Sharon  Mason

Sharon Mason


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Oak Bay house sells for $13.195 million, setting new record

An 11,900-square-foot waterfront house in the Uplands has sold for $13.195 million, setting a new record for a sale through the Multiple Listing Service in the region.

The 3155 Beach Dr. house, built in 2016, has five bedrooms and eight bathrooms and is set on 1.67 acres. Features include a glass wine cellar, two butler’s pantries, double islands in the kitchen and parking for six vehicles.

A Canadian buyer purchased the property but the name was not immediately available.

The previous sale record was set a year ago, when a Metchosin property at 529 Swanwick Rd. changed hands for $12 million. That property features a 10,500-square-foot house that has won architecture awards.

Prior to that, the most expensive sale through the MLS service was a $10.5-million estate in the Uplands that sold in 2006.

The listing agent for 3155 Beach Dr., Lisa Williams of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada, said the property attracted interest from other parts of Canada, the U.S. and around the world.

The new record is for MLS-listed properties only. A home on Towner Park Road in North Saanich — where Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stayed in the winter of 2019 — went on the market for $18 million in 2012. It was not marketed within MLS and the sale price was not made public.

The current highest price listed for a house in the capital region on MLS is $16.75 million for 8338 West Saanich Rd., set on 6.8 acres on the waterfront. Once owned by now-disgraced investment advisor Ian Thow, the property includes a 60-foot-long dock, a helipad and a two-bedroom carriage house for guests.

In 1999, the house won an award from the Canadian Home Builders’ Association for best single-family detached home of more than 3,500 square feet.

The new record-holder in the Uplands is among other large estates lining Oak Bay’s waterfront, where some of the capital region’s most valuable homes are situated. Properties next to Saanich Inlet in Central and North Saanich also have some of the highest assessments in Greater Victoria.

“In times of global uncertainty, Canadian real estate is regarded not only as a ‘safe haven’ financial investment, but as a literal ‘safe harbour’ offering personal safety and security,” said Don Kottick, chief executive of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada.

Rising property prices have put single-family homes increasingly out of reach for many Greater Victoria residents. In May, the benchmark value for a single-family home in the core — Oak Bay, Victoria, Esquimalt, Saanich and View Royal — was $1.446 million, an increase of 24 per cent from the same month in the previous year, according to the Victoria Real Estate Board.

Prices are expected to soften slightly as more homes come on a market that has seen little supply.

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