The listing: 142 Ridley Blvd., Toronto
Asking Price: $6,599,000
Taxes: To be assessed
Lot Size: 75 feet by 152 feet
Agents: Cheri Dorsey McCann and Al Pirdavari (McCann Realty Group Ltd.)
The back story
Arya Tahvili and Ali Ahari worked together as developers in Iran before both moved to Canada and decided to collaborate on a project here.
Mr. Tahvili purchased an older home on Ridley Boulevard in the Cricket Club neighbourhood, south of Highway 401, near Avenue Road.
The area’s namesake club was founded in 1827, when Upper and Lower Canada were still a colony within the British Empire and the game of cricket was popular. But the sport’s popularity waned over the years and, in the mid-1900s, the club faced dwindling revenue.
The fortunes of the Toronto Skating Club and Toronto Curling Club, meanwhile, were on the rise. In the 1950s, the three clubs amalgamated and the cricket club’s large parcel of land became a year-round sports facility.
Today the Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club still stands on Wilson Avenue and the entire neighbourhood to the south is known as Cricket Club.
Many of the area’s houses were built in the 1920s in cottage, Tudor and Georgian styles. The large lots provided lots of space for trees and manicured gardens. Many of the winding streets still don’t have sidewalks, which creates a feeling of being out of the big city.
On a warm day, many neighbourhood residents are outside tending to their lawns and well-established gardens.
In recent years, many of the area’s traditional houses have been torn down to make room for larger dwellings.
Mr. Tahvili purchased one of those older homes and replaced it with a large and contemporary residence that takes full advantage of the wide lot and views of the towering trees outside.
The house today
Mr. Tahvili designed a contemporary seven-bedroom, seven-bathroom house in 7,000 square feet of living space.
Guests arrive to a foyer with a lush black olive tree standing in a sunken planter with an irrigation system.
“The main idea was to cope with long, cold winters in Toronto,” Mr. Tahvili says. “It’s a tropical tree.”
A living room at the front of the house has a modern fireplace with bookmatched stone surround.
Beyond the entryway, the main floor widens to a kitchen and family room at the rear. Floor-to-ceiling windows trimmed in Douglas fir overlook the backyard.
The kitchen has a large island with a marble top and a built-in breakfast counter. Appliances are built-in behind modern cabinets.
A floor midway between the first and second uses space above the garage for two bedrooms and one ensuite bathroom. Mr. Tahvili points out that one of the bedrooms could be used as a home office.
On the second floor, a skylight above the stairwell brings light through the centre of the house.
The master suite at the rear has large windows overlooking the backyard. The walk-in dressing room has built-in closets and a skylight. In the ensuite bathroom, there’s a walk-in shower and a stand-alone tub in front of the floor-to-ceiling window. The double sinks rest on a floating vanity trimmed in wood.
There are four additional bedrooms, three bathrooms and a laundry room on the second level. An elevator takes residents between the three floors.
In the basement, there’s a recreation room with a bar, a laundry room, a nanny’s room with ensuite bathroom and a wine cellar.
A side entrance leads to a mud room with a built-in dog shower.
On the exterior, Mr. Tahvili and Mr. Ahari used stone for the front façade and ipe wood for the trim. There’s a circular heated driveway at the front.
At the rear, a terrace has a natural gas fire pit.
Real estate agent Cheri Dorsey McCann of McCann Realty Group Ltd. points out there’s room for a backyard swimming pool on the 152-foot-deep lot.
Ms. McCann adds that the neighbourhood is coveted for its proximity to reputable schools and easy access to the shops and restaurants of Avenue Road.
The best feature
In the family room, the double-height ceiling is lined with wood. The design also allows views of the backyard from a second-floor landing.
“I wanted to make the most of the trees,” Mr. Tahvili says.
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