High Mass: A Vancouver Project That’s Part Museum, Part Sculpture And All Home

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“You don’t know where the architecture stops and the design starts,” interior designer Mitchell Freedland says of this Vancouver home. “It’s seamless. Once you get into the house, nothing reveals itself fully. You have to go on a journey inside to get the full reward of the experience.”

It’s accessed via a walkway bridge that crosses over the front’s water garden surrounded by graceful sculptures.

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The home, with its interconnecting, floating, multi-level limestone cubes and dual black granite columns throughout its spine, provides both the openness and the privacy that the owner, a bachelor, wanted. Freedland credits the “flawless flow” of the 6,700-square-foot structure to the owner realizing architect Chris Doray, landscape architect Paul Sangha and Freedland all provided critical contributions to the project. The owner cited room preferences (an open- flow living, dining, sleeping area) as well as art elements he wanted integrated into the home, then let the professionals do their job.

“The project manager was the maestro of this construction,” states Freedland. “He kept us all working together.”

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Landscape designer Paul Sangha introduced the water garden concept for the front, an indirect link to the back of the property which features a pool and views of the ocean. His greenery protects the home from the street in this residential urban neighborhood so there’s a feeling of truly escaping the mundane.

“The architectural forms are strong and aggressive,” assures Freedland. “While in the more organic forms we used more sensuous materials. The human scale (throughout) is perfect.”

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The cubes, which all connect, also serve individual roles in the home.

Rather than have traditional levels, the home rises and lowers, offering views and elements that both surprise and beautify. From the entry gathering room, with its fun splash of orange bar chairs and poolside view, right through to an upstairs private library, with its perfect solo chair, this is not only a home of beauty, it’s also an exploratory adventure. “All these boxes connect on different levels – it’s actually five levels within the home,” notes Freedland. “It’s complicated, but that’s the magic of it.”

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Photography by Ema Peter.