When we think of the West Coast mansion, two distinct architectural styles often come to mind — either the clean, minimalist structures with white walls and plenty of marble, or the more soft-spoken mid-century modern designs, complete with natural materials and overhanging roofs.
If you’re one to break the mould and hike back to the Victorian era, then a recently listed home in New Westminster might be just your type of mansion.
Hitting the market this week comes 403 St. George Street, a six-bedroom, 5,840-square-foot residence in the heart of the historic Queen’s Park community, listed for $2.54 million.
Known as the Rostrevor, this Queen Anne-style mansion was built in 1890 by acclaimed Canadian architects Charles Henry Clow and Samuel McClure. Contracted for $5,000, local designer and artist Charles Murray was the first resident to live in the home. The property was later sold in the early 1900s to Walter Gilley, one of the founders of Gilley Brothers.
While the home was restored significantly after the 1990s following a period of disarray, 403 St. George Street still holds on to its classic late 19th-century charm.
From the curb, the three-storey residence is like a Barbie Dreamhouse come to life, with its cross gabled roof and rosey pink exterior. The 12,600-square-foot corner lot is home to the oldest monkey puzzle tree in Western Canada, according to the listing. A few circular hedges dot the lawn here and there as the front path leads you up to a covered Victorian porch. The front double doors showcase colourful stained glass windows — a number of windows throughout the home contain original stained glass work by Bloomfield & Sons. The foyer greets you with a fireplace (one of five throughout the residence), a multi-level staircase and original hardwood floors.
The formal living room exhibits intricate millwork on the fireplace mantel and wood trim throughout, partnered with a large bay window overlooking the front lawn. In the adjacent room, a domed chandelier hangs above a formal dining space, which is big enough to host all of your evening dinner parties in.
The kitchen has been updated with modern stainless steel appliances, but retains many of its historic features. A custom kitchen island and warm wooden cabinetry sit below a beamed ceiling. To the left of the fridge, French doors lead out to a private paved courtyard where you can enjoy a spot of tea.
Upstairs, the master bedroom has its own private lounge space and dressing area, which wouldn’t go amiss without a bay window and open fireplace. No floral wallcoverings or ornate patterns here — the bedroom walls have been kept pretty calm and neutral.
Showers in the home didn’t take off in popularity until later in the 19th-century, but this home pays tribute to the golden days of baths with adorable freestanding clawfoot tubs. In the master ensuite bathroom, a modern shower is accompanied by a traditional pedestal sink, a chandelier and wall-to-wall wainscoting.
Whether you’re looking for the perfect setting to write your next work of Gothic horror fiction, or simply a home with historical flare, 403 St. George Street packs a regal punch — Victorian ghosts not included.