While soaring interest rates had most home buyers hitting pause in 2023, the most expensive house sale ever on the North Shore – for a contemporary waterfront home on Radcliffe Avenue — also completed quietly in West Vancouver last year for $32.8 million.
Luxury buyers are still out there, said Brock Smeaton, the real estate agent who listed the most expensive home last year. Malcom Hasman of Angell, Hasman & Associates represented the buyer.
Buyers tend to be a small and elite group of people, who likely have homes elsewhere in the world, said Smeaton. “There aren’t a whole bunch of buyers for a house like this,” he said. “It’s a very small community and market.”
Most people who live in these homes – at least part of the time – aren’t especially famous, said Derek Grech, who was the real estate agent on some of the other top 10 sales this year.
They’re more likely to have made their money in tech, or in the financial world.
“I always thought they’d be much different than myself,” said Grech. But they’re not, he said. They’re just richer.
“They want their kids to have the things they didn’t have.”
Sales over $20 million used to be much rarer, said Smeaton. “Vancouver was not at that level until recent years.”
Buyers are looking for something “very unique and exclusive,” added Smeaton, who last year was named Royal LePage’s top individual national real estate agent.
Waterfront is often key. “A lot of it is location,” said Smeaton who names streets like Bellevue, Radcliffe and Travers among “the premium streets” in West Vancouver.
Also, when it comes to luxury real estate, size does matter.
“You’re not getting $20 million for a 5,500 square-foot house on a 12,000 square-foot lot,” he said. “It’s got to be an oversized large estate-style property.”
That said, here’s a look at the top 10 sales on the North Shore in 2023.
This sale was the most expensive to ever complete on the North Shore. The $32.8 million deal, completed in August, flew under the radar in a private sale.
The modern architecturally designed home by architect Brad Lamoureux was built on what used to be two former lots on the West Bay waterfront. The people who built the house “wanted to build a larger, wider home on the waterfront,” said real estate agent Brock Smeaton.
The result was an 8,000-square foot home in a spectacular setting including a small peninsula with breathtaking views.
“They had a beautiful putting green down by the water and a big negative edge swimming pool and spa, just kind of hung out over the water,” said Smeaton.
The interior of the home – mostly designed by one of the former owners – features a huge open floor plan with 14-foot ceilings on the main floor and a 2000-bottle wine cellar.
Smeaton describes the new owner as a global businessperson who moved to West Vancouver from Europe.
Property records list the owner of the home as the founding engineer of Uber who is now the chief technology officer for a cryto currency company.
Another big sale on the North Shore happened Sept. 30, when a 14-year-old Altamont mansion of over 13,000 square feet at 2960 Palmerston Ave. was sold by real estate agent Derek Grech of the Partners Real Estate for $16.98 million. Boasting almost 4,300 square feet of living space on the main level, the eight-bedroom, 11-bathroom home has plenty of room for entertaining and features vaulted ceilings, a hot tub, wine cooler, gym, media room and six fireplaces. There’s also a swimming pool, gated entrance and a five-car garage.
The home, which sits on almost an acre of flat land, sold just four days after listing.
This six-bedroom, eight-bath three-storey home at 770 Greenwood Road in West Vancouver’s British Properties sold for more than $15 million on Sept. 16 by Derek Grech of Partners Real Estate after only five days on the market. Described as a modern style concrete home of almost 10,000 square feet, the home was designed by Frits de Vries Architects and features an outdoor pool, sauna, steam room, wine and media rooms, triple garage and radiant heating, as well as stunning views over downtown Vancouver. The home was most recently assessed at $8.1 million, and last sold in March 2016 for $4.5 million.
815 King Georges Way
This stunning three-storey, four-year-old mansion at located on a 0.44-acre corner lot at King Georges and Farmleigh Road in the British Properties, sold for just under $14.7 million after just one day on the market. The house boasts five bedrooms, eight bathrooms, and just over 9,000 square feet of living space along with unobstructed views of the city, bridge, ocean, Stanley Park and beyond. A flat heated driveway, waterfall features front and back, (said to bring good fortune), Italian chandeliers, and Tesla back-up battery are among the features of the home, along with a temperature-controlled wine cellar, office, gym and home theatre. Outside, landscaping features California palm trees along with a private putting green.
The property was last assessed at about $10 million and last sold for $4.6 million in September 2015.
It’s all about the views at this contemporary 10,700-square-foot mansion at 1430 Bramwell in West Vancouver’s Chartwell area. Stunning views of Mount Baker, Lions Gate Bridge, Stanley Park, and UBC helped the six-bedroom nine-bathroom home, complete with “Lamborghini office”, sell for $14.3 million after 32 days on the market on March 19. Spacious balconies overlook a private swimming pool and Jacuzzi, and a manicured south-facing back yard are among the outdoor attributes. Inside, there is extensive use of Italian marble, as well as Miele appliances, BOCCI chandeliers and a 20-foot ceiling showcases breathtaking views. Other features of the smart home a Tesla generator, elevator, sauna, home theatre, gym, wine bar and wine cooler and four-car garage.
The property was last sold in June 2015 for $6.3 million.
6165 Eastmont Drive
This 7,200-square-foot West Coast modern home, custom designed by Craig Chevalier Designs, was built in 2016 and sold in a private sale in September 2023 for $13.5 million by real estate agent Brock Smeaton.
The three-bedroom, six-bathroom home sits on a large one-acre lot on a promontory overlooking Larson Bay. It’s described as a “stunning one-of-a-kind Gleneagles estate.”
It was assessed in July at just over $10 million.
2988 Rosebery Avenue
This grand 11,500-square-foot home on three-quarters of an acre in Altamont was sold in November by real estate agent Derek Grech of Partners Real Estate for $12.4 million. The mansion on a private estate setting includes a pool, seven bedrooms and 11 bathrooms, a theatre, games room, gym, wine room, hobby room and four-car garage.
The 20-year-old home near Altamont Park last sold in 2015 for $8.9 million.
This nine-year-old luxury mansion at 4360 Rockridge Road in the Cypress Park neighbourhood provides expansive water views from a private one-acre estate.
The five-bedroom, eight-bathroom 8,200-square-foot home in an area above Stearman Beach was sold for $10.1 million June 14 by Malcom Hasman of Angell, Hasman & Associates after 40 days on the market.
Included in the gated exclusive property is a pool, sauna, steam room, wine room and gym.
The property last sold for $11.6 million in September 2015 and has been listed on and off since 2021.
550 Lowry Lane
The only North Vancouver property to crack the top sales list last year, this Tuscan-inspired estate on the Dollarton waterfront sold for $9.5 million July 9.
The 6,700-square foot four-bedroom, six-bathroom home offers panoramic views out over Burrard Inlet. The main-floor features a chef’s kitchen with professional-grade appliances, Florence-inspired office, and family room. The second floor includes a recreation room, wet bar, and home spa with soaking tub.
1070 Groveland Road
This 7,900-square-foot 22-year-old home in the British Properties sold for $9 million June 27 after 63 days on the market.
The spectacular six-bedroom eight-bathroom custom-built home sits on an acre of land and offers breathtaking city and ocean views.
The three-level home boats an open floor plan, floor to ceiling windows, grand foyer, gourmet kitchen, pool and Jacuzzi. Additional features include a dry and steam sauna, radiant heat, a theatre, three-car garage and nanny accommodation.