Every client we meet has a goal for their renovation, and frequently the focus is the kitchen. Kitchen designs can tell you a lot about the way the home is used, from style to layout. Not only does each home have a unique style, but that style is often a product of the homeowner’s lifestyle. Is the focus entertaining? A busy family? Relaxing? Working from home? We recently completed a kitchen and living area renovation and we spoke to the homeowner, Heather, about why they wanted to renovate: “We moved in with two young boys and never intended to stay. After living in the home for 16 years and doing only cosmetic changes I thought ‘if I have to look at that dusty rose tile one more day!’ I began to hate it!” So they took the leap! They decided to use Sasen because of a referral. They knew if we were up to the standards of their friends, we would be perfect for their job! We designed the project, focusing on the kitchen. The clients had Houzz images and photos of kitchen designs and knew the general style and aesthetic- modern and light, eliminating the warm tones and moving towards cooler gray. Our cabinet maker met with the clients to choose cabinetry and provided detailed kitchen cabinet drawings. “For the first time, my home aligns with my life. I work hard and am busy and when I come home I want an uncluttered space. This is me.” The clients were able to demo and find homes for the existing cabinets and flooring, allowing less material wastage or disposal costs. In the end, we opened up the kitchen space, re-did the fireplace, changed the front door and installed new flooring and carpet throughout the home. One of the key details was opening up the kitchen to allow a flow of access from the kitchen to the amazing view. We also turned the formal living room into an everyday family room allowing for less wasted space. “I don’t know why we didn’t think of this before. The kids are older now and they have friends over. They can hang out in the TV room watching the game.” The features of kitchen designs tell you about a family’s lifestyle. We asked what small change had made a big difference to this busy family, with two teenage boys. “I had seen the idea somewhere to make four built-in drawers, one for each family member. Now I just throw the boys’ stuff in a drawer and when they ask ‘where’s my assignment?’ or ‘where’s my wallet?’ they already know the answer!” “The millworker’s attention to detail was amazing!” While the guys have the TV room, she has her own private relaxing space or as we called it, ‘Heather’s Happy Place.’ We designed the room off the kitchen to become a lounge area, the focal point being a special painting. “Every summer as the kids were growing up we went to Savary Island for three weeks. This was the chill place to reconnect.” The painting of the vacation spot became a relaxing reminder that no matter how busy life gets, you can always go to the happy place. “One rule: No TV in the happy space.” This place is just for relaxing. Overall, the space reflects the people and no matter what the trends, you have to be true to what flow you need out of your home. And it often starts with the kitchen! What kitchen designs reflect your lifestyle?
Sasen’s 2015 Here at Sasen, we are looking forward to a new year of connecting with our clients and community around creating beautiful homes. We want to take a moment to reflect and appreciate the people and projects we were involved with in Sasen’s 2015, so we put together Sasen’s 2015: A Year in Review. We started 2015 off by wrapping up projects in North Vancouver and Burnaby. Soon after, Tyler, one of our Project Supervisors accepted the Ovation Award on behalf of Sasen for Best Heritage Renovation. We returned to New Westminster and Vancouver to complete second phases of renovations. Sometimes it’s easier to break up a renovation into different phases, and we are always happy to catch up with past clients! Spring usually brings us into major construction season, but this year we moved into our biggest ever design and permit season yet. Simultaneously our valued crews and subtrades were on the scene at multiple projects in Burnaby, West Vancouver and Vancouver. Connecting with community extends beyond working with our valued clients. This year’s team building event was a volunteer day building the Robson Redux design installation that promotes connecting people to each other and to their city. Things were certainly heating up on Robson, when the Sasen crew spent the summer day helping construct the Porch Parade. We value the collaborative efforts between designers, builders and the community that pull together to bring unique projects with the Robson Redux design challenge. We can’t wait to see what project will hit the street this coming summer! For some R&R, we gathered for the summer BBQ with friends and family. Matt, Sasen Renovation’s principal, and his wife Rosie and their two daughters served up grilled treats and cool drinks on a beautiful summer day. Sasen’s 2015 Wraps Up: As the weather cooled, our team continued the hard work, stopping briefly to celebrate two finalist nominations for the Georgie Awards. Powering through house raising, Vancouver’s new permitting rigors, renovations with amazing views and all the in-betweens, time flew by. Before we knew it, Christmas season was upon us. It is our Sasen holiday tradition to join together and enjoy a meal and the company of those who have helped make Sasen’s 2015 a success. Every year, we connect with amazing new clients. 2015 was no different. We have really been blessed with the opportunity to grow our community of discerning home-owners who know the value of not just a house- but a home. Thank you for your patronage and for sharing your homes with us. So far, 2016 is promising to be a productive year. We are looking forward to what this new year has to bring!
Everyone loves having their hard work recognized and we at Sasen are grateful to be named 2016 Georgie Award Finalists. Sasen Renovations is a finalist in two categories: Best Kitchen Renovation over $100,000.00 and Best Outdoor Living Space. Both of these projects, Casa Luminosa and La Dolce Vita, have distinct feel and show the breadth of design options for an eating space that connects with the outdoors. Casa Luminosa, located in North Vancouver, is a modern kitchen renovation and addition that focuses on the home owner’s existing landscape features. The landscaping incorporates a variety of plant species and takes advantage of Vancouver’s hospitable climate conditions. For these discerning clients, the complete reinterpretation of their kitchen was so expansive and central to their living space that an entire addition was built solely for it. All the services were moved from the original location at the front of the house to accommodate the new, open-concept layout of the kitchen which now faces the expanded living room and the serene back yard greenery. Every effort was made to maximize light and circulation with new, oversized skylights and a unique, custom window surrounding the suspended hood vent. The show piece of this new kitchen is the cabinetry. True to the modern, mid-century feel of the rest of the home, the grain matched, quarter cut, black walnut cabinetry exhibits a unique, repeating “stripe-like” pattern that is subliminally underscored by other features in the space such as the dry stack rockwork on the central fireplace and the bamboo grass feature wall at the far end of the living room. This striking pattern, along with the volume of light filtering through the space, gives the sense of an over-height largeness to an area which is no more than 200 SF in size. We are proud that this project is one of the 2016 Georgie Award finalists particularly because of the home owner, who welcomed our team and forged an ongoing relationship as we worked. In addition, we partnered with numerous trades and Synthesis Design, whose design choices made this project what it is. La Dolce Vita, located in Burnaby, is a Tuscan outdoor kitchen that incorporates a family’s Italian background with the ultimate goal of hospitality. From the chameleon like colour of the curved, stamped concrete walls and stairs right up to the wrought iron handle accents on the cabinet doors, it is plain to see that this Tuscan inspired, back yard retreat was conceived of by people who love to cook and who love to eat even more! The gracious and inviting space was created around an open, outdoor fireplace and kitchen complete with sink, fridge, BBQ and side burner and is anchored by a full sized, dual fuel forno (pizza oven). Unending split-faced granite masonry and natural Sicilian Anzio granite are complimented by the custom Kaya Batu millwork fronts and carved bolster elements. The hand worked copper detail of the chimney caps and hood vent cover catch and throw light from the fireplace and pizza oven up onto the coffered ceiling laid out painstakingly around the 6 skylights. The careful shaping of the post and beam wraps blends an old world Italian feel to the open structure and the architectural bolsters which adorn all the post and beam connections were inspired by the owner’s trip to the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York city. In the evening, when the sun is setting and the oversized, amber glass carriage lamps are dimmed low with the fireplace crackling and the smell of fresh pizza coming out of the oven, one would almost believe they were living la dolce vita in Tuscany....
As we move into the new year, we want to take a look at some of our accomplishments of the last year, and the 2014 Royal City Builders’ Awards mark a wonderful achievement. Sasen Renovations has been recognized once again for our strength in heritage renovations. We took home the 2014 Royal City Builders’ People’s Choice Award this year. The 2014 Royal City Builders’ Awards acknowledge professionals building in New Westminster. New West is home to a variety of beautiful heritage homes, many of which require updating. It takes both talent and patience to work on heritage homes and is something we are fond of at Sasen. This year, the 2014 Royal City Builders’ Awards were hosted by Todd Talbot, known for his presence on Love It or List it Vancouver. We are especially grateful to our hardworking team here at Sasen Renovations for the talent and adept ability to craft something new while respecting the existing heritage properties of the home. We would also like to thank Eric from Pattison Architecture, whose knowledge and experience allowed for the success of this project. Pattison Architecture has won many Royal City Builders’ Awards over the years, a testament to their experience. Of course, we also want to thank Bob and Sheila Innis, the homeowners, who hold a strong appreciation for the heritage value of the home and who have updated this property with the ability to envision the new with appreciation for the old. Bob and Sheila, thanks! This project in particular was interesting due to the artifacts we were able to source, including photos of the original building. As we worked on this project, Sasen Renovations found key pieces of the original building hidden behind a variety of a new changes. We were able to restore the heritage home to be a younger, more updated version of what it was in its glory. In addition, Sasen was able to modernize the kitchen while still allowing for the flow of the home to transition seamlessly. The end result was fantastic! We look forward to taking on more heritage projects, and projects that allow us to practice and respect the craft that is at the core of what drives Sasen Renovations!
Sasen Renovations is kicking off 2014 with the exciting news of becoming a Residential Renovation Georgie Award Winner at the awards ceremony for 2013 Georgie Awards. We took home the award for the Best Residential Renovation under $300,000. We turned a house into a home, and it took dedication and finesse. Even during demolition, this project required consideration and attention to detail. A New Westminster renovation and a heritage renovation at that, we had to keep in mind the delicate and beautiful parts of the home that were being preserved. This project included both an interior renovation portion and exterior New Westminster renovation portions. The interior allowed Sasen to demonstrate our experience with bathroom remodelling, kitchen renovations and the ability to focus of the fine interior finishes while preserving the heritage portions of the home. We created a continuity of design and style, assisting the client in making design decisions that would blend together new and aged portions of the heritage home. The exterior renovation really embellished the bones of the existing structure, but this part allowed for more than just esthetic quality. Replacing the windows meant the home owners can live in greater comfort and be more energy efficient. The sooner an older home takes on a energy effective renovation, the longer the home owners can enjoy the benefits of a greener home. The 2013 Georgie Award ceremony was wonderfully done. It was such an honour to be surrounded by so many of the talented professionals working in Vancouver renovations and Vancouver home building. We enjoyed the evening as much as we enjoyed bringing home the award and recognition for our entire team’s hard work. We couldn’t have done it with out the talented Sasen Renovations team and those who partnered with us to make this project a success. We are confident the 2013 Georgie Awards will be the first of many awards to come! To visit the Georgie site, follow the link below: http://www.georgieawards.ca/winners/view.aspx?id=2682
This is an example of how Sasen stands behind our level of Integrity, Excellence and Craftsmanship… We will do it until it is right! In Burnaby, we are servicing our warranty with an existing client’s outdoor patio! After some time, both the client and Sasen agree that the finishing was not up to our standards so here we are, making it right! Have you experienced this high level of customer service in your past general contractor experiences? After some tears and hard work, we were able to end up with a beautiful product! Of course, we had to also wait for our window of beautiful weather. It was all well worth it!! We are extremely excited to pass this beautiful patio back to our extremely satisfied clients in a couple weeks!