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Real Estate

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

What small-town mansion would be complete without an invaluable Chinese maple tree, eight acres of land, a loggia and a boathouse?

By Teagan Sliz
Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Location: Innisfil Price: $13.9 million Size: 16,000 square feet on 7.8 acres of land Bedrooms: 5 Bathrooms: 6+3 Real estate agents: David Bemmann and Jack Miller, Sotheby’s International Realty Canada


The place

A five-bedroom, six-plus-three-bathroom palazzo on the shores of Lake Simcoe. Like something from the mountains of Italy, this estate comes with a home theatre, a saltwater pool and a Chinese maple tree with branches that go for $800 a pop. Allandale Golf Club is within walking distance, and motorists are a short drive from the 400.

The history

In 2003, the current owner purchased this property with the goal of building a from-scratch vacation home in the Tuscan style. He worked with designer Joe Brennan and Red Seal carpenters to get it done. Now, he’s putting it on the market.

The tour

The grounds are completely shrouded from the outside world thanks to the dense surrounding forest.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

The façade is defined by a clay-tiled roof, stucco sides and many balconies. The cobblestone driveway and manicured garden encircle a seven-foot tiered statue fountain.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Walking through the towering glass front door reveals an ornate foyer with painted ceilings and arched wall mouldings.

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Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Turn around and you’re in the living room (if you can call such a space that), home to 30-foot ceilings and an enormous window wall with doors to the backyard.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Above, there’s a fully frosted Swarovski crystal chandelier imported from Tuscany, set against a coffered ceiling with moulded inlays.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

The grandeur continues with the Italian-marble wood-burning fireplace, which is flanked by two gold-framed mirrors.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

In the kitchen: commercial-grade appliances and built-in everything, from the double-door fridge to the island wine storage to the crisper and beverage drawers incorporated in the cabinets.

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Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Here’s a closer look at the gas oven and cooktop as well as the granite counters.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Off the kitchen is a breakfast room with more fancy windows.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Down the hall is the study, lined with wall-to-wall, floor-to-ceiling mahogany millwork.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

The study would look right at home on the Titanic.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Moving upstairs highlights the “lady’s” suite, which is inspired by Marie Antionette’s quarters at Versailles.

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Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Its ensuite bathroom is equipped with a brass-accented hot tub and a Juliet balcony.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Also attached to the suite is this dressing room. It comes with a TV that rises from the island, plus pull-out clothing racks behind each of those doors.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

And this is the corresponding “gentleman’s” bedroom.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Its mahogany-covered ensuite is also attached to the study.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

The basement features a full-on theatre, with a stage, sliding velvet curtains, a green room and three rows of theatre seating (Betty Boop statuette not included).

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Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

This is the temperature-controlled wine cellar.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Now for the outside. A poolside lounge channels West Palm Beach with its stone patio, garden fountain, and built-in grill and prep area.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Overlooking the saltwater pool is a pool house which, with its own laundry room, change rooms and kitchenette, functions like an independent home.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Another old-world treat is the loggia facing the patio.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Here’s an exterior view of the loggia. Yes, this building is in Innisfil.

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Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Finally, right on the water is the original property’s two-storey, two-slip boathouse, complete with a kitchenette and lounge upstairs.

Surreal Estate: $13.9 million for an Italian grotto sitting on an Innisfil side road

Have a home that’s about to hit the market? Send your property to realestate@torontolife.com

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