LOCATION: : Mulmur, Ontario


DESIGN LEADERSHIP: Michael Poitras, Principal-in-Charge of Design

CLIENT: Withheld


  • No.of storeys: 4
  • Fourth floor area: 1,750 ft2 (163 m2)
  • Third floor area: 3,740 ft2 (348 m2)
  • Second floor area: 7,675 ft2 (713 m2)
  • Ground floor area (finished): 4,025 ft2 (374 m2)
  • Total floor area: 17,190 ft2 (1,597 m2)

  • Dry stacked Wiarton stone
  • Black zinc exterior walls & fascia
  • Clear anodized aluminum curtain wall & doors
  • DensDeck soffits (painted white)
  • Dry stacked Wiarton stone landscape walls
  • Glass guardrails
  • Concrete terraces
  • Green roofs

Ground floor:

  • Master bedroom/ensuite
  • Family room
  • Games room
  • Change rooms
  • Exercise room
  • Sauna
  • 2 fireplaces
  • Outdoor pool/deck
  • Landscaped terrace

Second floor:

  • Open concept living/dining/sitting/kitchen
  • 2 fireplaces
  • Sports equipment room
  • 4-car garage

Third floor:

  • Entrance foyer
  • Office
  • Library
  • Guest bedroom/ensuite
  • 1 fireplace
  • 2 outdoor decks

Fourth floor:

  • 3 bedroom ensuites
  • Craft room/laundry room
  • 2 outdoor decks


Set within a 25-acre pastoral site high up on the Niagara Escarpment with extensive views to the east, this modern stone house, inspired by traditional European country villas, connects its occupants – an extended grown family – with nature, at every turn.

Conceived as an “outcropping of rock” commonly observed in the Mulmur hills, the building is sited 90-degrees to the contours, running perpendicular to its sloping site, to best address the predominant views and the sun’s rotation.

The massing for this large residential building was broken down into “visually manageable chunks of rock”, with Wiarton stone building blocks of varying heights stepping continuously in both plan and section. The building’s south façades are open and glazed, allowing warm sunshine to enter the home, while the black zinc north façades remain closed to reduce winter cooling – a perfect solar diagram. Intermixed with this, are thin black zinc horizontal projections for roofs and balconies, which double as outdoor terraces.

Perpendicular to the villa and parallel to the site’s contours are numerous dry stacked Wiarton stone landscaped retaining walls, which define driveways, pool edges, walking paths and a fire pit. Newly planted maple trees positioned parallel to these stone walls bring more greenery, shading and wind protection to this wide open, stunningly beautiful site.