Special Promotional Feature
Less than a one hour drive up the 400 — or a 90-minute GO train ride — Friday Harbour is a new development like no other. Not simply a resort, more than a residential development, Friday Harbour is an all-seasons getaway that will set a new standard for vacation living in Ontario.
“Friday Harbour is a place that residents can come to just relax and enjoy,” says Earl Rumm, president of Geranium Corporation and partner at Friday Harbour.
Proximity to the city is just one of its advantages. “We’ve been planning for 13 years. And for the last three years, we’ve been preparing a golf course, an inland marina on Lake Simcoe and a nature site,” explains Rumm. “It’s all about creating a place for people to enjoy 12 months a year.”
For residents of Friday Harbour, the appeal is a chance to head north and enjoy the peace and serenity of a relaxing getaway without the hassle of a long drive or taking care of a high- maintenance cottage property. “It truly is a place you can come and leave your stress and worry behind.”
At the heart of Friday Harbour will be the Marina Village. “We’re just about to build the village boardwalk — 12 buildings that will house over 550 residential units,” Rumm says. “The boardwalk will have over 50,000 sq. ft. of specialized shops and great restaurants.”
The condo units are all elevated on a giant platform; owners will reside above the boardwalk and the village shops and restaurants.
To the south of the village is the inland marina, one kilometre long at its widest point, which can hold up to 1,000 boats. The marina is approximately 40 acres and includes two private islands with approximately 300 townhomes, each with its own private boat slip.
For residents, there’s no end of things to do: There’s a double deck riverboat for parties, weddings and events, and boats for rent. The Lake Club, a 35,000-sq.-ft. recreational centre right on the harbour, will be a popular entertainment spot and a place to meet others, with such amenities as badminton, games rooms, meeting rooms, movies and more.
In the winter, Friday Harbour residents can enjoy such cold-weather pursuits as ice fishing, ice hockey, skating, snowmobiling and cross- country skiing. In summertime, the list includes boat regattas, concerts, markets, car shows, golf tournaments and more. There will also be “camps” for like-minded residents looking to learn something new. “There will be lots of action and activities throughout the year.”
And for those who just want to unwind, the waterfront, the nature preserve, seven kilometres of hiking trails and the two swimming pools offer plenty of opportunities to kick back and relax. Friday Harbour even has shuttles and electric golf carts to get people around, in and out of the resort. “When you’re here, we take care of you.”
It’s the kind of lifestyle that appeals to many, Rumm has discovered. “Our residents include people of all age groups who love the city lifestyle and also enjoy escaping to Friday Harbour. They get everything they would in Toronto, but can also enjoy that cottage country feel in summer and a chalet experience in winter.”
There’s another group of people who are also choosing the Friday Harbour lifestyle. “Those who may already own a cottage or second home in Ontario but who are ready to make the move to eliminate travel distance and dealing with upkeep. Their families aren’t rushing up north as much, and Friday Harbour is more appealing because it’s so close.”
Friday Harbour units in phase one are already sold out, and phase two is quickly selling. “We’re creating a place that people can come to relax and enjoy their own slice of heaven.”
The homes of Friday Harbour
“We have a great range of offerings, from studio condos to six-bedroom townhomes,” says Jonah Rumm, sales manager for Friday Harbour. “All units are open concept with great features like high ceilings, all appliances and ceiling-to-floor windows.”
About half of the Friday Harbour units are in phase one, scheduled to be ready for the summer of 2016. The rest are in phase two, ready for summer 2017.
“Our boardwalk condos sit directly above shops and restaurants in the heart of the village, with a premium waterfront view,” says Rumm. Units range from studios starting at $239,000 to million-dollar three-bedroom penthouses. Only six remain in phase one; about half are sold in phase two.
“Just a two-minute walk away, the harbour flat condos are close to the village and surrounded by trees and a courtyard.” These one, two and three-bedroom units range from $269,000 to $899,000. All phase-one units are sold, as is about 60 per cent of phase two.
“All our condo buildings have rooftop decks with barbecues and outdoor kitchen facilities,” says Rumm.
The two-story three- bedroom marina townhouses are on the water and priced at $849,000 to $1 million. On a private island in the harbour, the island townhouses are connected to the mainland by a bridge and gated entrance.
“They’re the largest suites, with premium lakeviews and a shared private pool,” says Rumm. Sizes range from three to six bedrooms and cost from $1.1 million to just under $2 million.
“Each marina and island townhouse has its own private boat slip and dock,” adds Rumm. Phase one is sold out; 12 marina townhouses and 13 island townhouses are still available.
What Friday Harbour owners are saying
Thirteen years in the making, Friday Harbour is finally ready to start building residential units, beginning next month. Those who have already taken the plunge are eagerly awaiting completion of their condos and townhouses.
Pat and Vic Hawdon were Canadians living in North Carolina. After retiring, they moved back to Ontario and are currently residing in Newmarket. “We looked for a home on Lake Simcoe on the water, but we didn’t see what we were looking for,” says Pat. “Then a friend told us about Friday Harbour.”
After visits to the sales office and the site, they fell in love with the concept and opted for a 3,300-square-foot 5-bedroom island townhome.
“We’re thrilled! We have a great lake view and we’ve worked closely with the construction manager to make the changes we wanted in our unit. Everyone’s been so helpful — the staff at Friday Harbour is amazing!”
The Hawdons have a long list of things they love about Friday Harbour. Some of their favourite amenities include the nearby restaurants, the Lake Club, the pool and walking trails. They’re also happy that the GO train is close by; their daughter Andrea lives on the Toronto waterfront, only 90 minutes away by train.
“The way the whole concept has been presented to us, we know exactly what it’s going to look like,” says Pat. “We’ve really never seen anything like it. All the steps they’ve taken to get this far – now it’s taking shape and getting very exciting!”
Olga and Ryan Cohen live in Toronto with their two children, ages four and one. “I grew up spending time at cottages and summer camp, and I’m an avid kite surfer, water skier and boater,” says Ryan. Olga, on the other hand, doesn’t have experience with cottages and prefers city living, so Friday Harbour seemed like a good choice to meet both their needs.
“We can hike, bike or enjoy the boat, but we can also use the fitness centre or dine in the restaurants. And we can skip the maintenance that goes with cottage ownership. When we saw the renderings and learned of the partners who were involved in the project, we bought in.” They purchased a three- bedroom harbour flat condo.
The Cohens also appreciate the proximity to the city. “As realtors, we can’t spend whole weekends up north. Friday Harbour isn’t a three-hour commitment on the highway, so we can run up and rescue the weekend.” Ryan adds:
“We’re looking forward to moving in next summer — it will be a great way to enjoy our time together as a family.”
Additional information can be found at http://www.fridayharbourresort.com