A completely rebuilt century-old Toronto home is reimagined for modern-day living. Here’s what broker Justin Cohen, from Cohen Homes and Estates, told us about this exquisite estate.

By Adriana Ermter

Photography by Alex Rothe


Welcome to Horsman Hall Estate on Crescent Road, in the highly coveted south Rosedale enclave, where lush green parks and forested ravines surround tree-lined streets punctuated with stately Victorian, Georgian, Tudor and Edwardian-style homes. Founded in 1826 and named after the wild roses that abound, Rosedale is as coveted for its peaceful environment and scenic greenery as it is for its top-rated schools and one-of-a-kind luxury properties, like Horsman Hall.


Originally built in 1915, the two-and-a-half-storey detached heritage home is an $11,895,000 estate that offers easy access to the boutiques and restaurants on Mount Pleasant Boulevard and Yonge Street, as well as the Don Valley Brick Works’ weekend markets, hiking trails and bike paths. With its magnificent red brick and natural stone exterior, complete with an expansive circular veranda, curved bay windows and a hipped, cross-gabled roof with a Palladian dormer, Horsman Hall is picturesque, iconic and steeped in more than 100 years of history. “The home has so much history,” says Justin Cohen, a broker with Barry Cohen Homes Inc., in Toronto. “The owner engaged Lieux Architects to elevate the estate and restore it to its former glory. They did a great job, too, preserving the charm of the home and its character, as well as respecting the history of the area while bringing it up to modern standards with a brand-new interior.”


The estate’s grand exterior is a nod to its legacy. Walking through the newly restored original oak front door, a blend of meticulously preserved architecture with a fulsome renovation awaits. The elegant herringbone-patterned European white oak hardwood floors, by Noeud Atelier du Parquet, are accented by sleek white porcelain tiles (swirled with silver-grey veining) and work beautifully with the crisp white walls featured throughout the main floor’s living and dining areas and private library. A three-sided gas fireplace, a chic bar area for social gatherings and a premium Sub-Zero wine preservatory easily facilitate every celebratory moment. Steps away, the expansive kitchen is flanked in bespoke wood cabinetry, complemented with black-and-white-veined European-made porcelain floor tiles and white-and-silver-grey- veined porcelain countertops. Replete with a Wolf induction cooktop, Miele wall ovens and dishwasher, a Sub-Zero refrigerator and a custom-crafted porcelain backsplash, no detail has been overlooked. The island and separate floating eat-in counter share sweeping southwest views and access to the back garden through the floor-to-ceiling glass walls and sliding doors. A powder room with black walls, brass fixtures and a feature wall of black-and-grey geographic-printed wallpaper adds drama. “This home has truly been designed for a family,” says Cohen, adding the space is well thought out. “There’s room for everyone on every level of the home.”


Upstairs on the second floor of the 5,515-square-foot main house, the spacious primary suite boasts a wall of built-in closets and a walk-in closet for optimum storage, as well as an incredible balcony with a stellar view of the city. The ensuite bathroom has a stunning volcanic limestone soaker tub — the perfect place to escape during autumn’s cool evenings. Down the hall, an additional bedroom with a two-storey cathedral ceiling, high windows and ensuite lend fairy-tale vibes. There are two more bedrooms on the third floor, each with a window seat and writing nook, a shared bathroom and access to an airy roof deck with a spectacular downtown view.




Downstairs, on the light-filled lower level, is another bedroom and ensuite bathroom, perfect for nanny suite, teenager or visiting guests. Polished concrete floors stretch throughout the level’s media family room, wine cellar with a wet bar, home gym and laundry area. “Everything has been replaced, and it’s all brand new, including the mechanics, the HVAC, the roof and 95 percent of the windows, except for the heritage stained-glass originals. It’s a smart home with all the modern conveniences,” Cohen says.


The immense conveniences include a historic coach house. Located behind the newly added Muskoka-inspired two-car garage at the west end of the property lies an idyllic 1,900-squarefoot, two-storey coach house from a bygone era. Its copper-clad entry canopy and brick exterior give it the storybook presence it deserves. Constructed with an elevator for expediency, two generous bedrooms (both with ensuite bathrooms), a dining and living room, kitchen and powder room, the coach house is a rare and spacious retreat. “It’s definitely the coolest feature,” says Cohen. “It’s separate from the rest of the backyard and could be for guests, a multigenerational family or it could be a music studio, office or other — the options are endless,” he says. “There’s nothing like it. This is truly a hidden gem in the city and, without question, it’s a trophy property.”