As more people are discovering South Vancouver Island, the lure of owning a little slice of this paradise is helping to push demand for real estate and new development.
The tranquility and rugged beauty of the South Island, its excellent services and superb lifestyle draws many to retire here, buy a vacation or primary property and/or start a business. Entrepreneurs with ventures of all sizes comprise the more than 17,000 businesses operating in Greater Victoria.
The region has an exceptional selection of condominiums, patio homes, retirement complexes and town houses, as well as a broad range of single-family dwellings in historic neighbourhoods through to new subdivisions and rural settings. It's a compact place, and that helps make commuting times shorter than many cities, and provides exceptionally convenient access to shops, schools and recreation.
Greater Victoria has some of the most fantastic real estate in the country, but prices are more cushioned from the boom-and-bust cycles of many other parts of Canada. In the downtown core, thousands of new condos have been built in the last ten years. With a handful of new projects now under construction, there's a healthy inventory of new and nearly-new units.
Bayview Place is a five-minute walk from downtown, adjacent to the Inner Harbour, it is a mixed-use neighbourhood and a retail, residential and community focal point. This project offers close to 1.5 million square feet of residential development, 70,000 square feet of commercial space, 20 prime hilltop acres with ocean views and four unique districts full of amenities. This new waterfront neighbourhood is bound to shift the balance in downtown Victoria. The Roundhouse Marketplace offers a mix of retail, culture, gathering places and residential surroundings. The Lime Bay District has four mixed-use sites highlighted by open spaces and landscaping features. It is connected to the waterfront by the Lime Bay Mews walkway and to surrounding districts by the E&N RailTrail. At the peak of Bayview Place, the Saghalie District boasts views of the harbour, city and distant mountains. It is characterized by the hilltop locations, where Saghalie is a First Nations word meaning high or above. Lastly, The Tyee, taking its name from the First Nations term meaning Chief or Elder, it is focused on meeting the needs of seniors in the Bayview Place neighbourhood.
Recently completed projects downtown range from all-new construction to restoration of historic buildings, like The Hudson. It has transformed the city's historic Hudson's Bay building into modern flats, double-height lofts and penthouses above some of the city’s most exciting retail, including the fabulous new Victoria Public Market.
The Sovereign is Chard Development’s latest project that brings New York-style living to downtown Victoria. Union by Anthem Properties mixes residential and commercial in two five-storey buildings located on Pandora and Fisgard, connected by a courtyard.
Era, by Concert Real Estate, combines the historic architecture of old Victoria with modern concrete and glass. The eco-friendly project has 157 units over 16 stories, most priced under $400,000. On the corner of Douglas and Simcoe, facing Beacon Hill Park, 200 Douglas is a six-storey building with 38 one- and two-bedroom condos, priced from $359,900.
Duet, at 640 Michigan Street, has 90 units being built by Chard Developments, priced from $345,000. Escher on Broughton is an 84-suite development with a modern design that nods to Victoria's fast-growing reputation as a tech hub and thriving urban centre. One bedrooms start at $219,000.
In-fill housing is popular on the South Island, and municipalities are encouraging development of under-utilized parcels of land. New subdivisions are now being built in View Royal, Saanich, Colwood and Langford, as well as Sooke and the Highlands. Choices range from single-family dwellings, townhouses and condos through to waterfront estate homes.
SookePoint Ocean Cottages offer you a true Vancouver Island experience, where you enjoy an ocean view in your cottage perched on solid rock only five metres from the sea. Hike, sail, dive, fish, whale watch or just relax at these luxury 530- to 2,500 square-foot cottages. Prices start at approximately $240,000 and you can enjoy flexible zoning with unlimited personal and resort use. Come visit the show cottage and see for yourself!
Heron View in Sooke is situated along the shores of a protected inlet, with an endless array of landscape, beaches and breathtaking Strait of Juan de Fuca and Olympic Mountain views. Just steps from the ocean, on 10 acres of waterfront property, Heron View offers craftsman-inspired townhomes starting at $375,000. Each of the 3- or 4-bedroom layouts are a popular choice for downsizers seeking a maintenance-free lifestyle. Heron View is less than an hour from Victoria.
Spirit Bay in Metchosin, 35 minutes from Victoria, is currently being built to be a sustainable and unique community. Spirit Bay is a community that will grow carefully in planned phases over a period of 8-10 years. The first 100-acre phase will include 600-800 residences, as well as a town centre with offices, shops and recreational facilities. Visitors can check out the presentation centre to see the model, floor plans and overall development. The homes will be reminiscent of seaside fishing villages with board and batten exteriors to epitomize a cottage feel.