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Level Gray log home with distinctive historical past on the market for $12 million

The century outdated dwelling on West 2nd close to Blanca has solely had two homeowners

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Imagine it or not, there’s nonetheless an outdated log home in Level Gray. And you would argue it’s essentially the most distinctive outdated home in Vancouver.

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The six-bedroom house is on the market for the primary time in seven many years, for $11.9 million. However the sky-high worth isn’t due to the log home, it’s as a result of the property stretches over three heaps that supply breathtaking views of English Bay, downtown Vancouver and the North Shore mountains.

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“Do you bear in mind the Vancouver Present within the ’80s?” asks Jennifer Fahrni, whose household has owned the house since 1950. “The view was truly the primary shot of the Vancouver Present (a nightly TV present on CKVU). That was the shot from the (second storey) balcony to the town.”

There’s a bust of a girl on the balcony that appears out on the view, certainly one of many artworks that adorn the property. Nevertheless it isn’t a bust of simply anyone, it’s a self-portrait by the late Jean Fahrni, an artist who made the house an inventive hub for seven many years.

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Jean Fahrni died June 2, 1919 on the age of 100. A detailed good friend of the legendary Haida artist Invoice Reid, she held numerous occasions within the dwelling for cultural organizations over time.

“(Reid) hung round the home, he was a fixture at Thanksgiving and Christmas and late at night time,” mentioned Jennifer Fahrni, certainly one of Jean’s 4 youngsters.

“They had been nice, nice pals, from earlier than I used to be born. He made her a bracelet that’s certainly one of a sort. He didn’t make any with mastodon ivory, aside from for her. He mentioned ‘Since you’re such a white girl, I needed to put the ivory in there.’”

Jean Fahrni’s heat, partaking persona was a very good match for her dwelling, which has giant rooms with tall ceilings that had been excellent for entertaining.

The cedar logs have a darkish stain and adorn the outside of the home. However the inside is extra like an arts and crafts dwelling, with common partitions, coffered ceilings and pollard oak flooring with beautiful inlays across the corners.

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In line with the humanities and crafts theme, the hearth mantles are constructed from stones that had been dug out of the Capilano River and barged over to the location. The den is exceptional, with an enormous river rock fire surrounded by six foot tall fir panelling topped by plate rails.

We also needs to be aware of the large Douglas fir and cedar timber that flank the entrance of the home. The fir is likely to be 10-storeys excessive, and there’s a bit burl within the cedar that somebody has subtly carved right into a face.

The house was built circa 1912-17 and sits on three lots. The columns are river rock from the Capilano River, the logs come from the Sunshine Coast.
The home was constructed circa 1912-17 and sits on three heaps. The columns are river rock from the Capilano River, the logs come from the Sunshine Coast. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG

The 5,000 sq. ft. home at 4686 West 2nd is alleged to this point to 1912, however doesn’t seem in a neighborhood listing till 1918, so could not have been completed till 1916 or 1917. It will have been constructed when Level Gray was a separate municipality — it joined Vancouver in 1928.

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The primary proprietor was Ontario lawyer James Francis Joseph Cashman, and one of many architects was Richard Perry, who designed one other acclaimed heritage construction, the Tudor-revival Tatlow Court docket flats in Kitsilano.

The story goes that Cashman met Tom and Frank Murphy, who had a small timber firm on the Sunshine Coast. The Murphys had reduce a bunch of logs for telegraph poles, however there was a recession due to the First World Conflict and so they weren’t in a position to promote them.

So that they satisfied Cashman to construct a log home with their unused logs.

“Cashman bought all these logs, and so they floated all of them the best way from Half Moon Bay to Spanish Banks,” relates Will McKitka of Sotheby’s Realty, who’s promoting the house. “Then they used draw horses and dragged them as much as the location.”

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The home would have been out within the boonies when it was constructed, extra like a country lodge within the forest than a daily dwelling.

The outside has a big lined porch, similar to these at outdated railway stations. It’s large enough to arrange a desk and chairs to dine outdoors and take within the view. There may be additionally a big patio in again with a big eating space that has a tremendous wisteria vine that wraps across the again of the home.

“(Jean’s) crowning glory was that wisteria, (which) was planted when the home was constructed,” mentioned Jennifer Fahrni.

“It’s the mom of the wisteria at Van Dusen (Gardens). (She) was a grasp gardener at Van Dusen and he or she would take numerous clippings from the backyard to numerous locations.”

However the large wisteria, fir and cedar timber solely add to the complexity of any potential redevelopment of the location.

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The home is listed as Heritage A on the Metropolis of Vancouver’s Heritage Register, the best designation. Nevertheless it was constructed in the course of the location, so including some other buildings could be difficult.

“Hopefully somebody buys the house and does a major renovation and enjoys it for what it’s,” mentioned realtor McKitka.

“However that will take a major funding. There may be an argument to be made that somebody might retain this home and construct an infill home, or somebody could need to construct three new properties.

“The home is on the town’s historic checklist, however there is no such thing as a heritage bylaw hooked up to it, so that will permit a possible purchaser to go to the town and negotiate, maybe retaining the heritage home and on the identical time growing densification, which the town is clearly in favour of.

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“And naturally it will requite rezoning. It will be a prolonged, pricey process.”

However it’s a distinctive dwelling, with a singular historical past.

We haven’t even gotten into Jean’s husband, Dr. Harry Fahrni, an orthopedic surgeon who travelled the world for spinal analysis.

Jean Fahrni went alongside on his journeys to Indonesia and assembled a group of 600 ceramics that she donated to the Museum of Vancouver. They had been included in an exhibition of Asian ceramics on the time of her demise.

“I acquired her from the hospital and he or she acquired all spruced up, like she at all times was, and took her to the opening of the present, which was within the Vancouver Museum,” mentioned Jennifer Fahrni.

She was a trooper to the tip, Jean Fahrni.


The den has a river rock fireplace and six foot fir panelling.
The den has a river rock fire and 6 foot fir panelling. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG
Unlike many arts and crafts homes, this one is quite bright inside, because of the large windows and large rooms. This is the dining room, where Jean Fahrni’s friends gathered for cultural events.
Not like many arts and crafts houses, this one is kind of vivid inside, due to the big home windows and enormous rooms. That is the eating room, the place Jean Fahrni’s pals gathered for cultural occasions. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG
A photo of Jean Fahrni from her younger days, beside a photo of her daughter Jennifer.
A photograph of Jean Fahrni from her youthful days, beside a photograph of her daughter Jennifer. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG
The living room is big enough for a piano.
The lounge is large enough for a piano. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG
Jean Fahrni was an artist and filled the property with art, such as this face carved into a cedar tree.
Jean Fahrni was an artist and crammed the property with artwork, similar to this face carved right into a cedar tree. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG
Closeup of the logs used during construction.
Closeup of the logs used throughout building. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG
Another view of the living room.
One other view of the lounge. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG
The view from the front yard.
The view from the entrance yard. Photograph by Jason Payne /PNG
Jean Fahrni made a bust of herself as an art student at UBC. She installed it on the second-storey sleeping porch/balcony of her home, positioning it so it could admire the home’s breathtaking view. In the 70s and 80s the Vancouver Show used a photo from here at the beginning of the show.
Jean Fahrni made a bust of herself as an artwork scholar at UBC. She put in it on the second-storey sleeping porch/balcony of her dwelling, positioning it so it might admire the house’s breathtaking view. Within the 70s and 80s the Vancouver Present used a photograph from right here firstly of the present.
Jean Fahrni was a fixture of Vancouver’s society pages for decades. Here she is in the Vancouver Sun on May 6, 1961.
Jean Fahrni was a fixture of Vancouver’s society pages for many years. Right here she is within the Vancouver Solar on Could 6, 1961.
Jean Fahrni and daughter Jennifer with the unique Bill Reid gold and ivory bracelet in 2008. Malcolm Parry photo.
Jean Fahrni and daughter Jennifer with the distinctive Invoice Reid gold and ivory bracelet in 2008. Malcolm Parry picture.

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