As popular as today’s open-concept floor plans are, they’re not for everyone.
That’s because, as functional as they are, they come with some subtle drawbacks.
First, visitors can often see the entire main living area — kitchen, dining area and family room — from the foyer.
Consequently, if they arrive at a time when dishes are piled haphazardly in the kitchen and toys are strewn about the family room, they can see messes you don’t necessarily want them to bear witness to.
Second, open-concept great rooms, due to their wide-open nature, can serve as echo chambers that boost the shrill screams of youngsters and amplify music or sound effects from movies so they reverberate throughout the entire house (or so it seems).
Finally — unless you have a designated sitting room or den on the main floor — it’s difficult to find a private place to curl up and read a book or sit back and listen to music in semi-solitude.
Blair Sonnichsen of Royal LePage Dynamic Real Estate says the main-floor layout of his listing at 3655 Eldridge Rd. in Charleswood slots in neatly between today’s contemporary open-concept floor plans and yesteryear’s walled-off, traditional floor plans.
"This home — which was custom-built by Jaymorr Homes in 1988 — features a floor plan that has designated living spaces, yet is open enough so that both traffic and light flow aren’t compromised," he says of the two-storey, 1,920-sq.-ft. residence. "It offers a sufficient amount of privacy, yet it’s also a home that’s great for entertaining."
A generous foyer with a soaring ceiling and smashing distressed-maple staircase starts the home off in grand style.
To the left, a wide doorway leads into a traditional living room/dining room.
The living room is a warm, cosy space with rich hardwoods that’s perfect for visiting with guests after dinner.
Meanwhile, the dining room — which can easily accommodate a table for six to 12 — offers seamless access to the kitchen through a wide doorway on its right-hand wall.
This is where the home’s hybrid floor plan really starts to shine, Sonnichsen says.
"You come into an open-concept area with spacious island kitchen to the right, bumped-out eating area next to patio doors and a sunken family room with rustic-looking wood-burning fireplace with brick surround, heart and rustic wood mantel. Flow between the living room/dining room and kitchen/family room is excellent, yet the layout creates a nice bit of separation."
He adds that a subtle design feature plays a central role in giving the two areas a bright, airy feel.
"Large windows in the living room and dining room let in lots of natural light, as does the patio door and sidelight windows in the kitchen, and a big picture window in the family room. Every space is filled with natural light, making for a very livable home."
At the same time, well-placed updates to key spaces ensure that the home has a contemporary feel.
Those updates start in the kitchen, Sonnichsen says.
"It’s straight out of a magazine with its cherry soft-close cabinets, granite countertops, beautiful backsplash and terracotta tile floor. Loads of natural light pours in from the dinette area, which is next to the bay-style patio doors, which lead out to a private, fenced backyard with three-tier composite deck, in-ground pool and gazebo."
Access to the home’s upper level is provided by a gorgeous distressed maple staircase. The same flooring showcased on its steps then runs through the hallway and all three bedrooms.
"Sunlight streaming in from a huge window over the front door serves as a wonderful counterpoint to the flooring’s texture and warmth," Sonnichsen says. "Both secondary bedrooms are huge with oversized windows and ample closet space, and the main bathroom is a generous, nicely finished space that comes with a deep soaker tub."
Then, there’s the second floor’s pièce de résistance — the perfectly isolated master suite.
"At nearly 15 feet by 12 feet, it’s just the right size — comfortable, but not so large that it takes space away from the ensuite and walk-in closet. A five-foot hallway with a large walk-in closet placed in its centre to the left leads into the updated five-piece ensuite, which is an absolutely gorgeous space."
Totally redone, it comes with a heated tile floor, tiled walk-in shower with frameless tempered glass enclosure, cherry vanity with granite countertop and fluted ceramic sink — plus a diamond-shaped window that allows sunlight to cascade inside.
"It’s a true retreat — luxurious but practical, a great space to wake up to in the morning," he says.
Last but not least, there’s the home’s finished lower level.
"It offers a huge rec room with media and games area, built-in entertainment unit, pot lights, wall to wall carpeting, plenty of storage and mechanical room with a high-efficient furnace, central air unit and 60-gallon hot water tank; each is just three years old."
Additional upgrades include a newer roof, Hardie board siding and custom blinds and window coverings.
"This home truly needs to be seen to appreciate all it has to offer," Sonnichsen says. "It’s been impeccably maintained, beautifully updated and is in a location that’s close to three levels of schools, community clubs, the Hart Trail and shopping and services. It’s a really good place to call home and raise your family."
Location: 3655 Eldridge Rd., Charleswood
Year built: 1988
Size: 1,920 sq. ft.
Contact: Blair Sonnichsen or Tyson Sonnichsen, Royal LePage Dynamic Real Estate, 204-989-5000