Timeless elegance is the only way to describe the grand house located at 6 Ruskin Row. This turn-of-the-century estate, located across from Enderton (Peanut) Park in the heart of Crescentwood, is a rare treasure in a modern world.
Started in 1908 and finished in 1910, the house is a century old. It feels like stepping back in time to a bygone era when you walk through the grand front doors of the house. It has been lovingly maintained and meticulously preserved in its original character by the home's longtime owner.
"This house is one of a kind," Janne Young of Royal LePage Dynamic says. "It is historically significant."
The house was reportedly built for about $52,000. That would have been a hefty price tag back then. Irreplaceable by today's standard, the house is currently listed for a cool $1.5 million.
"The uniqueness of this house is that it has been maintained in its original state with good mechanical and electrical upgrades," Young notes.
She points out that it was important for the current owner to maintain the original character of the house, which has been in the family since 1970. With her vast collection of antiques, Young describes the owner as "a curator" who has created a stunning historical home of "museum-like quality."
At more than 6,200 square feet, the house is more like a palatial estate than a house located in the middle of the city. Designed by provincial architect Victor Horwood for Chester D. Stovel, the house has many Arts & Crafts-style features. There are also some design features that make the house a one-of-a-kind masterpiece, especially in the immaculate condition that it is in today.
The house is filled with original, solid walnut touches. From the solid wood doors and trim to the wide wainscoting and walnut-beamed ceilings, the rich wood is present throughout the house. Fabulous built-in bookshelves and cabinetry exude a sense of opulence with the gleaming wood. The owner says the house has an "old Manitoba Club" feel to it.
Another touch that sets the house apart is the exquisite stained-glass throughout the house. The incredible works of art were collected from all parts of the British Isles and almost every piece has its own story. An incredible array of colours fills the house and changes with the seasons. The pièce de résistance is an enormous showpiece window at the top of the second-floor landing.
A regal house wouldn't be complete without an impressive fireplace and mantle in one or two rooms. This house has six wood-burning fireplaces and a whopping seven chimneys.
Right from the grand entrance, the attention to detail and commitment to quality is evident. From the fine detail of the wood carving to the stained-glass masterpieces, this mansion stands the test of time and exudes classic elegance.
Only the finest finishings were incorporated in the building of the house, including the bricks used on the exterior of the home, which were specially ordered and imported from Germany. The exquisite walnut used for the doors was book-matched, which means each piece is a consecutive cut off the tree to match. According to the home's owner, that's the closest you can get to having identical cuts of wood.
"They spared no expense," she says of the original owners. "Everything was top of the line."
The main-floor features a lovely large living room, a luxurious library with a beautiful fireplace and rich wooden mantle, solid wood panelling and abundant built-in wooden bookshelves. The dining room is a masterpiece with built-in china cabinets and buffets, which were uniquely designed to keep wine chilled even in the heat of the summer.
There's another cosy study tucked away at the back of the main floor, which was called a "snug" and was likely once used as a cigar room for the gentleman of the house. A tiny closet near the side of the house was once used to store coats and provide callers with a convenient place to wash their hands after getting out of their carriage. Today, it has been updated with a toilet to convert it into a modern, main-floor powder room.
The kitchen is large and bright with a centre island and abundant cupboards and counter space. It has a French country farmhouse feel with lighter wood than the rich dark walnut used in the rest of the house. Charming blue and white, toile-like ceramic tile has been used as the backsplash and on the counters with matching ceramic knobs on the doors.
There's also a separate butler's pantry that hearkens back to yesteryear and an old screened porch on the back of the house was converted into a four-season separate eating area that overlooks the lovely yard and garage. The garage, which now holds four cars and a boat, features the original carriage doors.
Gleaming hardwood floors and a beautiful walnut staircase with solid, wide wood panelling lead up to a lovely sitting area accented by the huge showpiece, stained-glass window.
The master bedroom is a showpiece in itself. Already quite roomy, the owner converted the nursery into an extension of the master bedroom to make the room a luxurious retreat. The bed is situated where the nursery used to be, directly in front of garden doors that open onto a large balcony at the front of the house, providing the perfect view of the trees in the park across the street.
The original master bedroom footprint is now a lovely parlour with a roomy sitting area set around one of the home's original fireplaces. Hardwood floors, two chandeliers and wall sconces add to the pampered feel of the room. There's also a luxurious four-piece ensuite complete with chandelier and ceramic tile flooring.
The main bathroom features an original toilet from 1918, which works better than most of its later year counterparts. And the architect included a separate water closet with his split-bathroom design so two people could use the space at one time.
The second floor features another three roomy bedrooms and a sleeping porch that has been converted into a neat casual sitting area. Done in a Middle Eastern theme, the room features rich colours and frescoes with elephants and a desert scene.
There's an entire third floor with an abundance of spacious rooms, 12- to 14-foot ceilings and many large windows that flood the area with natural light.