14265 Weston Rd., King City, Ont.
Asking price: $4.9-million
Land: 84 acres
Agents: Diana Dunlap and Lynda Laceby (Laceby Real Estate) Carolyn Scime (Chestnut Park Real Estate Ltd.)
The back story
The farm set in the bucolic hills of King Township was deeded around 1865 and the stone farmhouse was built soon after.
The Crawford family purchased the farm in the 1930s and named it Kinkyle.
Prominent Toronto-based lawyer and businessman Henry Borden bought the farm in the 1960s, then his daughter took it over in the 1970s, real estate agent Diana Dunlap of Laceby Real Estate said.
The current owners, Paul and Marylou Little, turned Kinkyle into an 84-acre equestrian estate for breeding thoroughbred horses. The Littles also hired the architect William Bennett to renovate the old stone house and design a large addition that blends with the original dwelling. Mr. Bennett is well known for his work on historic buildings, including the Millcroft Inn and Langdon Hall Country House Hotel and Spa.
The renovation and building at Kinkyle took two years and expanded the original farmhouse to 7,000 square feet.
The house today
The house is large and well endowed with modern conveniences, but it still retains historic elements such as the wide plank pine floors and five wood-burning fireplaces.
“So many houses now are so ostentatious,” says Ms. Dunlap. “This one isn’t. It’s a real house.”
Mr. Bennett designed a new wing for the master suite, which includes a large bedroom, an ensuite bathroom and a large dressing room.
The country-style kitchen includes a brick fireplace, an alcove to house the range, a large marble-topped island, and arched windows overlooking the garden.
The kitchen is open to a great room which has a vaulted ceiling and windows with views over the swimming pool, tennis court and gazebo.
The dining room has doors leading to a screened porch which allows outdoor dining in warm weather.
Upstairs are the three original farmhouse bedrooms with wide plank floors and dormer windows. Modern comfort comes in the form of ensuite bathrooms.
“Now you really get the feeling of a one-and-a-half storey farmhouse,” says Ms. Dunlap of the sloping ceilings.
Real estate agent Carolyn Scime of Chestnut Park Real Estate Ltd. says the upper storeys in 19th-century houses were often built with dormer windows so the owners could claim the house had only one-and-a-half storeys and therefore pay less in taxes.
“It’s an old farmers’ trick,” she says.
Outside, the grounds include gardens and water features designed by Mark Hartley Landscape Architects. The broodmare barn was built by Dutch Masters Construction Services Ltd., which specializes in horse barns and riding arenas.
The stable has seven stalls, a tack room, feed room and washing area. Ms. Dunlap says it would be easy to expand the facility with an indoor exercise arena for horses participating in activities such as dressage or jumping.
“It’s beautifully designed,” says Ms. Dunlap. “It’s a horseman’s barn.”
A one-bedroom cottage that currently serves as home for the farm manager could also be a guest cottage, suggests Ms. Dunlap.
The best feature
The estate on the Oak Ridges Moraine is set up for pampering thoroughbreds, but Ms. Dunlap points out that people involved in all kinds of sporting activities will find things to do there. Surrounding the house are perennial gardens and a large terrace with a stone fireplace for outdoor gatherings.
For swimmers there are a lap pool, hot tub and outdoor shower. Beyond the house there are 10 rolling acres of paddocks as well as walking and riding trails through the woods.
The tennis court has a covered viewing area and lights for nighttime matches.
The small lake, known as Glenloch, is used for fishing and canoeing.
“They let neighbours’ kids come and fish,” says Ms. Dunlap.
She adds that the location not far from Highway 400 makes the property easy to get to from Toronto.
“It’s very accessible,” says Ms. Dunlap. “If you didn’t want to battle the traffic to Muskoka on the weekend, you’ve got a lake, a pool and a tennis court.”