VILLAS AT WATERMARK IS A DREAM COME TRUE, ESPECIALLY FOR THE EMPTY-NESTER - Marty Hope, Condo Living
The braintrust behind Villas at Watermark knew quite a while ago they had a good chance of success with this multi-family phase of their award-winning community.
And by “quite a while,” we’ mean about five years ago — and maybe a bit more than that! That feeling of success, the confidence in the semi-detached villa product, and the level of interest among potential purchasers has driven Macdonald Development Corporation to take another look at its proposed future construction schedule.
“Demand has been very good,” says Ian Macdonald, director of sales for Watermark at Bearspaw. “We had a five-year database of interested people to work with in the beginning.”
Very good, to say the least. You might even go so far as to say great, considering that prior to the Prairie-style villa show homes that were officially opened in mid-September, 19 of the 32 upscale walkout bungalows had already been scooped up. And sales staff continue to be busy with traffic continuing to show strong levels.
The level of consumer interest has the developer “gearing up” for the launch of the second phase with construction beginning early next year, says Macdonald. As well, construction of a clubhouse for the use of villa residents will be under way in 2014. At buildout, there will be 101 villas in four phases.
“The villa lifestyle has been neglected to a certain extent, with very few high-end projects being built,” says Matthew Jones, associate vice-president of sales and marketing for Macdonald Development Corporation. “We’ve had people tell us there is very little villa product for them.”
The Villas at Watermark offers four models —Kananaskis at 1,976 square-feet, Highwood at 1,988 squarefeet, Glasgow at 2,376 square-feet, and two alternate Cascade plans with either 2,237 or 2,625 square-feet. Prices start in the low $700,000 range and run through the million-dollar plateau, according to Macdonald. Condo fees are $359 per month.
As well as having four very different main-floor layouts, the walkout villas also offer three different lower-level floor plans, with lots of options and upgrades. The open-concept homes come with 10-foot ceilings on the main floor and nine feet on the walkout level, a 14-foot by 21-foot glass-railed deck looking across the valley to the Rockies, front-attached or side-slung two-car garage, stylish and workable kitchens with Shaker-style cabinets and quartz countertops, tile and hardwood floors, bright and airy greatrooms with cast stone or natural stone fireplaces, main-floor laundry, and ensuites with twin vanities.
“Depending on the model, the master bedroom can be on the main or lower level and come with a large walk-in closets,” says Macdonald. The ensuites have double vanities and five-piece baths with porcelain surrounds and heated floors. The homes’ exteriors are a blend of cedar, fir, stone and stucco.
“Our buyers are coming from all over the city and all over the demographic map,” says Jones. “And they’re coming for the lock-and-leave style of housing, the views, and because they appreciate the amenities we’re offering them in both the community and the homes.”
From the demographic perspective, the buyers are made up mostly of empty-nesters, retirees, or semi-retired people who still might want to work from home.
Watermark at Bearspaw was named the best community in Canada by the Canadian Home Builders’ Association at its annual conference in March. It is located on 12 Mile Coulee Road off Crowchild Trail just outside Calgary’s northwest city limits. For more information, visit www.VillasAtWatermark.com