318 King St. E., Unit 1004, Toronto
The question about the price: $1,249,990
Taxes: $4113.80 (2022)
Monthly maintenance fee: $808.56
agent: Robin Bob (Bob Real Estate Co., Ltd.)
Kelly and Chris Pettit’s lengthy search for an apartment in Toronto led to nearly 90 units in buildings located in popular neighborhoods such as Yorkville, King Street West, Ronsvalis Village and The Junction. Finally, they found the right spot in a two-bedroom “soft loft” at the east end of town, Pettit says.
The mid-rise building is located at the intersection of King Street East and Parliament Street. Its location between Corktown to the east and St. Lawrence to the West is perfect for the couple’s lifestyle. A short ride in transit leads to the Financial District.
“I loved the fact that I could walk out the door and get on the tram,” Pettit says.
For drivers, the site also provides easy access to Don Valley Parkway and the Gardiner Expressway.
This access to a highway out of town became important to the Pettits family early on because they both worked in the fashion business. Soon after their purchase of the unit, Mr. Pettit took a position at a sportswear brand with offices in London, Ontario, and the couple bought a house there.
Meanwhile, Ms. Pettit’s role was in a Canadian clothing distributor who traveled frequently to New York, Atlanta, Boston and countries in Asia to meet with customers and suppliers.
The couple has been splitting their time between a Toronto apartment and a London house for the past six years or so, Pettit says, with the apartment serviced privately as well as a small apartment in the fall and winter.
When the pandemic halted travel in 2020, both Pettits switched to working at home. Mrs. Pettit has turned the second bedroom into an office and Mr. Pettit works in the kitchen when he is in town.
These days, they confuse travel with tasks in the home office.
“Our buyers in Canada are still working at home. I do a lot of Zoom shows,” Ms. Pettit says. “All the American buyers are back in their offices.”
Measuring 1,087 square feet, the interior features an open layout with angled walls, floor-to-ceiling windows, and sliding doors that open onto a balcony from the main living space.
The building is considered a “soft loft” because it is not a diversion from an antique warehouse or industrial building. While the carriage factory that was on the site was demolished, the units had elements such as exposed concrete, heavy columns, nine-foot ceilings, and industrial windows that provide a loft feel.
The Bates lived in the unit as it was after purchasing it six years ago.
Ms. Pettit says most of the finishes were those provided by the builder, so after about three years the couple decided to renovate with the help of Toronto-based Marla Nazzicone Design.
Ms. Pettit began by transforming the kitchen to remove the bulkhead and replace the espresso-colored cabinets, which she found too dark for the space. Today’s kitchen has new built-in appliances and millwork in a light wood veneer with black accents. The small island has been replaced by a larger, porcelain-covered island with a waterfall ledge and an overhanging breakfast bar.
Mrs. Pettit says the couple’s daughter is a cook and Mrs. Pettit loves to cook, so having a good gas range is important for the family.
Ms. Pettit notes that the surface of the island has a marble appearance, but is of a more durable material.
“Porcelain really takes wear and tear.”
Next to the kitchen, an art deco sideboard is built with hammered copper doors, and a wine fridge is behind the cabinet.
The dining area has doors that lead to the west facing balcony.
“It’s a beautiful view of the city,” Pettit says.
Throughout the space, Pettits added 5-inch hardwood floors, motorized blinds, and sheers to cover the windows.
Pettit says window coverings allowed her to go out on long trips to Asia knowing the apartment was securely locked.
“I would stay away for three weeks at a time,” she says.
The basic bedroom has an en suite bathroom with a new dressing table and finishes to match the kitchen palette and appliances.
The second bathroom is used as a powder room for guests and provides an additional shower.
Ms. Pettit says the neighborhood offers plenty of entertainment, along with the couple’s favorite restaurants, wine bars and cafés.
“There are definitely quirky little bars out there,” she says.
The couple sometime walk to Cherry Beach on Lake Ontario or along a waterfront trail.
In the pedestrian-only Distillery there is an open-air market during the Christmas season, and the food vendors at St. Lawrence Market are within walking distance.
“We like to wake up on Saturday, have our coffee on the porch and go to the market,” Pettit says.
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