The Call Of The Wild
The call of the wild, with all the comforts of home.
(available for purchase)
‘A World Apart’! Those are the words that Paul Crammond uses to describe this bona fide ‘cottage country hideaway’. He has been selling cottages in this area for over 18 years and has seen over 4,000 properties; and he contends that this one is right up there in his ‘Top 15’ list. So what is it that makes this Georgian Bay retreat so special?
For some people, the perfect getaway means spa treatments and sun-basking; for others, it’s a cultural browse through museums and galleries. Thrill-seekers sate their sense of adventure in exhilarating experiences, while families might enchant their children at fantasy-filled theme parks.
But there is something very special about the rugged terrain of Georgian Bay. Almost 80% as large as Lake Ontario, adjoined to Lake Huron by the narrowest straits, it is often called the ‘sixth Great Lake’. Its classic rock formations, imposing cliffs, and windswept pine trees served as inspiration for many of the landscapes painted by the Group of Seven.
Glacial activity gouged out small bogs and ponds among the rocky outcrops, while deep deposits of soil supported the growth of rich hardwood forests. Part of the Biosphere Reserve, Georgian Bay’s 30,000 Islands area is renowned for its exceptional cruising and unique environment, with many of the islands owned by the crown or the Georgian Bay Land Trust.
Amid this spectacular backdrop is the retreat that has captivated even a seasoned realtor like Paul. “While it is only a couple of hours away from Toronto,” he says, “it feels as if you are entering another reality.” With a taste of the wilderness, but enjoying close proximity to cultured civilization, this location offers the best of both worlds.
Set on ten acres, with 1,300 feet of shoreline, and abutted on either side by similarly-sized vacant lots that are available for purchase, the family compound affords privacy as well as quick access to fine dining, golf, and shopping.
Intersected by Tadenac Bay, it is a five-minute, island-flanked boat ride to the marina. The present owners frequently hop into their boat and head in to Port Carling for lunch or ice cream, and the sumptuous facilities at the San Souci club and the Tadenac Bay fishing club are near at hand.
Expressly designed by the architect to ‘speak to the landscape’, the bungalows suit Georgian Bay’s distinctive lower tree-line. Natural granite pathways weave throughout the compound, blending beautifully into the scenery. The buildings are fashioned from British Columbia cedar and glass, with lake views from all the principal rooms wherever possible.
Ideal for entertaining, with a large guest wing off the main cottage and a separate two-suite guest villa, it can also accommodate a fleet of boats, with a front dock, dry-dock boathouse, and side docks in a protected harbour.
The sheltered sandy beach is perfect for the kids, while smooth swim rocks offer a change of pace. The two islands that are part of the property make great picnic sites, and the sunset views are breathtaking.
“Cottages in this historic area tend to stay stable and are rarely for sale,” says Paul. “Most of them have been handed down through generations.” This one is no exception: the present owners have been there for more than forty years.
It is easy to understand why this particular property earns a high ranking on Paul Crammond’s list of all-time favourites. With the allure of the wild coupled with the comforts of home, this hideaway is truly a world apart! CCH
Photos: Robert Nelson. Aerial photo: Paul Bennett