By Anita Murray, All Things Home
If there’s a renovation in your future, if you love the inspiration of before and afters or if you simply enjoy exploring well-designed and constructed spaces, Reno Tour 2022 is for you.
Like a house tour (or builder model home) but focusing on renovations, the tour, which is presented by the Greater Ottawa Home Builders’ Association, is a great place to start your reno research. It features remodelling and addition projects by three of Ottawa’s most respected renovation companies — Amsted Design-Build, Lagois Design-Build-Renovate and RND Construction.
And you don’t even have to leave home to take the tour.
The eighth annual tour is a virtual one this year, as it has been since the pandemic forced a pivot from in-person visits to see the projects. But you can still walk through the homes, thanks to the immersive 3D imaging work of Point3D Commercial Imaging. And you can virtually walk through each of these renovations at your own pace, direction, convenience and as often as you wish, discovering extras such as before photos and multimedia tags with more information as you go. Plus, you can also reach out directly to the renovator of each project.
“It’s a chance for people to peek into basically what’s a home magazine,” says Amsted’s Stephanie Fahey. “I think people just have a genuine curiosity about what other people are doing in their homes. But it also gives them a chance to see a renovator’s work more up close and personal.”
Amsted’s project is a dramatic renovation and addition to a century home that completely reimagines the main floor and adds some serious wow factor.
Combining unexpected design choices, customization to meet the family’s changing needs and a flair for the dramatic creates a sophisticated, intimate and highly functional remodel. Highlights include two islands, barnboard beams, beautiful layers of lighting and an intriguing use of colour.
“It’s a beautiful project. It’s honestly one of my favourites,” says Fahey. “There’s something so sophisticated but cosy and intimate.” The project is also a finalist in the upcoming Ottawa Housing Design Awards, which will be announced Oct. 15.
This project shows the dramatic transformation of a home for a couple who loves to entertain but had a closed-off kitchen. A large addition was added to the back, the kitchen and dining room were merged, and the stairs were relocated to increase functionality.
Expansive windows let in nature and light and allow the homeowners to enjoy their mature gardens, the new layout encourages family gathering, and the new heart of the home is a joy to be in.
“Accommodating large family gatherings with a space to connect was important to our clients,” says Lagois president Jacob Kirst. “The solution was to create an addition with expansive windows overlooking the rear yard, while taking advantage of the natural light to flood into the existing home, creating an energizing environment to relax, entertain and live.”
In a prime example of the value of Reno Tour, a past visitor went on to become a client for RND. The project is a kitchen renovation and addition that showcases a strong indoor-outdoor connection and includes an oversized peninsula with an eat-in bar and lots of food prep areas and storage.
Adding a personal touch are the milled planks from a beloved black walnut tree lost in the 2019 tornado, which were incorporated into the kitchen’s open shelves and decorative band on the range hood.
“We usually encourage our homeowners to incorporate some feature that is unique to their needs or experiences,” notes RND owner Roy Nandram, who points visitors to both the quality of the finishes and the home’s energy-efficient features — a hallmark of RND projects.
The kitchen is a finalist in the Housing Design Awards.
Taking the tour
The tour will be live at renotour.ca as of Oct. 1 and will remain active over the next year. You can also see previous Reno Tour projects at gohba.ca under the RenoMark tab. (All participating companies are RenoMark members, which means they must meet and adhere to strict eligibility requirements to better protect the homeowner.)