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Real Estate

Surreal Estate: $4.9 million for a Thornbury mansion with a koi pond and a wall dedicated to Dr. Seuss

What house in a field would be complete without 3,500 square feet of space, a cedar plunge hot tub and multiple decks?

By Erin Hershberg| Photography by Alan Shisko, First Showing Photography.
A four-bedroom, three-and-half-bathroom home in Clarksburg

Neighbourhood: Thornbury Price: $4.9 million Built: 2007 Size: 3,568 square feet Bedrooms: 4 Bathrooms: 3.5 Land: 6.5 acres Parking: two spots in the garage Agent: Mark Veer, Riopelle-Veer Real Estate Group


The place

A four-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bathroom home in Thornbury with plenty of sleek and functional space both inside and out. Designed in the California style, the house also has a cedar plunge hot tub, Ipe decking and a 400-foot driveway. It sits on six and a half acres of land and is a short drive from the neighbouring ski town of Collingwood.

The history

In 2007, designer Kendra Patten and her husband Ian Patten completed this home just off 40 Grey Road. Her family have lived in the country oasis since, most recently completing a renovation during the pandemic. Now, they’ve decided to ditch Canada and head to the jungles of Costa Rica to begin a new chapter in their lives. 

The tour

To start, an aerial view of the property, its six-plus acres and the surrounding town. Just past that forest is a ravine with an abundance of wildlife.

This house has plenty of sleek and functional space both inside and out

The house has an expansive 270-degree view of Georgian Bay, Georgian Peaks and Beaver Valley.

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Designed in the California style, this edition of Surreal Estate also has a cedar-plunge hot tub

And 122 metres of private drive to the main entrance.

The home has a 400-foot driveway

The entrance hints at the refined minimalism to come: a concrete walk, lined with river stone and Japanese-style gardens, with walls clad in red cedar.

Just north of Toronto, this house has Ipe decking all over

The foyer—with 19-foot ceilings and huge windows—provides breathtaking views of the peaks and the valley.

The home sits on six-and-a-half acres of land in Thornberry, a quiet town just a hop and a skip out of neighbouring ski town, Collingwood.

The sunken dining and living spaces are back to the right of the foyer.

The house is just off Grey Road

One of Patten’s goals for the build was to make the transition from indoors to outdoors feel seamless. She used windows and walnut to achieve the effect.

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This place was designed by Kendra Patten

The kitchen and dining room feature polished concrete floors, honed Corian counters, a built-in walnut-clad 24-inch Thermidor fridge, an 18-inch stand-alone freezer, a stainless steel propane Heartland stove, a Miele speed oven and espresso machine, and a built-in walnut bench. 

A family of four haas lived in this country oasis since 2007

Here’s another view, which shows off the built-in walnut seating and storage bench. It’s meant to create definition between the kitchen and living area.

The owners completed a major renovation over the pandemic, which included this kitchen

Here’s the stunning view from the kitchen and dining area.

The view from this rural property may be its best feature

Nearly every window in the home is a sliding door with access to the expanse beyond. That’s the koi pond in the background.

Here's a look at the mansion's koi pond from the living area

Patten used the same materials throughout to keep the design minimal. Nearly all of the wood in the home is walnut.

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The $4.9-million property seamlessly blends minimalism with charming, earthy accents.

Emerging from the living room onto the Ipe deck, you might as well be stepping into a luxury resort. In the foreground is a built-in smoker, and up the stairs is the cedar plunge hot tub.

You can see hawks flying over Beaver Valley from the deck, equipped with a smoker

Here’s a closer look at the hot tub, which overlooks this sparse lounge. Those gardens are filled with Russian sage, Karl Foerster grass and creeping thyme.

The wood is Ipe, the gardens have Russian sage and the plunge tub is a highlight

Outside, there’s also a firepit—as if there weren’t already enough places to hang out.

As if there weren't enough places to hang with friends, here's a firepit

The rolling lawn is great for volleyball, pickleball or whatever outdoor activity residents fancy. 

The lawn is great for volleyball and other activities.

Moving back inside to the main bedroom once again showcases the view. Here, it’s framed like a picture thanks to the walnut trim. 

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The Thornbury mansion is an easy and breezy main suite

Now, the reverse view from the deck. 

The view from the deck indeed feels like California

The main suite is equipped with a Japanese-style platform bed and floor-to-ceiling cabinets. 

A japanese-style platform bed makes a statement in the main bedroom

Down the hall is the mirror-lined ensuite bathroom, with floating bespoke concrete slotted sinks, Eramosa limestone, walnut benches and a rainfall shower for two with an enormous Wetstyle tub.

The bathroom of this country home would not be out of place in Toronto's Yorkville

The stairwell serves as the spine of the house. It comes with a one-and-a-half-storey window wall that spans the basement to the main level as well as a cedar wall that extends from the interior out. 

The walnut staircase serves as the spine of the Thornbury home

The downstairs walkout showcases the home’s library, featuring a quirky Dr. Seuss display.

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The Dr. Seuss feature wall in this Thornbury home is something to see

This level has its own bathroom, with a floor-to-ceiling mirror, a concrete-and-glass shower, and a concrete sink that sits atop a floating walnut pedestal.

Polished concrete, white paint, mirrors and choice lighting make the space feel even larger

Sharing the space are two more bedrooms, each with their own walkouts to hammocks overlooking the valley. 

The owners have decided to ditch Canada and head to the jungles of Costa Rica

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

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