UP House – Modern Living in Context

The genesis of this modern house started with a discussion about a dining area that could seat at least 14 for large family get togethers. Entertaining guests either formally or informally was a common discussion point during the design phase of the project. Even though it is a completely new build, the exterior takes on cues from the original structure dating from the early 1960s in order to fit seamlessly into the streetscape.

Like many homeowners, this family defines entertaining in several ways postgame drinks with fellow golfers, holiday family meals, cookouts for courting prospective clients. Their new 2,900-square-foot house in Toronto covers all the bases.

Entertaining has evolved since the days when children just had birthday parties and grown-ups had dinner parties. Modern living entails parties that are multigenerational, informal, last-minute and with the clients we set out to create a home that is flexible.

We applied a keep-it-simple concept to the floor plan. The clients say, “We can have 150 people here without logjams because it flows.”

The plan uses two French doors at the rear of the house. One is visible from the front door so guests head toward it when they arrive. The other leads back into the kitchen. The circular flow allows the clients to have more guests when the weather is warm.

Even though there is a focus on entertaining we separated private areas like the bedrooms so that there is definite articulation of the two different uses. We anchored the open floor plan with a U-shaped kitchen island. It is flanked by a dining table that stretches to seat 20 and a main seating area with a fireplace and television.

At one end of the living area is a stairway to the lower level. The railing is glass so parents can keep one ear tuned to children downstairs. Putting game tables, exercise equipment and home theaters in the lower level means not losing valuable first-floor entertaining space.

We are thrilled that this house was recently featured in Toronto Home Magazine. Check out the article and let us know what you think!