For 30-years Niels and Nancy Bendsten, through Gastown’s Inform, have brought the world of modern living to Vancouver. They have been leaders, not only in design, but in helping create the vision for the current Gastown evolution. It is natural, therefore, that Vancouver’s most design-forward residential development, the Terminus, be located in Gastown, and that Inform would play a part in showing it off through decorating a truly progressive model home.
We are excited to announce the completion of our model suite at terminus. The design of the unit has brought together the talents of David Nicolay of Evoke International Design and our neighbors and industry leaders in modern furnishings, Inform. To truly appreciate the Terminus, one must see it. If you are in the market, either for a home that is truly individual, or a modern furniture masterpiece, we think a visit to the terminus will satisfy both cravings.
And if you liked the model home, please ask us to take you to the Terminus lounge, where Nancy and David have also styled a great place to catch the sunset over Vancouver. It comes with a new home in the Terminus. Please contact Salient or Inform to book a visit.
Those of you following us on Twitter were treated to a sneak peak of the Inform x terminus display suite Friday afternoon. We’ll be posting photos of the display suite here soon.
From award-winning homes to neighbourhood watering holes and hip T-shirts, this design firm redefines casual modern living.
By Jim Sutherland
Some interior design partnerships are headed by highly focused individuals possessing intimidating training and credentials along with a laser-like sense of purpose. Other partnerships consist of, well, an architect and a graphic artist who branched into interiors primarily to outfit the bars and restaurants they wanted to hang out in.
The latter partnership describes Vancouver’s Evoke International Design, headed by David Nicolay, the architect, and Robert Edmonds, the graphic artist. And while the duo’s route to running a seven-person interior design practice may have been circuitous, that doesn’t take anything away from their work, lauded by judge Kelly Deck for its “authentic flair” and “attention to materials and atmosphere.”
Today, residential work takes up a large chunk of Evoke’s design energy. As a double-threat architect and interior designer, Nicolay was responsible for a Vancouver home (seen here) that in 2006 was named a North American Home of the Year by Metropolitan Home magazine. Other residences are at various stages of design—in some cases, Nicolay notes, their progress hampered by local zoning regulations that penalize contemporary design Much of Evoke’s recent work has been on condominiums, particularly collaborations with Acton-Ostry Architects for Vancouver developers Townline and also the Salient Group, which specializes in converting warehouses and other heritage buildings. Judge Raymond Girard lauds what he calls “real” (as opposed to “soft”) lofts. “How clever to turn utilitarian spaces like kitchens and bathrooms into sculptural elements, spicing up smaller loft spaces without cramming them full of stuff, materials and textures.”
The seed of the Nicolay and Edmonds collaboration dates to the mid-1990s and a memorable Vancouver restaurant in the Kitsilano neighbourhood called Tangerine, which Nicolay and family members launched to fill what he describes as “a keenly felt void of cozy, stylish places to eat and drink.” That soon led to other restaurant work, both as designers and proprietors. Vancouver’s Figmint and Metro restaurants are recent projects, each displaying sophisticated takes on neo-modernism. Evoke and partners also designed Main Street haunts Habit and the Cascade Room, the latter a slightly off-key riff on post-war England. Both continue a tradition of rooms that, true to the company name, suggest rather than accurately describe a style or period. Paul Lavoie describes them as “fresh spaces with thoughtfulness for heritage and reality.”
The firm was recently hired for a condominium development in Victoria. A line of T-shirts featuring vivid graphic treatments by Edmonds is also ready to go. Not everyone can live in an Evoke product but at least we can all wear one.
The 1911 Paris Block building on Hastings Street: next up for conversion.
Lofts to Love
Salvaging the last of Vancouver’s heritage structures By Peter Mitham
PULL QUOTE: “Our whole goal is always to touch these spaces pretty lightly” Interior designer David Nicoloy of Evoke lnternotionol Designs Inc.
Turning derelict old Vancouver offices and warehouses into loft condominiums entails some of the challenges that face a homeowner renovating an older house: hidden surprises, higher-than-anticipated costs and a steep learning curve.
This spring, the Salient Group brought one of the latest projects to market, the Paris building at 51 West Hastings. Completed in 1911, the five-storey former shoe factory is typical of the conversions taking place elsewhere in Vancouver’s historic core. When renovations are completed late next year, the building will feature 29 homes of approximately 750 square feet catering to buyers with a zest for urban living. Currently, Salient has started work on the Garage, which will combine an 1899 rope factory and a 1930-era auto centre into live/work spaces.
But the demands in crafting trendy homes from old commercial space are daunting.
“These small, infill sites really have to be in the right location,” explained Rick Ilich, president of the Townline Group of Richmond, which moved into the urban core in 2005 with an ambitious plan for six properties with a total of 197 homes in the Crosstown and Yaletown areas.
“Construction’s slower, the trades aren’t necessarily making the margins they would on a simple, 30-storey building where they can just fl y, so you’ve got to make sure you’re in the location that can get the numbers that you need to make it worthwhile,” he said.
Two of Townline’s conversion projects – 1180 Homer, which completed this year, and 540 Beatty, set for to open next year – have had to balance economic demands as well as neighbours’ tolerance for the demanding work the projects require. A new, interior shell was built at 540 Beatty, for example, as part of seismic upgrading.