vida rendering-compressed Vida Condos is set to transform Bayview Village. Priced from just $199,990, the Castle Group Developments midrise project will feature a wide array of suite designs, with 328 to 1,000 square feet of living space. The surrounding neighbourhood is replete with shops, restaurants, parks, schools and transit options — Bayview Village Shopping Centre is a few doors down, the on-ramp to Highway 401 is mere minutes away and Bayview subway station is within walking distance.

One person who is particularly proud of the highly-anticipated project is Mona Bhamani, President of Castle Group Developments. BuzzBuzzHome recently sat down with Ms. Bhamani to gain insight into the three, six and eight-storey stepped condominium.

BuzzBuzzHome: What was the overall design aesthetic for Vida?

Mona Bhamani: The project was conceptualized to fit into a neighbourhood that has been transformed by residential intensification along the subway line. Vida will be built and spread over 1.5 acres of land and was conceived as a “U” shape with each of its three parts responding differently in terms of scale and use to the adjoining land.

These three parts form a quiet courtyard that was inspired by a European palazzo building, creating a semi-private, active, yet sheltered space from Sheppard Avenue. The façade along Sheppard was designed with a more expressive, bolder approach in order to animate the street and give the building identity. It has a geometric ribbon-like pattern that wraps around the building, tying the parts together.

BBH: How does the building fit into the surrounding neighbourhood?

MB: The façade of the building facing Sheppard is more urban, with a scaled six-storey portion and a podium addressing the vehicular and pedestrian nature of the street. Along the west side is an eight-storey portion, which reflects the tall, existing residential building to the west. Along the south rear side is a three-storey portion addressing the lower scale of the existing houses to the south.

Vida was specifically designed for the end user – those who truly want to live there. The grand entrance complements the neighborhood, giving residents a sense of arrival similar to that of the Bayview and Sheppard corridor. vida enterance-compressed BBH: What are the challenges of designing a mid-rise condominium?

MB: Vida’s multi-level design offers numerous suite designs — a bonus for the purchaser, but a bit of a challenge for the builder.

BBH: The floorplans aren’t online yet, so, without giving too much away — what can you tell us about the suite designs?

MB: There is literally something for everyone, from studios to two bedroom plus den suites. Vida also has some beautiful penthouse and sub-penthouse suites that have huge balconies or terraces. All our suites are open-concept and ultra-efficient. We offer affordability without compromising on quality. You get that million dollar look without the million dollar price tag.

BBH: With boutique style condominiums, there is often an emphasis on creating a sense of community. What elements in particular did you use to make Vida feel more inclusive and intimate?

MB: We’re really focused on the end user, so we have designed retail space on the ground level that faces Sheppard and spills out into the courtyard, providing summer café style seating. The courtyard also allows for plenty of daylight, it will be very pleasant for residents and those in the community. Vida’s lobby, games room and sports bar are all very welcoming and will be the perfect setting for residents to spend time with their friends, family and neighbours.

BBH: How does Vida compare to past projects from Castle Group Developments?

MB: Every one of our four projects has been architecturally designed specifically for the environment and the neighbourhood in which it is to be built. As a result, there is no Castle Group “template” but rather a beautiful statement for each location. For example, our award-winning Bellair Gardens is located overlooking the Don Valley Parkway — it’s a mid rise design that carefully follows the curve of the land. Tuscany Gates on Eglinton in Mississauga stands tall and creates a strong presence with an Italian flair while The Palm at Yonge and Finch was inspired by the stunning architecture in Dubai — it’s modern, sleek and stately.

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