Sometimes when you want something done right, you’ve got to do it yourself.
For homeowners Gerry and Louise, that included creating their very own lake, and a custom home to complement it, and now selling it. Their beautiful, recently listed 18 acre property is located in the Rural Municipality of Ste. Anne, Manitoba, and a drive down the long, twisting road to the property is like entering an oasis, with the incredibly well maintained, sloping landscape offering a stark contrast to the flat prairies. “People are riveted,” says Louise. “We love seeing people just get out of their cars and look around – they tell us it’s a park, not a yard.”
The historic Rural Municipality of Ste. Anne is located where the West begins, and the rugged Canadian Shield changes to the expansive planes that mark Western Prairies. This area is primarily agricultural, but the beautifully forested areas from Richer eastward provide a striking contrast and great recreation. This area is centrally located only 20 minutes to the east of Winnipeg off the four lane Trans Canada Highway and only about 10 minutes north of Steinbach, or ‘The Automobile City.’ The convenient access to city amenities and a laid-back country setting provides the best of both worlds, and makes the region ideal for business, industry and settlement.
Gerry was born on the property in the original home over seventy years ago, back when his parents were operating the land as a dairy farm. After Gerry and Louise purchased the property, their first step was to complete the immaculate landscaping, and the installation of the acre of lake – ideal for recreation, with an island only accessible by one 48′ arched bridge. The naturally-occurring fresh spring offered an ideal opportunity to dig deep and expand. “We started off with two Caterpillars, explains Louise. “The water kept coming up, so we actually ended up needing a track hoe to build the rest of the lake.” Gerry adds “The water comes in and feeds the lake – it’s filtered, and there’s never a need to add more. The windmill aerates the water in the winter and keeps the fish alive. The extensive pipe pump system (including over 200 feet of pipes) is used to aerate the waters and control algae.
The fountain adds both flair and function with its soothing sounds and aerating abilities from Spring to Fall, and the accent lights along the lake add to the magic late at night. The property lends itself to easy entertaining, especially for families. The pedal boat (which is included for the new owners) can be launched from the beach or the dock, and has provided a popular swimming spot for grandchildren, birthday parties, and the occasional request for wedding photos. During the winter months, the lake has hosted several little ice rinks, offering a perfect platform to skate, play hockey, or have a cozy bonfire. A custom swing set and separate outdoor bathroom add to the child-friendly property amenities.
The property itself has a lot of potential as for evolving uses well. “We had played with the thought of adding small cabins to the property when we were younger,” admits Louise. “Currently, the property features an insulated shop set up for ironworks with a metal shop, and the eight open acres adjacent to Highway 210 would be a great opportunity for the new buyer to garden, plant trees, subdivide – whatever they want.”
When the actual home was built, Louise and Gerry wanted to ensure it was centred around the lake. “Usually the deck would be in the back of the house, but we wanted everything facing the lake. As for the veranda, full length windows and sunroom make sure we get a beautiful view of the lake at all times.” Gerry and Louise ended up going to an architect to get their vision for the home turned into a reality. The end result – a stunning 1750 square foot, open concept bungalow with vaulted ceilings, a gourmet kitchen, spacious dining room and stunning four-season sunroom was designed for picture-perfect views and practical living.
Their neighbour – a carpenter/builder from France – helped them create the Maple one-piece cabinet in French fashion; one piece with a generous overhang. “The large Maple slab was a bit of a challenge to get in the house initially,” says Gerry. Generous cabinet space, strategic accent lighting, spacious counters and an abundance of natural light make the kitchen an excellent space for both food preparation and informal family gatherings. The entranceway also has full cupboards as well as a single, deep utility sink – which Gerry uses to make his homemade wine. The spacious dining room has a niche for a china cabinet, and the 13’ x 10’ four-season sunroom offers gorgeous views and access to the large deck overlooking the lake.
While Gerry & Louise have enjoyed many years and memories with this property, they decided that as they got older it was time to downsize. For them, the decision to sell with PropertyGuys.com was reinforced through word of mouth. “We had been talking to a guy we’ve known for years,” explains Louise. “His son had his property for sale for a long time, and when he switched to PropertyGuys.com it sold fast, so we figured we would give it a chance.”
Ultimately, Gerry and Louise hope that the new property owners will love it as much as they do. “It’s a beautiful place with the gardens, the lake, beautiful views…it has a lot to offer,” says Louise.
If you think this beautiful property might be the gem you’ve been looking for, visit the full listing here.
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Amy is a communications associate for PropertyGuys.com Durham Region and contributor for Welcome Mat.