The South Rosedale Landmark estate known as “Horsman Hall” is the result of the flawless and seamless intersection between mesmerizing modern design details and extravagant heritage charm.

By Tara MacIntosh


Imagine a neighbourhood first settled by Sheriff William Jarvis and his wife, Mary, sometime around 1826 — a neighbourhood built from trails that were transformed into meandering streets and continues to be defined by ravines. This is a neighbourhood that derived its name from blooming roses, and it’s an area that has become a landmark attraction in one of the world’s largest cities — Rosedale, Toronto. Rosedale has continued to evolve over nearly 200 years while preserving its heritage look, but it’s often a challenge in settings like this when it comes to designing the different epochs together.


Originally built in 1915 and designed by James Ellis, one of Toronto’s prominent architects of the time, this home has been completely renovated. The design by Lieux Architects Ltd. has been crafted by Severn Woods Fine Homes, in collaboration with Noeud Atelier du Parquet and Edwards + Wilson Cabinetmakers. The renovation includes a generous two storey addition, allowing for an expansive kitchen and family room, and a sunlit principal bedroom with ensuites.


The pairing of the various woods, along with the styling of this immaculate home, makes this Rosedale estate a masterpiece when it comes to marrying heritage detail and stunning modern additions. The interior space brilliantly combines the luxurious open-concept approach to contemporary design with timeless, meticulous craftsmanship that celebrates beauty and longevity. “We designed the modern interior the homeowner wanted, while retaining key elements of the original architecture,” says Nathalie Bely, a principal at Lieux Architects Ltd. “The heritage property’s picturesque circular porch, Palladian dormer and stained-glass and curved bay windows were all restored. The modernization included opening the interior and creating a wall of windows at the back of the home, inviting natural light to illuminate the space and providing sweeping views of the back garden and Coach House. Every detail, including the floor design, was detailed and meticulously executed.


The flooring played one of the significant roles, since it would be immediately visible and had to subtly integrate into each room and encourage flow. The floors needed to represent both a modern aesthetic and heritage charm, plus it had to be durable and offer a rich texture. “It really needed to create depth and be visually interesting — it was certainly treated as one of the home’s main features,” says Bely. “We needed exceptional quality hardwood that could be customized to complement both big and small spaces with equal allure. We were eager to work with the experts at Noeud Atelier du Parquet, as their customization options allowed us to have custom pattern on the main floor while using the same tone in straight boards on other levels.”


Noeud Atelier du Parquet ensured the flooring chosen for this project told the story of old meets new in the most poetic way. Used throughout the home is a product of their luxury line noeud_360 from Collection THREE — this high-end collection is in alignment with a home of such esteemed stature, as its beauty is undeniable, and it employs heritage traditions in its manufacturing, including smoking and cerusing techniques. The hardwood boards were deep smoked, which accentuates and darkens the tannins in 144 the wood. The cerusing process followed, done by hand, to draw out the detail and character of the grain, allowing unique beauty to take centre stage. “The cerusing of the wood adds a depth, richness and an appeal factor,” says Wissam Qassim, the co-founder of Torontobased Noeud Atelier du Parquet. “The contrast works so well for this particular project, known as project Crescent, as smoking the wood highlights its natural variation and cerusing adds texture, celebrating its character and detail while keeping it sleek and light.


As a luxury flooring provider, every detail — from the variety of wood tones, treatments and curated patterns — is purposely selected to tell the story that inspired the homeowner. In this case, the integrity of the estate needed to be complemented with a modern aesthetic without compromising the existing charm. The ground floor boasts a regal herringbone pattern — a classic design that feels both retro and contemporary. Herringbone, dating back to the Roman Empire, was reserved for the elite due to its opulence and strength. “The pattern was a successful design choice for this project because it perfectly demonstrates the expanse of the flooring,” Qassim explains. “It pairs flawlessly with the millwork and other materials in the home. Together, there is a seamless flow, which is imperative to the home’s integrity.” In a matching tone, six inch parallel boards were selected for the upper level to maximize room size, offer visual interest and honour the home’s history. Paying tribute to contrasting periods is a delicate dance; however, breathtaking results ensue when the vision of the homeowner meets the imagination and luxury hardwood collection of Noeud Atelier du Parquet.


“We’re really proud of this project — it came together seamlessly, and the homeowners were thrilled with the results,” says Qassim. “We wouldn’t have been so successful without our collaborators who helped bring our creative vision to life, including Barry Cohen Homes, KARE Toronto, M-Prove, Weavers Art, photographer Evgeniya Pagalova, videographer Pavlotski Productions, stylist Daria Zotova and Atelier Munro.”


Photography by Evgenia Pogalova