tennis Club is a pleasant stroll away. If the weather is good, a ten-minute walk will take you to 28-acre Woodbine Park, known for being home base to a number of festivals, as well as its bountiful ecosystem, and leisure activity offerings. This is truly the ideal location for nature, water, and fitness lovers, as it’s also just a short stroll, bike, or blade away from the sanctuary of the Leslie Spit and Lake Ontario. Plus, nearby Balmy Beach and Woodbine Beach rank in our list of the best beaches in Toronto! Imagine, a location with accessible cardio cleansing, contemplation, and daydreaming just steps from your door!

If you are looking for a new good read, a chance to learn a new skill, or an afternoon of educational and fun activities for the whole family, the Beaches Branch of the Toronto Public Library is very close by.

Adding to the convenience of this location is the proximity of so many public transportation options on nearby Queen Street East with streetcars and buses running regularly. And for those who have to hit the road, Woodbine south to Lake Shore Boulevard offers easy access to the Don Valley Parkway and the Gardiner Expressway. Live car free? There’s an Enterprise CarShare located steps away at Queen and Woodbine!

How amazing is that?

A Bespoke Dwelling

You know you are in for something impressive when the lengthy list of a home’s features read like chapters in a riveting “I can’t put this down” novel! This makes sense when you consider the custom tailoring that has transformed 160 Kenilworth Avenue into a bespoke residence.

Originally constructed in 1929, this handsome Edwardian residence evokes the English charm of an enchanting fairy tale. Perched at the end of the fork in the road at the top of the hill on the dead end cul-de-sac portion of Kenilworth Avenue, this hidden oasis is tucked amidst a copse of mature trees. In fact, it’s almost like a ‘secret garden’, where one has to cross the right-of-way over the front yard of its sister dwelling at 158 Kenilworth to get to the gated yard of the property, which opens to a pretty treescape terrace overlooking the meandering riverbed below that Kenilworth Avenue once was.

Substantially transformed over the past 16 years, from the front door the entertainment space unfolds into a series of articulated zones for living spanning almost fifty feet in length. At the entry, a double closet for all your gear is tucked behind sliding mirrored doors, in addition to a bespoke powder room that serves this living level. Generous stone slabs in a brick pattern run continuously from front to back, while recessed lighting and metal beams spanning the width of the house offer a contrasting glint to the rustic stone fireplace with gas insert.

Offering options to suit your own particular taste, the front lounge transitions to a sundrenched family-room atrium that comfortably accommodates your grand piano, along with your laughing barking brood. Having a wood-burning fireplace and custom millwork evoking an English library, this expansive space is gloriously situated under a pitched skylit roof with ceilings soaring to twenty feet. Drenched in natural light, this sun-lovers oasis will lift your mood throughout the seasons.

If you love to cook as I do, the open plan kitchen/diner is sure to tick all your culinary boxes. Featuring a generous gas range for the resident chef, an expansive marble topped island with classic pot rack & breakfast bar for savoury and sweet onlookers, in addition to the preferred deep sink perfectly positioned in front of a bank of windows overlooking the sun-filled garden, this luxe kitchen, completed in 2005, will make your heart go thumpety-thump. Even better, how fantastic is the broad built-in dining banquette to gather your loved ones around, located beside the french doors which walk out to the terrace with stainless steel gas barbecue!

Up the stairs, a broad glass-wrapped balcony circumnavigates the atrium which separates the charming children’s bedrooms from the master sanctuary. I adore the two west-facing children’s bedrooms which share a three-piece stone tiled washroom. Featuring vaulted ceilings with secret lofts tucked under the eaves on top of exposed rafters, this pair of bedrooms has built-in shelving and french doors which open to Juliette balconies that embrace the rustic bark of a century-old tree that shades the west facade of the house with its protective cloak of leaves.

The master bedroom sanctuary is a romantic aerie with treetop vistas. Featuring vaulted ceilings with exposed rafters, a stone fireplace with gas insert, and a charming bay window, this oasis of calm has a wall of closets with inset mirrors for all your storage needs and an indulgent five-piece ensuite including whirlpool tub and separate rain shower. It’s rustic comfort in the city and the perfect place for breakfast in bed.

What Makes This Home Successful

I’d like to bring your focus to how amazing the level of creativity, thoughtfulness, and attention to detail in this unique urban space which I think you’ll especially treasure!

– the intimacy of domestic bliss that comes with being curled up with a book in a bay window beside a cosy stone fireplace in the lounge overlooking the front terrace.

– the graceful sculptural space-expanding aspect of the dramatic atrium lightwell with second level balcony.

– the way the sunlight filters through the skylights with a gossamer quality, and the enchanting scent of wood burning in the fireplace wafting through the house on a brisk winter’s day.

– the rarity of a 2 storey light-well with soaring vaulted pitch, the remarkable ‘pinch me I’m dreaming’ volume of the space itself, and the opportunity to experience the changing light throughout the day, and seasons.

– the dynamic open plan kitchen/diner connecting directly to a garden terrace that will elevate your family’s collective engagement.

– the inviting cosiness of each bedroom sanctuary with their vaulted ceilings and lofty nooks and crannies, that nurture the spirit and the soul.

– the connectivity between indoors and out – with two distinctive tranquil outdoor zones for respite – that are very much like ‘being in Muskoka, yet in the heart of the city’.

– the juxtaposition between the natural stone floors and exposed steel beams, artfully balancing rustic and contemporary aesthetics.

– the realization of how rarely one comes across a property that’s both contemporary and charming, surrounded by a lush lakeside setting where cricket song sings you to sleep.

This Home Sweet Home Includes 2 Car Parking & Plenty Of Storage

This magical residence has a lower level which offers plenty of storage for your everyday life, as well as laundry and utility zones. Mechanically updated, with renovated washrooms (2009), and a new roof, I celebrate the architectural ingenuity of this ‘treehouse’. Having an exceptionally rare deep lot, beyond the fenced west-facing terrace and the expansive mature garden is a right-of-way to two car parking that could, depending on your navigation skills, potentially accommodate three vehicles. Alternatively, there is the opportunity to install a generous storage shed on the rear portion of the property.

Purchasing a space that “feels like Home” invites domestic bliss for the next chapter of your life. And when it’s located within a dynamic neighbourhood that’s beloved, a tailored family home becomes its own opportunity.

Will you soon call 160 Kenilworth Avenue “Home”?

If you have questions, don’t hesitate to contact steve@urbaneer.com for more information or my co-listing associates – Domenic & Olivia Cristiano – from Real Estate Homeward at 416-698-2090!